Cell biologist and author Kenneth Miller discusses the scientific theory of evolution and the recent legal battles to teach intelligent design in schools.
Kenneth R. Miller is a biology professor at Brown University. Miller is particularly known for his opposition to creationism, including the intelligent design movement. He has written two books on the subject. The first, Finding Darwin's God: A Scientist's Search for Common Ground Between God and Evolution, argues that a belief in evolution is compatible with a belief in God. In Only a Theory, his second on the subject, explores ID and the Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District as well as its implications in science across America.
Kenneth Miller relates a key piece of evidence from the Dover intelligent design trial that proved the intelligent design textbook was a reprint of a creationist textbook with only a few key words changed.
Argument intended to demonstrate that living organisms were created in more or less their present forms by an intelligent designer. Intelligent design was formulated in the 1990s, primarily in the United States, as an explicit refutation of the Darwinian theory of biological evolution. Building on a version of the argument from design for the existence of God, proponents of intelligent design observed that the functional parts and systems of living organisms are irreducibly complex in the sense that none of their component parts can be removed without causing the whole system to cease functioning. From this premise they inferred that no such system could have come about through the gradual alteration of functioning precursor systems by means of random mutation and natural selection, as the standard evolutionary account maintains; therefore, living organisms must have been created all at once by an intelligent designer. Proponents of intelligent design generally avoided identifying the designer with the God of Christianity or other monotheistic religions, in part because they wished the doctrine to be taught as a legitimate scientific alternative to evolution in public schools in the United States, where the government is constitutionally prohibited from promoting religion. Critics of intelligent design argued that it rests on a fundamental misunderstanding of natural selection, that it ignores the existence of precursor systems in the evolutionary history of numerous organisms, and that it is ultimately untestable and therefore not scientific. See alsocreationism.
Originally Posted by antonianouf55
WHO'S THE IDIOT FILMING THIS??? man its really anoying we cant see the slides.
I know! The same thing happened with a Eugenie Scott video. The videographer missed half the graphics displays on the Power Point screen overhead...and the ones he covered were 'speed' framed for about 2 seconds allowing virtually no time to read them. I think they fall asleep at the tripod!
How do you deduce the existence of atoms from the phenomena of boiling water? If you understand this, then why don't you understand how the theory of evolution is deduced from it's supporting evidence?
There have been (and are) experiments that demonstrate evolution. Haven't you looked? There's the Lenski experiment for instance, which produced 12 separate lineages of ecoli bacteria. In the 30,000th generation (or so)one of the lineages evolved the ability to metabolize citrate, in addition to the glucose that ecoli normally survives on. Naturally occuring ecoli cannot metabolize citrate.
30,000 generations is a long time when you move to mammals - and as another commenter mentioned, humans did not evolve from chimps, we share a common ancestor. So your proposition of a "chimp to human" experiment is unrealistic.
I suggest you do your research before perpetuating baseless speculation.
Very nice talk , there was only one detail I didn't like about it, his "scientific patriotism". Being a scientist is being critical, even to your own system of government, educational system and scientific community. You should never brag that much about anything. Science is USA is not even comparable with the geniuses from Britain. Not only that; but a huge about of scientists in USA are foreigners or have studied abroad... Americans with Jewish ancestry doesn't count! As far as I can count, Edwin Hubble, Carl Sagan, Richard Feynman and Lawrence M. Krauss and maybe Robert A. Millikan?
America is a young nation .. of refugees. A little brainstorm around Britain gives me: Roger Bacon, William Gilbert, William Harvey, Francis Bacon, Tomas Willis, Robert Boyle, Robert Hooke, Isaac Newton, Henry Cavendish, Joseph Black, Joseph Priesly, Edward Jenner, Humphrey Davey, Joseph Banks, John/William Hunter, Charles Darwin and Wallace, Michael Faraday, James Joule, James Clerk Maxwell, James Watson and Francis Crick. And great people like Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens.
A small detour around Europe gives me names like: Aristotle, Archimedes, Nicolaus Copernicus, Galileo Galilei, Albert Einstein and Sigmund Freud.
I have yet to see such wonders from USA... ( Email me at 'firstname.lastname@example.org' for anything )
"The science of Evolution is forensic. We don't have the time to replicate in the lab what naturally took 4.5 billion years."
You are overlooking human breeding of animals. All the different breeds of cats, dogs and our livestock have been created solely by selection until very recently when some progress was made with direct genetic manipulation. In our breeding programs we are simply selecting for traits that make these animals useful to us, while nature is selecting animals based on their chance to procreate in the natural environment. The result is that our breeds can usually only survive in our homes and stables and quickly revert to more natural forms when left to their own (see feral cats and dogs).
The sometimes ridiculous results of selective breeding, especially in dogs, should demonstrate sufficiently, how much flexibility the mammalian genome has for relatively quick adaptation (hundreds to thousands of years or merely a couple hundred to thousand generations) to rather strange looking forms. See the Chihuahua as prime example of what the wolf genome can do when stress tested!
"Have you ever seen and atom or a quark? Does that mean that Atomic Theory is just an art?"
We don't have to be coy about that, either. Atoms can be seen readily in most every atomic microscopy lab these days. We have plenty of electron microscopes and tunnel microscopes that have sub-atomic resolution. Google "electron microscope atoms" for pretty pictures. Every good high school, at least in Germany, used to have an ion emission microscope that can show electron emission of single atoms on the tip of a very fine needle. Again, google "ion microscope atoms" for pictures.
And even images of quarks can be obtained from measurements at collider experiments:
The key is in the understanding of what "seeing" really is: the Fourier transformation of the waves reflected by the imaged object through the lens in the human eye. While we currently do not have lenses for high energy particles that can actually probe the distance scale inside a proton, we can do the Fourier transform mathematically in a computer and are left with pretty much the same result that we would get from a physical implementation of a quark microscope...
Incidentally, the latest development in photography tries to use the very same technique to get rid of the bulky lenses in classical optical cameras and replace them with holographic (completely flat) detectors that have many advantages over lenses (which are nothing but analog Fourier transformers). The resulting cameras will, one day, be completely flat and be able to make three dimensional images of everything in front of them using almost every single photon that hits their surface. Unlike optical lenses which have to sacrifice light in order to improve optical resolution and which are still limited to two dimensional imaging, these cameras will capture the total information content in the optical wave field between the camera and the observed object.
"Seeing" is a prime example of how limited the human experience of the physical world really is. We do not "see" what is really in front of us. We merely see enough of it to escape predators and to find breakfast, lunch and dinner. Evolution does not work harder than is absolutely necessary to survive natural selection. The difficulty, which can be overcome by education, is to not mistake what we see for reality.
Response to AlienIquirer:
I guess you don't understand the definition of "theory":
"A supposition or a system of ideas intended to explain something, esp. one based on general principles independent of the thing to be explained."
So, the Theory of Evolution stands on the same ground as the Theory of Relativity or the Theory of Gravity; tested and validated time and time again.
The science of Evolution is forensic. We don't have the time to replicate in the lab what naturally took 4.5 billion years. However, in carefully controlled experiments, bacteria have been show to evolve new characteristics (the ability to metabolize different food sources).
Have you ever seen and atom or a quark? Does that mean that Atomic Theory is just an art?
Basically, we have the fossils, we win.
You are picking and choosing which sections of the bible are fact and fiction. You are tailoring your god to fit in with what makes sense to you and your comments offend free thinkers everywhere. What proof do you have of your omniscient omnipotent " Lord " created anything and more importantly exists?
Did he make us in his own image? If so then perhaps you can tell me what use he would have for a kidney, eye or penis?