27 December 2005

A Biology Teacher I Wish I’d Had

Science News Online is mostly a subscription-access site, but some articles are posted for free access. Fortunately, one of the freebies from the year-end issue is a delightfully snarky take on teaching the controversy, by Bruce Bower. Thus:
Old-school evolution often occurs too slowly for an observer to see. That's inconvenient for those who limit reality to anything that can be captured on their digital video cameras. For those interested in seeing for themselves, ponder artificial evolution. Consider, for example, dog breeding over the past century or Michael Jackson's face over the past 25 years.

And on the subject of missing links:
Although the intelligent-design people put a lot of stock in missing links, those wacky creatures tell you squat about evolution. So what if we never stumble over the remains of, say, the last common ancestor of apes and people? … Since nobody knows what the common ancestor looked like, scientists in their prickly way may never agree that they've found it. Many questions remain about the ways in which fundamental shape changes arise and foster the evolution of new types of animals. These aren't signs that evolution never happened. They're signs that fascinating turns in evolutionary biology lie ahead for the intellectually curious.

I ommend the reader to peruse the full article.


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