Transitional Forms

 

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Examples of Transitional Forms.

This is the beginning of discussion with the Discovery Institute (DI), located in Seattle, WA. I was referred to the DI by Bryan Hunt. My initial communication was forwarded to Casey Luskin’s email from the web site discovery.org. Apparently, he did not know this came from the Discovery Institute web site.

From: Casey Luskin
Sent: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 3:10 PM
To:
Scott Vigil

Subject: RE: Homo Habilis

Dear Scott,

Greetings and thanks for your e-mail. Where does ID claim “no transitional forms have been found”?  I’m not aware of anyone who has ever claimed that. That sounds like a typical straw man characterization of ID.

Scott 3/24/14: As of this writing, the above statement seems duplicitous, Casey. Nowhere do you concede a single transitional species that demonstrates true transition from one species to another. See Quest For the Unbroken Chain.

Discussion on Homo Habilis moved to Pin! (It’s good  :^)

From: Scott Vigil
Sent: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 4:34 PM
To: Casey Luskin
Subject: RE: Homo Habilis

Hello Casey,

Thank-you for your prompt reply. It was the public speaker, Bryan Hunt, who said no transitional forms had been found. I’m sure I could find it in email form. But, it’s not essential.

Does the ID community see any of the examples in section 2 of this references as transitional? If not, could you please specify a few examples it does concede transitional?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transitional_fossil

Scott

From: Casey Luskin
Sent: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 4:37 PM
To: Scott Vigil
Subject: RE: Homo Habilis

Hi Scott,

I’ve never heard of Bryan Hunt. Whoever he is, he doesn’t speak for standard ID.

Regarding the Wikipedia page you listed, most of the examples given there are pretty weak ones. Even evolutionary biologists wouldn’t call Archaeopteryx as relevant to a “transition” (see: http://www.evolutionnews.org/2009/10/the_demise_of_another_evolutio027271.html).

The australopithecines make for a poor transitional form. (See my attached article.)

Whales also appear too quickly in the fossil for neo-Darwinian evolution to be responsible. See:

http://www.evolutionnews.org/2011/10/fact-checking_wikipedia_on_com_1051951.html

In any case, to answer your question in another way, I think many of the examples of the “transitional” fossils within horses could be arguably called “transitional.” But given that the starting point and the endpoint of that transition represent highly similar animals, we’re not talking about significant morphological change. Thanks.

Casey

From: Scott Vigil
Sent: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 5:25 PM
To: Casey Luskin
Subject: RE: Homo Habilis

Thank-you Casey,

Bryan did the best he could.

Where does ID claim “no transitional forms have been found”? 

I’m sorry, the above statement seemed to imply that the ID community does concede that transitional forms have been found. So I go back to my secondary response, “could you please specify a few examples it does concede transitional?”

Perhaps I could further specify, fully transitional…

Scott

From: Casey Luskin
Sent: Wednesday, October 9, 2013 5:26 PM
To: Scott Vigil
Subject: RE: Homo Habilis

Hi Scott,

I thought I mentioned intermediates in the famous horse sequence.  Thanks.

Casey

From: Scott Vigil
Sent: Thursday, October 10, 2013 9:44 AM
To: Casey Luskin
Subject: RE: Homo Habilis

Thank-you,

What is your definition of a transitional form?

Scott

From: Casey Luskin
Sent: Thursday, October 10, 2013 2:17 PM
To: Scott Vigil
Subject: RE: Homo Habilis

Hi Scott,

Wikipedia’s pages on ID and evolution are written by Darwin activists and are heavily biased/inaccurate. In that regard, don’t trust their contrived and false discussions of the topic. They’re not objective and attempt to rewrite history about what “transitional forms” mean. My definition of a transitional form is a form that is transitional.  And by transitional, I mean it was part of an evolutionary transition. No word games here. Just fair definitions based upon what words actually mean. To better understand this, you should read my discussion at:

http://www.evolutionnews.org/2012/09/how_do_theistic_1064301.html

Thanks.

Casey

Scott 1/30/14: Philosopher John Searle of UC Berkeley describes how the Wikipedia descriptions of his views are full of errors. The guy’s a hoot. You can hear him complaining about trying to correct errors on his own views on Searle 16, at the 49:15 marker. So, I will cede this point on accuracy to you. However, Searle continues that he will use Wikipedia to find out what ions are. And he refers to it all the time. So, it’s still a great work-horse for learning information. But any crucial fact has to be double checked. Personally, I have used it to research FAA and FDA development standards. In the end, I had to go to actual FAA and FDA working group web sites that were very obscure to get the precise information I wanted. So, it cannot take precedence over authoritative sites.

Yet, Wikipedia was my starting point. And, based on my best information, I see it as a large positive that Wikipedia does not allow ID theorists to run its web pages.

Nevertheless, here’s a portion of the TOC on the Transitional Forms page on Wikipedia. Elsewhere I complain that you attacked Wikipedia rather than the specific transitional forms it describes. I won’t repeat that criticism here.

I asked you—Casey—for information on transitional forms. You did not address one of these forms until pressed. Elsewhere, I produce your attempt to refute Archaeopteryx and Australopithecus afarensis. And I was open to what you had to say. But my final analysis is that you could only shoot blanks.

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