The Desperate Efforts of Neo-Darwinism
Darwin’s theory entered into a deep crisis because of the laws of genetics discovered in the first quarter of the 20th century. Nevertheless, a group of scientists who were determined to remain loyal to Darwin endeavoured to come up with solutions. They came together in a meeting organised by the Geological Society of America in 1941. Geneticists such as G. Ledyard Stebbins and Theodosius Dobzhansky, zoologists such as Ernst Mayr and Julian Huxley, paleontologists such as George Gaylord Simpson and Glenn L. Jepsen, and mathematical geneticists such as Ronald Fisher and Sewall Right, after long discussions, finally agreed on ways to “patch up” Darwinism.
This cadre focused on the question of the origin of the advantageous variations that supposedly caused living organisms to evolve-an issue that Darwin himself was unable to explain but simply tried to side-step by depending on Lamarck. The idea was now “random mutations”. They named this new theory “The Modern Synthetic Evolution Theory”, which was formulated by adding the concept of mutation to Darwin’s natural selection thesis. In a short time, this theory came to be known as “neo-Darwinism” and those who put forward the theory were called “neo-Darwinists”.
The following decades were to become an era of desperate attempts to prove neo-Darwinism. It was already known that mutations-or “accidents” -that took place in the genes of living organisms were always harmful. Neo-Darwinists tried to establish a case for “advantageous mutation” by carrying out thousands of mutation experiments. All their attempts ended in complete failure.
They also tried to prove that the first living organisms could have originated by chance under primitive terrestrial conditions that the theory posited but the same failure attended these experiments too. Every experiment that sought to prove that life could be generated by chance failed. Probability calculations prove that not even a single protein, the buildingblocks of life, could have originated by chance. And the cell-which supposedly emerged by chance under primitive and uncontrolled terrestrial conditions according to the evolutionists-could not be synthesised by even the most sophisticated laboratories of the 20th century.
Neo-Darwinist theory is also defeated by the fossil record. No “transitional forms”, which were supposed to show the gradual evolution of living organisms from primitive to advanced species as the neo-Darwinist theory claimed, have ever been found anywhere in the world. At the same time, comparative anatomy revealed that species that were supposed to have evolved from one another had in fact very different anatomical features and that they could never have been ancestors or descendants of each other.
But neo-Darwinism was never a scientific theory anyway, but was an ideological dogma if not to say some sort of false religion. The Canadian philosopher of science Michael Ruse, a staunch evolutionist himself, confesses this in a speech he gave at a 1993 meeting:
And certainly, there’s no doubt about it, that in the past, and I think also in the present, for many evolutionists, evolution has functioned as something with elements which are, let us say, akin to being a secular religion … And it seems to me very clear that at some very basic level, evolution as a scientific theory makes a commitment to a kind of naturalism(Source:- Michael Ruse, «Nonliteralist Antievolution», AAAS Symposium: «The New Antievolutionism,
» February 13, 1993, Boston, MA)
This is why the champions of the theory of evolution still go on defending it in spite of all the evidence to the contrary. One thing they cannot agree on however is which of the different models proposed for the realisation of evolution is the “right” one. One of the most important of these models is the fantastic scenario known as “punctuated equilibrium”.