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Is the theory of evolution by natural selection correct?
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The fossil record is incomplete

If evolution happened through the gradual development and multiplication of slight variations, which is what evolutionists claim, then the fossil record should exhibit dead organisms closely constellated together with scarcely differentiated strata. But this is not the case. The record is filled with gaps.

The Argument

Evolution supposedly took place over the span of four billion years. No one observed the process. Today, the fossil record and the comparative anatomy, physiology, and biochemistry of various organisms allow scientists to infer about the past. If life evolved through the gradual development and multiplication of slight variations, then the fossil record should exhibit this kind of constellating progression. Dead organisms should be constellated in strata that are hardly differentiated.[1] "But for well over 150 years," says David Berlinski, "the dead have been remarkably diffident about confirming Darwin’s theory."[1] The disintegrated remains of primeval creatures do not appear how they should in the fossil record. Palaeontologists have classified fossils into different categories like theromorphs and therapsids. However, there are significant gaps in the record; many key transitional forms are nowhere to be found.[1] Prior to the Cambrian era, which was roughly 600 million years ago, the fossil record exhibits a significantly small collection of biological forms.[1] A vast array of new biological forms suddenly emerges in the Cambrian era.[1] These new biological forms appear all at once in the fossil record.[1] Then, key courses of transitional progress are simply absent.[1] Consider the ancestral link between Eusthenopteron and Ichthyostega, which is the pivotal juncture of the fish and the amphibia. Most species come into the evolutionary arrangement entirely formed and go out unaltered.[1] "Where there should be evolution, there is stasis instead," says Berlinski. [1] In building their theory of "punctuated equilibria," palaeontologists Stephen Jay Gould and Niles Eldredge used the term 'stasis' instead of 'evolution' or 'progression'.[1] Steven Stanley, a palaeontologist and evolutionary biologist at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, says the following: "The known fossil record fails to document a single example of phyletic evolution accomplishing a major morphologic transition and hence offers no evidence that the gradualistic model can be valid."[1]

Counter arguments

Many scientists would insist that there is a good amount of transitional fossils in the fossil record. For example, between prehistoric land mammals and present-day whales there is a transitional fossil called "Ambulocetus natans."[2] Those who oppose the theory of evolution will likely respond by saying that cases where there is only one or a few transitional fossils between different kinds of organisms is hardly conclusive evidence, since there are still large gaps. Although there are gaps, proponents of evolutionary theory would retort, there are many fossils that indicate an earliest ancestor shared by a group of species (Richard Dawkins calls these "concestors").[2] Many of these concestors are identified once data and evidence from different scientific fields of study come together. Thus, the fossil record, despite its incompleteness, can be seen as supportive of evolutionary theory when all of the information from specific areas of scientific inquiry, like morphogenesis and genetics, is thoroughly considered.[2]



Rejecting the premises

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This page was last edited on Monday, 9 Nov 2020 at 17:28 UTC

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