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Robin



Posts: 1431
Joined: Sep. 2009

(Permalink) Posted: Nov. 11 2011,09:18   

Quote (afarensis @ Nov. 11 2011,07:33)
Quote (Southstar @ Nov. 11 2011,06:27)
Quote (Henry J @ Nov. 10 2011,23:27)

Yesterday I had to go for work to Verona, which is about a 2,5 hours trip and this gave me some time to ponder some more questions which will probably come up and to which I have found no clear answer.

If evolution is continuos and you can't stop it, why are there simple organisms around? Are we to assume that bacteria "devolved" or that it continues to reform? Obviously to put forward the question I assumed that complexity indicates evolution and maybe the problem lies there. But I can't quite figure it out.

Thanks
Marty

In addition to what OgreMkV said there is the question of whether there is an open niche for the population to move into as well as how well they are adapted or specialized for the niche they currently occupy. Your question seems to be a variant of the "why are there still monkeys" question

There's also another misunderstanding presented in Southstar's question - it's basically a rewording of "if humans evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys."

The answer of course, which is beautifully illustrated by ring species, is that while some members of a given species may gain some beneficial or neutral mutation, many members still do not. If the non-mutated parental stock - the original species-remains competitive in its environment and/or has sufficient flexibility to adapt to some other environment, it will continue to exist along with it's daughter and cousin relatives.

Evolution is not all of some parental species morphing into some other species, yet this is what many creationists think evolution is. Similarly, evolution does not require all members of some species to die off/disappear when some portion of that species gain some genetic variation.

A third misconception embedded in the question is that evolution implies that newer organisms with more changes and complexity are "better" than older, simpler organisms. This is not what evolution states or implies. Evolution as a theory merely notes that change occurs and how; there's no implication about change being "good" for organisms in general. Further, if one really understands evolution as an explanation of a process, one also understands the concept of adaption. Mutations and genetic drift are considered "beneficial" if a group of organisms can use the change to help them adapt to given environmental conditions and thus produce more offspring than its competition/predation rates. If an organism group without said change can adapt to given environmental changes such that they produce more offspring than their competition/predation rates, guess what? They'll survive too.

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we IDists rule in design for the flagellum and cilium largely because they do look designed.  Bilbo

The only reason you reject Thor is because, like a cushion, you bear the imprint of the biggest arse that sat on you. Louis

  
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