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Re: Evolution in a microcosm

That was a great email Zack. I actually agree with everything you said, even though we have different opinions on the validity of macro-evolotion. I'm actually fine with people not accepting evolution. As you said, it's not good to have blind faith in the evolution idea. To really understand the mechanics of genetics and evolution takes years of study which is of course not going to happen for the general public. So I think it's great that you don't accept it. Personally, I do believe it but only through devoting my professional life to studying the evidence and making sure I understand the mechanisms as well as is currently possible (and seeing it before my eyes in these bacterial genomes, the genome sequences are just awesome!).

I also completely agree with you that religion and evolution aren't the only options. People shouldn't believe either blindly. So most people automatically assume that evidence against one is evidence for the other. But at least evolution is testable and gods are not. I suspect that the reason that religion gets thrown into the mix is that when people can't scientifically explain a phenomenon, they have this strange need to make something up. I promote the idea of being honest with ourselves and saying "heck if I know". Religions all fall into the category of explanations to make people feel more secure, but since the existence of gods isn't testable, why should we believe in them? And why does a non-testable story make people feel more secure anyway? That one always baffles me.

What upsets me is when people are raised religious and never question what they've been taught. Most people have never even realized that the existence of gods is not testable. I'm not saying that they should immediately believe evolution, but there's certainly no excuse for making up mystical stories of gods and angels. Pay attention to any time you see a person explaining a phenomenon to another person. Every where the person says "well God did that", you can just replace "God" with "I don't know" and that's really what they're saying. I think they should just say "I don't know".

I don't know why some feel the need to shy away from this subject. I agree
with others who consider this an enjoyable discussion. We're all adults here
and should be able to handle some intelligent discussion of a very pivotal
idea. The occurrence of macro-evolution or the lack thereof is very
prevalent with regards to our Apistos. It affects how we identify or
understand the relation of our fish--whether what we have is really a new
species in a chain or whether it is just a variation of a pre-existing
species. Whether we go into the examination of a fish with the pre-existing
notion that we must fit the fish into our evolutionary model affects how we
identify our fishes.

I find it interesting that it is the proponents of macro-evolution who have
felt it necessary to bring in religion. Those of us capable of offering an
intelligent discussion about the occurrence of macro-evolution have yet to
mention religion. I have only given reasons why I don't accept evolution and
haven't stated any affiliation to an alternative religion from evolution. So
far the biggest lack of education or intelligence I have seen comes from the
other side. I wonder how well anyone understands the alternatives, or do
they just believe in their religion of evolution because that is all they
have taken the time to study? I have studied evolution in-depth and at
length and find no merit in it.

Most of what has been offered in favor of macro-evolution has been devoid of
substance or evidence in favor, but rather has simply attacked alternative
views with simplistic dogma. I don't agree with the ideas of macro-evolution
for many well-thought-out reasons and therefor differ in my opinions of what
constitutes the identification of a new species. I am happy to discuss with
others who can behave like adults the logic of my views. If you're not
interested in this subject, there are other threads and you don't have to
read this one. If you are interested, whether as a contributor or observer,
you're free to participate.

Regards all,

Zack Wilson
losing more and more respect for Ph.D's.

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-- Sincerely, Brian Ahmer, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
Department of Microbiology
The Ohio State University
376 Bioscience Building
484 West 12th Ave
Columbus OH 43210


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