The Instigator
Nathan.apologetics
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
2-D
Pro (for)
Winning
4 Points

Is Evolution Scientific?

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Post Voting Period
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after 1 vote the winner is...
2-D
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/5/2014 Category: Science
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 618 times Debate No: 62672
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (6)
Votes (1)

 

Nathan.apologetics

Con

The belief in evolution is a remarkable phenomenon. It is a hypothesis that is defended by the scientific community with a fiery passion, despite macro-evolution's (evolution from one distinct kind of organism into another) contradictions with several key scientific laws. The origins, insufficiency of substantial evidence and the inconsistencies of evolutionary dogma will be outlined in this debate.
Evolution is a hypothesis that contradicts physics,biology,the fossil record and common sense. If people want to believe evolution that's fine, just don't teach it in a science class as a well supported scientific theory with my taxes.(I am assuming you live in a country that uses taxes to teach the hypothesis of evolution)
My only request is that my opponent lists reliable sources for the information he/she presents. I will make sure that I list reliable sources as well. This first round is for the purpose of making an opening statements.
To my opponent I wish you good luck, because your certainly going to need it.
2-D

Pro

I accept, looking forward to your arguments.
Debate Round No. 1
Nathan.apologetics

Con

Science: "knowledge about or study of the natural world based on facts learned through experiments and observation"[1]Evolution is not scientific because it is not "based on facts learned through experiments and observation"[1]
Point 1:No Fossil Evidence
Premise : If and only if evolution is true, then we should see hundreds of transitional fossil
Fact : There are only a handful of dubious transitional fossils
Conclusion : The Hypothesis of Evolution is (likely) false.

Justification for premise 1: There are literally millions of fossils. Wouldn't it be logical to assume that if evolution has been occurring for hundreds of millions of years there would at least a several hundred transitional forms that have been documenting

Justification for Fact: The world has been looking for "missing links" for the past 200 years. Honest scientists admit that there are no legitimate missing links in the fossil record. Others in desperation forge transitional fossils in order to prove Evolution and to become famous. A good example of a desperate attempt to find a missing link is Nebraska Man.

In a 1922 issue of Illustrated London News, an article was published featuring a picture of Nebraska man drawn by Amedee Forestier saying the, "reconstruction is merely the expression of an artist's brilliant imaginative genius." Imaginative was correct because this man and his mate were concocted from a single tooth. It turns out that the tooth was that of a pig.

In 1917, Harold Cook, a rancher and geologist from Nebraska, unearthed one molar tooth in Pliocene deposits in western Nebraska. In 1922, he sent the tooth to Dr. Henry Osborn of Columbia University, head of the American Museum of Natural History, who claimed that it belonged to an early hominid and determined that the tooth had characteristics of chimpanzee, Pithecanthropus (Java man), and man. He wrote Cook saying: "I sat down with the tooth and I said to myself: 'It looks one hundred per cent anthropoid"[5]. One month later, Osborn announced that Hesperopithecus haroldcookii was the first anthropoid ape from America; a missing link in human evolution.[7]

Sir Grafton Elliot Smith, F.R.S., Professor of Anatomy of Manchester, England, supported Osborn saying, "I think the balance of probability is in favor of the view that the tooth found in the Pliocene beds of Nebraska may possibly have belonged to a primitive member of the Human Family" [6].

Here is a quote from an honest scientist who fully believes in evolution, but admits that there are no valid transitional fossils. Dr Patterson who had written a book for the British Museum simply called Evolution[3] admitted "there is not one such fossil for which one could make a watertight argument" . When Creationist Luther Sunderland wrote to Dr Patterson inquiring why he had not shown one single photograph of a transitional fossil in his book. Patterson then wrote back with the following amazing confession which was reproduced, in its entirety, in Sunderland"s book Darwin"s Enigma:

"I fully agree with your comments on the lack of direct illustration of evolutionary transitions in my book. If I knew of any, fossil or living, I would certainly have included them... I will lay it on the line"there is not one such fossil for which one could make a watertight argument."[4]

Conclusion: Since there is not one "watertight" transitional fossils out of the tens of millions of fossils that have been found,it would be logical to conclude that evolution did not take place.

Point 2: No Observed Change in Kinds (macro evolution)
Definition of a kind:"a class or group of individual objects, people, animals, etc., of the same nature or character, or classified together because they have traits in common; category"[2]
Premise: If and only if macro evolution is true, then we should see new kinds forming through the addition of genetic information
Fact: Has never been observed.
Conclusion: The Hypothesis of Evolution is (likely) false.

Justification for the premise: If all living things have a common ancestor then there must have been millions of new kinds of animals that arose over the past billion years. We should be observing new kinds evolving every 1000 years or so. Or at least observe genetic information being slowly added to the genome.

Justification for fact:The only time macro evolution has been documented was in The Princess and the Frog, but the magic formula in that case was a kiss not millions of years. Also the addition of genetic information needed for macro evolution to take place has never been observed. There isn't even a good theory as to how such a process could take place.

Conclusion: Since none of the processes necessary for macro evolution to take place have been observed, it is logical to conclude that macro evolution never took place.

Conclusion:
My conclusion goes like this:
-Premise 1: If macro evolution happens, then evolution is possible.
-Premise 2. If we see transitional fossils documenting change in the fossil record leading up to the creatures today, then evolution is likely responsible for life on Earth today
-Fact 1: Macro evolution has never been observed
-Fact 2: No "watertight" evidence of macro evolution has been found in the fossil record
-Conclusion: Macro Evolution is not scientific because it doesn't conform to any principles of science .Evolution is also not "based on facts learned through experiments and observation"[1],therefore the Hypothesis of Evolution belongs in the category of pseudoscience.Pseudoscience:"a system of theories, assumptions, and methods mistakenly regarded as scientific"[1]

Sources:
[1]http://www.merriam-webster.com...
[2] http://dictionary.reference.com......
[3] Patterson, C., Evolution, The British Museum of Master Books, Natural History, London,1978.
[4] Sunderland, L., Darwin"s Enigma, Master Books, Arkansas, USA, pp. 101"102, 1998. Patterson"s letter was written in 1979.
[5] Osborn, Henry Fairfield, 1922, "Hesperopithecus, the first anthropoid primate found in America," American Museum Novitates, 37, p. 2
[6] Smith, The Evolution of Man 1927
[7] http://en.wikipedia.org......
2-D

Pro

Here is my argument from an earlier debate. I will address Con's arguments next round. There is nothing new here to refute one of the most established scientific theories. Notice I am only challenged to establish that evolution is scientific and not that it is accurate. This is not difficult.

Molecular Evidence

Shared basic building blocks

There are three basic building blocks for every cell, DNA, RNA and proteins, and they are found in all forms of life [2]. This links all forms of life (and was predicted by evolutionary biologists [5]) as there could just as easily have been different building blocks for all forms of life. RNA and DNA are built with four specific complex monomers while Proteins are built with 22. RNA monomers in all life share a right handed chirality further linking all life. All cells share a variety of complex features such as a plasma membrane, cytoplasm and ribosome’s.

Shared common genes

There are many genes that are a part of all living organisms and are used for basic cell functions called ubiquitous genes [2]. There are a variety of functionally equivalent forms that these genes can take provided the coded protein has a similar shape and can perform the same function.

When these genes are exactly the same there is no reason other than an ancestral relationship and this is used to trace relationships among similar animals. For instance, since humans and apes are very similar we would expect them to share many genes of the same category but when ubiquitous genes are exactly the same this indicates an ancestral relationship.

Scientists have identified 2.3 x 1093 functionally redundant versions of Cytochrome C and it is found in all organisms on earth. Over time, mutations can change how the gene is expressed so only closely related animals share similar versions.

Our version of Cytocrome C is exactly the same as the version in a Chimpanzee establishing a common descent. This is one method scientists use to trace different forms of life from a common ancestor.

Transposition errors and Pseudogenes

Transposition errors (‘junk’) cause a discrete section of DNA to be copied and placed at some random point in the genome during replication. These errors are recreated in exactly the same way in subsequent generations and this is used to establish common descent, for DNA forensic evidence and for paternity tests. All subsequent generations should share a version (random mutations will very slowly alter the sequence over time but it will be in the same location) of this error since they are often completely benign and are not removed by natural selection.

Three specific transposition errors have been found in the same locations to link whales, hippos and ruminants which were previously linked using the phylogenetic methods based purely on bone and physical characteristics.

Pseudogenes I referenced as ‘fossilized’ genes and are also referred to as ‘junk’ since the proteins they code for are no longer produced due to random mutations. Primates (including humans) all share a redundant pseudogene for hemoglobin where a 8 monomer mutation that destroys the function of the gene are exactly the same and at the same locations linking the common descent of all primates.

Historical Phylogenetic Tree, the fossil record and transitional forms


Before genetics could confirm common descent, scientists easily grouped species based on common characteristics building the Phylogenetic Tree [8]. Evolution is gradual and when a new feature is formed, such as a spine, it is passed on to all future ancestors branching into various species. So all vertebrates are predicted to have a common ancestor and this is confirmed by the fossil record. Other major characteristics used to link species by a common ancestor are feathers, placenta, digits jaws etc.

Organisms matched primarily by physical characteristics are confirmed by genetic evidence with a high degree of statistical accuracy. Out of thirty major classifications there are 1038 possible combinations but the branching tree determined by standard methods were confirmed independently with genetic evidence using Cytochrome C molecular studies. Remember there are 2.3 x 1093 functionally redundant identified versions of the molecule shared by all life. When versions are very close they indicate common descent.

The branching tree is confirmed by the fossil record and links transitional forms to a common point. There is a complete set of transitional fossils linking dinosaurs with birds and reptiles to the earliest mammals. Phylogenic comparisons have linked chimpanzees to humans. This is again confirmed by the fossil record with a collection of homonid fossils linking humans to primitive chimpanzees.

Analysis of physical characteristics has also linked whales, cows and hippos. This is confirmed by the fossil record with many transitional forms such as legged sea cows. There is also an excellent record linking vertebrates from fish all the way to mammals all predicted by grouping animals based on common characteristics.

Macro/molecular vestigial characteristics from the past in adults and embryology

There are many vestigial characteristics predicted by evolution [9]. Since whales are ancestors of land animals it is predicted that they previously had legs. Snakes are predicted to be decedents of four legged reptiles based on common characteristics.

Some whales have vestigial legs and pelvises. Snakes often have vestigial pelvises. Snakes and whales often have leg buds that form and are reabsorbed. Modern whales, dolphins and porpois embryos grow legs with developing bones, blood vessels and nerves that degenerate before birth.

There are examples of whales born with legs and humans born with tails. Where most mammals have tails humans have four fused vertebrae and embryonic humans develop a tail that extends beyond the anus and legs around 10% of the embryo length.

Humans cannot synthesize vitamin C and we get all of the nutrients from our diet. Our predicted ancestors can, with the exception of primates and guinea pigs. Sure enough a pseudogene used to synthesize Vitamin C was discovered in many primates (yep including humans) and in guinea pigs. Remember pseudogene is a gene that has mutated so that it can no longer produce the coded protein, in this case previously used to create Vitamin C.

Other mammals have a much better sense of smell that is no longer necessary for us. Sure enough we have more than 99 oderant detector genes and 70% have been reduced to pseudogenes and are useless.

Observed speciation events

All that is needed to create a speciation event is isolation. There are several examples of, “ring speciation.” An interbreeding species navigates around a geological feature and by the time they migrate all the way around they can no longer interbreed. Two species of salamander Ensatina are a good example located around the edge of Central Valley in California. Two gull species identified in England, Larus. L. argentatus and L. fuscus, cannot reproduce. Hybrids live all around the North poll but are incapable of interbreeding only in England.

Many species can interbreed but produce stillborn embryos such as frog species Rana pipiens and R. sylvatica. Others can interbreed but only produce sterile offspring such as one frog species of the Rana genus effectively creating a speciation event.

Several fruit fly speciation events have been observed in labs. Other fly speciation events have been observed such as house flies, mosquitoes and many other insects.

[1] http://www.talkorigins.org...

[2] http://en.wikipedia.org...

[3] http://www.talkorigins.org...

[4] http://www.talkorigins.org...

[5] http://www.talkorigins.org...

[7] http://www.talkorigins.org...

[8] http://www.talkorigins.org...

[9] http://www.talkorigins.org...

[10] http://www.talkorigins.org...

[11] http://www.tim-thompson.com...

[12] http://science.howstuffworks.com...

[13] http://www.answersingenesis.org...
Debate Round No. 2
Nathan.apologetics

Con

Nathan.apologetics forfeited this round.
2-D

Pro

Arguments extended.
Debate Round No. 3
Nathan.apologetics

Con

Nathan.apologetics forfeited this round.
2-D

Pro

Arguments extended.
Debate Round No. 4
Nathan.apologetics

Con

Nathan.apologetics forfeited this round.
2-D

Pro

Arguments extended.

Debate Round No. 5
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by Nathan.apologetics 2 years ago
Nathan.apologetics
I am so sorry! I had my internet disconnected and couldn't access the debate. I will put a reply to pros arguments as soon as possible.
Posted by ChristianPunk 2 years ago
ChristianPunk
@cheyenne

Last I checked, Ken Ham and other creationists believe the dead bones as evidence of a flood. We can learn a lot from observing things when we observe its elements.
Posted by cheyennebodie 2 years ago
cheyennebodie
Why do evolutionists always point to a bunch of dead animal bones to make their point?They cannot, and will never give out any information on how they came top be. If they cannot jump species in live animals, how do they figure animals with no intelligent being at their disposal did it.
Posted by Nathan.apologetics 2 years ago
Nathan.apologetics
I believe in micro evolution which is change within a species. I know that a species has limits to how much it can change. A good example is the hundreds of breeds of dogs but they are all dogs. On one debate I did make the mistake by asking an evolutionist for an example of a fly giving birth to an elephant. Creationists that ask questions like this are tying to make a joke of macro evolution. A better question would be to ask "have mutations ever been observed that didn't either destroy or rearrange genetic information?" Sorry that you didn't have a chance to accept the debate but if you have any questions or concerns involving my arguments; I would love to hear them in the comments.
Posted by Mister_Man 2 years ago
Mister_Man
WELL NEVERMIND. Good luck.
Posted by Mister_Man 2 years ago
Mister_Man
I would accept this, however I'm really curious as to your definition of evolution. I've seen arguments nearly identical to this in the past, and a lot of the time some of the arguments consist of questions such as "can you show evidence of a cat turning into a hippo?" - Whereas the person presenting the argument has absolutely no idea how evolution works, and thinks it's as simple as a Giraffe giving birth to a frog.

If we can agree that "evolution" is the mutations and adaptations of a living organism that is affected by it's environment, I will probably accept. Not being able to prove what our common ancestor was is not proof that evolution is false; monkeys still existing isn't either; birds becoming ants overnight, and stuff like that also isn't proof of evolution not existing.

It's a well supported scientific theory because we have performed experiments and tests and studies on multiple animals, and have witnessed it ourselves. We have fossil records and DNA samples leading toward a common ancestor. And much more.

Well I'm typing this all up in the comments right now so I guess I might as well accept but I'm in the process of two large debates that are similar to this, so it would feel way too repetitive in a sense. However if we can agree on the definition, I will seriously consider accepting this debate.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Enji 2 years ago
Enji
Nathan.apologetics2-DTied
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: Forfeit. Con focusses on the existence (or alleged lack thereof) of transitional fossils, which is unsuccessful in supporting the resolution because the connection between the existence of transitional fossils and being scientific is tenuous at best. In the opening round, Con proposes that evolution violates key scientific laws and is in contention with most other areas of science, however he never builds upon these claims which could have made a stronger (or, at least, extant) argument. However, Pro's accurate presentation of some of the scientific basis for evolution probably would have won arguments regardless.