I learned evolution in my Catholic high school biology class. But since coming to know Christ, I have found my "faith" in evolution damaged. The primary reason being that the "debate" so far has been primarily rhetoric and argument from assumptions on both sides.
For example (for evolutionists): What is the most convincing evidence you have seen for evolution?
I haven't seen any evidence. I was told that evolution is true. And it was on a test. I memorized it for the test, and promptly started to assert it. This forms the core of the debate for most people. The remainder is mostly to march out a group of skulls and put them in a line, and say evolution! That's not evolution, that's quicksort().
In the interests of joining the discussion, I have read an article that is supposed to boost my "faith" in evolution. It address some common points:
Science is Falsifiability
Yeah, falsifiability is nice. But I'm an electrical engineer, I prefer predict and measure. Kirchhoff's Current Law and Kirchhoff's Voltage Law. Draw a circuit on paper, run the numbers, build it in the lab, measure it on the scope. That's science to me.
With just falsifiability, it's too easy to propose stuff that is always mutating and dodging the falsification. For example: based on current observations, hemoglobin (the red cells in blood) was assumed to break down after many thousand years (maybe as much as 100,000). Until a T-Rex was discovered with intact hemoglobin. Well, everyone knows T-Rex is 65 to 130 million years old, so now we assume hemoglobin can naturally survive that long. If you've got 65 millions years to wait around, we can verify this prediction...
Macro-Evolution is Lots of Micro-Evolution
This utilizes a concept known as induction. Induction says given a base case, show the progression from a set of size N to one of size N+1. Then you have then shown the idea for all N. For example, "All People Are Bald". The base case is this guy, Billy. He is bald. So given that any set of N people are all bald, show that N+1 people are all bald. Well, consider the case where N=10. The first 9 people are all bald. And the last 9 people are all bald. And the two sets overlap, so all 10 people are bald. Therefore, all people are bald!
Is induction an invalid way of proving things? No. But it does show you have to be careful in your reasoning. And you should be able to show some proof.
"Major evolutionary change requires too much time for direct observation on the scale of recorded human history."That makes evolution not repeatable, and therefore not "hard" science. I want to see a fruit fly produce beetles or wasps or something not a fruit fly. Or even just have a single celled organism produce a multi-celled organism - or even a colonial organism (like a sponge). Or turn an amoeba (asexual reproducer) into a paramecium (single cell sexual reproducer). I'm also trying to find publications which references the results of Ernst Mayr's fruit fly mutation experiments.
"Why should a rat run, a bat fly, a porpoise swim, and I type this essay with structures built of the same bones unless we all inherited them from a common ancestor?"An interesting question, but not evidence. This just shows that the Designer (if any) enjoys code reuse. You can argue for or against a Designer who reuses code, but then you are arguing the properties of a Designer you do not know and cannot understand.
Analogies Between Memetic Evolution and Biological Evolution
"When we recognize the etymology of September, October, November, and December (seventh, eighth, ninth, and tenth), we know that the year once started in March, or that two additional months must have been added to an original calendar of ten months."The calendar (and any other abstract human concept - like government or culture) is a bad example for evolutionists. - because these things were designed (by people).
Well, that wasn't very satisfying. I will have to tackle another article later...