Your thoughts on evolution
Researchers found hand bones of an adult female Australopithecus sediba in Malapa, South Africa.
September 12th, 2011
12:56 PM ET

Your thoughts on evolution

We knew our story on a possible human ancestor called Australopithecus sediba would be controversial, but never expected more than 1,900 comments to come in.

The post generated some pretty intense discussions involving readers who do not believe these new findings - or any evidence of human evolution, for that matter - because of their religious beliefs.

blake

Maybe your ancestor, not mine. I was created in the image of God, not evolved from from some lifeless goo over billions of years. The accident of time and chance. I don't have enough faith to believe those kind of fantastical fairy tales.

Religious sentiments such as this received a lot of backlash from readers such as gary, who writes:

Evolution is fact. Deities and demons are pretend. Bible is folklore, myth, superstition and legend.

There's also a large contingent of readers who don't see a contradiction between accepting the facts of science and having religious faith. Judas Priest writes:

Excuse me, but why does believing in god mean denying the wonders of creation that you can see and touch and evaluate? How does accepting that the world is billions of years old, and the universe billions of years older still, deny god? How does observing that things change over time refute god in any way? Why must god, and god's creation, be small enough to be encompassed by your tiny little mind and your tiny little book?

The hundreds of comments that formed these discussions annoyed readers like Pav, who thinks people with religious reasons for denying evolution should take their beliefs elsewhere.

Mathematicians don't have to justify the Pythagorean theorem every time they apply it to a new proof, and scientists don't need to justify evolution every time they talk about a new fossil. So, stop it!

Of course, not everyone sees it this way - earth2loons feels that evolution is a lot more controversial than the Pythagorean theorem, writing:

"...when you must eliminate the possibility of a creator from your interpretation of the data because of your own agnostic or atheistic biases, you will see what you want and need to see."

It's obvious that a lot of people have very passionate views on this topic but, this being a science blog, we are going to report with the assumption that the prevailing, tested theory with the most rigorous evidence - evolution - is true. And CNN has a Belief Blog that fosters conversations about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives.

And there's a lot of misunderstanding about evolution; it's really not as clear cut as you might think. Reader John Hanson writes:

There is always controversy surrounding the "discovery" of fossils that are supposed to bridge apes to humans because they're always plagued by assumptions made by paleontologists. They touted "Peking Man" as the "link" in the fossil chain proving evolution, then came to discover bones of homo sapiens in the same pit. There are too many assumptions and too little PROOF.

The truth is that there is no simple chain of ancestry with a "missing link" that scientists are trying to find. When we talk about the lineage of Homo sapiens, we acknowledge that there were a whole bunch of ancient relatives of various anatomical forms, some of which are more closely related to us than others. Check out this piece from Science 2.0 on the "missing link fallacy" to learn more about the complexity of tracing the evolution of our species.

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Filed under: Human ancestors • On Earth
soundoff (3,534 Responses)
  1. palintwit

    Sarah Palin believes that the first automobiles really were foot powered, just like what Fred and Wilma drove.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:45 pm |
    • hasc

      And if you send that in to Bill Maher he will tell national audiences she said that and everybody will believe it. Just like everybody knows Marie Antoinette said "Let them eat cake."

      September 12, 2011 at 6:45 pm |
    • eatdodo

      They weren't????

      September 12, 2011 at 8:58 pm |
  2. stevef2222

    roses are red, violets are blue, humanity sucks...what else is new?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:45 pm |
  3. Strange1

    It would be humorous if it wasn't so sad that the religious right also are the ones usually touting "teaching the basics" but excluding real science and history. Is there any wonder that America is falling behind. My 6th grade granddaughter's science teacher actually played an "earth science" video (from a religious site) claiming to be "sounds from hell." The Superintendent's office just told her to "don't do that again." Unfortunately my granddaughter lives in a school district where there aren't any education alternatives other than homeschooling and that isn't feasible for several reasons. Hence, the best we can do is to try to teach good science and history as well as how to "pass the school tests" without inculcating bad science and history. Our school district also is a very conservative, right-wing, fundamentalist area which means that the peer pressure on children to conform to a particular religious viewpoint is enormous and the adults have to be very careful not to reveal a religious view different from an employer or the local bank. And we wonder why America is falling behind.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:44 pm |
    • spoo

      you could also go and complain to the teacher and the school authorities. remember that this is a political problem not an educational one....there are some there that want to become powerful by making the acceptance of their believes an obligation for others

      September 12, 2011 at 3:54 pm |
      • Strange1

        You are being naive. My daughter teaches in the same district. She would lose her job. My son-in-law works with a business where many of the "community's finest leaders" influence business contracts and most of those leaders are right-wing fundamentalists. My wife has a business that would result in a reduction of clientele. And, I teach at another school where the right-wing, fundamentalist principal also "roots out" anyone that doesn't exhibit the correct political or religious stance.

        September 12, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
      • eatdodo

        is that short for "spooge?" I'm gonna go spooge now.

        September 12, 2011 at 9:07 pm |
    • Peggy

      This terrifies me!

      September 12, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
    • Fact Check

      Sounds like your grandchildren are lucky despiste evolving from you...LOL

      September 12, 2011 at 4:20 pm |
    • BBoy705

      @ Fact Check – Sure, too much science is a bad thing for little minds, they might think too much and develop ideas of their own!! BTW, clever use of the word evolving.

      @ Strange1 – I would move out of that town in a hurry before they start passing around purple Kool Aid!

      September 12, 2011 at 5:01 pm |
  4. B. Strick

    The Bible says that God created man...but it doesn't say how!

    September 12, 2011 at 3:44 pm |
    • Matt

      that's EXACTLY right

      September 12, 2011 at 3:46 pm |
    • evolution

      from dirt

      September 12, 2011 at 3:47 pm |
      • BadMonkey

        CLAY!! - DUH!!

        September 12, 2011 at 3:58 pm |
    • lol

      uhh..didn't he create Adam out of dust? and then Eve out of one of Adam's ribs? I mean, is that a metaphor, er, what? this entity you call "God" just created the ENTIRE universe out of nothing, but he then decides to create man out of dust and woman out of rib? rofl

      September 12, 2011 at 3:48 pm |
      • CharlesD

        It depends on which of the two different, intermingled creation stories in the Bible you read. They are quite separate in content and contradictory on both physical and doctrinal points, an obvious co-mingling of the creation myths of two very different cultures.

        September 12, 2011 at 3:51 pm |
    • eatdodo

      With goo

      September 12, 2011 at 9:00 pm |
  5. Matt

    IF WE EVOLVED FROM MONKEYS THEN WHY DO WE STILL HAVE MONKEYS?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:44 pm |
    • Strange1

      Narrow linear thought.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:46 pm |
    • Matt

      A narrow thought you obviously have no answer for

      September 12, 2011 at 3:48 pm |
    • lol

      troll

      September 12, 2011 at 3:48 pm |
    • Ek

      We did not evolve from monkeys. We evolved from a common ancestor. That is why chimp DNA and human DNA are 99% identical.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:50 pm |
    • DoesntMatter

      We didn't evolve from "monkeys". Read more about evolution as you do not know anything about it.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:51 pm |
    • Abolish All Religion

      We didn't evolve from "monkeys". This is what Jesus freaks and bible-thumpers don't seem to have the mental capacity to understand. Both humans and monkeys evolved from a common ancestor, on separate evolutionary paths. We both do what we do well enough to be around today. Any living organism alive today is a product of the same length of evolutionary process, doing what they each do in the best way evolution has made possible.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:56 pm |
      • BadMonkey

        ... and, uh.... exactly who was this common ancestor?

        September 12, 2011 at 4:01 pm |
    • MisterK

      Matt, we didn't evolve from monkeys. All primates (including us and monkeys) evolved from something else – a prehistoric primate. A monkey is not our great great grandmother (as you seem to think evolution states), but a very distant cousin. Whatever we all evolved from (that great grandmother) is no longer around, but all the kids all all here: apes, monkeys, humans....

      September 12, 2011 at 8:41 pm |
  6. GOD

    The typical discussion on evoluation just shows, yet again, that the average American has neither the education nor intellectual capacity to understand complex scientific theories. If the discussion moves much beyond "fire, hot!", it exceeds the realm of understanding for 75% of the population. Please, go pray to your fairies to solve your problems while people with the actual ability discover new information and expand human knowledge.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
    • CharlesD

      Evolution isn't exactly complex. It is actually an enormous simplifying framework when compared to the chaotic attempts to comprehend and understand the vast explosion of new life forms that were discovered during the Age of Exploration and which otherwise simply defied analysis.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:54 pm |
  7. Questionable

    To me it seems like many religions eventually conform to scientific theory. At one time in history you could be punished by the church for saying the Earth wasnt the center of the universe. This is probably one reason European's astronomical understanding paled in comparison to the Mayans. The church held back scientific understanding due to fear of punishment and/or preconceived perceptions of the way thing worked due to the churches views. Now religious people are starting to conform to the idea of evolution by saying evolution could fit into their religion. Anyone else see a pattern?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
    • CharlesD

      Well, not exactly, but the real story is fairly complex. Suffice it to say that the Church provided both the tools and the funding for what eventually became the scientific method. For an excellent read on the topic, I recommend "Galileo's Daughter" by Dava Sobel. It quietly but thoroughly trashes the notion that things were as black and white as they are often presented.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
  8. Nookleerman

    God doesn't have to intervene to tell us science is wrong. Scientists do that all on their own. The difference between scientists today and the religious nuts of 500 years ago is the nuts believed in a God who loved them. They both have their book of "facts" that with a little digging can be proven to be ridiculous guesses based on little evidence. Not to long ago (less than 100 years) it was believed that going over 60 miles an hour would kill you, since the only peopl who had ever done it were falling from a very high place. The religious nuts didn't give us that little gem. There is a laundry list more of such "facts" that are continually proven wrong, making science, as I stated, the shakiest religion of all. I'm all for using it to help advance our society, but the idea that one book of nonsense can disprove another book of nonsense is in and of itself, nonsense.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
    • jason

      that's actually why science is a valid system, because it allows itself to be proven wrong. A theory that cannot be falsified cannot illuminate as well.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:44 pm |
    • Questionable

      I dont think there is one book for science, The Orgin of Species is by no means the end all be all of science. The difference is science is way more willing to adapt with new evidence even if it contradicts what was thought of as fact before.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:53 pm |
  9. Sarah

    When an anti-bacterial soap kills 99.9% of germs, that 0.1% forms a resistant strain. The same thing happens with anti-biotics. 100% proof of evolution. The old strain isn't extinct from the earth, but the new strain is an evolution.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
    • Humanoid

      @sarah – If you use antibiotic soap all the time, bugs become immune to it. That;s NOT evolution, it's adapting. Once we started to eat meat, our appendix stopped working – that's adapting too. The 2 are quite distinct from each other. Sorry.

      September 12, 2011 at 7:03 pm |
  10. a1000lies

    I believe in intelligent design because a collection of 2000 year old desert scribblings MUST be the word of god! It's fact! Forget hard work and research, its nonsense!

    September 12, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
    • evolution

      There are some really cool scribblings in the desert near Nazca, Peru. That is why I worship only 2000 year old gods of western Peru.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:45 pm |
  11. TYRONE

    PEOPLE ARE SO SMART UNTIL THE FACT THAT WE ARE SO DUMB...SCIENCE HAS FOUND THINGS THAT CAN BE PROVEN AND I GIVE THEM CREDIT FOR THAT BUT WHEN YOU HAVE OVER A BILLION PEOPLE ON EARTH WHO FINGERPRINT WILL NOT MATCH, YOU HAVE FISH IN THE SEA THAT WEIGHS A TON, YOU HAVE A EARTH THAT NO MATTER WHAT THE SUN WILL RISE AND THE NIGHT WILL FALL, LETS BE REAL GOD HAS PROVIDED US WITH THE KNOWLEDGE TO EXPLORE AND FIND THINGS BUT ONE THING SCIENCE CANT PROVE AND THAT IS THEIR IS NO GOD.THE TREES AND LAND PROVIDES FOOD AND OXYGEN FOR US TO BREATHE THIS IS NO A MISTAKE AND CORRECT ME IF IM WRONG WHEN 9/11 OR ANY TRAGIC THING HAPPEN IN OUR LIFE WHAT IS THE FIRST THING PEOPLE SAY"""""'OH MY GOD""""' Wake up people

    September 12, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
    • Matt

      "My god" will also be most everyone's last thoughts too 🙂

      September 12, 2011 at 4:02 pm |
    • Humanoid

      Tyrone – you might be very interested to look up – http://www.godandscience.org/apologetics. It gives loads of recent scientific data which, they say, comes close to proving that God created the Universe.

      Another group of scientists are " very, very close " to proving that there IS life after death.

      I am a Catholic. And I found both these articles incredibly interesting. I'm sure you'll appreciate them too. Peace Brother.

      September 12, 2011 at 7:11 pm |
  12. ckbabs

    I am a christian but I absolutely believe in evolution. God gave us intelligent minds and fantastic puzzles to figure out. Science is fascinatiing! Writing science off because it doesn't mesh with religion is down-right silly. Why couldn't God use evolution? Why couldn't he have set off creation with a big bang? Something from nothing had to start somehow! And this ridiculous notion that the earth is only 6000 years old... come on. We're smarter than that. It is easy to PROVE age. Science is an incredible gift and we should delight in being capable of studying it. I think God is thrilled that we're happily exploring what He created. It really is rather perfect! 🙂

    September 12, 2011 at 3:42 pm |
  13. BadMonkey

    the·o·ry   /ˈθiəri, ˈθɪəri/ Show Spelled[thee-uh-ree, theer-ee] Show IPA
    noun, plural the·o·ries.
    1. a coherent group of tested general propositions, commonly regarded as correct, that can be used as principles of explanation and prediction for a class of phenomena: Einstein's theory of relativity. Synonyms: principle, law, doctrine.
    2. a proposed explanation whose status is still conjectural and subject to experimentation, in contrast to well-established propositions that are regarded as reporting matters of actual fact. Synonyms: idea, notion hypothesis, postulate. Antonyms: practice, verification, corroboration, substantiation.
    3. Mathematics . a body of principles, theorems, or the like, belonging to one subject: number theory.
    4. the branch of a science or art that deals with its principles or methods, as distinguished from its practice: music theory.
    5. a particular conception or view of something to be done or of the method of doing it; a system of rules or principles: conflicting theories of how children best learn to read.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:42 pm |
  14. John B

    Evolution? I thought the earth was only 6,000 years old. I mean, the bible never mentions dinosaurs, so those "fossils" must be fake.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:42 pm |
    • what?

      Apparently, God planted them just to screw with us.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:53 pm |
    • Humanoid

      Probably another student hoax like the Piltdown Man' ..............Students 50........Scientists 0

      September 12, 2011 at 7:12 pm |
  15. DoesntMatter

    Does anyone else think it's hilarious that people are going "Ape" over this discussion?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:42 pm |
    • Humanoid

      I don't give a "Monkeys" myself! Sorry couldn't resist it.

      September 12, 2011 at 7:14 pm |
      • eatdodo

        Go spank your monkey!

        September 12, 2011 at 8:56 pm |
  16. Mike in NYC

    Here's the problem that I have with the theory of evolution (and i'm NOT discounting the theory but this has never been explained to my satisfaction .... not even by my college professors) ... evolution in general is an extremely slow process. When two mice breed, the offspring is a mouse. When that offspring breeds, its offspring is a mouse. When that offspring breeds... And the process continues. Point mutations do not change this fact in any significant way over the short haul. Carl Sagan, in "The Dragons of Eden," put it this way:

    "The time scale for evolutionary or genetic change is very long. A characteristic period for the emergence of one advanced species from another is perhaps a hundred thousand years; and very often the difference in behavior between closely related species - say, lions and tigers - does not seem very great. An example of recent evolution of organ systems in humans is our toes. The big toe plays an important function in balance while walking; the other toes have much less obvious utility. They are clearly evolved from fingerlike appendages for grasping and swinging, like those of arboreal apes and monkeys. This evolution constitutes a respecialization - the adaptation of an organ system originally evolved for one function to another and quite different function - which required about ten million years to emerge."

    The fact that it takes evolution 10 million years to make a relatively minor change in existing structures shows just how slow evolution really is. The creation of a new species would be rather time consuming. Consider that 65 million years ago dinosaurs roamed the earth without man. NOW if it takes 10 million years to create a big toe .... you do the math. For evolution to explain our existence there would have to have been some extraordinary leap of evolution somewhere along the line. Its THAT gap that causes problems for me. And as I've said .... I've had several anthropology professors (with a whole bunch of PhDs after their names) that can't come up with an answer for that.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:42 pm |
    • BadMonkey

      Hear hear ... and thank you.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:45 pm |
      • eatdodo

        You go spank your "Bad" monkey.

        September 12, 2011 at 9:08 pm |
    • ckbabs

      Definitely something to think about!

      September 12, 2011 at 3:48 pm |
    • CharlesD

      The new species of plant that arose in Britain just a few years ago did so instantaneously – a single point mutation rendered a new species incapable of breeding with its ancestors and only with itself (self-fertility is common in the plant world). In other realms, since you're fond of quoting Gould I would suggest that you try reading some of his work, in particular that on punctuated equilibrium, wherein a large population with a large pool of diversity exists for long periods of time, then can rapidly shift its genetic corpus when the environment changes and some small sample of that diversity quickly dominates. Millions of years aren't required; species almost certainly arise over much shorter timespans, probably on the order of tens of thousands of years or less.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:48 pm |
      • BadMonkey

        So do you think Carl Sagen came back as a plant?

        September 12, 2011 at 3:51 pm |
    • evolution

      Humans didn't evolve from Dinosaurs. There were mamals on earth at the same time as dinosaurs. Many things evolve at the same time. Your teeth can be evolving at the same time as your toe.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:50 pm |
      • Mike in NYC

        There is NO evidence that ANY species of humanoid existed at the same time as dinosaurs, therefore, we would HAVE to have evolved during the 65 million years since.

        September 12, 2011 at 3:53 pm |
    • Strange1

      Mutations aren't on a time schedule and usually occur by some action. Clearly some may be the result of accident and clearly some may be from natural selection. But physical or external factors can stimulate change and perhaps at a pace faster or slower than 10 million years. Evolution itself isn't a theory; how evolution occurs is what is theoretical.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:51 pm |
      • Mike in NYC

        Again to my last response. There have been no humanoid fossils found below the K/T boundary ... therefore we HAD to have evolved in the last 65 million years for the theory to evolution to hold water. As I've posted – I've had 3 well respected and highly published anthropology professors that admit that there is no explaination for the explosive rate evolution that would have been necessary for us to be here.

        September 12, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
    • Humanoid

      Good question Mike.
      How come some of these mini, pseudo-scientists here spout forth and pontificate to us [what they see as 'lower ranks' / religious freaks etc ] about basic evolution, when even your eminent scientisy professors couldn't?

      Short answer being – don't get on these posts if you need intelligent information from evolution theorists

      September 12, 2011 at 7:22 pm |
  17. GoDucks

    Though being from a catholic family and raised religiously, actually thinking and learning helps you understand there are two sides to evolution and religion. Religion is an analysis of the unknown. We don't know what will happen when we leave this Earth and the Bible helps us guide our way to that point to lead a good life which I hope everyone tries to do. But it shouldn't control us, and Frankly just sitting through a few anthropology classes will help people think more that there is no way we came out of thin air. There is too much evidence and coincidences to ignore evolution.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:42 pm |
    • Dawgdays

      Also being from a Catholic family and raised religiously... the evidence that has been uncovered, and all the reasoning that man has put into it certainly points towards evolution. There is no doubt of that. But, for those who believe, God is an all powerful God and in being so he could have instantly created all that we perceive , including the fossil records, including giving them age as with C14 dating and such. Its really not much of a stretch if you believe in an all knowing all powerful God. For those who don't believe, well, they are welcome to their beliefs.

      September 12, 2011 at 4:27 pm |
    • eatdodo

      We came from under cabbage leaves....not outta thin air!!!! There's a big difference.

      September 12, 2011 at 9:03 pm |
  18. Babarudra

    God is beyond all form and concept. Love and worship of God has a place in all matters. As humans we are learning more and more, but there will always be things beyond us, that is God. Instead of demanding proofs, demand to prove yourself a loving, caring, sibling to your fellow members of this Earth, that is God too. Being narrow-minded and closed to what may be, closes off the possibility of furthering your minds. But also don't take every word ever written as fact, so many have been refuted and shown the truth, both in science and faith.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:42 pm |
  19. JayDeeT

    At this point, it's not really a question of god or evolution; there are enough realy ignorant people in this society who would believe just about anything told to them by a religious idiot or read in a book scribed by pre-historic goat herders. Why should any one with a healthy mind bow down to either a book of superstitions or a bog of ooze?? Wake up people – and stop looking for validation for your irrational, inane, and infantile "religious" hang-ups!

    September 12, 2011 at 3:41 pm |
  20. ReadABook

    Audit any college level genetics or evolutionary biology classes... read a book... learn something! There is more evidence to support evolution than the cell theory. To deny the theory of evolution – yes, it is a theory... you should also know that there are VERY few laws in math and science, is to deny the fact that the sun is warm and grass is green. Ugh, another failure of the public education system.

    PS it's spelled Satan, not Satin. If you're going to be a religous zealot, at least don't be fool that can't even get your own jargon right.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:41 pm |
  21. CharlesD

    Denying evolution denies the power of God.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:40 pm |
  22. Mark L.

    All living beings are constantly evolving, whether they believe in evolution or not.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:40 pm |
    • eatdodo

      You're wrong....I'm devolving.

      September 12, 2011 at 9:04 pm |
  23. Joe F.

    Darwin -in his own words and dismay said – as regards the fossil field in the "Cambrian Explosion" – which were totally of of synch with his theory– If you do not in future years discover the reason for this – you may discard my THEORY
    250,000 fossils and 150 years later – they still are way off the charts in expectations for evolutuion– AND the mini
    grand canyon in Oregon after 50 years of proof to misread uniformitarian geologists had to agree it was a massive volume of water loosed over as short a time as 3 days. There is a conspiracy to recognize Creator God as superstition
    and not provide the well intended populace to See ALL THE EVIDENCE. Also ask about OPEN and CLOSED systems for
    judging the dates for rocks, and also have C-14 explained to you. They are assumption upon assumption, unreliable! !

    September 12, 2011 at 3:40 pm |
    • CharlesD

      If you're going to attempt to ground your objections in the scientific realm, you would do a lot better to actually learn some science – even a little bit – before spewing nonsense like this. What you've said here isn't worth refutation because it simply doesn't make any sense.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:42 pm |
    • spoo

      you do NOT have a clue of what you are saying.....

      September 12, 2011 at 3:50 pm |
    • Terry

      Holy smokes, you're the type of person that makes me fearful for my children's future.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:52 pm |
  24. Nate

    All of this bickering just stems from people not understanding the various perspectives on the issue and how they interrelate. Some evolutionary biologists are atheist and some are people of faith. The science of the issue is not disputed between these two groups. Evolution is an observable phenomenon. It happens. We see it happen rapidly in species that reproduce rapidly. It happens much more slowly in species that do not reproduce so rapidly, but it still happens. Sometimes an event will occur that will spur rapid changes. Some changes occur over a more extended time period.

    None of these observable phenomena prove or disprove higher beings. Some people with preconceived notions one way or the other will use them to support their beliefs or will completely discount them because of an apparent conflict with their preconceived notions, but they're overreaching here. The observable phenomena are just that...observable phenomena.

    There's a little bit of discussion about the mechanisms by which these phenomena occur, but not much. What is not in question is that evolution occurs because gene frequencies change among populations. There are lots of reasons why this happens and a number of mechanisms that cause it to happen. Would you believe that in some cases, people are responsible for changes in gene frequency among some populations?! In some cases, the females of a species are responsible for the changes due to the way they select their mates. Sometimes, changes in environmental conditions are responsible. It goes on and on. And that list is not a closed list. More mechanisms may yet be discovered.

    But that doesn't change the fact that evolution occurs whether someone chooses to believe it or not. And whether you choose to believe it or not, it's only reasonable to at least understand it before making your choice.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:39 pm |
  25. palintwit

    We arrive in rusty 1964 motorhomes.
    We bring our bibles and loaded assault weapons.
    We wear ridiculous clothing and have teabags dangling from our ears.
    We carry misspelled racist signs as we stomp all over the White House lawn.
    We are Sarah Palin's 'real' Americans.
    We believe the earth is flat and only 6,000 years old.
    We love the baby jesus the most and we also love to boink our cousins.
    We are the birthers. We are the baggers.
    We are republicans. We are morons and we are proud.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:39 pm |
    • Terry

      No all Republicans feel this way. I tend to lean toward the right, but for the life of me can't understand how religion can be accepted in today's society. Also, many of my left leaning friends believe in religion. It's simply a matter of being brainwashed in a system that their parents, and their parents, were brainwashed in as well. It's a never ending cycle of ignorance that one day, hopefully, will become extinct like the dinosaur.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:50 pm |
    • Humanoid

      How juvenile!

      September 12, 2011 at 7:23 pm |
    • eatdodo

      We are "real" Americans. That's why the rest of the world thinks we're assholes.

      September 12, 2011 at 9:05 pm |
  26. cyberCMDR

    Science is based on the scientific process. Observe phenomena, make hypotheses, test them through experimentation or gathering more observations, see if the results agree with the hypothesis, lather, rinse and repeat. Science proves nothing; instead it rigorously tests our explanations of the world and refines or discards them as new data comes in. What science calls theories are those hypotheses that have continued to survive rigorous testing. Aspects of theories may be modified based on evidence (such as how natural selection works in specific cases/environments), but the core concepts of theories remain. Evolution is a theory in the scientific sense; it has survived massive amounts of observations and experimentation, albeit some mechanisms/family tree relationships are still being clarified as new data comes in (like new fossils).

    What so many people can't seem to wrap their heads around is that religion CAN NOT be incorporated into science. Any hypothesis based on supernatural explanations by their nature can not be tested. If you want to believe that God did something go ahead and believe it, but with no way to test it science must ignore those beliefs. In fact, science goes out of its way to eliminate the effects of an experimenter's opinion (via double blind tests) to avoid the potential effects of their bias in interpreting the data.

    Finally, many will not accept evolution regardless of the evidence because it is antithetical to their core beliefs. Evolution is messy; more organisms are born than can survive and the unfit may quickly become part of the food chain. This is hard to reconcile with a just and loving God. Also, if they accept evolution as fact then there was no Adam and Eve. No Garden of Eden, no original sin, no Fall, and thus no need for a Redeemer. Because of this, many are incapable of changing their worldview in this area. It threatens a belief system that many have completely integrated into their sense of self. Take that away, and they will feel lost.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:39 pm |
  27. Just Sayin

    Well if it all came from a big bang and everyone evolved from that point on..........hmmmm..........wonder if I go blow up some junk yard for cars will I get a brand new corvett to appear. Come on, everything has a creator, even a toothpick. Someone had to create that toothpick it didn't slime across the ground then evolve into a toothpick someone made it. Don't ask me to think for a minute that something as complex as the Human Body and the Universe has no creator? It's a no brainer, of course there is a creator. It's just that people don't want to go there because if there is a Creator then one might have to adjust their lifesyle so it just fits into a neat little package to pretend we came from slime then evolved. Wa La no fuss no muss no retribution for anything, just sayin.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
    • what?

      You logic...well, can't actually call it 'logic'...is so off that there's hardly any point in even refuting it.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:59 pm |
  28. spoo

    this discussion is not about science versus faith, but it is a political problem in this country where the religious right want to impose their own "sharia" on all of us. this is not about the mighty God, who in the mind of any reasonable person could have created the universe and life by evolution, but about making the bible the law of the land, and because they see themselves as the owners of the bible, they feel entitled to authority over others

    September 12, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
  29. Aubrie

    I would NEVER be so bold or arrogant as to limit what God does, or how he does it. It's not for me to judge. I think it's plausible, and if God wants it that way, and that's how he designed the universe, then who am I to question it? If he didn't he didn't... I won't deal in absolutes either way... That is the mystery of life and hopefully one of many that will be answered upon death.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
  30. Bobbito

    For the sake of argument lets establish a basic foundation to work on. Lets assume that IF there is a God, that He is all-powerful. Meaning that no rule applies to Him, if He wishes us to know his existence through direct observation then he could make it so. Likewise, if He wishes for us to have faith and not know Him directly, then he can make science not apply to himself (ie render himself invisible in every way).

    If you can accept that He is all-powerful, then it must also stand that God could make whatever series of events produce an outcome that He desires. For example, God could make man out of loam (as described in biblical texts). Or, he could create all the chemicals and conditions for life, and cause, over billions of years for a very simple organic structure to evolve into us.

    Now, if you also believe that God desires for us to have faith in Him and he doesn't make his presence or existence easily explainable which method is more obscure in origin? If God's hand really did form man, I imagine it'd be as obvious as a stroke of Picasso's brush. At least, compared to that of evolution. In a way, evolution is a part of God's grand scheme to get us to have faith. That even through what seems the most unlikely of events, He created us.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
    • Dawgdays

      That is exactly what confounds those who do not believe. No amount of science can disprove what we believe in. And our believe does not disprove the appearance of evolution. After all, the "science" of evolution, really is just a best guess of what we can perceive to be during our short time in existence. Just as we feel and see the effects of gravity but we do not understand it.

      September 12, 2011 at 4:15 pm |
  31. Travis

    "He's just making it up as he goes along!" –Life of Brian

    September 12, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
  32. Ek

    There was no science when the bible was written – between 2000 BC and 200 AD. Poor Galileo was imprisoned by the Pope for stating that the earth revolved around the sun – not the other way around. It didn't take that long to convince the church that Galileo was right. Science will be proven right. We share 99% of our DNA with chimps. Fairly obvious that we evolved from the same ancestors.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
  33. Yes1fan

    Evolution fails to explain "The Big Bang" – aka, something from nothing.....

    September 12, 2011 at 3:36 pm |
    • jason

      Evolution doesn't try to explain the origin of life. Remember the title of Darwin's book? The Origin of SPECIES.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:39 pm |
  34. Stat

    What is a assumption? why not to say "we are going to report with the "BELIEVE" that the prevailing, tested theory with the most rigorous evidence – evolution – is true" So, are we in the correct blog?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:36 pm |
  35. Matt

    The bible was written on behalf of god by man and is clearly not 100% accurate neither is the "theory" of evolution. SO what if god does exist but also does evolution. Maybe evolution became what god already is...

    September 12, 2011 at 3:36 pm |
    • Matt

      Put that in your pipe and smoke it.....

      September 12, 2011 at 3:37 pm |
  36. Brooklyn Boy

    I'm a huge supporter of science and exploration but if some people's belief in an invisible man who lives in the sky is more important, so be it. I believe that the rest of us should keep exploring and asking questions. They are not worth the effort and should be left behind so that they don't hold the rest of us back. .

    September 12, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
  37. Abolish All Religion

    Why is it that the common clay who have no formal education in science feel they have the authority to comment on and critique scientific theories? Well-established, verified, validated *scientific* theories? These are people who don't even understand what it means for something to be a scientific theory, who confuse the term "theory" with a guess or a hunch.

    You never see this in other fields. You don't often see people picketing skyscrapers and bridges under construction, shouting idiotic things like "I don't believe this thing is gonna hold up" or "I don't care what your calculations say, no bridge can span that wide". You don't see too many people picketing airports saying "if god had meant for man to fly he would have given him wings".

    When did biology and genetics become a matter of personal belief and opinion?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
    • Ek

      well said

      September 12, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
    • Dawgdays

      It sounds to me like you feel intellectually threatened by religion. Perhaps if you broadened your small scientific mind and accepted that there are other possibilities you would not be so confused and angry. Science does not preclude a belief in God. It doesn't mean that you have to accept those possibilities, just that you accept that there may be other possibilities. As a scientist you are boxing yourself in with such a closed mind.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:52 pm |
  38. evolution

    The entire universe was created last Thursday by an all-powerful invisible unicorn. We were created with false memories implanted in our brains of things we think happened prior to last Thursday. These memories as well as all other information on earth were created by the invisible unicorn to test our faith in Her.
    Try to Prove me wrong! You can't because I am right.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
    • Abolish All Religion

      I believe! I believe! Where do I pay my tithing? I want to be SAVED by the great unicorn!!!!!!!!

      September 12, 2011 at 3:40 pm |
  39. truthtalker

    Evolution is not even theory, its nothing more than conjecture. Nobody is going to tell you that though.
    And the world is not nearly as old as evolutionists would like you to think it is. And when is the last time you saw a genetic mutation that actually benefitted a creature? Was it the two-headed calf? That didn't go well for the calf.
    The point is mutations are never good, and would never benefit a species over time. Wake up, evolution as truth is an enormous deception.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
    • evolution

      gravity is a deception too. Its all a conspiracy!

      September 12, 2011 at 3:41 pm |
      • lol

        don't give in! see past the facade of science. those scientists were put here by the devil to make your lifespan roughly three times what it should be! those devilish hoodlums!

        September 12, 2011 at 3:57 pm |
  40. Don Baltimore

    God is probably sorry He ever created evolution.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
  41. Chelsea

    I consider myself a Christian but also consider myself a science believer. What is that quote by Einstein, "Religion without science is lame, science without religion is blind."? Who's to say that God didn't create us in a way that we would best survive on the planet at the time, and since He also gave us the ability to grow and change and be ourselves, he also gave us science, for us to evolve into who we are today, and continues to allow science to change us through evolution for who we will be in the distant future!?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
    • evolution

      Einstein did not believe in a personal god or afterlife.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:38 pm |
    • jason

      He also called the big bang the most beautiful theory of creation he had ever heard (even thought he rejected it).

      September 12, 2011 at 3:48 pm |
    • lol

      who's to say there is a "God" in the first place? oh that's right, a bunch of illiterate middle-eastern goat herders.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:52 pm |
      • jason

        yes they told us so in their illiterate book... wait...

        September 12, 2011 at 3:59 pm |
  42. EnergyBeing3

    I love this topic. Also, I'm not here to try and sway anyone's opinions but, lets realize the history of 'Religion' with those who used force and abuse to indoctrinate people, and yes, against their will, into believing the stories. We still see this happening in parts of the USA and world today. Also, for a very long time, anyone who didn't follow the Christian religion or talked against it or a priest, were horrifically tortured or put to death. Scientists who were slowly but surely discovering new realities had to form secret societies and go into hiding in some areas of the world for fear of their lives. The huge difference is that science isn't forced or has ever been forced through intimidation or suffering onto humans. So the larger questions are, WHY did Bible stories have to be forced onto people and the answer I believe was for brainwashed control and gross power. These are very real and dark agendas humans have used against each other. We don't see scientists expressing these discovering to suppress or hurt or torture humans in some hidden agenda set on control. What ever is discovered by scientists is the status quo until yet other new discoveries are found... a very welcome and healthy situation from the science community. Yes, some debate, but not through manipulation or torture to force an opinion and control others through illusions of an outdated book.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
    • Dawgdays

      Where your theory breaks down is that it does not take into consideration that God has bestowed free will on man. And that all men, including those who call themselves religious are fallible. This does not mean that the Bible is outdated. It means that throughout history there have been many individual men who used it for their own earthly purposes and did not follow what it teaches. There are many who do the same today and there will be more who do it tomorrow. But, the book and its true meaning do not change.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
      • Humanoid

        Excellent response Dawgdays. The very people who call us brainwashed are the ones who can't see further than their own narrow view.

        September 12, 2011 at 7:28 pm |
  43. Kevin Untener

    So, why couldn't we have been created by God to evolve?

    God creates earth, earth creates man, man creates god, and argues every since.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:33 pm |
  44. BBoy705

    If we are the creation of some Omnipotent being then boy did he/she ever screw up big time! I give the human species maybe another 200 years maximum before we are whittled down to a few hundred thousand at best. The way we have totally decimated what could have been paradise and the way we squabble over the stupidest things proves to me that our Omnipotent Overlord ain't so omnipotent after all. "In his own image"... say what? I imagine that he/she (supposing he/she exists) might be off in some remote corner of the Universe (of perhaps closer in a nearby solar system) giving it another shot and wondering how, being so god like and mighty, he/she made such a mess when he/she created such a bunch of losers!

    September 12, 2011 at 3:32 pm |
    • Humanoid

      You talk like a child. "It wasn't me, HE made me do it"
      The world is potentially beautiful. People have the capacity for good or bad – and we all have free will .
      To blame God is to relegate man to the realm of the robot, without the power to make decisions or take any form of responsibility for his actions.
      Laws are made – break the law and you pay whatever penalty is given. You don't blame the law. You made your choice – you pay.
      God laws are exactly the same. The difference is God loves us no matter what. All this infantile twittering about God wanting to shove us into eternal hell fire is trash. People will go to hell if THEY choose to go. God respects their decision.

      September 12, 2011 at 7:41 pm |
  45. Dawgdays

    My faith tells me that God is all powerful and that he could have just as easily also created all the fossil records in an instant and given them age. And that is something that science can never disprove. Put that in your pipe and smoke it!

    September 12, 2011 at 3:32 pm |
    • FreezeFrame

      So, you put faith into someone who would frame the evidence up to deceive us?

      Or was it the work of the Devil? How would you tell the deference?

      September 12, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
  46. ws6dave

    The science of evolution needs to solve what I call the rate of knowledge to prove their point.
    They say that we evolved from apes based upon remains found in the ground.
    The issue I have is that if you look at the rate that man has advanced themselves and the rate of evoution the 2 don't make sense.
    We have just recently started advancing ourselves at a very fast rate (the past 3000 years). Until then nothing. So what happened where we just started to learn and advance. It seems odd that it took millions of years to evolve only to have gained knowledge in the past 3000?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:31 pm |
    • jason

      The development of language is the key to the explosion of culture and technology.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:49 pm |
  47. Earl

    Evolution by natural selection is as well-established as Newton's Law of Gravity. Those who deny it are either ignorant of the evidence supporting it, or they are motivated to deny it by fear that it calls their religious beliefs into question. With regard to the latter: evolution is supported by massive evidence; religious beliefs are supported by myths propagated in ancient texts written by igorant tribesmen who knew nothing about the world in which they lived. Your choice...

    September 12, 2011 at 3:30 pm |
    • Dawgdays

      It is my choice and my faith tells me that God is all powerful and that he could have just as easily also created all the fossil records in an instant and given them age. And that is something that science can never disprove. Put that in your pipe and smoke it!

      September 12, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
      • jason

        Answer 3 questions. Do you believe that various traits can be inherited?

        Do you believe that there is variation in reproductive success?

        Do you believe that genetic mutations occur?

        If you answered yes to these three questions, you just endorsed Darwinian evolution, congratulations.

        September 12, 2011 at 3:53 pm |
      • what?

        Oh that wacky God and his practical jokes, putting fossils in the ground just to screw with us! What a guy.

        September 12, 2011 at 4:03 pm |
      • fin

        Me thinks you need to stop smoking that "pipe" you speak of....

        September 14, 2011 at 9:08 am |
  48. Ben

    If you'll all promise to get college degrees in biological fields, I will take on the burden of explaining to you the itty bitty details of why I believe in evolution. If you won't, the conversation really won't go anywhere.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:30 pm |
  49. Bob

    Considering that Darwin's "Origin of Species" is originally titled "The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection—or The Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life", and being from the "unfavoured" or inferior race that he speaks of....i think it would be best to throw all this man's theories out of the window...including evolution. Darwin says
    "At some future period, not very distant as measured by centuries, the civilised races of man will almost certainly exterminate, and replace, the savage races throughout the world. At the same time the anthropomorphous apes, as Professor Schaaffhausen has remarked, will no doubt be exterminated. The break between man and his nearest allies will then be wider, for it will intervene between man in a more civilised state, as we may hope, even than the Caucasian, and some ape as low as a baboon, instead of as now between the negro or Australian and the gorilla" . If this is evolution...i want nothing to do with it.....

    September 12, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
    • spoo

      Bob, I agree with you that the language used by 19th century scientist is offensive for today's sensitivity. however, the idea that darwin advanced is of historical proportions...darwin was probably a bastard racist but with a brilliant mind

      September 12, 2011 at 3:45 pm |
  50. Buriedcomicbook

    Just think if all the time and money wasted on religion, imagine it being used on advancing society we would be so better off? The idea of a GOD is so ridiculous! its so said so many people believe a GOD. We need to keep evolving that's for sure! Nonbelievers are gaining we are about 20% of the population and growing. People are waking up to the truth.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
    • jason

      Religion seems to be a human universal (an evolved behavior?) therefore writing it off as ridiculous seems very unscientific. Perhaps we should seek to understand why it is that religion exists in every known human society.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:36 pm |
    • EnergyBeing3

      Mostly agree with your post. To me, God is just Energy of this Universe. We are made from this Energy. But we have this human experience we all share through consciousness in it's various forms and situations. Lessons to be learned in this difficult Earth School. We can all learn something from all the religions of the world, without having to be controlled by any of them. What if a person replaced the word 'God' with 'Universe' or 'Energy'. Then isn't science simply more discover of Energy in the Universe? Are we not simply the Universe looking back onto itself?

      September 12, 2011 at 3:41 pm |
  51. Kenrick Benjamin

    IF to Create is to give rise to and Evolution is to give rise to, then why are we in discussion, when they are both one and the same.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
  52. nimnim

    I have a couple of unanswered questions for the evolution nonbelievers: What race were Adam and Eve and how did the 2nd generation come about. Did Adam sleep with his daughter and did Eve sleep with her son. Evolution is a beautiful story of creation–why disclaim it?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
  53. jason

    The denial of evolution has less to do with science and the Bible than Christianity's baggage of Platonism. Evolution is apparent and obvious and you can usually get a Creationist to admit it. If you accept that traits can be genetic, that there is variable reproductive success, and that mutations occur, you just accepted evolution. Christians get in trouble because they carry an unscientific notion of what a species is derived from Platonic ideas. A species is not some sort of ideal essence.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:27 pm |
  54. Jay

    Interesting in day and age of "tolerance", thus he don't believe in evolution are labeled as "stupid"; or "evolution is a fact!" as some cry out. Saying that doesn't make it so. It's a theory, and some believe very grounded theory, and I respect that. However, it's also a theory that still has the premise of a "bang", puddle, guppie,...then later ape, neanderthal, then man....hmmmm, with all do respect, I think that takes more hollow faith.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:27 pm |
    • lol

      right, it takes more "faith" to accept observable facts than to believe that we are all magical sky children who were created in the image of our bronze age, god of war father.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:31 pm |
    • Humanoid

      LOL – Forgive me, did I miss something? You said "observable facts" Did someone actually see the "bang............ puddle............ guppie................etc?????? Streuth, where was I?

      September 12, 2011 at 7:46 pm |
  55. NO GOD!!!

    COME ON REALLY IT IS THE 21 CENT.. TIME TO GROW UP AND ACCEPT THE FACT!!!! THAT GOD WAS A MYTH FROM THE BRONZE AGE!!! ANY COMPLAINTS YOU CAN TELL YOUR FALSE IDOL PEACE OUT FROM A RATIONAL PERSON

    September 12, 2011 at 3:27 pm |
  56. captndan

    I am not obligated to explain my beliefs and behavior to any one or any god. I am only responsible to my self. And yes I believe my spirit will be judged someday. Try throwing away the crutch and start thinking for your self. OK, the CIA doesn't like this idea either.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:26 pm |
  57. spoo

    the question is "to understand or not to understand", if not understand, then believe

    September 12, 2011 at 3:26 pm |
  58. Cameron

    I believe in evolution 100%

    That said, any self respecting scientist, or person who fathoms themselves to have half a brain, I acknowledge that Evolution remains a theory with many many holes, and what we know now could change drastically over the course of time. What is "true" now may not be "true" in 100 years.

    Remember, once upon a time the world was flat.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:26 pm |
    • lol

      exactly. give it time.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
  59. Jim Eberle

    Evolution is a fact of the geologic history of planet Earth. Natural selection is the mechanism responsible for the wholesale genetic transformation of species, which leads to reproductive isolation or speciation. The Neo-Darwinian synthesis, which refined Darwinian thought, realized that speciation takes place in small, geographically isolated populations, whereby genetic novelties subjected to natural selection overspread a population given sufficient time. Following speciation, the population fans out to colonize new lands. If it is more adaptable than the antecedent species, it will drive it to extinction. This explains why the fossil record rarely shows transformational forms.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:26 pm |
  60. Dan

    If I was not to believe in evolution, I'd have to believe that the devil cleverly hid fossils in different layers of strata just to fool us. And why would the devil trick us into believing in evolution? It's not evil, it doesn't disprove the supernatural. It simply debunks the story of creation in Genesis. There are still 65 more books in the Bible, so calm down people. The evidence is there, life has evolved over millions, possibly billions of years. Get over it and move on. If the Bible was compiled today instead of 500-600 years ago, I'm sure they'd leave the book of Genesis out based on scientific evidence.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:26 pm |
  61. John

    Dinosaurs never existed either because they aren't mentioned in the bible, right? Also, there are no other galaxies planets outside of our galaxy either because those aren't mentioned by the "word of God". Right? Also, there is no such thing as atoms and quarks and molecules and all that other stuff that makes things tick because that wasn't revealed to us by God either. In fact, there is no proof about anything and nothing that exists is real unless God made it or told us about it in the bible. Okay, bible thumpers. Do you see how stupid this argument is yet?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:26 pm |
    • Jay

      study up on that, and you'll see many believe the Bible does reference dinosoar like creatures.....Research Ken Ham sometime on google....

      September 12, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
      • Terry

        This is commonly one of the first things that religious people will try to do ... JUSTIFY EVERYTHING BECAUSE THE BIBLE SAID IT. That stupid book has been twisted in so many directions over the eons, what revision are we on now, the 20th, the 30th? You don't like how it reads, need it to read a different way to claim it says so, then change it. Seems to me King James did this.

        September 12, 2011 at 3:39 pm |
  62. Abby

    Many of these comments show how little most people understand the process of evolution. Statistical analyses of speciation (the process of a root ancestor diverging into two or more distinct species) over the entirety of the fossil record shows no evidence of a "driven trend" toward greater complexity (see the collected works of Steven Jay Gould). Evolution is not about things becoming more advanced or more complex necessarily, it's just about change and adaptation. Therefore, when you have a root ancestor still alive today with coexisting species that branched off from their family tree, it's because they adapted to the environment in different ways and each was able to thrive with those adaptations. Evolution is simply mutation that results in the creation of viable offspring with the same mutated characteristics. Some of these mutations may prove over several generations to be less well-adapted to the environment and will die out, others will continue to thrive and over time possibly speciate again.

    The veracity of evolution should not be questioned because of any missing link in the evolution of homo sapiens. Many other species lack complete fossil records of each iteration of their ancestry because fossils only form under the most specific of circumstances. It's unreasonable to expect a perfect record of any species' evolutionary track, and that's not how scientists have reached the conclusion that evolution occurs. It's sad to me that a majority of Americans will continue to have very misguided views of the process of evolution because it has been politicized to the point where it's merely glossed over in anything but a specialized higher-education curriculum. My research on invertebrate paleobiology, arguably the best way to study evolution, has lead me to the conclusion that evolution as a natural process absolutely exists. I also believe in God, albeit not in a narrow-minded Bible-centric way. These things are reconcilable by intelligent individuals.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
  63. lol

    might as well title this "Your thoughts on gravity." the religious comments against it would make about as much sense.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
  64. TheBossSaid

    The best part of listening to atheists and those who are adamant that evolution is FACT is that they make the statement that it is FACT that life exists on other planets. Really?? Show it to me.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
    • Sybaris

      You are entertained very easily if that is the best part but................ given the evidence for microbial life on this planet in very extreme conditions (heat, cold, pressure, acidity, etc..) it is very likely that in the vastness of the universe other life-forms exist. Far more likely than there being a supernatural entity creating and controlling every detail of the universe.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:31 pm |
    • what?

      Now you're just being an argumentative little dickens.

      September 12, 2011 at 4:19 pm |
  65. SoCalMatt

    We are all just a bunch of apes....deal with it!

    September 12, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
  66. Adam

    People who don't believe in evolution should not be able to use medicine. Medical science is largely based upon the foundations of evolution and the interplay between microbes and our immune systems and the evolution of everything because of the selective pressures each plays on one another. If you believe in a higher power, fine. If you don't, fine. If you believe at all that evolution is not real, however, then stop using medicine. You won't believe it works, then, so why use something you don't believe in? Go back to praying that your cancer will go away (yep, cancer is a form of evolution – unfavorable for the host, sure, but amazingly favorable for the cells that have mutated...). Stop getting vaccines (the reason you get yearly flu vaccines is because of the evolution of the influenza virus due to it's segmented genome). Enjoy being sick all the time. Go on "home" early. Afterall when God calls you home, nothing can stop it, right?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
  67. abcd

    Religion – human's early attempts to explain the unknown. It's reliance on faith rather than long observation and study was suited to our early, primative intellect.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:24 pm |
    • NO GOD!!!

      I LIKE YOUR STYLE YOU ARE SMART

      September 12, 2011 at 3:28 pm |
    • Terry

      Not to mention it made those that claimed they were vessels of their gods rich and powerful. Hey, it still does to this day! Go figure.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
    • BadMonkey

      There are many renown scientists who are deeply religious, so there must be something a little shakey with the theory. Just sayin'.

      September 12, 2011 at 4:33 pm |
      • eatdodo

        Like I said, go off and spank your "Bad" monkey.

        September 12, 2011 at 9:12 pm |
  68. Bassmaster 22

    Tired arguement. When the Earth blows up in 5 billion years, the believers will go to candyland and the nonbelievers will cease to exist. What difference does it make? Believe or don't believe in whatever you want; that's your right. But stop shuving it down everyone elses throat. Fortune cookie say "People who are content in their beliefs need not seek validation in convincing others."

    September 12, 2011 at 3:23 pm |
  69. bjd0012

    The problem with creationism versus evolution is that evolution is constantly trying to better its theory and the theory itself "evolves" as new information is discovered. Creation stands by its basic idea that god created us from his image and that he created Adam and Eve and that we are all descendants of them, and then if you keep on reading, we would all be descendants of Noah and his wife. Science is about coninually improving upon the current idea, not just taking it at face value and saying "Thats it, no use looking into this anymore."

    I will admit that I have not been the biggest bible reader in my life, so it may explain how we went from Adam and Eve to the vast variety of humans that exist today, I just dont remember seeing it. To me the fact that you can have a 4'10" caucasian woman standing next to a 6'2" black woman and all the variety that exist in between is proof that evolution exists.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:23 pm |
  70. Travis

    So which makes more sense- God got lazy when he designed human teeth, or wisdom teeth fit alot better in our mouths when they grew in large, protruding simian mouths and not our tiny little human ones? why are there drug-resistant bacteria if they're not evolving?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:23 pm |
  71. Pliny

    Can't we just sterilize the weak-minded...in other words....the religious.

    Why do we have to allow their supersticion to be passed onto another generation?

    Haven't they caused enough problems?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:23 pm |
  72. Kechiro

    I do not believe in God. Why not? Because to believe in God is to deny all that is good in humankind. We humans have achieved enormous successes, and to attribute all that is good, successful and magnificent in us to a being we have never seen, know nothing about first hand and cannot prove that S/He exists is to treat humankind as little more than a means to an end. We are great. There's nothing wrong with admitting that. Why give credit to a mysterious presence whose very essence is debatable when we can surely point to ourselves and prove what we have accomplished? It makes no sense to believe in God. It makes plenty of sense to believe in each other. I place my faith in science, the human world and the greatness that we all have inherent within us. I also believe wholeheartedly in evolution: it is testable, provable and makes sense within the greater context of the development of life as we know it.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:23 pm |
  73. palintwit

    Sarah Palin believes that the Flintstones is a factual documentary of early man.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:23 pm |
    • Terry

      What?? It isn't?? 🙂

      September 12, 2011 at 3:33 pm |
    • eatdodo

      it isn't???????

      September 12, 2011 at 9:13 pm |
  74. pathetic

    Only in the US this kind of discussion or commentary is even necessary. Evolution is FACT, whether the religious maniacs believe it or not.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:22 pm |
  75. soroshunter

    At a relatively late point in human evolution, a particular gene mutation occured. This resulted in the victims developing a "god-like self image". They came to be known as liberalensis homo, whcih share 99.99% of genetic typing with that of homosexualensis homo, which, more often than not, further mutate into the self-destructive socialist progressive-aka- communistensis homo.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:21 pm |
    • bristoltwit palin... America's favorite dancing cow

      Will someone please milk me ?

      September 12, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
  76. FreezeFrame

    Consider this list:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_parasites_of_humans

    If creationism is true, why did God create this long list of parasites?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:20 pm |
    • Pliny

      Hopefully....one of those parasites will EVOLVE into something that kills off stupid people.

      And then, you'll be gone.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:24 pm |
    • what?

      Humans are parasites.

      September 12, 2011 at 4:21 pm |
  77. Cliff

    I have never considered the two to be mutually exclusive.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:20 pm |
  78. JP

    Use man's best friend, a canine, as a microcosm of evolution. The domesticated dog has been in existence 15,000 years, evolving to everything from a Chihuahua to a Great Dane. They all have the same common ancestor, the gray wolf. Wolfs also exist today, albeit in multiple different subspecies themselves. Breeding and natural selection has seen multiple types of dogs and wolfs become extinct, thus I imagine the same thing would happen in the evolution of humans...we hit some evolutionary dead ends until nature found one that worked. Seems like a much easier tale to swallow than a compilation of stories written by man. Religions have died off and have proven false again and again through the ages of man. Does anyone still worship Greek Gods? My opinion is that religions were only developed by man as a means to control the masses. Unfortunately due to globalization, this has led to massive conflicts, resulting in the deaths of millions...I'll choose science any day over that.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:20 pm |
  79. Sybaris

    It is utterly amazing that there is a segment of society that want to believe some invisible being created the first humans out of dirt but needed a human to recreate itself............only to eventually sacrifice itself to itself to atone for creating imperfect beings. Really?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:19 pm |
    • Terry

      To make matters worse, Jesus fits the definition of a zombie.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
  80. The Truth

    I am not religious, but everyone believes in something. Man created Religion so they have something to believe in. Everyone who believes in angels and demons, I am not here to say, you are wrong, I am here to say, believe.
    I personally think, today we have the Kardashians. Lohans, and Hiltons to give us all the soap and drama. Back during that time the bible was written, this was there form of entertainment, fear. Which god will want you to sacrifice your child.
    This was a book of entertainment, their version of The Young and the Restless.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:19 pm |
  81. Mike

    If evolution is true, then why did it stop? Why aren't there apes turning into humans now? Why are wolves evolving into domestic dogs? Why are leopards evolving into cats, and whales into elephants? What stopped it?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:19 pm |
    • Kechiro

      Nothing stopped it. Evolution takes time to see in gross states, but genetic mutations happen between generations. You won't see a cat turn into a different animal in a single generation or lifetime, but you may see subtle evolutionary changes over a period of 100,000 years.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:27 pm |
    • bjd0012

      What makes you think evolution as stopped. If you take a picture of a person running, they are not moving in the picture, but hat doe snot mean they were standing still at the time of the photo. Evolution it constantly as work. Bacteria and viruses evolve very quickly, because of their lack of complexity. Look how many different Flu's come around. Take the common cold. Our bodies build up antibodies to fight off colds in th efuture, so why do we keep getting sick. Becasue it is not the smae cold, it has addapted and evolved to survive.

      You ask why a lion may evolve into a house cat. Who has teh easier life, the house cat, or the lion. It is not out of the range of possibilities that as humans began to provide food and nurishment to animlas, domesticating them into pets, that some of those animals changed to adapt to the new life.

      In addition, people hear evolution and think it means that the gorilla or monkey down at the zoo is what evolution says humans came from. It doesn't, Evolution says there is a common ancestor between the species. Thousands of years, humans did not exists as they exist today, neither did monkeys or gorillas.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:48 pm |
  82. Josh

    I believe in God, and I also understand evolution. Why are others claiming you can't have both.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:19 pm |
    • Arturo

      Exactly!

      September 12, 2011 at 3:22 pm |
    • JP

      I love Christian Revisionists. If science doesn't go along with the bible; stretch theology to somehow...sorta...kinda work within the confines of scientific facts. Oh ye of little faith!

      September 12, 2011 at 3:30 pm |
  83. Rick

    Sorry, I do not have enough faith to believe in evolution........I was taught it in school all my life but it sounds just to unbelievable to me.

    evolutionist are truly the people with great faith.......

    September 12, 2011 at 3:19 pm |
  84. Gr

    My thought is Its crap that I had to learn in school and pass test's. I would love to take legal action against our school system teaching me that again CRAP!!!!! 400 million yrs give me a break. I wished they would have just said we don't know.

    Gr

    September 12, 2011 at 3:19 pm |
    • Terry

      WOW! Educational monies well spent.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:22 pm |
  85. animalia

    This sums it up: "My views are wright and your's are rong"

    September 12, 2011 at 3:18 pm |
  86. SouthernCelt

    The only thing that has "evolved" in our lifetime is the definition of "Evolution". It used to be just defined as a change in the physiology or anatomy or a species, but biologists have been promoting their own theories as part of "Evolution" to the point where the classical definition has been lost. Show me the physical link to non-homo sapiens and I would be more willing to consider Evolution as more than just another theory.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:18 pm |
    • Terry

      I can't understand, with every fiber of my being, how some can think that one day *poof* we came into existence. You want proof of evolution ... well I want proof of *poof*.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:21 pm |
      • rancholazer love

        "well I want proof of *poof*" lol....yeah were is the POOF PROOF???

        September 12, 2011 at 3:55 pm |
  87. Phil

    No matter how you slice it, we're just a bunch of damned dirty apes!

    September 12, 2011 at 3:18 pm |
  88. sam

    attention all creationists and evolution-deniers: believe whatever you want. nobody is going to stop you.
    but while you contribute NOTHING to our society except ignorance, guns, and babies,
    scientists will innovate and experiment, to find a cure for cancer, to build a lunar colony, and engineer nuclear fusion reactors.
    maybe creationists will earn enough at their burger-flipping jobs to buy the fruits of those innovations when they become available.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:18 pm |
    • DoesntMatter

      They'll just hijack the spaceship and start preaching.

      Using either guns or babies..

      September 12, 2011 at 3:48 pm |
      • Answer

        That's Hilarious!

        Thanks for the laughs 🙂

        September 13, 2011 at 1:23 am |
  89. aNN west

    What do they mean descended from Apes? Just look at the way masses of people act . They are more violent that Apes or animals in general. My question is when will we evolve to what we expect humans to be?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:18 pm |
  90. Olivares

    Look down to your toes. See that "pinky" toe? Notice how is smaller and almost shrinking away? THERE IS YOUR PROOF OF EVOLUTION. Hndreds of years ago it was much more developed; the lifestyle and clothing have made it almost useless. Evolution does not happen overnight and it does not happen as an isolated phenomenon. Totally agree w/WALTER below.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:17 pm |
  91. captndan

    There must be some connection between this kind of crap and Congress. I believe in evolution and I believe in my God. I believe that a God created the start of earth and the beginnings of man. To me today looks like this. God has created a most beautiful planet and all things living or inert on it. Man is placed here to make his own decisions and to use all the beautiful things and tools as he sees fit. When a man dies his spirit is judged based upon how he has used his life and how he has used all the resources. Based on that his spirit may be used again in some form or maybe we already have enough rocks. I do not fear my God because he has never given me a reason too.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:17 pm |
  92. Osro

    To anyone who denies evolution because of their religion-
    Evolution is based on facts which are derived from evidence.

    Your religion is based on faith, and faith is the reason you give for believing in something when you have no good reason for believing in it.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:16 pm |
  93. Melody D

    CNN wants to talk science..ok..let's talk science. First, any talk of the origins of man must be in theory because none of us were there and any reported evidence discovered is based on a presumption originating with a scientist–a human scientist who is by definition of being human is incapable of completely absolving his/her belief system from his/her presumption.
    Second, since we are talking evidence and theory, there is plenty of evidence and theory to support creationism and/or intelligent design. There are science-based websites touting this evidence. There are lectures presented by professional, credited scientist to this effect. There is a creation museum in Kentucky loaded with evidence supporting that theory. So, I don't buy into the "evolution is the only theory with evidence" argument. Anyone who says that is neither intelligent or informed enough to edit a CNN science blog.
    Third, the idea of evolution is implausible based on its own definition. To evolve means to get better, improve. Yet, all of nature and science proves that nature (including humans, plants and animals) don't improve but decline over time. If you look at the human body, there are body parts we no longer use because we don't need to. The spleen, appendix for instance. We only use 6% of our brain. I find it hard to believe that is a vast improvement over a few thousand years ago when people were building pyramids and figuring out how to grow food in the dessert. We can't even figure out how they did those things today, so obviously we haven't improved.
    Then there's the whole species thing. It is implausible scientifically that one microorganism would develop into so many different species. That cell and any offspring would be set in the same environment, so what would contribute to develop one species from another. And why would some remain apes and other humans if they all existed in the same environment? There's no scientific reason to quantify that because there would have to be a change to cause a change, if you're really talking science.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:16 pm |
    • Osro

      Your misconceptions of evolution are far too numerous to list. I suggest you take a non-church sponsored course on evolution, within the first 45 minutes you'll realize what you've been told is flat out wrong. I'm sorry, but whoever gave you this information is lying to you.

      Also, the number of "scientists" who support creationism is pathetically small and many of the most out-spoken ones have degrees from degree mills. You should look up project Steve, in short: it turns out there are more scientists named "Steve" that support evolution than there are scientists who deny it. The Steve list also has more nobel prize winners.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:21 pm |
      • Arturo

        Your just on the other end of "Extreme". If 45 min is all that takes for you to lose your faith, then you had your mind up before you knew the truth. No offense, just saying.

        September 12, 2011 at 3:25 pm |
    • Pointless2argue

      I have a good friend who says that anyone who has owned a house or a car can't believe in evolution!

      September 12, 2011 at 3:22 pm |
    • Kechiro

      I agree – the misconceptions in this post are magnificent in their scope and intensity. As a museum educator, I will debunk the Creation Museum in Kentucky. The use of animatronics to display an idea of earth's creation and Bible stories does not substitute for hard fact. Just because it can be built does not mean it is true. The "facts" they use are selectively interpreted and narrowly defined. And the handholding involved is unconscionable. Visitors are literally disallowed from thinking for themselves. Visitors are posited a statement, and the leading setup of "if x is true, then y must also be true" without any proof behind x. This is bad ethics as well as bad museum practice. We as places of informal education are supposed to encourage independent thinking and diverse questions. The Creation Museum quashes all that. It's just... wrong.

      September 12, 2011 at 4:35 pm |
      • Melody D

        So, I take it that you would find it equally appalling when a secular museum does the same thing? They assume "x" (evolution) to be true so "y" (we came from microorganisms, apes whatever) to be true. My point is this: No one was there. There is evidence on both sides and what you believe to be "true" evidence largely depends on your religious perspective. Since that is the case, and both truly are only theories, then both should be treated as theories instead of treating one as unequivocal fact. And while several here have taken shots at my post said inaccuracies are "too numerous to mention" I noticed that NONE of you actually provided any factual argument as to why what I stated is wrong. BTW, I studied science public school and do study new archeological finds, so I have spent "more than 45 minutes" listening to a secular science lecture. But I ALSO open my mind up to other possibilities and listen to what they have to say as well, unlike any of you.

        September 15, 2011 at 3:31 pm |
  94. Broncomax

    I am a believer in divine creation, and evolution. I utilize the scientific method in my daily work, and believe firmly that in seeking truth it is important to evaluate the world (and religion) from that standpoint. The scientific method neither proves, nor disproves evolution or religion unfortunately (yet). It doesn't explain how something as complex as an eyeball, which has multiple functioning systems in it which would be pointless if they hadn't all came in to being at exactly the same time exists. It also doesn't explain why evolution would create a creature that operates completely outside of and non-harmoniously with it's ecosystem (humans). Furthermore, the bible tells us that we need to "prove" our belief and the teachings in the bible to ourselves. To simply believe in something for no reason is foolish. There are still a lot of questions to be answered about evolution and about God. Regardless, I don't think either should just be accepted on faith. That's my two cents. Thoughts?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:15 pm |
  95. unknown11

    Perhaps the biggest frustration in this never ending argument is that the people so ardently defending evolution as science know so little about evolution and science. They just know that 'science' has told them something, and they take it on faith that this must be true. I think that this uninformed, uneducated, blind faith approach to science does not further any argument as it morphs science into a religion of the ignorant. When so many supporters of a position know so little about the position, it makes it difficult to have any kind of intelligent dialog.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:15 pm |
    • Broncomax

      I like this comment.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:17 pm |
    • Terry

      You can say the exact same thing about religion. Your point is pointless.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:18 pm |
    • spoo

      probably you parents were the most frustrated when they realized that you couldn't understand at all

      September 12, 2011 at 3:29 pm |
    • DrMark

      At least they have real science and real scientists to back them up. Not ignorant priests, ancient books and superstition. Its much better to take science at face value versus religious beliefs wouldnt you agree?

      September 12, 2011 at 7:08 pm |
  96. PatRedstone

    Every major religion in the world accepts the science of evolution and natural selection and the scientific evidence that homo sapiens sapiens and all species are in process. In fact, much of the science we access to study evolution originated in Christian universities by Christian scientists like Pierre Tielhard de Chardin. Muslims, Mormons, Catholics Jews can disagree about a lot of things – but they all agree that humans evolved from other species. Protestants alone have their fanciful ideas and demand we all cater to their Talibanish bullying and submit to their pagan story about The Garden Of Eden.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:15 pm |
    • Bman

      I no longer believe in evolution. Explain to me how we have been evolving for millions of years but these people are still morons?

      September 12, 2011 at 3:39 pm |
  97. Terry

    The one thing this discussion has proven is that there are many more people in this world that do not believe in creationism than the creationists want to believe. It's time we spoke up in numbers and stop letting the myths of the world control our destinies.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:14 pm |
    • animalia

      yea

      September 12, 2011 at 3:20 pm |
  98. Pointless2argue

    Argument is pointless as each side is committed to their own dogma. There are dangers in each camp that should be at least recognized:
    – The creationist has a tendency to turn a blind eye to new scientific discoveries or to consider competing points of view. Non-believers are then shunned, ridiculed, and may become the target of heated rhetoric. This is exactly opposite Jesus' teaching on how to relate to people.
    – The evolutionist has a tendency to accept anything printed in a science textbook without a hint of skepticism. The belief that humans have evolved and are evolving can lead logically to racism and genocide. After all, who among us is the 'most evolved'? Wouldn't it be logical to encourage the propagation of that segment of the species over any other segment? Perhaps this could be accomplished through selective abortions or euthanasia.

    Both camps are full of devotees who have not taken the time to study the evidence(s) for themselves. They have heard someone else say, "Well, there is so much evidence for _____ that you would have to be a fool to not believe it."

    Christians who take seriously the Word of God tend to become creationists. This is not because of the evidence for or against evolution, but because of their relationship with God.

    Atheists who take their stance seriously tend to become evolutionists. This is not because of the evidence for or against evolution, but because of their refusal to believe in God.

    The battle over evolution is therefore, a pointless debate. It is really a sideshow keeping people from the real debate: what do you believe about God? This is the Great Question that must be answered and all other theories and beliefs will flow from it.

    September 12, 2011 at 3:14 pm |
    • DustinMyselfOff

      People that believe in evolution aren't committed to dogma, they're committed to reason, science, and proof.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:50 pm |
    • Kechiro

      I would also argue that evolutionists don't think of "who's the most fit" – we're a species, we're all in this together. The whole idea of "fitness" is a 19th and early 20th century concept that came with the earliest misconceptions of Darwinian thought. We understand that there is no such thing as "race" on a scientific level (it is in fact a Biblical concept), that diseases are caused by viruses and bacteria and not the superiority of some over others and that men and women are equal. It isn't evolution that led us to think any of this in the past, but religion and society.

      September 12, 2011 at 4:41 pm |
    • Answer

      By the very concept you have imposed, by your opinion then, every topic is pointless to argue.
      Disagreements are the cornerstone to change. Outdated views have to be educated.

      September 13, 2011 at 1:31 am |
  99. Jane

    It's a MYTH that evolution is science and Creation is based on Faith. BOTH require a bit of faith and both use science. A case could be made that evolution is NOT science. It is based on guess work. It seems that evolution today has degenerated into nothing more than modern day flat-earth science. Especially in light of what we know today in genetics-how could one still cling to evolution?
    BTW-if we evolved from a single cell over eons-then why is there beauyt in nature and why do we have the senses to observe that beauty?

    September 12, 2011 at 3:14 pm |
    • Terry

      My goodness, get a hold of your senses .. please!

      September 12, 2011 at 3:16 pm |
      • BadMonkey

        You are a monkey.

        September 12, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
    • DustinMyselfOff

      No. You're wrong and uninformed. Also; I'm willing to bet that's the way you like it, as most Christians do.

      September 12, 2011 at 3:49 pm |
      • BadMonkey

        no, wait .... YOU'RE the monkey. sorry.

        September 12, 2011 at 4:26 pm |
  100. unafy

    No evolution. Full stop!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    September 12, 2011 at 3:13 pm |
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