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> Evolution (part 3) Issue: 2012-3 Section: 17-19

Arguments Against Evolution

Evolution is NOT what created life on earth because:

  • Religion/God
  • Alternative Theories
  • Creationism
  • Errors in the theory of evolution
  • Other Arguments Against Evolution

 

Religion/God

Without doubt the largest contributor to the disbelief of evolution is caused by religion. The reason for this is due to how influential religion is, and more so, how it has been. Religion is/has been the cornerstone for many peoples lifestyles for centuries, and has split off into many different varieties, having a huge impact across the world. Christianity has been a social norm for thousands of years, and the power of it and the church was immeasurable, so much so that those who went against it would be punished, whether this be socially, or physically.

The above image shows mapping based on religion upon a global scale, from looking at the key, it is quite clear that Christianity is the most dominant belief, which confirms the above point. Notice there is no part on the key stating areas of no belief, or atheism, this is because of how large of an impact religion has upon a community, a country is commonly a predominant religion, or racially (and therefore religiously) diverse, showing how much of a minority non-religious people are [14]

The theory of evolution quite clearly goes against god, and questions his existence; therefore it is going against the church. Due to the immense influence of the church, many people did not, and still do not believe that the theory of evolution is correct, some American states even refuse to teach it! This shows how much of an impact religion has had, and still has.

Since evolution, and the current scientific mindset of people nowadays, religion is extremely threatened by evolution, as it explains the entire history of life, as opposed to creationism. It is due to this threat that religion uses what influential power it has over people to disregard evolution, and many people follow this endlessly.

This is not particularly a reason or argument as to how or why evolution is wrong, nor a way to disprove it, this falls under the category of ‘Creationism’ later on. However it does show how and why people will disregard evolution, and will attempt to find ways of disproving it. This is due to it being such a great threat to the religious community, and this regards a huge proportion of the population.

 

Alternative Theories

There are other theories at to how man came to be, the most notable one being creationism (of which will be explained more in depth later in its own section), however there are lesser known and disregarded theories that challenge the theory of evolution; these include: Lamarckian Inheritance, Punctuated Evolution, Intelligent Design, and more. Most of these have been disproved, although they still have a – granted, small – Impact on the population, and on evolution [2]

The first theory being Lamarckian Inheritance, which simple broadcasts the idea that a species will come across small changes over time to benefit upcoming generations, however unlike evolution, these changes are environmental, as opposed to natural selection/survival of the fittest [2]

The best example of this (shown by the image to the left) would be of a giraffe, as it strains the muscles in its neck to attain apples from a tree above them, there necks will gradually grow larger, and this will then be passed on to its young, gradually increasing in neck size as each generation goes on. Though the basic idea of this theory may be correct, it would happen by the process of natural selection instead. Rather than the giraffe ‘stretching’ its neck and passing that on to its young, the giraffes with naturally longer necks are more likely to survive, as they are more capable of obtaining food, therefore the gene that allows there neck to be long, will be passed down generation upon generation, until they get where they are today… as opposed to ‘training’ there neck. A good way of explaining why Lamarckian Inheritance doesn’t work, is by saying that a husband and wife are body builders, with perfectly built and toned muscles, the then decide to have a child, however when it is born, it doesn’t have perfectly sculpted muscles; why? Because children do not inherit characteristics this way, they may however grow up to is a bodybuilder just do to the environmental factor of growing up with them [2]

This theory, along with the others listed, have all been disproved, however still remain in the minds of a small proportion of the population, these theories may be swatted away by the superior theory of evolution, but nothing is to say that evolution in itself may be wrong, and these theories could be correct, however it’s the influential factor, and scientific evidence that defends evolutions spot as the globally accepted theory of how man came to be [2]

 

Creationism

Creationism is Evolutions nemesis; both theories contradict each other entirely, and Creationism is commonly followed by Christians, however this may not always be the case. Creationism is a belief that life on earth, was simply designed, and placed upon it by a superior entity, otherwise referred to as god, as opposed to evolving from complex genes. There are different types of creationism, however the most common is Christian Creationism, taking the bible quite literally, to use as a mantel for there beliefs. Some of these beliefs consist of: the earth being between 6000 and 10,000 years old, that everything on the earth was ‘created’ by this superior entity known as god in 6 days, and that death is caused by the death of Adam and Eve. [3]

These, and many other creationist beliefs go against the theory of evolution, for example the idea that the earth is between 6000 and 10,000 years old, if true, would make the fossil record completely redundant as many of these are believed to be millions of years old!

Despite there being no solid proof of creationism, it is still a plausible theory, mainly for the fact of how influential it has been on many individuals, claiming that they have ‘spoke to god’, no matter how unlikely this may be, it is still a very strong belief, and still a possible cause of life on earth [3]

 

Errors in the theory of Evolution

The theory of evolution was first observed, and commonly refers to, the gradual change in fossils over a long period of time. Fossil records are the backbone of the theory of evolution; it is the apparent ‘proof’. However this ‘proof’ has been found to have some mistakes, such as missing links which would make the fossil records completely worthless. [4]

One was the fossil record can be disproved is through fossils from the prehistoric ages, the time that dinosaurs roamed the earth. Through intensive testing and research, fossils of a T-Rex have been found to be around 65 million years old, with plenty of supposedly conclusive evidence to back it up. However one recent discovery goes against the carbon dating of the T-Rex’s fossils. A biologist named Mary Schweitzer eventually found that within the thigh bone of a T-Rex were soft tissue-including blood vessels. Over time and large amounts of research, there was also found to be haemoglobin, which-if the bone really was 65 million years old- should have disintegrated. This completely disproves the use of carbon dating to find the age of fossils, creating a large dent in the fossil records. There have been numerous related discoveries since, even including frozen mammoths, still with flesh and skin attached; this makes it near impossible for evolutionists to deny [4]

Many evolutionary ideas have also been found to be wrong, such as:

The Neanderthal (left [25]); these were supposedly another species of human, and inferior one that became extinct due to natural selection, however the bones that had been studied to lead to the belief of this weaker, inferior species, have been found to just be regular human bones with some form of a defection causing the bone to weaken, such as rickets [4]

Despite this, there has been a very recent discovery of a 44,000 year old jawbone(below[33]) that is once believed to be that of a Neanderthal, and that it is evidence that we homo-sapiens lived alongside Neanderthals. We know this thanks to radiocarbon tests, we may have originally been around 7000 years under the actual age, but this difference would suggest that Neanderthals were already living in Europe before us Homo-sapiens arrived. A second radiocarbon scan was performed on fossil milk teeth of these Neanderthals, suggesting that they were 45,000 years old. These results would suggest that the anatomy of modern-day humans were inhabitants of Europe thousands of years earlier than previously thought. These alterations in the original theory make it more likely that we humans lived alongside Neanderthals [33]

Piltdown man (right [26]); this was also believed to be another species branched off from humans, much like the Neanderthal. However this again was disproved, after further research the skull of what was apparently the Piltdown man, was found to be a combination of a child’s skull, and an orang-utan’s jaw. This belittles the amount of evidence of human evolution evenfurther [4]

Nebraska Man; The belief of another species of human was initiated by the discovery of a tooth in Nebraska, what was extraordinary, and frankly ridiculous, was that the entire lifestyle and looks of this supposed Nebraska Man, was based entirely around a single tooth! Firstly this would be an unreliable way to determine the lifestyle of an unknown species, and secondly, over time a skull that fit the tooth was discovered… it was the skull of a pig, thus demeaning any other idea of human evolution [4]

All of these false discoveries simply prove that not all fossil records are entirely reliable, and some parts of the theory are prone to mistakes, even the most influential and believed discoveries may also prove to be incorrect, a perfect example of this would be of another supposed human ancestor, named ‘Lucy’. ‘Lucy’ was universally accepted to be the true ancestor of man, the missing link between man and ape, and since its discovery, many believed they had the answer to mans evolutionary missing link [4]

Lucy (Skull, right [27]) was alike a humanoid, although was also alike a chimp, this type of being was called Australopithecus, however even this was disproved, and hesitantly at best. After further study of the bones, it was found that they were that of a chimpanzee, supposed ‘Lucy footprints’, were proved to be those of modern man, and lastly a fossil of a skull was discovered in Kenya, suggesting even more human-like features than Lucy, giving more evidence that Lucy is in-fact a chimpanzee, and also leaving a huge gap in the theory of man’s origin, widening the distance between the missing link. Therefore even the most revolutionary and influential discoveries cant be trusted, as they are just theory, as is evolution [4]

 

Other Arguments Against Evolution

Another argument against evolution is through the mathematical terms of probability. Alongside the currently known biological facts, the odds of evolution occurring through nothing other than chance are little to none. Despite the length of time of existence, mathematically, evolution is still considered to be impossible due to how slim the chance is of a species gaining some kind of benefit through random mutations. The more that we learn about our complex biological world, is comes surprising to some that evolutionists still believe in evolution occurring by chance over a period of time, and others believe that the "intelligent design" model, based upon a Divine Creator, makes much more sense.

To expand on this, the DNA possessed by any living organism consists of the information required to form its individual characteristics that would be passed upon generations, or perhaps mutated. Due to its intricate detail, the amount the genetics can change through mutation is limited; this is to avoid sterilisation or death. This would then suggest that the genetic code can not, and will not undergo any dramatic changes of mutation, this further slims the chances of evolution occurring at the rate it supposedly has done.

Furthermore, there is no conclusive evidence of a genetic code that allows DNA to gradually change there molecular codes, nullifying the possibility of mutations gradually changing organisms into others over time. This means that organisms have a ‘limit’ to how much they are capable of mutating, or at least this is what is suggested by the given evidence. As a result, despite how much time you may spend watching the evolutionary process of the mouse, you will never see it undergo mutations to turn it into, say an elephant, as this limit to mutations makes it near impossible for drastic mutations to successively and consistently benefit the species to such a point it evolves into another [28]

 

Evaluation and opinion

My own personal view on evolution is that it did create the diversity of life on earth; this is for a small accumulation of reasons. First of all, there is a large amount of evidence to strengthen the foundation of the theory with numerous different ways of explaining and proving it, these include using of looking at the fossil records, the evolution of DNA, the evolution of MRSA, and through observations upon embryology. Furthermore there is little evidence against evolution, despite the thought that evolution is mathematically improbable, it has been allowed to occur over billions of years, and it can’t be any less likely than an unexplained superior entity simple creating life himself out of nothing. Despite there being gaps in the fossil records that supposedly hinder evolution, to me, this only strengthens it. This is due to the fact that evidence for evolution through the fossil records is already very strong and reliable, but the idea that the vast majority of fossils are yet to be discovered suggests that we are capable of attaining even more evidence to back up the theory of evolution even further. To close my reasoning, the belief of the alternate theory of creationism has been the dominant belief of existence for thousands of years, whereas scientific evidence has only recently been able to accumulate for around a hundred or so years. If given more time to further research evolution we can almost guarantee that we will discover something that can indefinitely prove evolution. I am completely adamant about my opinion and believe evolution entirely, as opposed to the even lesser explained theory of creationism.



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