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test54 03-17-2009 09:25 AM

interesting perspective on the debate. I want to watch the full program but will have to do that tonight.

FORA.tv - Michael_Ruse_on_Darwinism

mriff 03-17-2009 10:44 AM

I agree with much of what he says, except one. That the voice of extremism will be lessened due in part to the recent political changes in the US. I don't see that happening. It may in fact, exacerbate it.

I'll have to look up more of his stuff test. He seems very reasonable. And a bit entertaining. Thanks for posting.

Edit: He is a professor at FSU, right in my back yard.

test54 03-17-2009 12:45 PM

yeah seems pretty knowledgeable. I do think that you will hear more of the extremism but I do think that as he said it is coming from fewer people. I think that as things change you will see that the minority will get louder and louder in their anger and complaints. thats typical for extremists or radicals.

mriff 03-17-2009 06:13 PM

Yet another small piece of the dinosaur puzzle.

Smallest known North American dinosaur found - CNN.com

mriff 03-18-2009 06:13 AM

A science minister who has trouble with the Theory of Evolution. His response when asked whether or not he believed in evolution:

"I'm not going to answer that question," Goodyear, federal minister of state for science and technology, told the Globe and Mail in an article published Tuesday. "I am a Christian, and I don't think anybody asking a question about my religion is appropriate."

But then again, he's a former chiropractor, so it kind of fits.

(n)

Science minister's coyness on evolution worries researchers

mriff 03-18-2009 06:24 AM

Wow. There are just no limits to how deceptive McElroy will be. The book written by a guy with a BS in general science is being touted as meaninful! Reminds me of the Pandas book bought and distributed by the Dover School Board. We all know how that went. The NAS is made out to be a bunch of criminals.

Texas Evolution-Creation Debate Impacted by Book: Sowing Atheism : Tue, 17 Mar 2009 : eNewsChannelsxxx8482;

Dawg 03-18-2009 06:35 AM

Boy, they really gave you a stage didn't they?

mriff 03-18-2009 06:37 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dawg (Post 1323985)
Boy, they really gave you a stage didn't they?

Don't like it? Don't read it.

kathrynhr 03-18-2009 08:25 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mriff (Post 1323966)
A science minister who has trouble with the Theory of Evolution. His response when asked whether or not he believed in evolution:

"I'm not going to answer that question," Goodyear, federal minister of state for science and technology, told the Globe and Mail in an article published Tuesday. "I am a Christian, and I don't think anybody asking a question about my religion is appropriate."

As a Christian, I have trouble with his response. The point of Christianity is to share the good news through your words and deeds.

I read his comment as, "I'm either not articulate enough or not confident enough to state my personal views to others. Or worse, I'm too afraid of the reactions of others."

Dawg 03-18-2009 08:26 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mriff (Post 1323987)
Don't like it? Don't read it.

I didn't(n)

mriff 03-18-2009 09:34 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dawg (Post 1324123)
I didn't(n)

Somehow, some way, I'm not surprised Dawg. It was your usual MO. Slip in, make a slashing comment, then slip away.

test54 03-18-2009 09:35 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mriff (Post 1324223)
Somehow, some way, I'm not surprised Dawg. It was your usual MO. Slip in, make a slashing comment, then slip away.

wait thats my MO :razz: maybe Dawg's posting technique has evolved.

mriff 03-18-2009 09:36 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by kathrynhr (Post 1324120)
As a Christian, I have trouble with his response. The point of Christianity is to share the good news through your words and deeds.

I read his comment as, "I'm either not articulate enough or not confident enough to state my personal views to others. Or worse, I'm too afraid of the reactions of others."

I agree. It was an odd, defensive response to a very legitimate question. A question that was only a matter of time that he was asked as Science Minister. And a question that he should answer one way or another IMHO.

mriff 03-18-2009 09:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by test54 (Post 1324224)
wait thats my MO :razz: maybe Dawg's posting technique has evolved.

Lol! Dawg doesn't evolve. But just for kicks, here's a interesting article (at least to me) that attempts to describe how Homo sapiens will evolve over the next hundred thousand years. Which group will your ancestors be in? ;-)

Where Will Evolution Take Humanity? Scientists Predict a Radical Change in Humans

snip

He sees the pickiness of people in choosing sexual partners starting to divide the human race. BBC News described Dr. Curry’s two species: “The descendants of the genetic upper class would be tall, slim, healthy, attractive, intelligent, and creative and a far cry from the ‘underclass’ humans who would have evolved into dim-witted, ugly, squat, goblin-like creatures.”

In the near term (the next 1,000 years), however, Curry believes humans will improve a bit. He says they will typically stand between 1.8 and 2.1 metres (six to seven feet) and will live to be 120 years old. Physically, future generations will become more attractive and racial differences will vanish; everybody will be coffee coloured.

However, gadgets will be the undoing of society. People will come to rely on them so much that they will begin to lose a lot of their skills; they might resemble domesticated animals. Social abilities will decline and people might even lose such emotions as love, sympathy, trust, and respect.


/snip

kathrynhr 03-18-2009 10:16 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mriff (Post 1324234)
Lol! Dawg doesn't evolve. But just for kicks, here's a interesting article (at least to me) that attempts to describe how Homo sapiens will evolve over the next hundred thousand years. Which group will your ancestors be in? ;-)

Where Will Evolution Take Humanity? Scientists Predict a Radical Change in Humans

Boy, are they late to the table. Scott Adams (Dilbert's creator) predicted this course for humanity nearly 15 years ago:

Men Who Use Computers Are The New Sex Symbols Of The 90s

8-)

mriff 03-18-2009 10:27 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by kathrynhr (Post 1324290)
Boy, are they late to the table. Scott Adams (Dilbert's creator) predicted this course for humanity nearly 15 years ago:

Men Who Use Computers Are The New Sex Symbols Of The 90s

8-)

Lol! That's pretty funny. Thanks for posting. I had not seen that before.

Dawg 03-18-2009 01:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dawg (Post 1324123)
I didn't(n)

I didn't slash anyone. I simply stated the obvious. And I haven't gone anywhere.

mriff 03-18-2009 10:07 PM

I think this is a basic, yet thorough introduction to evolutionary biology. For those of you who care to read, I'd like to hear your comments.

Introduction to Evolutionary Biology

kathrynhr 03-19-2009 08:34 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mriff (Post 1325130)
I think this is a basic, yet thorough introduction to evolutionary biology. For those of you who care to read, I'd like to hear your comments.

Introduction to Evolutionary Biology

I initially got no farther than this dismissive remark in the second paragraph:

"People who have a general interest in science are likely to dismiss evolution as a soft science after absorbing the pop science nonsense that abounds."

After a period of eye rolling, and reminding myself that scientists as a group are not known for their people skills, I continued onward.

I found this paper dry, as most people with no post-high-school background in Evolutionary Biology might.

I did pause at this passage, which is the portion of evolutionary theory over which many Christians trip:

"All species have descended from a common ancestor. As time went on, different lineages of organisms were modified with descent to adapt to their environments. Thus, evolution is best viewed as a branching tree or bush, with the tips of each branch representing currently living species. No living organisms today are our ancestors. Every living species is as fully modern as we are with its own unique evolutionary history. No extant species are "lower life forms," atavistic stepping stones paving the road to humanity.

A related, and common, fallacy about evolution is that humans evolved from some living species of ape. This is not the case -- humans and apes share a common ancestor. Both humans and living apes are fully modern species; the ancestor we evolved from was an ape, but it is now extinct and was not the same as present day apes (or humans for that matter). If it were not for the vanity of human beings, we would be classified as an ape. Our closest relatives are, collectively, the chimpanzee and the pygmy chimp. Our next nearest relative is the gorilla."


Different Christians interpret the Bible, and understand/believe this portion of evolution differently.

I don't know any Christians who don't believe that biological evolution exists. A basic study of one's own environment suggests that living things change over time.

The debate comes in when one sits down and reads the book of Genesis, which Christians believe is true. Here's the relevant excerpt:

Quote:

The Fifth Day

God said, "I command the ocean to be full of living creatures, and I command birds to fly above the earth." So God made the giant sea monsters and all the living creatures that swim in the ocean. He also made every kind of bird. God looked at what he had done, and it was good. Then he gave the living creatures his blessing--he told the ocean creatures to live everywhere in the ocean and the birds to live everywhere on earth. Evening came and then morning--that was the fifth day.

The Sixth Day

God said, "I command the earth to give life to all kinds of tame animals, wild animals, and reptiles." And that's what happened. God made every one of them. Then he looked at what he had done, and it was good. God said, "Now we will make humans, and they will be like us. We will let them rule the fish, the birds, and all other living creatures." So God created humans to be like himself; he made men and women. God gave them his blessing and said: "Have a lot of children! Fill the earth with people and bring it under your control. Rule over the fish in the ocean, the birds in the sky, and every animal on the earth. I have provided all kinds of fruit and grain for you to eat. And I have given the green plants as food for everything else that breathes. These will be food for animals, both wild and tame, and for birds." God looked at what he had done. All of it was very good! Evening came and then morning--that was the sixth day.
Some Christians interpret this section literally and in light of our present understanding. That is, they believe that all of the above happened precisely as described in a period consisting of 48 hours.

Others believe this passage to be fact, but believe we cannot possibly know how much things changed with "the fall" (of Adam and Eve), so we cannot interpret it properly now. For example, was a "day" a 24 hour period back then, or was it something else? Was it referring to an age? These people believe the passage speaks truthfully but that we lack the whole picture because of sin's entrance into the world. We can't see the true meaning of Genesis clearly anymore.

Still others believe that Genesis is allegorical. They believe it is the early Jewish take on the journey of mankind from the time of its creation to forager (in the Garden), to hunter, to farmer. We lost our innocence along the way as we began to kill one another over limited resources; and the story of Genesis to them is one of mankind pining for safety and plenty and peace in a troubled world. These Christians say the Bible is "divinely inspired," but that it was never meant to be taken word for word because the men who wrote those words were sinful and fallible like all men.

As you may imagine, arguments exist between these different factions. Some people who interpret the Bible literally believe that Christians who don't are not really Christians. Some people who think Genesis is allegorical believe that people who interpret it literally are bat-crazy (they tend to use the more polite phrase "willfully ignorant"). There's a ton of animosity.

With respect to evolution, you can see that there is room for evolution in some of the Christian perspectives, but not others.

As I said before, I think this is one of those debates that is a Britney debate. It's pretty, it's polarizing, it's ultimately pointless. Neither side can submit sufficient evidence to the other to close the issue and end the debate once and for all. Consequently, each person feels justified in clinging to his own warm and fuzzy paradigms and shutting out any conflicting data that might threaten them.

mriff 03-20-2009 08:58 AM

Kathryn, what a thoughtful, informed post. I've read it, and of course have a few things to say, but don't have time to do that today.

I did have one quick comment though about this statement:

Quote:

After a period of eye rolling, and reminding myself that scientists as a group are not known for their people skills, I continued onward.
I resemble that remark and wonder if you would also say the same about softward developers. :razz:


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