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RFD - Evolution vs Young Earth Creationism

Varrack
Posts: 2,411
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8/28/2015 7:33:04 AM
Posted: 1 year ago
This is my voting decision for this debate: http://www.debate.org...

I will assume that the BoP is shared, since both sides presented their cases and the BoP wasn't otherwise made clear.

A scale for grading impact from each argument will be used in my vote, with each number representing an amount of points. 1=small impact, 2=medium impact, 3=large impact.

Pro's Case

1. Transitionary fossils. Pro goes to say that the transition between neanderthals and humans as shown by fossils suggests the high likelihood of evolution. Con states that there are animals/insects in the process (like drafonflies) that simply appear without any transition, and that this hurts the theory of evolution. Pro concedes a lack of links may exist, but that it doesn't disprove the theory. Con repeats himself in Round 5, but I don't think he made enough damage to the fossil record here. I can believe that there are holes in it yet still believe in evolution, as a jigsaw puzzle that's missing a few pieces. The missing pieces doesn't mean the whole puzzle doesn't exist. 2 points

2. Radiometric dating. Half-decay of elememts estimate the ages of rocks and fossils. Con says that this may or may not be factual depending on the amount of decay already existent in rock. This is kind of a shaky argument, because it's a "what if?" scenario. We could give a 50/50 chance of rock not already containing lead, but it would need a 100% chance for this rebuttal to have impact. Pro concedes this may be true but says isochron is more accurate as it relies on original material. Con lastly shares a quote by a guy who states that isochron dating is somewhat flawed. But this doesn't help much because (1) it still is the 50/50 chance being relied on, (2) it doesn't make me doubt isochron that much, since it's simply a quote and doesn't provide a lot of evidence to support it, and (3) it's in the last round so Pro wouldn't be able to respond. 3 points

3. Chronological order. This solely relies on dating itself, as Pro ends this point with "The older species are deeper down and the younger ones are higher up. Could this be a pure coincidence?". This assumes that old-earth dating is correct, which Con doesn't seem to believe in the first place. Thus, this point is moot.

4. Continental drift. How could the continents move so fast in so little time, if they likely fit together in the first place? Con responds with seismic activity. This point goes in hand with Con's first argument in his case, but I'll still make this one separate. I don't think Pro made a big impact on this because the flood doesn't necessarily exclude seismic activity by any means, but even so the Bible doesn't add it in. I'll give Pro 1 point.

5. Natural selection. An explanation for the process of evolution at best, not necessarily an argument in favor of it. It's basically saying "if X exists, then Y exists" with Y as natural selection. So? Pro just needs to show X (evolution) is valid. Y isn't mutually exclusive with YEC as Con points out, and it doesn't prove evolution in any way. Moot point.

6. Size of Noah's ark. How could Noah fit 16 million (unsourced) species? Con just concedes this by saying that creationists believe that only some species sent into the ark, but this doesn't mitigate Pro's argument. 2 points

7. Starlight. If the Earth is 6k years old, light from the rest of the galaxy still wouldn't have reached us, right? Con says the stars were supernaturally created, but this doesn't disprove Pro's contentions on this. Con only started attacking this by Round 5, saying that light has been slowed down before and that light years are the measurements of distance, not time. So? Whether it's been slowed down before or measures distance doesn't make YEC more sound than evolution. 3 points

Con's Case

1. Catastrophic events. This point has little impact because it demonstrates that such events, such as the flood, are possible. It doesn't give me any reason to believe the flood in 4000 B.C. was more likely to happen then evolution, it's just stating that the idea of YEC isn't impossible. However, Con does say that whale fossils have been found in the desert and that the placement of sedimentary rock suggests a flood (how exactly?). It's not much, but it's something. Pro states that only lava can shape land as such, not water. But Con doesn't think so: seismic activity for the win! Anyways, this doesn't progress much further than this, so I'll give Con 1 point on it.

2. Bible's Accuracy. A pretty moot point. As Pro said, proving the Bible true doesn't debunk evolution. There are theistic evolutionists (like myself) who exist, so this argument doesn't matter to me. I believe the Bible to be true but not in YEC, so this point is all irrelevant. You can save the Gardens of Babylon for another interesting debate though.

3. DNA. This is a defensive argument - it assumes that Pro thinks one thing and it intends to debunk what it is assumed Pro is thinking. Only problem is that this is basically a strawman. Pro never claimed that 98% of chimps' DNA resembles that of humans, and even so this doesn't argue in favor of evolution. It just means that they have similar genes. Point is moot.

4. Blood Cells in Dinosaur Bones. This was a good argument by Con, and Pro rebutted it well. The issue boiled down to iron and its ability to preserve blood cells. When I finished this argument I just had a lot of uncertainty and wasn't really drawn to either side. If Pro convinced me, then I would not award this argument any points, but if was tied in that regard, so I'll give it 1.

5. Magnetic Field. This was also one of Con's better ones. The field is decaying at 5% per century, so if the earth was old then it must have been unreasonably strong at one point. Pro responds with the assertions of "well it's known to fluctuate" and "if doesn't measure the earth's age" and "it's not known to decay steadily". The evidence Pro supplies is weak for this...I'm not convinced. Con and Pro exchange a remark on the magnetic field and the argument dissipates. So although Con could have used a better rebuttal to counter Pro's assertions, I end up leaning more toward Con. 2 points here

Total Count

Pro - 11 points
Con - 4 points

Pro wins. Good job y'all.
SimplyAidan
Posts: 51
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9/1/2015 8:47:41 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 8/28/2015 7:33:04 AM, Varrack wrote:
This is my voting decision for this debate: http://www.debate.org...

I will assume that the BoP is shared, since both sides presented their cases and the BoP wasn't otherwise made clear.

A scale for grading impact from each argument will be used in my vote, with each number representing an amount of points. 1=small impact, 2=medium impact, 3=large impact.

Pro's Case

1. Transitionary fossils. Pro goes to say that the transition between neanderthals and humans as shown by fossils suggests the high likelihood of evolution. Con states that there are animals/insects in the process (like drafonflies) that simply appear without any transition, and that this hurts the theory of evolution. Pro concedes a lack of links may exist, but that it doesn't disprove the theory. Con repeats himself in Round 5, but I don't think he made enough damage to the fossil record here. I can believe that there are holes in it yet still believe in evolution, as a jigsaw puzzle that's missing a few pieces. The missing pieces doesn't mean the whole puzzle doesn't exist. 2 points

2. Radiometric dating. Half-decay of elememts estimate the ages of rocks and fossils. Con says that this may or may not be factual depending on the amount of decay already existent in rock. This is kind of a shaky argument, because it's a "what if?" scenario. We could give a 50/50 chance of rock not already containing lead, but it would need a 100% chance for this rebuttal to have impact. Pro concedes this may be true but says isochron is more accurate as it relies on original material. Con lastly shares a quote by a guy who states that isochron dating is somewhat flawed. But this doesn't help much because (1) it still is the 50/50 chance being relied on, (2) it doesn't make me doubt isochron that much, since it's simply a quote and doesn't provide a lot of evidence to support it, and (3) it's in the last round so Pro wouldn't be able to respond. 3 points

3. Chronological order. This solely relies on dating itself, as Pro ends this point with "The older species are deeper down and the younger ones are higher up. Could this be a pure coincidence?". This assumes that old-earth dating is correct, which Con doesn't seem to believe in the first place. Thus, this point is moot.

4. Continental drift. How could the continents move so fast in so little time, if they likely fit together in the first place? Con responds with seismic activity. This point goes in hand with Con's first argument in his case, but I'll still make this one separate. I don't think Pro made a big impact on this because the flood doesn't necessarily exclude seismic activity by any means, but even so the Bible doesn't add it in. I'll give Pro 1 point.

5. Natural selection. An explanation for the process of evolution at best, not necessarily an argument in favor of it. It's basically saying "if X exists, then Y exists" with Y as natural selection. So? Pro just needs to show X (evolution) is valid. Y isn't mutually exclusive with YEC as Con points out, and it doesn't prove evolution in any way. Moot point.

6. Size of Noah's ark. How could Noah fit 16 million (unsourced) species? Con just concedes this by saying that creationists believe that only some species sent into the ark, but this doesn't mitigate Pro's argument. 2 points

7. Starlight. If the Earth is 6k years old, light from the rest of the galaxy still wouldn't have reached us, right? Con says the stars were supernaturally created, but this doesn't disprove Pro's contentions on this. Con only started attacking this by Round 5, saying that light has been slowed down before and that light years are the measurements of distance, not time. So? Whether it's been slowed down before or measures distance doesn't make YEC more sound than evolution. 3 points

Con's Case

1. Catastrophic events. This point has little impact because it demonstrates that such events, such as the flood, are possible. It doesn't give me any reason to believe the flood in 4000 B.C. was more likely to happen then evolution, it's just stating that the idea of YEC isn't impossible. However, Con does say that whale fossils have been found in the desert and that the placement of sedimentary rock suggests a flood (how exactly?). It's not much, but it's something. Pro states that only lava can shape land as such, not water. But Con doesn't think so: seismic activity for the win! Anyways, this doesn't progress much further than this, so I'll give Con 1 point on it.

2. Bible's Accuracy. A pretty moot point. As Pro said, proving the Bible true doesn't debunk evolution. There are theistic evolutionists (like myself) who exist, so this argument doesn't matter to me. I believe the Bible to be true but not in YEC, so this point is all irrelevant. You can save the Gardens of Babylon for another interesting debate though.

3. DNA. This is a defensive argument - it assumes that Pro thinks one thing and it intends to debunk what it is assumed Pro is thinking. Only problem is that this is basically a strawman. Pro never claimed that 98% of chimps' DNA resembles that of humans, and even so this doesn't argue in favor of evolution. It just means that they have similar genes. Point is moot.

4. Blood Cells in Dinosaur Bones. This was a good argument by Con, and Pro rebutted it well. The issue boiled down to iron and its ability to preserve blood cells. When I finished this argument I just had a lot of uncertainty and wasn't really drawn to either side. If Pro convinced me, then I would not award this argument any points, but if was tied in that regard, so I'll give it 1.

5. Magnetic Field. This was also one of Con's better ones. The field is decaying at 5% per century, so if the earth was old then it must have been unreasonably strong at one point. Pro responds with the assertions of "well it's known to fluctuate" and "if doesn't measure the earth's age" and "it's not known to decay steadily". The evidence Pro supplies is weak for this...I'm not convinced. Con and Pro exchange a remark on the magnetic field and the argument dissipates. So although Con could have used a better rebuttal to counter Pro's assertions, I end up leaning more toward Con. 2 points here

Total Count

Pro - 11 points
Con - 4 points

Pro wins. Good job y'all.

I just read the whole thing. I side with con fully. Pro lost me when he started attacking.