[quote=PhilVaz] Evolution is a vital, well-supported, unifying principle of the biological sciences, and the scientific evidence is overwhelmingly in favor of the idea that all living things share a common ancestry.
I find it to be so bothersome that those who support evolution as if it is this impeccable brick wall of a theory do so by such enormous assertions like the one appearing above. I want to break it down per the adjectives used. Evolution is said to be:
(1) “vital” - in what sense? It’s “alive and kicking?” It’s necessary? The first is obviously true and the latter is by no means obviously true. I assume the author means the latter sense. I’ve yet to hear the great argument that the theory of evolution is necessary to biology (remembering that equivocation on terms like ‘evolution’ to mean merely ‘change’ does no one any good). Perhaps the author could supply the argument for why the underlying theory of origins is necessary to contemporary biology?
(2) “well-supported” - OK, what qualifies as evidence that supports the theory well? Since it is historical in nature, only historical evidence could support it “well,” though perhaps non-historical evidence could help in mild ways for a cumulative case argument. Only major historical evidence one could readily think of is the fossil record, no? And needless to say, such a record by no means support evolution well. If it did, there would be no room for debate whatsoever. The provided “links” would be a slam dunk.
(3) “unifying principle of the biological sciences” - it is a unifying principle, but of course the question is whether it’s the only adequate or successful unifying principle one could think of, which leads me naturally to address the last assertion, which is, not unexpetedly, overstated…
(4) “the scientific evidence is overwhelmingly in favor of the idea that all living things share a common ancestry” - but, of course, it could only be so with an very good (or even mildly supportive) fossil record, along with perhaps other lines of evidence. There is no doubt that the biologial sciences imply commonality among all living organisms. Somehow though, this commonality translates to simple common ancestry, though there are many missing links in the argument from obvious commonality among organisms to common ancestry. Common design is equally plausible, and perhaps more so, given a lack of fossil support.
And then, in keeping with the overstatement, we leave off with a quote which sounds like little more than bullying and belittling. But, I don’t suppose it’s so surprising. This is what one tends to do when his case is not as strong as he might have hoped it would be.
[quote=PhilVaz] It is scientifically inappropriate and pedagogically irresponsible for creationist pseudoscience, including but not limited to “intelligent design,” to be introduced into the science curricula of our nation’s public schools.