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The assumption of evolution can cause problems

Discussion in 'Evolution Vs. Creationism' started by Man of Faith, Jan 1, 2012.

  1. Man of Faith

    Man of Faith Well-Known Member

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    Like with the adipose fin in fish. Biologists don’t know what they are for so they assume they are vestigial. If they are vestigial then that would mean they aren't used or needed and a leftover from evolution. However we might find that if we “trust science” and assume that there are such things as vestigial structures in organisms and are not structures that were designed by God then things like this could happen.

    “Clipping off the seemingly useless adipose fin to mark hatchery-grown fish is common practice in Oregon and across the Northwest. New research published today suggests that clipping off the small, fleshy fin between the dorsal fin and tail might hurt fish's ability to swim in turbulent water.”

    Clipping adipose fins on salmon might hurt fish's ability to swim in rough waters, study finds | OregonLive.com
     
  2. David M

    David M Well-Known Member

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    The problem with your argument is that you are using the creationist definition of vestigial and not the scientific one. So, as usual, you are wrong from the start.

    Vestigial does not mean "aren't used or needed and a leftover from evolution" and even Darwin did not use that meaning for it.
     
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  3. jasonwill2

    jasonwill2 Well-Known Member

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    I agree that assuming an organ or body structure has no use only because we cannot find said use is stupid, but I do not see how this is actually a result of evolution.

    Rather, it seems to be a result of "well we can't figure it out so it must be useless" mentality among some biologists.

    You see, if it is in several successive generations then it MUST have a use because otherwise natural selection would of gotten rid of the feature. So actually according to evolution the fin WOULD HAVE TO have a use because other wise the trait would of died out.

    Unless of course it didn't hinder them in anyway or was tied into a piece of genetic information that provided another important trait in the same strand of DNA. I guess that's possible too.
     
  4. Skwim

    Skwim Veteran Member

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    Point of information.

    Not all fish have adipose fins.

    And a question
    What are the problems caused by the assumption?
     
    #4 Skwim, Jan 1, 2012
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2012
  5. Man of Faith

    Man of Faith Well-Known Member

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    Whether my definition of vestigial is correct or not, the article stands for itself. Biologists assumed the fins were vestigial and not used or needed so they clipped them off for another reason. Then they found out that they were used.
     
  6. Man of Faith

    Man of Faith Well-Known Member

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    Working on the assumption that evolution happened the biologist are predisposed to assume that there are non-needed vestigial structures in creatures.
     
  7. Man of Faith

    Man of Faith Well-Known Member

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    It is in the OP.
     
  8. Iti oj

    Iti oj Global warming is real and we need to act
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    I think you failed to demonstrate that all/most vestigial are assumptions...
     
  9. SOdhner

    SOdhner New Member

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    Agreed, there's a big difference between "we don't know what this does (if anything)" and "this does nothing" and depending on the context that might cause problems. Certainly that's not the fault of evolution.

    Yeah, there are for sure ways for useless stuff to stick around. I think in most cases useless stuff will go away or change into something else but that could take a really, really long time if it's not doing harm or using resources.

    Really long by my standards, that is.

    Anyway, my point is that I totally agree that this isn't something to blame on evolution, but I also think that there are times when it's okay to say "Hey, this doesn't seem to do anything. Don't sweat it." with the understanding that there's always a chance that you'll learn more later. Science is all about growing and learning along the way, but it's not always practical to include disclaimers and reminders so even if the first person remembers to say "as far as we know..." the next guy or the next one might just say "it doesn't do anything". And that should be fine, generally, because most people take the "as far as we know" as a given.
     
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  10. Draka

    Draka Wonder Woman

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    Whereas working on the assumption that Creation happened biologists wouldn't have bothered to learn how germs and diseases evolve and spread, and learn how to develop cures. Oh well, shoot, going on the assumption that Creation occurred we would just have a bunch of people walking around happy to be ignorant and not bother learning about our bodies and the planet and our past and about everything else. In other words, to use the thread title...the assumption of Creation can cause stupidity.
     
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  11. Skwim

    Skwim Veteran Member

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    Thank you. My bad for not getting it the first time through.
     
  12. Dan4reason

    Dan4reason Facts not Faith

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    I would say that a mis-characterisation of evolution and its arguments, and of science itself causes problems and that is something you definitely do.

    You got the definition of vestigitality wrong.

    Vestigiality describes homologous characters of organisms that have seemingly lost all or most of their original function in a species through evolution.

    Vestigital organs are not functionless, they simply lack most of their original function.
     
  13. Dan4reason

    Dan4reason Facts not Faith

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    As we are all trying to tell you, when we assume something is vestigial, we are NOT necessarily assuming it is not needed because that is not the definition of "vestigial."

    We often remove body parts that do more harm than good (they might not do any good).
     
  14. Iti oj

    Iti oj Global warming is real and we need to act
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    like out appendix.... or why do we have tails bones........
     
  15. 9-10ths_Penguin

    9-10ths_Penguin 1/10 Subway Stalinist
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    But here's the problem: your line of argument assumes that the biologists in question have a faulty understanding of evolution.

    A vestigal organ/system/etc. isn't necessarily unused; it's simply not used for its original purpose. This doesn't mean it hasn't been adapted for some other use since then.

    Nothing about evolution suggests what you're implying it does.
     
  16. Trantorfuzz

    Trantorfuzz Member

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    Not necessarily. A trait that doesn't reduce the reproductive fitness of a species can hang around indefinitely. What is more, natural selection isn't the only evolutionary mechanism; genetic drift can play a role too.

    --Trantorfuzz
     
  17. painted wolf

    painted wolf Grey Muzzle

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    It wasn't assumed to be vestigial because we didn't know what it does... it was assumed to be vestigial because it is...

    Vestigial doesn't mean non-functional.

    The poor assumption was that the fin wasn't consequential because they hadn't figured out what it was for. Now they know and it still remains a vestigial organ, but one who's current function (and thus why it's still present in it's current form) is now a little better understood.

    wa:do
     
  18. jasonwill2

    jasonwill2 Well-Known Member

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    Plus one.
     
  19. zebraone

    zebraone New Member

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    I think what the OP is looking to do is to show that vestigial organs are not proof against a designer...I'm perfectly fine with that. However, they don't help the designer argument either.

    Vestigial structures and organs are evidence for evolution. Evolutionary trees constructed using this type of data are consistent with trees constructed using different types of data. Pelvic bones in snakes may or may not have 'some' function, but their existence is consistent with the fact that their earlier ancestors had legs. Sure, a designer could have used the component for unknown reasons, but at best, we would be just guessing what that purpose was and would possibly find the reasoning strange or odd. Evolutionary theory, however, easily explains the observation in a way that also makes consistent sense.
     
  20. painted wolf

    painted wolf Grey Muzzle

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    I think you are very generous. :D

    wa:do
     
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