Thursday, April 06, 2006

D.C. Shocker: DeLay, Doyle Provide Scientific Evidence of Evolution

I was perusing the front page of today's New York Times when I read this exciting story:

Fossil Called Missing Link From Sea to Land Animals

Scientists have discovered fossils of a 375-million-year-old fish, a large scaly creature not seen before, that they say is a long-sought missing link in the evolution of some fishes from water to a life walking on four limbs on land.


In the fishes' forward fins, the scientists found evidence of limbs in the making. There are the beginnings of digits, proto-wrists, elbows and shoulders. The fish also had a flat skull resembling a crocodile's, a neck, ribs and other parts that were similar to four-legged land animals known as tetrapods.

The animal was described as having sharp teeth and was classified as a predator.

Later in the morning, I heard a radio interview about this fossil discovery with a prominent evolutionary biologist (his name escapes me at the moment) who suggested that, like many evolutionary changes, scientists speculate that crawling out of the water or into shallower waters allowed the animal to escape pursuit by larger predators, an adaptation known as "predator avoidance."

Further along in The Times front section I came across this article and put two and two together:

Official Resists Extradition on Charge Involving Internet and Sex

WASHINGTON, April 5 -- The Department of Homeland Security's deputy press secretary (Brian J. Doyle) appeared in a Maryland state court on Wednesday and refused extradition to Florida, where he faces charges of using the Internet to seduce someone he thought was a 14-year-old girl.

Brian Doyle is just like the animal of the fossil discovery: a predator of smaller creatures seeking to steer clear of bigger predators out to get him, in this case a Polk County detective and the Polk County prosecutor.

Brian Doyle is adapting and evolving before our eyes!

And how else to explain Tom DeLay's sudden departure from the House?  What a study in evolution!

DeLay goes from an exterminator (a job which, no doubt, led to the adaptation and evolution of cockroaches seeking to survive his fumigating), to being a bully and predator in the House of Representatives, to being the hunted, himself, sought by state and federal prosecutors on a myriad of charges.  And rather than hang in there and face the music, DeLay scurries away like one of the very cockroaches he used to fumigate!

Talk about symmetry in evolution.  We are witnessing evolution on a daily basis in the very people who discount the theory of evolution!

Oh, sure, there will always be those folks out there who posit that the Earth is only 6,000-years-old, but even they are being forced to adapt and evolve on the fly.  Witness this from The Times fossil story:

Dr. Shubin's team played down the fossil's significance in the raging debate over Darwinian theory, which is opposed mainly by some conservative Christians in this country, but other scientists were not so reticent. They said this should undercut the argument that there is no evidence in the fossil record of one kind of creature becoming another kind.

One creationist site on the Web ( /evid1.htm) declares that "there are no transitional forms," adding: "For example, not a single fossil with part fins, part feet has been found. And this is true between every major plant and animal kind."

Dr. Novacek responded: "We've got Archaeopteryx, an early whale that lived on land, and now this animal showing the transition from fish to tetrapod. What more do we need from the fossil record to show that the creationists are flatly wrong?"

On second thought, many of the creationists and religious hard-righties have, apparently, stopped adapting and evolving:

The Rev. Virl Murray, of Midway Assembly of God, said he does not believe in any kind of evolution.

"It's all speculation--could haves and would haves," Murray said. "When it comes down to the Bible they say there is no proof. Well, there's no proof here. They don't know what they have."

Murray said some things are unexplainable.

"There's an aspect in man that is unanswerable," he said. "We just have to accept that his ways are beyond finding out. Look at all of the unanswered questions in this world."

I have an unanswered question, Reverend...

The Stegosaurus had a brain the size of a walnut.  It is extinct.  Why are you still here?


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