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Should evolution be taught in the public schools?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/11/2016 Category: Science
Updated: 2 weeks ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 270 times Debate No: 96040
Debate Rounds (5)
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Evolution should be taught in the public schools since a) it is valid science and b) it is widely accepted by the scientific community.


My argument is not that evolution should not be taught, but rather, that it should not be taught as if it were a proven scientific fact. A theory is literally defined as - an idea that has yet to be proven true. a guess or mere conjecture.
Yet, the "Theory" of Evolution is taught as though it is "Proven Fact" of Evolution and not a guess, which after almost two centuries of research still can only be called a theory.
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Debate Round No. 5
13 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by kylet357 1 week ago
"For the record, a scientific definition of the word theory is not something you cut and paste from wiki."
Good thing I didn't say that it was. I used that quote from Wikipedia because it was simple and easy to understand, while being very explanatory. I showed you two search terms and 5 different sources from which you'll find the exact same or similar definition.

"When someone comes up with an idea they call it a Theory."
You're mixing up hypothesis with theory. A hypothesis is a proposed explanation based on limited evidence that can be further examined through the scientific method.

"If the idea passes the tests and observations...They change the name Theory to a Principle or Law."
No. A law is just a factual statement of nature, usually written in mathematical form (e.g. F=ma). And from what I can find, a principle seems to be the same thing.

Actually, one of the biggest powers of a theory are its ability to predict results. Evolution made a prediction in Darwin's lifetime, as he predicted the finding of a bird with unfused wing fingers (Archaeopteryx lithographic), and then there's also Tiktaalik in 2004 (scientists predicted where to find this animal, and they did accurately as you can see through this link

"For many decades these ideas were taught largely because science had no way to test them."
Actually, no, they were tested rigorously for several years (if not longer). You are aware of what peer-review is and how it's apart of the scientific method, right?

That video completely misrepresents what Craig said and I knew exactly where it was going as soon as it began. The tree of life representation has been criticized in later years because it is found not to be as accurate (Craig says exactly what I expected to hear from an expert, saying that "there may be a bush of life"). But, as a representation of how populations may split and form different species, it is good enough.

I recommend using a URL shortener t
Posted by toocoolblue 1 week ago
Kyle, for some reason, you seem to be hung up on something that really doesn't matter and are missing the vastly more important issue. Perhaps if I clear up the unimportant issue, the more important issue will stand clear.
For the record, a scientific definition of the word theory is not something you cut and paste from wiki.
That is just random stuff that anyone can write on the internet.
In Science it usually works like this -
When someone comes up with an idea they call it a Theory.
They then test that Theory. If the idea passes the tests and observations, usually by making predictions.
They change the name Theory to a Principle or Law.
For instance, Bernoulli's Principle is not called Bernoulli's Theory because it makes predictions, that can be verified.
The reason we still call things - The Big Bang Theory, The Theory of Evolution, The Theory of Relativity etc. is because these ideas have not correctly predicted the future, have not correctly described the present, and certainly have not left in the past what we should expect to see if these ideas were true. Even though, they can occasionally get something right, on the whole, they don't cut it.

I hope we've cleared that up. Now onto what is important.

For many decades these ideas were taught largely because science had no way to test them.

In the last 10-15 years that has all changed.

My intention in joining this debate was to show people the results of these new tests. CERN, Hubble, WMAP, Human Genome Project, Planck, NASA, ESA, Harvard, Yale etc.

The new data completely undermine everything you were taught.

For instance, in CERN's laughably called "Big Bang Detector" has left physics in what they call the "Nightmare Scenario". Trust me, that isn't because the Big Bang just got detected.

And here is a video of the world's foremost authority in genetics research, explaining how wrong Darwin's studies were.
Posted by kylet357 1 week ago
After going back, I realized my first comment I said "So if you were to define a fact as a point of data that is objectively indisputable, then the Theory of Evolution is most definitely a fact", so I can understand the confusion now. What I SHOULD have put was that Evolution, the actual process, is a fact. Not the theory that describes it. I apologize for that, however, my other points still stand.
Posted by kylet357 1 week ago
At no point in my comments have I ever said that a scientific theory is a fact. You, in your initial argument for the debate, said a Theory is "an idea that has yet to be proven true. a guess or mere conjecture." I showed you that a scientific theory is different than the regular/colloquial use of the word, and even told you a few sources that say so as well. But in an absolutely stunning display of intellectual dishonesty, you've continued to ignore the definition that I gave you. And even more dishonest, you've projected your own misguided strawman onto me as if I ever followed that view.
Posted by toocoolblue 1 week ago
Quote -What the hell does Parallel Universes or Alternate Dimensions have to do with Dark Matter/Energy?

Kylet. I apologize.

If you can't understand that the word theory doesn't mean proven fact, then understanding the model of existence the theories you claim to believe in, (but clearly don't understand) is probably impossible.

But it's understandable, like I said it's not your fault. They haven't taught you the theories you claim to believe in.

This is intentional, because if you actually understood the theories. You would laugh at them.
Posted by kylet357 1 week ago
Actually that matter isn't "undetectable". The reason we have hypothesized about Dark Matter in the first place is because we've detected it through various gravitational phenomena. Dark energy is the one we know very little about however, which is why it's only hypothesized to exist currently. But it's the hypothesis that best fits current models and evidence.

What the hell does Parallel Universes or Alternate Dimensions have to do with Dark Matter/Energy? Also many of your articles, again, do not support your position on the non-existence of DM/DE.

From your 1st article:
-"I couldn"t say with a straight face that I was expecting to find dark matter with this particular data set," said Simon Fiorucci, an experimental physicist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and science coordination manager for LUX. "We were hoping for a good surprise, but we are not counting on good surprises."
-"I can"t say I was surprised. Disappointed, yes, because we are still, despite appearances to the contrary, in the business of trying to find something " but I don"t think many people were very surprised," Fiorucci said. However, he added, "it"s according to expectations, which as far as we"re concerned is already a good result."
-Another silver lining: The fact that LUX did not find anything might help to narrow down some of the models for dark matter, Gaitskell said. Of course, there"s always the possibility that this and similar detectors are on the wrong track, because dark matter isn"t some kind of weakly interacting particle at all. But Fiorucci said that such questions will have to wait for about a decade, until these extremely sensitive detectors can be put to the test. "We are limited by the technology at the moment and not really by the theory," he said.

The 2nd article is combating news media sensationalism and provides explanations for and against Dark Matter.

As for the 3rd article; "We are limited by the technology at the moment and not really by the
Posted by toocoolblue 1 week ago
Kylet, Since you apparently have no idea what the theory of relativity is, let me explain it to you.

In essence, it is an attempt to explain gravity. How certain things effect other things.

The universe that we observe, DOES NOT obey the rules Einstein puts forward in the (TR).

The galaxies are not moving the way Einstein said they should. To save the theories ad-hoc invisible, undetectable matter and energy had to be added to our understanding of the Universe.

So much so, that modern science currently defines the Universe as 96% undetectable Dark Energy and Dark Matter. With what they call Dark Energy finely tuned to 1 part in 10 to the 120. That's one part in a Trillion, Trillion, Trillion, Trillion, Trillion, Trillion, Trillion, Trillion, Trillion, Trillion - (the word Trillion ten times.) The explanation for this miracle, was to add an infinite number of Parallel Universes which also can never be detected. Presumably because they are hiding in undetectable Alternate Dimensions.

Hundreds of billions of dollars and decades have been spent looking for these "tooth fairies" to no avail.
They dug mines kilometers deep underground and found nothing -
They launched satellites and space stations and found nothing -
They built particle colliders and found nothing -

As I said before, It's called a THEORY because it works on somethings, some of the time. And as it fails test after test, it had to be saved by any sort of fairy tail addition. I love this quote from the above article -
It"s striking that we"ve thought about these things for 30 years and we have not made one correct prediction
What you think of as proven science is nothing bu
Posted by kylet357 1 week ago
"Can you name the last major invention, discovery or accomplishment of science that profoundly effected the world?"

A recent major one is the discovery of CRISPR in 2012 and it's even more recent use in genetic engineering (making it extremely cheaper and faster than before). This technology could yield a future in which humans are immune to various deadly diseases (including cancer and HIV/AIDS), especially once it has been mastered. You've still yet to acknowledge your incorrect definition of a scientific theory or bring any supporting evidence for your initial argument regarding evolution.

All of the articles you've linked seem to be more so a criticism of the Cosmological principles rather than of General Relativity. Again, General Relativity is still an accurate model of gravity. I would not be surprised if, in the future, it needed to be updated (as it is often said that General Relativity is incomplete, not wrong). This is, of course, the way of science. To continually correct and update models to provide the most accurate one possible. If Evolution were left the way it initially was written, we would have no accurate understanding of heredity or genetics. But thanks to Gregor Mendel, we have a more accurate model than what Darwin left us with (which has since been rigorously updated).
Posted by toocoolblue 1 week ago
Sadly, this is the problem. Kylet has chosen to believe what he or she has heard rather than look at the actual data. And now, it's not about learning anything, it's about trying to defend a position and his/her pride. The Theory of Relativity breaks down on many levels.
It breaks down when things are small - thus the need for Quantum Mechanics
It breaks down when energies get large -
As our ability to observe the Universe grows, the more we see, the more it doesn't match the predictions.
Alternatively, we may need to extend our understanding of gravity beyond Einstein"s general theory of relativity. "It could be that we need an even more general theory to explain how gravity works on very large scales," ...
"This is a challenging result for the standard cosmological models," says Francesco Sylos Labini
and (this link is mind blowing)

When, like Kylet, you are trying to justify your personal opinion rather than look at the real data, no progress will be made. And that precisely describes the current state of science in the world.
Can you name the last major invention, discovery or accomplishment of science that profoundly effected the world?
Posted by kylet357 2 weeks ago
Wow, never have I read a more pretentious reply than this. Let's start from the top.

The Theory was never forced on me as a child, I never learnt anything about it until after I left school (because I actually come from a country that is much more conservatively Christian than the US in its entirety).

As for what "parts" of the Theory I've learned, I've learned a little bit of everything. The only thing I'm terrible with when it comes to Evolution is the Genetics side, because it's extremely complicated. But besides that, I'm fairly educated enough to know what the mechanics of evolution are, how they work, and so on.

I like how you also ignore my other example of the Germ Theory of Disease, but let's not focus on that. General Relativity is not "wrong". It simply cannot reconcile with Quantum Mechanics because that's an entirely different realm of physics, governed by it's own laws. It's basically two different scales. General Relativity deals with the large scale, moons, planets, stars, solar systems, galaxies, etc. QM deals with the extremely small scale, atoms, particles, etc. If Relativity were wrong, it wouldn't be used (and the same goes for any other scientific Theory). You could say it was incomplete, and you might not be wrong. Even in Darwin's day, Evolution wasn't a complete Theory until the secret of Genetics was cracked by Mendel. But to say, flat out, that Relativity is wrong is an extremely arrogant claim.

If you do not even come up with any good or original arguments, you should honestly not even be given the time of day. Your rebuttal to my comment on your incorrect definition of Theory was that Relativity is wrong. You didn't mention my other example and you're also ignoring the countless other Theories in the various fields of science. I quite honestly have no hope for you, as you've shown yourself to be either very ignorant or dishonest.
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