Do cross-species changes actually occur? If not, there is no evolution. What do reputable scientists have to say about this? Here are their statements. This is science vs. evolution—a Creation-Evolution Encyclopedia, brought to you by Creation Science Facts.
CONTENT: Scientists Speak about Speciation
Introduction: The knowing are disillusioned, the ignorant are gullible.
Species, the Great Mystery: Where did they come from? Why is each species different than the others?
Only Well-defined Species: If the theory were true, there would be no sharp distinctions, just a blur
Only the Species Exists: Phylum, class, order, family, and most genera are just paper classifications
The Species Barrier: There is always a limit, beyond which a species cannot be bred
A Crucial Principle: Man should possess a smaller gene pool than his animal ancestors
Conclusion: Only God could make the species
This material is excerpted from the book, SPECIES
. An asterisk ( * ) by a name indicates that person is not known to be a creationist. Of over 4,000 quotations in the books this Encyclopedia is based on, only 164 statements are by creationists.
You will have a better understanding of the following statements by scientists if you will also read the web page, Species Evolution.
The knowing are disillusioned, the ignorant are gullible.
"Throughout the past century there has always existed a significant minority of first-rate biologists who have never been able to bring themselves to accept the validity of Darwinian claims. In fact, the number of biologists who have expressed some degree of disillusionment is practically endless."—*Michael Denton, Evolution: A Theory in Crisis (1986), p. 327.
"I personally hold the evolutionary position, but yet lament the fact that the majority of our Ph.D. graduates are frightfully ignorant of many of the serious problems of the evolution theory. These problems will not be solved unless we bring them to the attention of students. Most tend to assume evolution is proved, the missing link is found, and all we have left is a few rough edges to smooth out. Actually, quite the contrary is true; and many recent discoveries . . have forced us to re-evaluate our basic assumptions."—*Director of a large graduate program in biology, quoted in Creation: The Cutting Edge (1982), p. 26.
Where did they come from? Why is each species different than the others?
"Darwin never really did discuss the origin of the species in his Origin of the Species."—*Niles Eldredge, Time Frames: The Rethinking of Darwinian Evolution and the Theory of Punctuated Equilibria (1985), p. 33.
"But in the last thirty years or so speciation has emerged as the major unsolved problem. The British geneticist, William Bateson, was the first to focus attention on the question. In 1922 he wrote: `In dim outline, evolution is evident enough. But that particular and essential bit of the theory of evolution which is concerned with the origin and nature of species remains utterly mysterious.' Sixty years later we are, if anything, worse off, research having only revealed complexity within complexity."—*G.R. Taylor, Great Evolution Mystery (1983), p. 140.
"More biologists would agree with Professor Hampton Carson of Washington University, St. Louis, when he says that speciation is `a major unsolved problem of evolutionary biology.' "—*G.R. Taylor, Great Evolution Mystery (1983), p. 141.
"Evolution is . . troubled from within by the troubling complexities of genetic and developmental mechanisms and new questions about the central mystery—speciation itself."—*Keith S. Thomsen, "The Meanings of Evolution" in American Scientist, September / October 1982, p. 529.
If the theory were true, there would be no sharp distinctions, just a blur.
"Charles Darwin, himself the father of evolution in his later days, gradually became aware of the lack of real evidence for his evolutionary speciation and wrote: `As by this theory, innumerable transitional forms must have existed. Why do we not find them embedded in the crust of the earth? Why is not all nature in confusion instead of being, as we see them, well-defined species?"—H. Enoch, Evolution or Creation, (1966), p. 139.
"We recognize the great powers of observation possessed by Darwin, but we are amazed that he did not observe the limits of variation. Variation, he should have recognized, can produce new varieties only within kinds already in existence—a situation which could never produce evolution. While tracing migration paths of plants and animals [from South America to the Galapagos], Darwin never grasped the fact that he was able to trace those routes because the migrants were still bona fide members of the same basic kinds to which their ancestors belong."—Frank L. Marsh, Variation and Fixity in Nature (1976), p. [italics his].
"Species do not originate. All they do is remain in existence or become extinct."—*G.H. Harper, "Alternatives to Evolution," in Creation Research Society Quarterly 17(1):49-50.
"Why should we be able to classify plants and animals into types or species at all? In a fascinating editorial feature in Natural History, Stephen Gould writes that biologists have been quite successful in dividing up the living world into distinct and discrete species. Furthermore, our modern scientific classifications often agree in minute detail with the `folk classifications' of so-called primitive peoples, and the same criteria apply as well to fossils. In other words, says Gould, there is a recognizable reality and distinct boundaries between types at all times and all places . .
" `But,' says Gould, `how could the existence of distinct species be justified by a theory [evolution] that proclaimed ceaseless change as the most fundamental fact of nature?' For an evolutionist, why should there by species at all? If all life forms have been produced by gradual expansion through selected mutations from a small beginning gene pool, organisms really should just grade into one another without distinct boundaries."—Henry Morris and Gary Parker, What is Creation Science? (1987), pp. 121-122.
"If a line of organisms can steadily modify its structure in various directions, why are there any lines stable enough and distinct enough to be called species at all? Why is the world not full of intermediate forms of every conceivable kind?"—*G.R. Taylor, Great Evolution Mystery (1983), p. 141.
"Despite this, many species and even whole families remain inexplicably constant. The shark of today, for instance, is hardly distinguishable from the shark of 150 million years ago. And this constancy is seen at higher levels too: Birds vary widely in size, shape, coloring, song, and habits, but are still substantially similar to the birds of the early Tertiary.
"According to Professor W.H. Thorpe, Director of the Sub-department of Animal Behavior at Cambridge and a world authority, this is the problem in evolution. He said in 1968: `What is it that holds so many groups of animals to an astonishingly constant form over millions of years? This seems to me the problem [in evolution] now—the problem of constancy rather than that of change.' "—*G.R. Taylor, Great Evolution Mystery (1983), pp. 141-142.
Phylum, class, order, family, and most genera are just paper classifications. (Some creatures classed by men as genera or subspecies are really species.)
"Not one change of species into another is on record . . we cannot prove that a single species has been changed."—*Charles Darwin, My Life and Letters.
"According to the author's view, which I think nearly all biologists must share, the species is the only taxonomic category that has, at least in more favorable examples, a completely objective existence. Higher categories are all more or less a matter of opinion."—*G.W. Richards, "A Guide to the Practice of Modern Taxonomy," in Science, March 13, 1970, p. 1477 [comment made during review of *Mayr's authoritative Principles of Systematic Zoology].
"Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind . . And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind."—Genesis 1:11, 12 (cf. verses 21 and 24).
"Species are groups of interbreeding natural populations that are reproductively isolated from other groups."—*Ernst Mayr, Principles of Systematic Zoology (1969).
"There is no evidence of the origin of a hybrid between man and any other mammal."—*Edward Colin, Elements of Genetics (1946), pp. 222-223.
There is always a limit beyond which a species cannot be bred.
"Alfred Russell Wallace and Charles Darwin had insisted that through gradual continuous change, species could (in Wallace's phrase) ` . . depart indefinitely from the original type.' Around 1900 came the first direct test of that proposition: the `pure line research' of Wilhelm Ludwig Johannsen (1857-1927). What would happen, Johannsen wondered, if the largest members of a population were always bred with the largest, and the smallest with the smallest? How big or how small would they continue to get after a few generations? Would they `depart indefinitely' from the original type or are there built-in limits and constraints?
"Experimenting on self-fertilizing beans, Johannsen selected and bred the extremes in sizes over several generations. But instead of a steady, continuous growth or shrinkage as Darwin's theory seemed to predict, he produced two stabilized populations (or `pure lines') of large and small beans. After a few generations, they had reached a specific size and remained there, unable to vary further in either direction. Continued selection had no effect.
"Johannsen's work stimulated many others to conduct similar experiments. One of the earliest was Herbert Spencer Jennings (1868-1947) of the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard, the world authority on the behavior of microscopic organisms. He selected for body size in Paramecium and found that after a few generations selection had no effect. One simply cannot breed a paramecium the size of a baseball. Even after hundreds of generations, his pure lines remained constrained within fixed limits, `as unyielding as iron.'
"Another pioneer in pure line research was Raymond Pearl (1879-1940), who experimented with chickens at the Maine Agricultural Experiment Station. Pearl took up the problem . . [to] evolve a hen that lays eggs all day long.
"He found you could breed some super layers, but an absolute limit was soon reached . . In fact, Pearl produced some evidence indicating that production might actually be increased by relaxing selection—by breeding from `lower than maximum' producers."—*R. Milner, Encyclopedia of Evolution (1990), p. 376.
"Darwin's gradualism was bounded by internal constraints, beyond which selection was useless."—*R. Milner, Encyclopedia of Evolution (1990), p. 46.
"It must be strongly emphasized, also, that in all cases these specialized breeds possess reduced viability; that is, their basic ability to survive has been weakened. Domesticated plants and animals do not compete with the original, or wild type . . They survive only because they are maintained in an environment which is free from their natural enemies, food supplies are abundant, and other conditions are carefully regulated."—Duane Gish, Evolution: Challenge of the Fossil Record (1985), p. 34.
"Our domesticated animals and plants are perhaps the best demonstration of the effects of this principle. The improvements that have been made by selection in these have clearly been accompanied by a reduction of fitness."—*D.S. Falconer, Introduction to Quantitative Genetics (1960), p. 186.
"[The original species came into existence] with rich potential for genetic variation into races, breeds, hybrids, etc. But so far from developing into new kinds, or even improving existing kinds, such variations are always characterized by intrinsic genetic weakness of individuals, in accordance with the outworking of the second law of thermodynamics through gene depletion and the accumulation of harmful mutations. Thus, the changes that occur in living things through [the passage of] time are always within strict boundary lines."—John C. Whitcomb, The Early Earth (1986), p. 94.
If evolutionary theory were true, then man should possess a smaller gene pool than his animal ancestors.
"A Dutch zoologist, J.J. Duyvene de Wit, clearly demonstrated that the process of speciation (such as the appearance of many varieties of dogs and cats) is inevitably bound up with genetic depletion as a result of natural selection. When this scientifically established fact is applied to the question of whether man could have evolved from ape-like animals, `. . the transformist concept of progressive evolution is pierced in its very vitals.' The reason for this, J.J. Duyvene de Wit went on to explain, is that the whole process of evolution from animal to man . . would have to run against the gradient of genetic depletion. That is to say, . . man [should possess] a smaller gene potential than his animal ancestors! [!] Here, the impressive absurdity becomes clear in which the transformist doctrine [the theory of evolution] entangles itself when, in flat contradiction to the factual scientific evidence, it dogmatically asserts that man has evolved from the animal kingdom!"—*D.S. Falconer, Introduction to Quantitative Genetics (1960), pp. 129-130 [italics his; quotations from *J.J. Duyvene de Wit, A New Critique of the Transformist Principle in Evolutionary Biology (1965), pp. 56, 57].
Only God could make the species.
"Anyone who can contemplate the eye of a housefly, the mechanics of human finger movement, the camouflage of a moth, or the building of every kind of matter from variations in arrangement of proton and electron,—and then maintain that all this design happened without a designer, happened by sheer, blind accident—such a person believes in a miracle far more astounding than any in the Bible.
"To regard man, with his arts and aspirations, his awareness of himself and of his universe, his emotions and his morals, his very ability to conceive an idea so grand as that of God, to regard this creature as merely a form of life somewhat higher on the evolutionary ladder than the others,—is to create questions more profound than are answered."—David Raphael Klein, "Is There a Substitute for God?" in Reader's Digest, March 1970, p. 55.
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Forward to the next major topic in this series:
ORIGIN OF THE SPECIES UNKNOWN: Scientists tell us that no one really knows how any species originated. This study is a continuation of the one you have just read.