Icons of Evolution Home of Biologist and Iconoclast Jonathan Wells
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Warts - Skin Tag Disease

Mutant Destruction

Critics of intelligent design (ID) sometimes argue that if the human body were designed, it would be perfect. Among other things, we would not suffer from diseases such as cancer. Defenders of ID point out that this criticism is misplaced. Design does not imply perfection. Many things we know to be designed (such as cars) are imperfect. The “argument from imperfection” against ID is implicitly a theological argument, namely, that God is the designer and anything designed by God must be perfect. ID does not make that claim.

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"Whales Hervery Bay _0307" by Michael Dawes @flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Whale of a Tale

Charles Darwin wrote in the first edition of On the Origin of Species that North American black bears had been seen “swimming for hours with widely open mouth, thus catching, like a whale, insects in the water. Even in so extreme a case as this, if the supply of insects were constant, and if better adapted competitors did not already exist in the country, I can see no difficulty in a race of bears being rendered, by natural selection, more and more aquatic in their structure and habits, with larger and larger mouths, till a creature was produced as monstrous as a whale.

Geese Stepping
Geese Stepping
"geese4" by Scott Grassmann @flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Goose Stepping for Science

Imagine yourself in Moscow in 1950, taking part in a March for Science. Science in the Soviet Union had been suffering for many years under Trofim Lysenko, a third-rate biologist who promoted unsound agricultural policies. Lysenko’s ideas appealed to Joseph Stalin, who elevated him to a high position. Eventually, all criticisms of Lysenko were prohibited. Thousands of scientists lost their jobs. Some were even imprisoned or executed. You and others in the imaginary Moscow March for Science would be risking your lives to protest Stalin’s rule. Contrast this imaginary March for Science in 1950 with the March for Science on April 22, in Washington, D.C. Organizers describe the Washington march as “a call to support and safeguard the scientific community. …

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Pubic Domain, https://pixabay.com/en/one-way-arrow-brick-wall-863138/

The March for Science is Really a March for Conformity

I am a scientist, but I won’t be joining the worldwide March for Science April 22. That’s because it’s really a march for something that undermines good science. March organizers say “our diversity is our greatest strength.” They say “a wealth of opinions, perspectives, and ideas is critical for the scientific process.” But they don’t really mean it. Their passion for diversity extends to race, religion, nationality, gender and sexual orientation, but not to opinions, perspectives and ideas. In particular, it doesn’t extend to diversity of opinion about two controversial ideas. The first idea is that you evolved from ape-like ancestors by unguided processes such as accidental mutation and natural selection. The second idea is that manmade global warming threatens …

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"Evidence" by theycallmetelly @flickr

The Problem of Evidence

If it isn’t testable, it isn’t science. The present controversy over evolution is often portrayed as the latest battle in a centuries-old war between science and religion. According to this stereotype, Darwin’s theory was a milestone in scientific progress, based on evidence that is now overwhelming, and its principal opponents were–and still are–religious fundamentalists committed to a literal interpretation of Genesis chronology. That stereotype, however, is false. First, the “warfare” metaphor is historically inaccurate. With rare exceptions, such as the Galileo affair, science and religion got along just fine before Darwin. Second, the problem is not “evolution”–which means many things–but rather Darwin’s theory that all living things are descendants of a common ancestor that have been modified by random variations …