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Happy Birthday Darwin — Do You Believe in Evolution?

Darwin's fit theory of evolution has managed to survive 200 years after his death. Today, it's alive and well not only in the classroom and research labs, but also in neuroscience, literature, the dating world, and even religion (haven't you heard of evolutionary evangelists?). In fact, today's Vatican admits that Darwin's theory of evolution should not have been dismissed, as it is compatible with the Christian view of creation.

This week prominent scientists and religious leaders joined forces to call for an end to fighting over Darwin's legacy. They said militant atheists were turning people away from evolution because they use it to attack religion. The group also urged creationists to accept Darwin's theory.

Darwin maintained that all life evolved from a common ancestor. In On the Origin of Species, Darwin posited that organisms best suited to their environment would be the ones most likely to reproduce. Thus they would spread their beneficial traits to the next generation, until an entirely different organism resulted over time.

In honor of its father's 200th birthday, tell me do you subscribe to the theory of evolution?


Join The Conversation
0danielle0 0danielle0 8 years
There are people who still don't believe in evolution?!?! Wow...
Grandpa Grandpa 8 years
Garret, unless a theory can plausibly explain every variable of a theory it is not complete, and is subject to query. Like Quantum theory. Fascinating to speculate on, to see can you be the one to find the “better fit”, or additional flaw.
Garret Garret 8 years
Evolution isn't something you 'believe' in...It's a theory you either accept or reject. I accept the theory, realizing there may be holes in parts of it. The generally idea of survival of the species is sound. I do think that evolutionary changes tend to happen very quickly for most part.
bluesarahlou bluesarahlou 8 years
"blue, I apologize. It is just the way you wrote the sentence I quoted. It read like you were saying you had gotten that degree with the idea to use it to be a phlebotomist. But, I know many times I write something that makes perfect sense to me, but is read entirely differently by others." Grandpa, no worries. I changed my career goals about 100 times before I settled into what I do now. If anything changes it's pretty likely I'll go back to school and get my CLS license. For now I'm happy just playing with bacteria. :nerdgirl:
Amandaletta Amandaletta 8 years
Pretty much every religion has its own story of how life got on this earth. They are all different. I will always believe that every creation story is an attempt to explain the unexplainable and should not be taken literally. Did you ever stop to think that a different creation story could be closer to the truth than that of Christianity/Judaism? Probably not. I believe that we came from the earth and when we die we go back to the earth and thus perpetuate the cycle of life. I believe that earths ever changing landscape and weather over the billions of years of her existence has forced the life on her to change and adapt. Yeah...I'm an earth worshiping type. None of us will know the truth, because it's highly likely that when you just die and nothing happens and you will become part of the earth again.
Grandpa Grandpa 8 years
Oh, and equating making a case for intelligent design, and pointing out the current flaws in the current theory of evolution, is not quite the same as claiming that the intelligent design, is that omniscient, omnipotent, and omnipresent being that looks after each and every person rewarding and punishing according to some code. I do not make that claim, and find little evidence to support it. I am using the scientific method, and scientific method only to make my points. I think the universe had a start about 13.73 billion years ago, all the scientists in that field of study currently agree on that approximate timeframe (it is referred to as Plank time). We have a pretty good idea of how the universe formed after that first second of existence commonly known as “The Big Bang”. We have no idea or theory of how or why it happened, what caused it, or what existed before that time. It is generally agreed we will probably never know. That being said, how can we possibly be able to show a “Supreme Being” who existed before, and was solely responsible for that event, and everything there after. The closest we can get is using probability theory and statistical analyses, and attempt to come up with a theory that can tie it all in.
Grandpa Grandpa 8 years
blue, I apologize. It is just the way you wrote the sentence I quoted. It read like you were saying you had gotten that degree with the idea to use it to be a phlebotomist. But, I know many times I write something that makes perfect sense to me, but is read entirely differently by others.
bluesarahlou bluesarahlou 8 years
Did I say I WAS a Phlebotomist? No. I considered it. Having gone through the California college system, I am familiar with those requirements. I decided against it. Honestly it didn't fit into my schedule at the time. I was headed towards Clinical Lab Science (Medical Technologist), but I was given an opportunity for a position in Microbiology that I couldn't pass up. In preparation for the CLS training at UC Davis, I took many classes, including Hematology. Sounds like your wife would be me in 40 years, if I'd taken that career path. And I'm not embarrassed at all. I'm quite proud of my education, and my job. Do me a favor, don't talk to me like I'm a child either, you're not teaching me life lessons. I've never been anything but polite with you, and I would expect someone with your maturity would return the favor.
Grandpa Grandpa 8 years
Janeth, I agree with you, it is the nature of that intelligent design that is currently unknowable (and I suspect will always be unknowable). We pretty much know how each species evolved since that Cambrian explosion. What we don’t know is the chain of events that lead up to that point. Darwin’s theory falls down at that point. Someday somewhere, someone will do in the area of evolution the equivalent of what Einstein did with the general and special theories of relativity did for physics.
Grandpa Grandpa 8 years
blue, :Rotfl: "Grandpa I have a degree in Microbiology and I have extensive knowledge in Hematology (at one time I was headed towards being a Phlebotomist)." :rotfl: STOP! I Am laughing so hard it is hard to type. Try that line with someone not intimately familiar with what you are trying to pull a con with. For example, California has the MOST stringent requirements to be a phlebotomist. If that is the best you can do with a degree in microbiology, go back to that school and DEMAND your money back. Here you go, read it and blush with embarrassment: Training Requirements for Phlebotomists Phlebotomists complete either on-the-job training, crosstrain from another health care profession that require blood drawing skills, or a formal phlebotomy program. Formal training best prepares students for employment as phlebotomists. Educational institutions now recognize and accommodate a working person's schedule. Many schools offer morning, afternoon, and evening classes to accommodate their student's work and personal life and are open for extended hours. Often they also have resource labs that allow students to learn at their own pace and convenience. Phlebotomy training is usually provided at a community college, or at a business, vocational, or technical school. In California new phlebotomy regulations were adopted into law and signed by the Secretary of State on January 9, 2003 with an effective date of April 9, 2003 where all new phlebotomy students need to obtain: High school graduate transcripts or GED 40 hours classroom (didactic) instruction 40 hours practical training 50 venipunctures & 10 skin punctures Now a hematologist is a department in a hospital laboratory, they are manned by Medical technologists in the better hospitals, and medical technicians in some others. Generally the technician has a two year degree specializing in just one department, and are trained to man the machines. Medical technologists on the other hand have college degrees in medical technology, and are members of the ASCP that would be the American Society of Clinical pathologists, which my wife was a member of for some 40 years. She has an undergraduate degree in medical technology, and a graduate degree in Laboratory Administration, and was licensed to supervise Hematology, Blood Bank, Chemistry, Histology, Serology, and Microbiology Departments, in any hospital or laboratory in New York State, and New York City.
janneth janneth 8 years
Evolution is very intelligent design.
bluesarahlou bluesarahlou 8 years
"Believing in evolution doesn't mean that you need to arrest your faith in God. Believing in evolution means that you accept truths that are proven by science." Agreed.
bluesarahlou bluesarahlou 8 years
Grandpa I have a degree in Microbiology and I have extensive knowledge in Hematology (at one time I was headed towards being a Phlebotomist). So no offense, but I don't need a lesson in blood coagulation, I'm quite familiar with the process. :) I was just wondering where you got the info from, since it sounds like it's straight out of a textbook.
Grandpa Grandpa 8 years
em, you are playing word games. Those mammals that run around and do not die from there first cut, and have clot system that in balance. Genetics allows for, and you would expect "mutations". Most such "mutations are inimical to survival. Hemophilia was first considered a disease of royalty, since in ran in the Spanish Royal family. Those folks led a sheltered and pampered existence that allowed them to grow, mature and multiply. Some genetic diseases that are inimical to human health, turn out to have a dual roll, where the benefits out way the harm in allowing survival at least long enough for breeding purposes. Sickle cell anemia is an example. That disease is found only in those of African decent, and both parents must pass the trait to you for you to have it. If only one parent passes it on, you have the trait, but not the disease. It has been discovered that having that disease allows you to deal with Malaria much more effectively then those without. That being said, folks with sickle cell anemia living in areas rife with malaria have a significant survival advantage. I still have trouble understanding what you are saying negates the questions I raise as to things in evolution, that cannot be explained by the Darwinian school that states evolution as survival traits that give the possessor an advantage over those without through natural selection. Vestigial organs had a useful purpose at one time, when they no longer served a survival purpose, they gradually atrophy. I think Whales and dolphins are probably amongst the best examples.
em1282 em1282 8 years
Plus, there are vestigial organs/structures that no longer have usage in certain organisms--just because they don't have any immediate/long-term benefit in survival doesn't disprove evolution. Also, not everything in evolution is affected by "random chance".
em1282 em1282 8 years
If you're saying that something is "perfection", and then basing the existence of something on this perfection, then if it is imperfect, doesn't that screw with the existence of whatever it is that is based on perfection?
Grandpa Grandpa 8 years
blue, Not a biology book, but close enough. You really think I could keep all those details straight without help? The purpose was to show you how intricate and interrelated those proteins are to make the coagulation system work at all, and how it appears statistically impossible for those four proteins to show up by random chance all at once, and that natural selection does not allow for the first three proteins to show up one at a time, and be “stored” for future use, with no immediate benefit in survival. I am often asked to prove or source my statements. Em, can you point to any organ or body part that does not have defects? I do not get the point you are trying to make. Could you elaborate?
emily_88_88 emily_88_88 8 years
While describing the series of events and proteins involved in blood coagulation is certainly a long and seemingly impressive post, the fact is that blood clotting is not the be-all and end-all to debunking evolution. Believing in evolution doesn't mean that you need to arrest your faith in God. Believing in evolution means that you accept truths that are proven by science. If I see a dinosaur fossil, I say, "look, it is a dinosaur fossil. It is a skeleton of an animal that existed millions of years ago and has been preserved over time to form a solidified mass that we can put together". I don't think, "here lies a testament to my faith in God," just like when I see a hammer, and after all tests to prove that it is a hammer, I believe that it is a hammer. When I see something that proves evolution, it does not threaten my belief that a higher being exists.
Meike Meike 8 years
I agree, Jessie. I like your way of thinking.
stephley stephley 8 years
Oooh Jessie, thinking outside the box! I like it.
bluesarahlou bluesarahlou 8 years
Grandpa did you get that from a Biology textbook? It sounds like it came straight from my Hematology text...:confused:
Megatron Megatron 8 years
I believe in this theory called theistic evolution. God did create the earth but created it in a way that made the processes take a long time. The Bible creation story is basically an allegory to me. "Days" can be interpreted as any length of time, not just a literal 24 hours. It has actually deepened my faith in God.
Jessiebanana Jessiebanana 8 years
How does it defy logic? People assume there has to be a beginning and and end because we begin and end, but we don't actually begin and end. When are bodies decompose it feeds something else that now has the energy to reproduce. Everything that we know on this earth and is our immediate star system is cyclical. Why does the universe have to be "created"? And if there is a creator then what created that? You have to assume that something has always existed to believe there is a creator? Am I right? I'm just choosing to place my bet on the idea that energy is neither created nor destroyed. What makes up our universe will create another and so fourth. My theory is that it has always been. You have to have a different outlook to grasp that concept.
bluesarahlou bluesarahlou 8 years
em, I'll allow it. :P
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