I had a discussion with my mother yesterday that made me think, as often happens. She was commenting on watching a show about those communities who chose to ignore evolutionary theory in schools, and ONLY teach creationism. She mentioned how someone asked a question that made sense to her … namely those who wanted to deny evolution were asking “If it is true, why don’t we see it happening?” First this inspired my typical knee jerk reaction that stems from willful ignorance … poor mom often has to put up with my knee jerk reactions. But after I ranted for a few, I realized it I did not have an immediate answer, and the thinking actually started.
First of all, a lack of evidence is NEVER proof of ANYTHING. Second of all, one could just as easily turn that question back on them … If there is a God, how come we never see God in action? But the thinking did not stop there. To me, the very question means that not only do those asking have NO CLUE what the theory actually is, they also have no desire to learn. If one believes in creationism, they also believe that the world has been around for only some six to seven thousand years, so I guess evolution would have to happen pretty quickly in that case. But evolutionism also assumes that the world has been around for a few BILLION years. Evolution does not describe an instant change of life forms, but a PROCESS that takes hundred’s of thousands of years, if not more. The last I checked, few humans lived more than a hundred or so years, so SEEING evolution happen is a pretty slim possibility.
Then my crazy but active brain took me a few steps further. In reality, if one truly UNDERSTANDS the theory, and is actually WILLING to SEE the world, there is ample evidence of the process of evolution available in everyday life. The concept is that genetic “abnormalities” happen all the time, and some of them are actually beneficial to the species. Over time, if the “mutation” is truly beneficial, it spreads, eventually becoming the norm. Enough of these changes and a new species is born. Again this take a LOT of time, usually countless generations. However, it is reasonable to assume that often mutations are NOT beneficial, which means those affected will likely die off. Actually it is not just reasonable to assume this, we can SEE IT IN ACTION. What do you think cancer is? What do you think genetically spread diseases are? I say they are evolution failures. In my mind, we ARE seeing evolution happening.
There is also another component of continued evolution that could actually work AGAINST evolution. Intelligence and the power of choice. Human are so very resistant to change; afraid of that which is different or that they do not understand. So any significant “mutation” that may actually be an evolutionary step for humanity will most likely be perceived as unhealthy or disgusting or simply undesirable. The very word mutant has major negative connotations, proving the point. Since we pretty much CHOOSE who we procreate with, and in general avoid change, human evolution is very likely to take a LOT longer. Add to that the current trend of medical science which wants to actually CONTROL the changes … who knows what will happen next? However in my mind I think we are actually seeing evidence of the next step in human progress. Many of the so-called mental failings that we deal with may actually be humanity working on improving itself. Look at such things as Autism and related conditions. Many who fall in that category are actually super intelligent, even if only in certain areas. Imagine if EVERY aspect of their brain was as advanced … maybe the next level for humanity?
So the next time someone asks to be shown proof, tell them “Show me yours and I will show you mine.” Then show ’em yours anyway.