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August 21, 2005

Sunday Sermonette: Eugenie Scott

"The major argument going on among paleontologists dealing with the reptile/mammal transition is, where the hell do you draw the line? These things grade in sensibly into each other." Eugenie Scott in "Resolved: That evolutionists should acknowledge creation" Firing Line, 4 December 1997, p. 20. [Via]


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Is it just me or does that quote seem oddly abstracted and decontextualized. I am actually not sure what I am meant to take from it. The link does not take us to any further insight.

The whole audio of that Firing Line segment is posted somewhere on the internet, I just can't remember where I saw it. It's an interesting listen.

And I thought some mother reptile's son was a mammal.

I think that should be "grade insensibly into each other."

brent, the quote is a pretty good rejoinder to the musty old creationist allegation that there are no transitional fossils. Don't know in the absence of context whether that was what Scott intended.

If you want to explore the subject in more depth, the transition from reptiles to mammals is discussed in the Transitional Vertebrate Fossils FAQ over at the TalkOrigins Archive.

It's a reasonable place to start.

Buckley is generally wrong and always arrogant. I do, however, admire the way he gives his ideological rivals a fair chance to state their positions. The slope that leads from Buckley down to Hannity is quite steep.

If they are looking for the missing link between the reptilian and mamalian orders they can find some great specimens lurking around the halls of Congress!

If they found it, then it wouldn't be missing now would it??

Now all we need is a continuation of the old chestnut "how many stones make a heap".

Why, it MUST clearly show a divine hand at work, because there's just lots and lots of heaps of stones, and they can't have made the jump from "a few stones" to "a heap" without divine intervention.

I call it "Intelligent Heaping". Not to be confused with "Intelligent Humping"...

The funny thing is, in 1859 Darwin admitted that there weren't many transitional fossils yet found, and creationists were hollering, "He admits it! Not enough transitional fossils!"

Now, almost 150 years and thousands of transitional forms later, they're not just saying "Nope, still not enough transitional forms," they're actually saying "No such thing as a transitional form."

It's kind of like the wingnuts who keep telling mainstream Muslims, "Nope, you still haven't condemned 9/11 sincerely enough."

Kind of a lot like, in fact.

All fossils are transitional fossils. Duh!

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