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knobren
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 18, 2007 3:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Theodore, you and I have already argued about evolution and I do not intend to do so again. You quote young earth arguments that even most creationists have abandoned long ago and you didn't respond to the evidence that I sent you refuting these claims.

For those who care, I would like to clarify the point you still express that is a common misconception about evolution - evolution is NOT a progress toward a more perfect state. Evolution is a change in allele (gene form) frequencies in a population over time. Natural selection is one mechanism for this to occur by. In this case, individuals who possess a heritable trait that gives them an advantage in survival and/or reproductive success will reproduce more often than those possessing other traits, so more members of subsequent generations are likely to possess the form of the gene that confers that trait. So there is an increase in the proportion of the population that carries the form of a gene that confers an advantage and a subsequent decrease in the proportion carrying forms of the gene that are less advantageous UNDER CURRENT ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS. However, if conditions change, the form of the gene that is advantageous under current conditions might become a disadvantage, and the proportion of the forms of the gene will shift again. That is why antibiotic resistant bacteria survive and reproduce more than bacteria that are susceptible to the antibiotic IN THE PRESCENCE OF THE ANTIBIOTIC, whereas they may reproduce at a slower rate than susceptible bacteria of the same species in the abscence of the antibiotic. Similarly, human sickle cell trait is an advantage in areas with malaria (if you get only one copy), but a disadvantage in areas without malaria (because of the lethality of getting two copies).
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WishboneDawn
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 18, 2007 7:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

4given wrote:

You surely realize that, in general, we on the otherside believe the same about you. It's a debate that will continue as long as people are living. It all comes down to this..."where did that come from?"..."but, where did that come from" and on and on. I remember being a 10 yo child in PS and already knowing that evolution made no sense.And I was from a PAGAN family. I am not a biologist nor am I a theologian...IMO, it takes much greater faith to believe macroevolution than it does to believe creationism. Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Whether or not you want to acknowledge it, anyone who believes evol. is operating in faith. So, we are not so different in that respect. Resorting to personal attacks never accomplishes anything.


Am I supposed to accept your opinion? If you maintain that it takes much greater faith to believe macroevolution than it does to believe creationism, how are you going to support that? What led you to think that? What's the foundation of that claim?

As for faith, I reserve that for God.
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WishboneDawn
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 18, 2007 8:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Theodore wrote:
For educated banter, you sort of need two people who are both willing to decide the issue based on available fact and observation.


You also need sources so all involved can properly evaluate claims.

Quote:
Hmm. Mount Saint Helens carved canyons hundreds of feet deep, laid down hundreds of feet of rock, fossilized tree trunks standing upright. Experiments in 2001 also showed how rock layers, complete with strata and substrata, can be laid down sideways by sediment-carrying water. This is a clear case of observation and experiment both disagreeing with theory (Geologic Column), yet evolutionists ignore that and continue to believe that rock layers must be laid down over millions of years.

Millions of generations of fruit flies showed not a single benefitial mutation. This doesn't prove anything, but it doesn't supply the expected evidence for evolution either.

Moon dust, which evolutionists calculated would be 50+ feet deep if the moon were millions of years old, turned out to be "Just enough to kick." Again, no evidence for a large time scale.

The sun burns off mass and gradually shrinks, and if you extrapolate back a billion years, the earth is sitting inside the sun, or at the very least cooked to a crisp.

The same bone structures supposedly representative of "ancient man" can be also found in modern-day humans, and explained by a coarse diet, disease (arthritis), etc. It's interesting how you get a rational explanation if you tell someone that a skeleton is from a thousand years ago, but not if the same skeleton is from a rock layer hundreds of thousands of years old (see above).

The only subject left that isn't 100% clear-cut (at least in my opinion) is biology, and that only because biology is so advanced that it's easy to muddy the issue. I simply don't know enough to investigate whether or not the evidence is being misinterpreted. I will say this, though - mutation and variation have never been demonstrated as advancing the species, and while you can say that it's theoretically possible (punctuated equilibrium, etc.) you have to believe that it happened that way, you can't prove it.


Sources?

Quote:
There are also "Christians" who believe that divorce and homosexuality are ok, and even a handful who believe that they're doing the right thing if they shoot abortionists. They're Christian by name only if they don't agree with the totality of the Bible, sorry.


No True Scotsman, eh? I don't remember the literal inerrancy of scripture being a part of either the Apostle's Creed or the Nicean Creed...Or the bible for that matter. And, being a practising Christian I do read the book on a regular basis.


Quote:
I would say that the followers of Aristotle are more like evolutionists, unwilling to cast off the parts of their theory that disagree with simple observation. As science advances, evolution has to be constantly patched to explain new things, while creationism becomes easier and easier to explain.


The theory of natural selection has remained virtually unchanged. Evolution has been subject to tinkering because that's simply how science works. Please find me some area of science that hasn't followed a similar pattern. Science makes mistakes and then science exposes and corrects those mistakes. It's meant to work like that.

Creationism becomes easier (or seems too) because it is either dismissed in the scientific community or put forward without being subject to review and testing in the scientific or even creationist community.
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Theodore
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 7:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Evolution, the way it's commonly interpreted, is the mechanism by which all life evolved. You can't explain that with shifting allele frequencies. If that is not in fact how you define evolution, then you should call it something else so as to not confuse people.

All of what I said is easily verified, I'm sure you can find sources that you approve of if you search a bit on Google. These are just what I got in the top few results when I searched.

http://www.icr.org/index.php?module=articles&action=view&ID=261

http://searchwarp.com/swa220954.htm (it was actually millions of fruit flies, not millions of generations of fruit flies - my bad)

http://www.nationalacademyofsciencesrefuted.com/regarding_mutations.php

http://www.answersingenesis.org/tj/v7/i1/moondust.asp

http://www.greatcom.org/resources/reasons_skeptics/ch_12/default.htm

http://www.eadshome.com/Geochronometers.htm

http://www.custance.org/old/evol/3ch3/3ch3.html

I don't know where I'd go to find the actual data / source papers, but I'm sure you'd be able to find them if you tried. Yes, the sun does shrink, and yes, "prehistoric human" can be found alive today, and yes, the amount of moon dust can be fairly well measured and predicted. The original measurements and predictions were done by evolutionists, so it's not like they'd be skewed against evolution.
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knobren
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 11:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

http://talkorigins.org/faqs/evolution-fact.html

Evolution is a Fact and a Theory
by Laurence Moran
Copyright © 1993-2002
[Last Update: January 22, 1993]



When non-biologists talk about biological evolution they often confuse two different aspects of the definition. On the one hand there is the question of whether or not modern organisms have evolved from older ancestral organisms or whether modern species are continuing to change over time. On the other hand there are questions about the mechanism of the observed changes... how did evolution occur? Biologists consider the existence of biological evolution to be a fact. It can be demonstrated today and the historical evidence for its occurrence in the past is overwhelming. However, biologists readily admit that they are less certain of the exact mechanism of evolution; there are several theories of the mechanism of evolution. Stephen J. Gould has put this as well as anyone else:

In the American vernacular, "theory" often means "imperfect fact"--part of a hierarchy of confidence running downhill from fact to theory to hypothesis to guess. Thus the power of the creationist argument: evolution is "only" a theory and intense debate now rages about many aspects of the theory. If evolution is worse than a fact, and scientists can't even make up their minds about the theory, then what confidence can we have in it? Indeed, President Reagan echoed this argument before an evangelical group in Dallas when he said (in what I devoutly hope was campaign rhetoric): "Well, it is a theory. It is a scientific theory only, and it has in recent years been challenged in the world of science--that is, not believed in the scientific community to be as infallible as it once was."
Well evolution is a theory. It is also a fact. And facts and theories are different things, not rungs in a hierarchy of increasing certainty. Facts are the world's data. Theories are structures of ideas that explain and interpret facts. Facts don't go away when scientists debate rival theories to explain them. Einstein's theory of gravitation replaced Newton's in this century, but apples didn't suspend themselves in midair, pending the outcome. And humans evolved from ape-like ancestors whether they did so by Darwin's proposed mechanism or by some other yet to be discovered.

Moreover, "fact" doesn't mean "absolute certainty"; there ain't no such animal in an exciting and complex world. The final proofs of logic and mathematics flow deductively from stated premises and achieve certainty only because they are not about the empirical world. Evolutionists make no claim for perpetual truth, though creationists often do (and then attack us falsely for a style of argument that they themselves favor). In science "fact" can only mean "confirmed to such a degree that it would be perverse to withhold provisional consent." I suppose that apples might start to rise tomorrow, but the possibility does not merit equal time in physics classrooms.

Evolutionists have been very clear about this distinction of fact and theory from the very beginning, if only because we have always acknowledged how far we are from completely understanding the mechanisms (theory) by which evolution (fact) occurred. Darwin continually emphasized the difference between his two great and separate accomplishments: establishing the fact of evolution, and proposing a theory--natural selection--to explain the mechanism of evolution.

- Stephen J. Gould, " Evolution as Fact and Theory"; Discover, May 1981

Gould is stating the prevailing view of the scientific community. In other words, the experts on evolution consider it to be a fact. This is not an idea that originated with Gould as the following quotations indicate:
Let me try to make crystal clear what is established beyond reasonable doubt, and what needs further study, about evolution. Evolution as a process that has always gone on in the history of the earth can be doubted only by those who are ignorant of the evidence or are resistant to evidence, owing to emotional blocks or to plain bigotry. By contrast, the mechanisms that bring evolution about certainly need study and clarification. There are no alternatives to evolution as history that can withstand critical examination. Yet we are constantly learning new and important facts about evolutionary mechanisms.
- Theodosius Dobzhansky "Nothing in Biology Makes Sense Except in the Light of Evolution", American Biology Teacher vol. 35 (March 1973) reprinted in Evolution versus Creationism, J. Peter Zetterberg ed., ORYX Press, Phoenix AZ 1983

Also:
It is time for students of the evolutionary process, especially those who have been misquoted and used by the creationists, to state clearly that evolution is a fact, not theory, and that what is at issue within biology are questions of details of the process and the relative importance of different mechanisms of evolution. It is a fact that the earth with liquid water, is more than 3.6 billion years old. It is a fact that cellular life has been around for at least half of that period and that organized multicellular life is at least 800 million years old. It is a fact that major life forms now on earth were not at all represented in the past. There were no birds or mammals 250 million years ago. It is a fact that major life forms of the past are no longer living. There used to be dinosaurs and Pithecanthropus, and there are none now. It is a fact that all living forms come from previous living forms. Therefore, all present forms of life arose from ancestral forms that were different. Birds arose from nonbirds and humans from nonhumans. No person who pretends to any understanding of the natural world can deny these facts any more than she or he can deny that the earth is round, rotates on its axis, and revolves around the sun.
The controversies about evolution lie in the realm of the relative importance of various forces in molding evolution.

- R. C. Lewontin "Evolution/Creation Debate: A Time for Truth" Bioscience 31, 559 (1981) reprinted in Evolution versus Creationism, op cit.

This concept is also explained in introductory biology books that are used in colleges and universities (and in some of the better high schools). For example, in some of the best such textbooks we find:
Today, nearly all biologists acknowledge that evolution is a fact. The term theory is no longer appropriate except when referring to the various models that attempt to explain how life evolves... it is important to understand that the current questions about how life evolves in no way implies any disagreement over the fact of evolution.
- Neil A. Campbell, Biology 2nd ed., 1990, Benjamin/Cummings, p. 434

Also:
Since Darwin's time, massive additional evidence has accumulated supporting the fact of evolution--that all living organisms present on earth today have arisen from earlier forms in the course of earth's long history. Indeed, all of modern biology is an affirmation of this relatedness of the many species of living things and of their gradual divergence from one another over the course of time. Since the publication of The Origin of Species, the important question, scientifically speaking, about evolution has not been whether it has taken place. That is no longer an issue among the vast majority of modern biologists. Today, the central and still fascinating questions for biologists concern the mechanisms by which evolution occurs.
- Helena Curtis and N. Sue Barnes, Biology 5th ed. 1989, Worth Publishers, p. 972

One of the best introductory books on evolution (as opposed to introductory biology) is that by Douglas J. Futuyma, and he makes the following comment:
A few words need to be said about the "theory of evolution," which most people take to mean the proposition that organisms have evolved from common ancestors. In everyday speech, "theory" often means a hypothesis or even a mere speculation. But in science, "theory" means "a statement of what are held to be the general laws, principles, or causes of something known or observed." as the Oxford English Dictionary defines it. The theory of evolution is a body of interconnected statements about natural selection and the other processes that are thought to cause evolution, just as the atomic theory of chemistry and the Newtonian theory of mechanics are bodies of statements that describe causes of chemical and physical phenomena. In contrast, the statement that organisms have descended with modifications from common ancestors--the historical reality of evolution--is not a theory. It is a fact, as fully as the fact of the earth's revolution about the sun. Like the heliocentric solar system, evolution began as a hypothesis, and achieved "facthood" as the evidence in its favor became so strong that no knowledgeable and unbiased person could deny its reality. No biologist today would think of submitting a paper entitled "New evidence for evolution;" it simply has not been an issue for a century.
- Douglas J. Futuyma, Evolutionary Biology, 2nd ed., 1986, Sinauer Associates, p. 15

There are readers of these newsgroups who reject evolution for religious reasons. In general these readers oppose both the fact of evolution and theories of mechanisms, although some anti-evolutionists have come to realize that there is a difference between the two concepts. That is why we see some leading anti-evolutionists admitting to the fact of "microevolution"--they know that evolution can be demonstrated. These readers will not be convinced of the "facthood" of (macro)evolution by any logical argument and it is a waste of time to make the attempt. The best that we can hope for is that they understand the argument that they oppose. Even this simple hope is rarely fulfilled.
There are some readers who are not anti-evolutionist but still claim that evolution is "only" a theory which can't be proven. This group needs to distinguish between the fact that evolution occurs and the theory of the mechanism of evolution.

We also need to distinguish between facts that are easy to demonstrate and those that are more circumstantial. Examples of evolution that are readily apparent include the fact that modern populations are evolving and the fact that two closely related species share a common ancestor. The evidence that Homo sapiens and chimpanzees share a recent common ancestor falls into this category. There is so much evidence in support of this aspect of primate evolution that it qualifies as a fact by any common definition of the word "fact."

In other cases the available evidence is less strong. For example, the relationships of some of the major phyla are still being worked out. Also, the statement that all organisms have descended from a single common ancestor is strongly supported by the available evidence, and there is no opposing evidence. However, it is not yet appropriate to call this a "fact" since there are reasonable alternatives.

Finally, there is an epistemological argument against evolution as fact. Some readers of these newsgroups point out that nothing in science can ever be "proven" and this includes evolution. According to this argument, the probability that evolution is the correct explanation of life as we know it may approach 99.9999...9% but it will never be 100%. Thus evolution cannot be a fact. This kind of argument might be appropriate in a philosophy class (it is essentially correct) but it won't do in the real world. A "fact," as Stephen J. Gould pointed out (see above), means something that is so highly probable that it would be silly not to accept it. This point has also been made by others who contest the nit-picking epistemologists.

The honest scientist, like the philosopher, will tell you that nothing whatever can be or has been proved with fully 100% certainty, not even that you or I exist, nor anyone except himself, since he might be dreaming the whole thing. Thus there is no sharp line between speculation, hypothesis, theory, principle, and fact, but only a difference along a sliding scale, in the degree of probability of the idea. When we say a thing is a fact, then, we only mean that its probability is an extremely high one: so high that we are not bothered by doubt about it and are ready to act accordingly. Now in this use of the term fact, the only proper one, evolution is a fact. For the evidence in favor of it is as voluminous, diverse, and convincing as in the case of any other well established fact of science concerning the existence of things that cannot be directly seen, such as atoms, neutrons, or solar gravitation ....
So enormous, ramifying, and consistent has the evidence for evolution become that if anyone could now disprove it, I should have my conception of the orderliness of the universe so shaken as to lead me to doubt even my own existence. If you like, then, I will grant you that in an absolute sense evolution is not a fact, or rather, that it is no more a fact than that you are hearing or reading these words.

- H. J. Muller, "One Hundred Years Without Darwin Are Enough" School Science and Mathematics 59, 304-305. (1959) reprinted in Evolution versus Creationism op cit.

In any meaningful sense evolution is a fact, but there are various theories concerning the mechanism of evolution.
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knobren
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 12:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"Introduction to Evolutionary Biology" - http://talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-intro-to-biology.html

"Observed Instances of Speciation" - http://talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-speciation.html

"Some More Observed Speciation Events" - http://talkorigins.org/faqs/speciation.html

"29+ Evidences for Macroevolution:The Scientific Case for Common Descent" - http://talkorigins.org/faqs/comdesc/

"Evidence for Jury-Rigged Design in Nature" - http://talkorigins.org/faqs/jury-rigged.html

"Radiometric Dating" - http://www.gate.net/~rwms/AgeEarth.html

"How Good Are Those Young-Earth Arguments?" - http://talkorigins.org/faqs/hovind/howgood-yea.html#proof1

"Moon-dust argument no longer useful" - http://www.answersingenesis.org/creation/v15/i4/moondust.asp
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knobren
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 12:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"Are Mutations Harmful?" - http://talkorigins.org/faqs/mutations.html

"A Mutation Story" (about sickle cell trait) - http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/evolution/library/01/2/l_012_02.html

"Malaria and the Red Cell" (8 mutations that help protect against malaria) - http://sickle.bwh.harvard.edu/malaria_sickle.html

"Does one blood type get sicker than another, or is one type more apt to become sick?" - http://www.hhmi.org/cgi-bin/askascientist/highlight.pl?kw=&file=answers%2Fimmunology%2Fans_034.html
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Theodore
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 1:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Speciation proves nothing. You can have an infinite number of different types of lizards, but they're still all lizards. They will never speciate into birds, or vice versa. Scales bear no resemblences whatsoever to feathers, and the oldest recorded fossils are still easily distinguishable as one or the other.

Genetic similarities between all life on earth prove that that life is related, but in what way? You can either say that life evolved from a common ancestor - or that life was created by the same God. Similarities by themselves prove nothing either way.

The fact that life is not perfectly designed would tend to be an argument against evolution, not for it. However, I'm sure that a careful examination of most of that "jury-rigged" design would discover reasons for it being the way it is. Again, inconclusive.

Radiometric Dating article wrote:
If you examine the extensive research in the field of geochronology, you will see that one of the most important criteria in dating a sample lies in choosing an appropriate dating method for the sample.

Well duh. This is where evolutionists always make their mistake. They make an assumption of how old a rock is, based on what strata it's from and what "index fossils" it contains, then pick the "right" dating method to use. Surprise, surprise, the resulting date falls inside the expected range. As I stated above, the "millions of years for rock layers to form" no longer stands up to the available evidence, and several index fossils have been found alive today. What's more, the ages of the index fossils themselves are arbitrarily assigned so as to fit with evolutionary theory, so even if those fossils were all in fact extinct, you can't scientifically date rocks using them. That would be circular reasoning - using fossils to date rocks, and rocks to date fossils.

Bottom line, given that strata and fossils are both unscientific methods of choosing dates, radiometric dating is therefore also unscientific - even when we don't go into the issues of assumed constants. Creationists could just as easily assign young-earth ages to all rock strata and fossils and then use those to pick Carbon-14 as the dating method, resulting in relatively young ages. There is no scientific way to choose the right dating method.

I'll let the moon dust argument go, though even if the measurements were off by as much a factor of 20 (as the article claims), that still doesn't allow for more than millions of years. Still evidence against evolution imho.
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 1:07 pm    Post subject: Who cares about evolution? Reply with quote

"Teaching about evolution and the nature of science" - http://books.nap.edu/html/evolution98/

(» The National Academy of Sciences has produced an online book Teaching About Evolution and the Nature of Science that is meant to help school teachers better understand the nature of scientific evidence as well as the differences between science and religion. )

"May 2006 Lecture Series: Evolution and Medicine" - http://www.nigms.nih.gov/News/Meetings/EvolutionSeries2006.htm

"Insect Resistance Management when Planting Bt Corn Hybrids " - http://ipcm.wisc.edu/WCMNews/tabid/53/EntryID/218/Default.aspx
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Theodore
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 1:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sickle cell is an example of a mutation (damage) that helps under certain local conditions, but definitely does not improve the species as a whole. Certainly a prime example of microevolution, but it's better evidence against macroevolution than for it. Now if you could give a concrete example of a mutation that helps a species all across the board, that would be more helpful.
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 1:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Theodore wrote:
Speciation proves nothing. You can have an infinite number of different types of lizards, but they're still all lizards. They will never speciate into birds, or vice versa. Scales bear no resemblences whatsoever to feathers, and the oldest recorded fossils are still easily distinguishable as one or the other.


Let's try whales - The Origin of Whales and the Power of Independent Evidence - http://www.talkorigins.org/features/whales/

One paragraph from this page:

"The evidence
The evidence that whales descended from terrestrial mammals is here divided into nine independent parts: paleontological, morphological, molecular biological, vestigial, embryological, geochemical, paleoenvironmental, paleobiogeographical, and chronological. Although my summary of the evidence is not exhaustive, it shows that the current view of whale evolution is supported by scientific research in several distinct disciplines."


Note: Nine independent lines of evidence!
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 1:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm done with this "discussion" about evolution. I'd be happy to answer anyone's honest requests for clarifications about evolution, but I won't continue to "debate" Theodore.
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 1:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Theodore wrote:
Sickle cell is an example of a mutation (damage) that helps under certain local conditions, but definitely does not improve the species as a whole. Certainly a prime example of microevolution, but it's better evidence against macroevolution than for it. Now if you could give a concrete example of a mutation that helps a species all across the board, that would be more helpful.


Ok - one more post -

"Molecular evolution of ruminant lysozymes." - http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez?db=PubMed&cmd=Retrieve&list_uids=8765308&dopt=Citation

I don't feel like looking around for a more layperson friendly source right
now. Try looking up something about ruminant evolution. You also might look up something about how the evolution of ruminants affected the spread of grasses.

Or how about antifreeze proteins in fish.
"Fish: Fresh, not Frozen" - http://www.exploratorium.edu/origins/antarctica/ideas/fish.html
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 4:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Our discourse on evolution gives me several ideas for assignments that some folks might be interested in.

1. Discuss the nature of science. Be sure to include the scientific method, the types of questions that can be adressed by science, limitations, assumptions, etc.

I have an assignment like this on my website under "The Scientific Method" at http://www.ux1.eiu.edu/~bdknotts/assign.htm

2. Define "antibiotic resistance" in bacteria and explain how natural selection works using the development of antibiotic resistant strains of bacteria as an example, and discuss how antibiotic production is an advantage for bacteria and fungi that produce them. Related topics: differentiate between the terms "antibiotic" and "antibody" and explain the differences in how bacteria resist the effects of antibiotics or evade the immune system, respectively.

Again, I have an assignment related to this topic:
http://www.ux1.eiu.edu/~bdknotts/Antibiotics.htm

3. Research how to make a logical argument. Discuss several types of fallacious arguments.

4. If you have several kids or could arrange a group activity, you could organize a debate. Assign different participants to either the pro or con side of an area of interest.

5. Write an essay addressing how evolution is relevant to medicine, agriculture, the survival of endangered species, etc.
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Ramona
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2007 4:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

knobren wrote:
1. Discuss the nature of science. Be sure to include the scientific method, the types of questions that can be adressed by science, limitations, assumptions, etc.


I'm probably not going to take this in the direction you're looking for, but the question is so broad it reminds me of several things.

When I was around high-school and college age, I was talking to my parents one day and mentioned what I felt was a commonly-known fact, that those disciplines in which Bachelor of Arts degrees are offered are looked down on in general as serious studies when contrasted with those disciplines in which Bachelor of Science degrees are offered. My parents, from a considerably older generation, immediately expressed great surprise that I (and maybe even my generation) would look at it that way. They both said that they (and their whole generation?) had always seen Arts disciplines as "science-plus."

Some years later I read something--I wish I could remember where or by whom--that said the conventional wisdom is that art is more fluid and left open to the individual artist's interpretation, whereas science is very strictly defined. This author's point was that the reverse is actually true: art has specific guidelines and science is open to wherever experimentation takes us.

I think one thing that happened to art in the 20th century is that it stepped outside its box a little bit.

I guess my "discussion" on the nature of science starts with the ways in which it's different from art.

I haven't gotten as far as the specifics you say to "be sure" to include yet.

Smile

Ramona
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