[Quotes] [Evolution, #1, #2, #3]
"New concepts and information from molecular, developmental biology, systematics, geology and the fossil record of all groups of organisms, need to be integrated into an expanded evolutionary synthesis. These fields of study show that large-scale evolutionary phenomena cannot be understood solely on the basis of extrapolation from processes observed at the level of modern populations and species. Patterns and rates of evolution are much more varied than had been conceived by Darwin or the evolutionary synthesis, and physical factors of the earth's history have had a significant, but extremely varied, impact on the evolution of life." (Carroll, Robert L. [Curator of Vertebrate Paleontology, Redpath Museum, McGill University, Montreal, Canada], "Towards a new evolutionary synthesis," Trends in Ecology and Evolution, 2000, Vol. 15, pp.27-32, p.27)[top of page]
"The changes within a population have been termed microevolution, and they can indeed be accepted as a consequence of shifting gene frequencies. Changes above the species level-involving the origin of new species and the establishment of higher taxonomic patterns- are known as macroevolution. The central question of the Chicago conference was whether the mechanisms underlying microevolution can be extrapolated to explain the phenomena of macroevolution. At the risk of doing violence to the positions of some of the people at the meeting, the answer can be given as a clear, No." (Lewin, Roger [biochemist, former editor of New Scientist and science writer], "Evolutionary- Theory Under Fire: An historic conference in Chicago challenges the four-decade long dominance of the Modern Synthesis," Science, Vol. 210, 21 November 1980, pp.883-887, p.883).[top of page]
"Why don't we see gradual transition in the sequences of fossils? According to Darwin, and the current neo-Darwinists, the fossil record has gaps in it because of the haphazard way in which fossilization occurs-it is bound to be an imperfect record of the history of life. But is it? Is the jerky and abrupt nature of the record really just due to 'gaps', or does it reflect the way evolution actually happened? There is a strong feeling among leading palaeontologists that the punctuated history shown by fossils reflects the way life has evolved-in leaps and bounds rather than in gradual transition. There is also a growing sense that there is much more to understanding 'macroevolution'-the large-scale picture one gets from the fossils-than the simple idea of natural selection can alone explain." (Leith, Brian [producer, Natural History Unit, BC, Bristol UK], "The Descent of Darwin: A Handbook of Doubts about Darwinism," Collins: London, 1982, p.23).[top of page]
"Let us notice what would be involved in the conversion of a land quadruped into, first a seal-like creature and then into a whale. The land animal would, while on land, have to cease using its hind legs for locomotion and to keep than permanently stretched out backwards on either side of the tail and to drag itself about by using its fore-legs. During its excursions in the water, it must have retained the hind legs in their rigid position and swum by moving them and the tail from side to side. As a result of this act of self denial we must assume that the hind legs eventually be came pinned to the tail by the growth of membrane. Thus the hind part of the body would have become likes that of a seal. Having reached this stage, the creature in anticipation of a time when it will give birth to its young under water, gradually develops apparatus by means of which the milk is forced into the mouth of the young one, and, meanwhile a cap has to be formed round the nipple into which the snout of the young one fits tightly, the epiglottis and laryngeal cartilage become prolonged upwards to form a cone-shaped tube, and the soft palate becomes prolonged downwards so as tightly to embrace this tube, in order that the adult will be able to breathe while taking water into the mouth and the young while taking in milk. These changes must be effected completely before the calf can be born under water. Be it noted that there is no stage intermediate between being born and suckled under water and being born and suckled in the air. At the same time various other anatomical changes have to take place, the most important of which is the complete transformation of the tail region. The hind part of the body must have begun to twist on the fore part, and this twisting must nave continued until the sideways movement of the tail developed into an up- and-down movement. While this twisting went on the hind limbs and pelvis must have diminished in size, until the latter ceased to exist as external limbs in all, and completely disappeared in most, whales." (Dewar, Douglas* [British zoologist], "More Difficulties of the Evolution Theory: and a reply to "Evolution and Its Modern Critics", Thynne & Co: London, 1938, pp.23-24).[top]
* Authors with an asterisk against their name are believed to be creationists.
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Created: 11 September, 2000. Updated: 1 July, 2003.