I am BARRY HESS > Blog

Evolution 101

I haven’t read through all this, but I find it to be very clear and straight-forward and thus convincing. Of course, I’m not someone who needs convincing.

Basically, I keep being bombarded with articles about “Intelligent Design.” They are always simplistic, but I am so far removed from evolutionary education that I can’t really respond. They may go something like this, from Tom Schroder, Post Magazine editor:

I think it's easy to overlook the truly interesting point in the horrendously named "intelligent design" theory. Which is not that someone "intelligent" must be tinkering with DNA (unless that refers to someone in a lab coat with a bioengineering patent in his pocket), but that the idea that random mutations alone could result in all the variety and adaptations of life forms we see in the world is hard to believe. I'm no biologist, but I'm taking those folks at their word when they say that there are highly complex structures in the human immune systems that would require millions (or billions?) of individual mutations to come into being, yet no amount of those mutations alone would have any adaptive value at all. You need all of them, working together, to get the benefit. So how does that happen to evolve, randomly? You don't have to jump to the conclusion that "God did it" to find that intriguing. There are lots of things in nature where new, previously unidentified forces had to be discovered to explain the observable facts on the ground. So maybe there's something else -- as yet unknown -- at work in evolution, besides simply random mutation and natural selection.

Notice how he only focuses on mutations as the basis of evolutionary theory. Mutation is really a small part of evolutionary theory. Perhaps e-mailing this to any “ID”iots (no offense intended) who cross your path could help them understand that evolutional theory, in its basic form, is not all that complicated and really does make sense. At the very least they’ll admit that their confusion is probably stemming from literally interpreting the Bible.