It Sure Sucks to be a Creationist Right Now

Hey! These aren't supposed to exist!

Oh Noes!!! Transitional Fossils!!

PZ Myers has a good analysis of the new fossil (Ventastega curonica) announced a couple of days ago:

On one earlier side we have a bunch of tetrapod-like fish — Tiktaalik and Panderichthys, for instance — and on the later side we have fish-like tetrapods, such as Acanthostega and Ichthyostega. Now they’re talking about shades of fishiness or tetrapodiness within those groups! You’d almost think they were documenting a pattern of gradual evolutionary change.

The creationists keep claiming there are no transitional fossils. That’s a lie that’s getting harder and harder to maintain.

29 Responses to “It Sure Sucks to be a Creationist Right Now”

  1. Bunkie Says:

    Wow! These are so cool!

  2. TheNerd Says:

    Don’t worry – Creationists aren’t going to let a little thing like evidence stop them! After all, we may have logic and reason on our side, but they have the Word of God!

    Besides, instead of one gap between Tiktaalik and Ichthyostega, now you have three:
    Tiktaalik GAP Ventastega GAP Acanthostega GAP Ichthyostega
    Satan is going to have to try harder than that if he thinks he’s going to pull the wool over anyone’s eyes.

  3. Parrotlover77 Says:

    Well, as anyone can clearly see, this does, indeed, model all possible transitionals between anakin skywalker and darth vader.

  4. Sue Blue Says:

    I saw this and chalked it up on the long, long, long list of graven-in-stone evidence for evolution. Yet the denial of the fundies is unshakeable, as solid and fossilized as 300-million-year-old bones. It just so happened that one of my family members, an unreconstructed fundie, called me to relate some tidbit of family news right after I had seen this. Now, one of the more annoying traits of fundies is the tendency to work every conversation, no matter how banal, mundane, or trivial, around till it gets to their pet subject – Gawd. Jesus this and the Holy Spirit that, and we just have to let God work in our lives (I think this was came up when we were comparing gas prices in our respective states). I couldn’t resist. I had to spout off about the latest transitional fossil evidence. I rhapsodized about the DNA trail left by our migratory ancestors. I pontificated about the fact that, contrary to patriarchal biblical creation twaddle, the default sex of every embryo is female (if the Y-chromosome doesn’t “switch on” during fetal life, the baby will be a female). I raved on and on. And you know what she said?

    “Of course all forms of life have DNA and genes in common. God made us all from the same stuff.” And “Just because two things look like they might be related doesn’t meant they are.” And finally, “God is in control. He made everything. How do we know what we’re really looking at? All animals have had to adapt to a sinful environment – that’s why we see what we see in nature.”

    I finally shut her up with this – “You believe evolution is completely unlikely because such complexity could not possibly have arisen from nothing over the course of billions of years – yet you expect me to believe that all of the millions of species that walk, crawl, fly and swim, not to mention plant life, differentiated over the course of a few thousand years from the few animals Noah crammed onto a boat.”

    Silence. At least until she gets that God feeling in her life again.

  5. Ron Britton Says:

    Sue Blue:

    That reminds me of this great video by cdk007, which I posted once before. Creationists reject evolution, because they think it’s impossible and too slow. Then they turn around and believe in super evolution, which definitely is impossible and too fast. Go figure.

    (YouTube page is here)

  6. Brian Says:

    Sue Blue,

    You summed up what I was thinking as I first read about this over at Pharyngula. There is absolutely no fact, no piece of evidence, no iron-clad, rock-solid portion of reality these morons would ever acknowledge if it contradicted their precious bible. To the creationist, the discovery of another transitional fossil only means there are now more gaps in the fossil record evolution must account for. Their stupidity is truly without equal.

    By the way, that’s a pretty good retort to your relative. About the best one can ever hope to accomplish when engaging a fundie in debate is to shut them up for a little while. I’m sure after she prays on it for a while and pores over her bible she’ll find some line of scripture that, when taken way out of context, will be offered as a response. She’ll feel better about doing the lord’s work and that whole nasty brush with reality can be put out of her mind. You might as well attempt to shovel water uphill.

  7. LadyRavana Says:

    LOL Sue Blue! Brilliant! You ran circles around that relative of yours.

    Right now, I’m reading an article called “The Despoiling of America.” It’s about the Christian Dominionists. It’s a long one, but good. And damn scary. Goes into a lot of detail, and pretty much explores the entire history of the religious right.

    Check it out, ya’ll. It’s worth a read.

    http://www.yuricareport.com/Dominionism/TheDespoilingOfAmerica.htm

    As idiotic as George Dubya is, and I honestly, hate, HATE to admit this, but the article indicates that looney bastard might be more crafty than we gave him credit for.

  8. Peace Warrior Says:

    Must be nice to be able claim proof of something that impossible by showing a few drawings. -rofl- remember, evolutionists (hereafter evo’s) have a bad history with their so-called proofs through presenting drawings as proof.

    Macro-evolution, or changes in kinds of animals, has been shown to be impossible due to evo’s unrelenting grasp to only two mechanisms for changing one kids of animals into another kind of animal. The evo’s have a death grip on survival of the fittest, through and or with mutations, as the mechansism(s) for changing one kind of animal into another. The only saving factor the evo’s can use in this fruitless belief is multi-billions of years worth of time.

    Survival of the fittest alone was shown long ago to be unable to provide the necessary mechanism to change one kind of animal into another kind of animals; however, being dauntless in the face of impossible belief system, evo’s countered by adding mutations to both to their tenet of survival of the fittest over multi-billion years worth of time. They were merely postponing their incredible assertions.

    Postponed until the discovery and further studies of DNA, which has now for years proven that macro-evolution is utterly an impossible dream that was dreamed up by humanist with an agenda against creation and the Holy Bible.

    These latest series of drawings and the religious zealots behind them will soon learn that they are still without ANY real proof, which means NO transitional fossils have been found to date.

  9. Ron Britton Says:

    Peace Warrior:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! I was waiting for some creationist to come along and prove everything I’ve been saying, and you just did! It doesn’t matter how much proof for evolution there is, it doesn’t matter how impossible the creation fable is, you completely reject all facts and evidence and cling to your silly book that was written thousands of years ago by superstitious goat-herders. And then, to add to the irony, after denying all facts, you then claim to have facts!

    OK. Since you have these facts, please provide them:

    Claim 1:

    Survival of the fittest alone was shown long ago to be unable to provide the necessary mechanism to change one kind of animal into another kind of animals

    That’s news to me, but I’m just an “evo” (And where did that term come from? You guys finally realize that “Darwinist” wasn’t working?). Since this is old news to you, it must be easy to provide documentation for your claim.

    Claim 2:

    evo’s countered by adding mutations to both to their tenet of survival of the fittest over multi-billion years worth of time.

    Mutation has been in evolution since day 1. OOOO! Claim 2 is rejected right out of the gate!

    Claim 3:

    further studies of DNA, which has now for years proven that macro-evolution is utterly an impossible dream

    Wow! You mean the “evos” didn’t suppress those results? They didn’t get expelled for pursuing that research? OK. Tell us who did that research and where we can read about it. And “for years” implies multiple studies, which you will have to provide.

    Claim 4:

    that was dreamed up by humanist with an agenda against creation and the Holy Bible.

    OK. Who was this humanist, and please provide proof that he had “an agenda against creation and the Holy Bible”.

    Claim 5:

    NO transitional fossils have been found to date

    OK then. Please explain what these fossils are, if not transitional.

    If we don’t hear back from you, we’ll know that you can’t back up your claims, which is the same as an admission that everything you said is even more groundless than your Bible.

  10. Peace Warrior Says:

    I’d be glad to discuss this with you, but I won’t do it on a comments board. Please name a website or thread or give me your email and I will be glad to look into claims of both sides.

    BTW- Fair warning I won’t try to “prove” much of anything, as we both have faith and faith in and of itself can never be proven, but what has been “dis-credited,” such as the drawings I mentioned above, is most certainly on the table.

    Lemme know.

  11. Ron Britton Says:

    PEACE WARRIOR CONCEDES DEFEAT!!

    Sorry, PW. You can’t come onto this site and make unfounded claims. You made the claims in public, so you need to back them up in public. Obviously, you can’t, so you hide instead.

  12. ericsan Says:

    I find the “we both have faith” comment very telling. PW seems to assume we pray to the God of Evolution instead of his One True God. Therefore, it is his duty to show us the errors of our ways, renounce the evil gospel of the false gods and their false prophet Darwin.

    People like that probably have absolutely no idea what the scientific process and critical thinking are, but trying to explain that to them is like trying to teach thermodynamics to a gnat. The scary part is, I heard this author interviewed on the radio the other day, and he was saying he grew up in the Florida public school system and never, ever heard evolution or the name Darwin mentioned in school until he started college. Sad.

  13. J.R. "Bob" Dobbs Says:

    Well that was fast.I was worried, and hoping, Peace Warrior would stay longer.

  14. Ron Britton Says:

    He didn’t say he was a Christian Soldier. He’s a Peace Warrior, so he doesn’t engage.

  15. LadyRavana Says:

    Eh. Peace Warrior wasn’t so bad. At least he just did a hit and run, and wasn’t frothing at the mouth like some of the Holy Rollers that come here.

    I find the crazies that come here tiresome. It’s a waste of time to argue/debate with them. Good thing there aren’t too many, and this site is overall enjoyable and amusing to read/visit.

  16. Ron Britton Says:

    LadyRavana:

    I find the crazies that come here tiresome. It’s a waste of time to argue/debate with them.

    That’s why I tend to shut down threads after they’ve gone on too long. Once the conversation starts repeating itself or the fundies refuse to address the issues, that means the conversation has foundered and needs to end.

  17. Parrotlover77 Says:

    The scary part is, I heard this author interviewed on the radio the other day, and he was saying he grew up in the Florida public school system and never, ever heard evolution or the name Darwin mentioned in school until he started college. Sad.

    Okay, I grew up in the Florida public school system and we discussed evolution in depth from middle school on. In fact, I can hardly think of a biology class from my youth it wasn’t mentioned.

    Now, I’m not saying there isn’t a district somewhere in Florida where the creatards reign supreme in the science classroom and evolution isn’t taught, but I just want to point out that sweeping statement that it may not even be a part of the public school system is quite false.

  18. Parrotlover77 Says:

    That’s why I tend to shut down threads after they’ve gone on too long. Once the conversation starts repeating itself or the fundies refuse to address the issues, that means the conversation has foundered and needs to end.

    That’s a good (and fair) policy. However, it is important to respond to the attacks for a little while (at least once) so that lurkers and those that come in late don’t get the impression that us “evos” don’t actually, you know, have facts. Even if it is tiresome to do so… :-)

  19. LadyRavana Says:

    Ron:

    I admire your valiant efforts to debunk the fundies, and I sometimes even enjoy the creation vs. evolution tennis game that sometimes transpires here. Sadly, my knowledge of evolution isn’t as extensive as yours (or PL’s), so I can’t debunk them myself. But it is fun to watch them get shot down. And when they’re shot down, they resort to outright attacks. Sometimes it’s amusing, but I largely skim over their posts in the comments section.

    However, I do like to think that maybe you’ve helped a Fundie reconsider their stance that “evolution is a lie.” But then, maybe that’s just wishful thinking, and fundies, no matter what, are always going to remain willfully ignorant, no matter what.

  20. Sue Blue Says:

    Yeah, debating with my fundie relatives is just as frustrating and fruitless as arguing with the fundie trolls that pop up here. The only difference is the emotional investment. I keep hoping that I can have at least one encounter with my xtian flesh and blood that doesn’t devolve into an ordeal. But no, it is not to be. No matter how I try to avoid the subject, they always, ALWAYS, get around to bringing up what they suppose to be my future status in the hereafter. If I back them into a logistical corner, then I get the guilt trip. Weeping and wailing, they will mourn my future absence in heaven, ask me how I can stand the thought of an eternity without my loved ones, and moan about how they are wearing off their kneecaps praying for me.

  21. Sue Blue Says:

    Oh, and they can’t seem to understand how an atheist can have a fulfilling, hopeful and happy life without the fantasy of immortality. That’s the other crap I always get. According to them an atheist’s life is drab, hopeless, and ultimately pointless. They see no value in living this life to the fullest, knowing it’s the only one we’ll ever get. They’d rather waste time on their knees indulging in fantasies, wasting their money sending bibles to starving kids in Africa, and filling people’s heads with woo about spirits, demons, and all the nasty ways God is going to get you if you touch yourself or say his name in vain. What a fucking waste!

  22. Sue Blue Says:

    Peace Warrior – go ahead, keep upholding the Ostrich Principle, if it helps you deal with life. Too bad that sand encircling your neck and blocking out the sounds and sights of reality doesn’t mean that reality isn’t happening all around you.

    And that’s all the time I’m going to waste on the troll.

  23. Sue Blue Says:

    Crime Scene: Earth Crime: Perpetration of Life Suspects: God, Evolution

    Evolution: The crime scene reeks with this guy’s trace evidence. His fingerprints and DNA are everywhere, so thick it’s like the guy was trying to get caught. The bodies are piled up in his basement by the hundreds – maybe by the thousands – one on top of the other, each bearing his signature MO. He’s been caught red-handed in the middle of multiple acts of natural selection, blatant adaptation – even a speciation or two. He’s unrepentant, vowing to keep on doing what he does, because he can’t help it – it’s just the way he is.

    God: He’s the guy that got arrested because his cousin Billy Bob said he mighta done it, the cops thought he looked good for it cuz nobody else was around at the time (accordin’ to Billy Bob), and the DA “had a gut-feelin’ about this guy. And I always trust m’gut.”

  24. LadyRavana Says:

    LMAO! Sue Blue, you are a freaking RIOT!

    Truely, you are the queen of snark.

    You totally win at life. For realz, yo.

  25. Sue Blue Says:

    Thanks, Ron, for that video. It really hits the spot, doesn’t it? I think I’ll send it to my family, although their standard response to bits of reason and logic is that it’s all a trick of Satan.

    And thanks, Lady R! Humor is the only way I can cope with the insults to reason and logic I encounter every friggin’ day with my family. Reading the intelligent comments on this blog really help!

  26. Parrotlover77 Says:

    SB – that’s part of the reason I basically never talk to my fundie relatives about religion. I highly doubt they know my stance and, well, that’s good. They’ll die never knowing that I’m going to hell. ;-)

  27. ericsan Says:

    Actually, ParrotLover, he didn’t make a sweeping statement, just related his personal experience. Unfortunately I don’t remember where he grew up (or, even more ebarrassingly, his name) but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t one of the major urban areas.

  28. Parrotlover77 Says:

    True, bad wording on my part. I more meant that I didn’t want anybody to THINK that was a sweeping statement of Florida as a whole. I did not mean to say he was making that sort of statement on purpose (bad wording, I apologize). I would venture to guess he grew up in northern Florida, perhaps around the panhandle, because that’s certainly a much more backwards part of the state than the rest (where most people live). To be fair, I did not grow up in a major urban area either, but I did have the advantage of living in a college town, so that may have influenced the local schools more than in very rural areas.

  29. Clanaman Says:

    Sue Blue,

    If you haven’t yet you should read letters from the earth. Just having it in my possession has spawned many highly entertaining arguments with my parents, grandparents and so on. reading it is also fun as well. I’m letting your daughter borrow it and I have no problem letting stay at your place if you wish to read it.