Questions About Evolution

Summary: The theory of evolution is the explanation of how all life originated on earth and how all living organisms, both plant and animal, have evolved into hundreds of thousands of different species. Although this theory is accepted as an undisputed fact there are questions about it that evolutionists don’t have a tangible answers to. This article looks at some of them.

Evolution is often explained as the result of primarily two things: natural selection and genetic modification.

Natural selection happens when two living organisms who have different characteristics produce an offspring who then exhibit some of the characteristics of both parents. However, under this process, the offspring cannot have a characteristic that neither one of its parents is missing. For example, if a horse and a mule mate, their offspring cannot have claws or horns or a beak or wings, simply because neither one of its parents have any of those features. Therefore, during natural selection, the offspring can only have those traits that one or both of its parents already has.

The evolutionary process of genetic modification occurs when a random change in the DNA of one animal results in that animal’s offspring having a different characteristic than its parents. This process is also known as gene mutation, where a gene in one of the parents becomes damaged or is not an identical copy of the gene it was reproduced from and it is when this new gene is transmitted to its offspring that the offspring is born with a different feature that its parents didn’t have. And, according to the evolutionary model, it is this process that accounts for the vast majority of variations we see between animals.

Even so, most animals have common features. For example, most animals have eyes, ears, a similar breathing system, similar reproductive systems, similar brain structure, etc. However, for that to happen, every animal that has the same physical features have to have come from one common ancestor.

For example, since evolutionists say that all life began in the ocean, and since all fish have eyes and we have eyes, we should be able to trace our ancestry back to one particular fish that had eyes but whose parents didn’t have any. Therefore, according to the theory of evolution, every animal that has eyes has to be an ancestor of that one particular fish.

To better understand this principle, we have to look at the evolution of fish. It is said that all life on earth began as a single cell organism, much like bacteria, and then after millions of years the first multi-cell animal evolved which then evolved into worm-like creatures who lived in the sea. These primitive animals had no eyes but did have a jawless mouth of sorts whereby they took in or scooped in food.

From these came more sophisticated worm-like animals who eventually developed a tail and could therefore travel more efficiently through the water, and over millions of years these began to evolve to where they developed a bony skeletal structure, and a more defined head shape, such as a group of primitive fish called Pteraspidomorphi, who had no eyes.

But, to go from this to a fish that had eyes – even if this development happened gradually over millions of years – there had to be one fish that eventually was born who had a fully functioning eye system that its parents didn’t have.  This certainly couldn’t have happened through natural selection unless one parent had eyes and the other one didn’t. But if this is what happened then where did the one parent get its eyes from?

There are many different kinds of eyes in the animal kingdom. For example, the eye of a fly is very different from the eye of a human. The pupil of a goat is square instead of round like most other animals. The eyes of a cat are designed to see in the dark, while the eyes of a hawk can see details from a very long distance away. Yet, evolutionists say that all of these different kinds of eyes are merely modifications of the very first fish who had eyes. Therefore, every animal who has eyes has to be a descendant of one particular fish.

If that is not the case then every animal who is not a direct ancestor of that first fish with eyes had to come from some other fish who also had eyes but whose parents didn’t. But for that to happen there had to be another fish (and probably quite a few) over millions of years who also had the same exact, identical, random, unpredictable change in their DNA which produced the same eye system in a different fish. However, the likelihood of that happening is almost an impossibility if we accept the theory of genetic modification.

But what about all the other primitive fish, such as the Pteraspidomorphi, who didn’t have eyes? They too had offspring who produced more offspring for hundreds of millions of years, all of whom had no eyes. Therefore, we should expect to see many more fish who have no eyes than we do fish who do have eyes. Instead, the great majority of fish we see today have eyes.

This situation is further compounded when we consider animals who all have multiple similar characteristics. To understand why, we’ll use a simplified version, even though it is said that this process takes place over very long periods of time and happens in small incremental changes. But let’s say, for the purpose of illustration, that in the beginning there were one hundred fish, all of whom didn’t have a developed brain, then one day, one of their offspring was born with a brain. In all likelihood all of their offspring would also be born with a brain while none of the offspring of the other ninety-nine fish would have a brain.

Many generations later, one of the fish with a brain had an offspring who was born with eyes. Then we could expect that all of the offspring of this fish would also be born with a brain and a set of eyes, while all the offspring of those other fish who only had a brain would not have any eyes, and the offspring of all the other fish would have neither a brain nor eyes.

Then, many generations later, the offspring of one of the fish who had a brain and eyes was born with gills, which would be a very different system for processing oxygen from the water. All the offspring of this one fish would also have a brain, eyes, and gills but the offspring of none of all the other creatures in the sea would have any gills. Therefore, we should expect to see some fish who had a brain, eyes, and gills, a larger number of fish who had a brain and eyes but no gills, a larger number of fish who had a brain but no eyes or gills, and there would be even a greater number of creatures who had no brains, eyes, or gills.

And as we continue to see more and more complex systems developing in animals, what we would expect to see is a great many more animals who don’t have a complete set of highly developed systems. But, instead, what we find is that nearly all fish have the same systems. It doesn’t matter if we look at a minnow, krill, a pufferfish, a stingray, a shark, or a whale, they all have a brain located in their head, eyes, and fins. The question then becomes, what happened to the vast number of other fish who lacked some or all of these features?

The answer that evolutionists generally give is that they died off because they couldn’t adapt as well to their environment as did the better developed fish. This is known as the theory of “survival of the fittest,” but since it is said that evolutionary changes occurred over hundreds of millions of years then that also means that animals with less developed systems were able to survive very well for millions of years, and there is no reason to suppose that they couldn’t continue surviving even after more highly developed animals arrived.

In fact, everywhere in nature we see a wide variety of animals who are very different from one another but who are able to survive and defend themselves against other animals who are much larger, faster, stronger, more intelligent, and better adapted to their environment.

Take for example, the skunk, who is a slow-moving animal that has soft skin that can easily be penetrated by sharp teeth, who cannot out run a bobcat, is no match for the strength of a bear, nor can it easily hide from a hawk, and yet it still survives very well. There are species of living organisms in the ocean who have no eyes or gills, or fins but who continue to thrive in their environment.

This includes the starfish who don’t have gills, a head, a brain, or the kind of eyes that are well developed like those in regular fish. On the underside of each of its “legs” are “eye spots.” These can detect light but cannot make out much in the way of details. It could be argued that this is evidence of the evolution of the eye, but if that is true then it must also be true that sea animals who lack eyes don’t necessarily become extinct because they can could no longer adapt to their environments due to the existence of fish who do have eyes. Clams and jellyfish also have no eyes and yet they too have not become extinct.

Another example involves whales. These giants of the sea eat enormous quantities of fish of all kinds, such as shrimp, crabs, krill, and squid, and yet none of these animals have become extinct, even though they are no match or have no defense against a larger and better developed predator.

If that is true then, according to the genetic modification theory, animals who have less developed systems should be in the majority since they can survive and thrive in their environment as well as the more developed animals can. But instead what we find is that they make up a very small minority of sea creatures. Therefore, the theory of survival of the fitness doesn’t adequately answer this phenomenon.

Genetic mutation is often the cause for the differences in species of animals. For example, there are more than 27,000 different species of fish, most of whom look very different from one another, have different eating habits, and different defense systems. And yet, they all survive very well among each other, despite the fact that some fish are better developed. And the same is true of the 10,000 species of birds, the 20,000 species of bees, and the 22,000 species of ants.

When we consider that there are always going to be some animals who have more advantages than others and who prey on those weaker than themselves, we should expect to see a lower number of species according to the theory of survival of the fittest, but what we find is just the opposite. Therefore, the theory of survival of the fitness doesn’t adequately answer this perplexing phenomenon.

At the same time, according to the genetic modification theory, animals who have less developed systems should be in the majority since, as we have just seen, they can survive and thrive in their environment as well as the more developed animals can and have been around longer. But instead what we find is that they make up a very small minority of sea creatures, and the same can be said of land animals.

The other theory of how animals evolved is through the process of natural selection, where two different animals mate and produce an offspring that is a hybrid of its parents. It is said that this accounts for those changes in evolution that genetic modification doesn’t. But there are problems with this theory as well.

To understand why, we need to once again look at the evolutionary history of animals, which is often represented as a tree. At the base of the tree is the one cell animal which was the very first living organism. From there animals began to come forth that were the result of random changes in their DNA which created new creatures that branched out from the parent trunk. Over millions of years, as different creatures were born, they formed other branches on the evolutionary tree.

The original one cell animal had no bones but there came a time when an animal was born who had a soft form of bones called cartilage. At this point there was a split in the evolutionary tree, where one line of animals went on to develop bones and another line of evolving animals had no bones. These two different forms of animals are referred to as vertebrates (those with a vertebra or backbone) and invertebrates (those without a vertebrae).

Nearly all fish have a bony skeleton that is covered over with skin. These have internal skeletons and they make up the vertebrate branch of the evolutionary tree. The other branch contains those who have neither internal skeletal bones or cartilage, such as sponges, starfish, jellyfish, clams, crabs, lobsters, shrimp, squid and octopus.  Since these come from a very different species of animal than those in the vertebra branch we would expect to see that their outer form and inner structure would be very different from those in the vertebra branch and, in most cases they are.

For example, everything about a jellyfish is very different from that of any vertebra. Besides having no bones or cartilage, a jellyfish has no well-defined head, no eyes, no mouth, no central nervous system, no heart, a very different form of digestion and an asexual reproductive system. These kinds of differences between vertebrate and invertebrates is what we would expect to see according to the theory of genetic modification.

But as these animals underwent continual changes in their DNA and new, more complexed invertebrates came into existence – such as the squid and octopus – suddenly we find these new creatures having a well-defined head, two eyes in their head, a mouth with a beak, a developed central nervous system, a heart, kidney, and a digestive and reproductive system similar to those of vertebrates.

According to the theory of genetic modification, each of these features had to develop from a lower form of animal. For example, the eyes of an octopus had to come from a more primitive invertebrate who didn’t have eyes. However, the eyes of a fish who has a vertebra would have to have come from that same invertebrate who didn’t have eyes but their offspring did. The problem is that there is no such creature on the evolutionary tree to which both an invertebrate and a vertebrate can trace their beginnings of an eye. And this problem becomes more acute when we add in all the other similar features between an octopus and a fish.

The answer to this dilemma is supposedly found in the theory of natural selection. According to this theory, an invertebrate mated with a vertebrate and their offspring had some features of both.  For example, it would take something along the line of a jellyfish mating with a sea bass to produce an offspring who had a well-defined head, with eyes and tentacles but no bones – i.e, an octopus.

The only problem with this scenario is that the reproduction system of both kinds of animals are incompatible with one another. For example, a jellyfish has an asexual reproductive system (as do most invertebrates), meaning that the eggs laid by a jellyfish don’t need to be fertilized by a male sperm, whereas, fish have a sexual reproduction system that requires both a male and a female to produce an offspring. In other words, it is not natural that an invertebrate would select to mate with a vertebrate. Therefore, the theory of natural selection can’t account for animals on different branches of the evolutionary tree having similar features and neither can genetic modification.

In fact, the “tree of life” that evolutionists have constructed can only be based on the idea of genetic modification. Since each new species of animal is a branch that separates off from its parent, in order to show a new animal that came about through the process of natural selection, whereby two different animals mated to produce a hybrid offspring, the “tree of life” would have to show two different branches coming together and melding to form a new branch of animal, but we never see that in any of the pictures depicting how animals evolved from one kind to another. Therefore, by their own accounting, natural selection doesn’t seem to play a significant role in the evolutionary chain of events.

As we look at the model used to explain the theory of how all life on earth came from a single microscopic, one-cell living organism it leaves unanswered may questions about evolution.

 

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