If evolution is true…

With "if evolution is true..." questions many science skeptics put the evolutionary theory to test, apparently not to satisfy their curiosity but with the hope that the evolution theory will finally not be able to explain a natural phenomenon relevant to evolution.

It would be an understatement to say the evidence for evolution is overwhelming, yet a substantial proportion of people in the Western countries, especially the US, doubts the reality of it. Evolution skeptics usually base these doubts on the fact that Darwin’s theory of evolution is, after all, “only a theory” and creationism (including its sister “intelligent design”) represents a plausible scientific alternative to evolution.

In case there is a debate on the reality of evolution with a science-skeptic it is not uncommon to hear evolution skeptics demanding explanations of certain phenomena that evolutionary theory covers, and as a result, the theory will be jeopardized.

— If evolution is true why are they still monkeys?

— If evolution is true why don’t species have half-formed traits?

–If evolution is true why aren’t we currently evolving?

What evolution skeptics want others to doubt is ironically one of the best evidence supported theories in science.

Evolution is not a matter of opinion

While conversing with your neighbor or eating dinner with your friends the question “Do you believe in evolution?” may pop up evolution as if it were a philosophical matter.

— Do you think angels and demons exist?

— What is your opinion on karma?

— Is there only one deity?

— Do you believe in evolution?

However, unlike angels, demons, karma, or deities existence of evolution is not a matter of opinion but a scientific matter; evolution is an observable fact with a theory that explains how it happens, and how speciation works. 

Furthermore, the evolutionary theory has applications in the real world. For example, organismal biology, ecology, and medicine, partly or fully rely on evolutionary theory. Scientists develop many vaccines and all antibiotics thanks to the evolutionary theory, and domestication of animals and plants is nothing but living evidence of how speciation works in man’s hands.

In summary, evolutionary theory is an established scientific theory whether one likes it or not. 

In another world

The discussions on the reality of evolutionary theory are fundamentally futile because falsification of the theory does not mean verification of creationism. If in another universe the current evolutionary theory were to be falsified evolution would stay as a fact, just as in the falsification of the theory of gravity would not make gravity go away. Theories change over time, facts prevail.

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Tamer Aydogdu
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