Re: Stereotypes and reputations

From: Tim <>
Date: Thu Aug 04 2005 - 23:05:54 EDT

I wrote:
>> When I talk about the evidence allowing one to deduce common
>> descent, I'm not talking about making a wild stab at a
>> explanation. I'm saying that the evidence actually favors one
>> explanation over others. For example, multiple events of
>> unrelated special creation (e.g. Biblical creation by
>> kinds) ... are pretty much out of the picture.

Cornelius Hunter:
>Why is that true?

Against multiple, unrelated creation events:
* Very strong similarities among organisms (Organisms appear related).
* Appearance of new organisms in the stratigraphic record
    follows a pattern that generally correlates with relationships
    traced by cladistics.
* No physical trace of a potential creator found (e.g secondary artifacts).
* Boundaries between species are often unclear.

Against Biblical creation of kinds:
* No clear-cut boundaries to delimit kinds (e.g. discontinuity
    systematics is making little progress).
* Nested hierarchy persists above the level of most proposed 'kinds',
    especially those specified in the Bible.
* Order of events described in Genesis not matched in
    stratigraphic record.

Progressive creation via successive modification of existing organisms
(e.g. selective breeding, genetic engineering) is compatible with the
fossil record but lacks independent support that a bio-engineer was ever
present to perform any 'modifications'. While no case can be perfectly
made against the unknown intentions of a supernatural being, there is a
question of whether invoking such a 'force' is typically necessary when
alternate, mundane, possibilities remain and there is no direct
knowledge of the being's presence. Natural mechanisms, although their
interacting effects are often difficult to tease apart in biology,
provide a potential means for examining species relationships and
understanding historical patterns.

Tim I
Received on Thu Aug 4 23:07:59 2005

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