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September 21st, 2013
11:41 AM ET

Can Pope Francis make his vision a reality?

By John L. Allen Jr., CNN

ROME (CNN) - Pope Francis has sketched a vision of a Catholic Church that’s more welcoming – to women, to homosexuals, to divorced and remarried believers, to pretty much everybody –- and less invested in the culture wars.

In a now famous interview published Thursday, the pope said he knows some militants want him to toss around more fire and brimstone. But he insists that Catholic positions on hot-button issues such as abortion and gay marriage are already well known, and anyway, “Ministers of the church must be ministers of mercy above all.”

None of that implies a change in church teaching, but it does suggest a fairly serious shift in tone. The question now becomes, is this just the pope talking? Or is he capable of bringing the rest of the church along with him?

Despite the mythology of Roman Catholicism as a top-down monolith, the truth is that it’s actually one of the most decentralized institutions on Earth.

There are only about 3,000 personnel in the Vatican directing the affairs of a church that counts 1.2 billion members, which means that Rome doesn’t have the manpower to micromanage anything but exceptional cases.

Probably 90% of the decisions that matter – what pastor will be assigned to which parish, or what tithes will be used for –- are made at the local level.

Popes trying to steer this colossus in a new direction, therefore, need middle managers as well as the rank and file to pull in the same direction, and experience suggests they don’t always fall in line.

MORE ON CNN: Pope Francis: Church can't 'interfere' with gays

Pope John Paul II, nearly 27 years, exhorted the church to be more evangelical, more daring about taking its message to the streets, and while he unleashed powerful new energies – think about World Youth Days, for instance – that missionary aspiration still remains a work in progress.

Similarly, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI desired a church more appreciative of tradition and more focused on its core identity, and again most observers would say the end result over eight difficult years was a mixed bag.

If Francis is to bring the Catholic Church into line with his more pastoral and compassionate vision, two fronts seem especially critical.

First is personnel. Nothing a pope does to shape culture in the church is more important than naming the roughly 5,100 bishops of the world, who set the tone in their own backyards.

A new papal direction may be invigorating, but if people don’t pick up the same vibe from their local bishops and pastors, over time it will only seem like sound and fury signifying little.

To date Francis hasn’t made many flagship picks except for his own successor in Buenos Aires, Argentina, but he’ll have to do so soon, since archbishops in critical locales such as Madrid, Cologne and Chicago are all older than 75, the normal retirement age.

Popes typically rely on their nuncios, or ambassadors, around the world to recommend new bishops.

In June, Francis gave his nuncios their marching orders, saying he wants bishops who are “close to the people, fathers and brothers” as well as “gentle, patient and merciful.” He also said they shouldn’t have “the psychology of princes.”

How well he spots talent to fit that profile will help determine whether his dream of moving past what he called “a church of small-minded rules” becomes reality.

MORE ON CNN: The pope said what? Six stunners from Francis

The other key test is structural reform, beginning in the Vatican and radiating outward, perhaps especially on financial transparency and the fight against child sexual abuse.

Scandals in those areas have plagued the Vatican and the wider church in recent years, making it difficult for many people to see Catholicism as a vehicle for compassion.

Francis has set up three commissions to ponder reform, including a body of eight cardinals from around the world set to hold its first meeting in Rome from October 1-3.

If those groups don’t deliver significant recommendations, which are embraced and implemented by the pope, once again his rhetoric about reforming the church may ring hollow.

Popes play many roles, including prophet and CEO. Francis has delivered a stunning debut as the church’s voice of conscience and spiritual guide; now he has to get down to the brass tacks of management to make sure it doesn’t go to waste.

John L. Allen Jr. is CNN’s senior Vatican analyst and senior correspondent for the National Catholic Reporter. 

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Catholic Church • Leaders • Pope Francis

soundoff (2,596 Responses)
  1. In Santa we trust

    Strange how so many creationists have started posting in the last few days. A bit like when Chad et al would have their talking points.

    September 25, 2013 at 4:32 pm |
    • Topher

      Funny how many evolutionists have run away over the last few days.

      September 25, 2013 at 4:44 pm |
      • In Santa we trust

        You've had plenty of answers. If you want to deny logic, ignore the answers, and provide no answers to the questions about creationism it may that there is no response but like your bible, that's not accurate.

        September 25, 2013 at 4:49 pm |
        • Topher

          In Santa we trust

          "You've had plenty of answers"

          No. I've been BEGGING for the evidence, but the only thing I've gotten is that a dog, after millions of years, evolved into a dog.

          "If you want to deny logic, ignore the answers, and provide no answers to the questions about creationism it may that there is no response but like your bible, that's not accurate."

          Creationism wasn't the subject over the last few days. Evolution was. Nice attempt at the rabbit trail, though.

          September 25, 2013 at 4:54 pm |
      • sam stone

        where's all this evidence you have been blathering about forever, gopher?

        are you too much of a coward to provide it?

        it was a rhetorical question. of course you are

        hide behind jeebus to avoid the punishment you feel you deserve

        snivelling punk

        September 25, 2013 at 4:50 pm |
    • Alias

      Evolution is a very sensative topic. It can provide an explanation for how we got here other than "god did it".
      This is a threat to the very core of their religion.

      September 25, 2013 at 4:46 pm |
  2. Reality # 2

    The last paragraph of the topic:

    "Popes play many roles, including prophet and CEO. Francis has delivered a stunning debut as the church’s voice of conscience and spiritual guide; now he has to get down to the brass tacks of management to make sure it doesn’t go to waste."

    Popes as prophets? Give us a break ! More like a brainwashed fortune teller !

    September 25, 2013 at 3:51 pm |
  3. Net Net

    Evolutionists have more faith than Christians!

    September 25, 2013 at 3:28 pm |
    • Craig

      It takes more faith to be an evolutionist.

      September 25, 2013 at 3:31 pm |
      • Richard Cranium

        Only if you cannot fathom basic science. It takes ridiculous faith to think that your book is right, especially since so much has been proven wrong.

        September 25, 2013 at 3:38 pm |
        • Craig

          To believe you evolved from another life form with absolutely no evidence is somehow not based on faith?

          September 25, 2013 at 3:45 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Craig, There is a huge amount of evidence for evolution much of which was posted before you started your shift – geographical distribution, DNA, tree of life, etc.
          Whereas the only "evidence" for creationism is in the myths of Bronze Age Middle Easterners that your religion has adopted. Evolution is not tied to a given religion as your "explanation" is and so doesn't vary from religion to religion.

          September 25, 2013 at 4:38 pm |
    • EnjaySea

      Evolutionists have more evidence than Christians.

      September 25, 2013 at 3:31 pm |
      • Topher

        *snicker.* ... uh ... no.

        September 25, 2013 at 3:33 pm |
        • sam stone

          where's your evidence, gopher?

          time to wet yourself and run like a coward?

          September 25, 2013 at 4:54 pm |
      • Craig

        Really?

        Do you have evidence for the natural process by which new genetic information can be added to an organism’s genetic code?

        September 25, 2013 at 3:34 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          Craig. Where is your evidence that god created everything exactly the way it is.

          There is a lot of evidence of how DNA changes and mutates.

          There is none for any god, or anything any god allegedly did. God is a figment of imagination. There is no evidence to the contrary.

          September 25, 2013 at 3:41 pm |
        • Craig

          Answer the question, do you or do you not have the evidence for the question raised?

          September 25, 2013 at 3:46 pm |
        • Alias

          Yes.
          Yes.

          Try goole some time.

          September 25, 2013 at 4:42 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          craig.
          Yes. Try studying chemistry and biology, especially the amazing special properties of carbon.

          September 25, 2013 at 4:48 pm |
        • Topher

          Richard Cranium

          "Yes. Try studying chemistry and biology, especially the amazing special properties of carbon."

          Ooh! Should we discuss the problems with Carbon 14 dating?!

          September 25, 2013 at 4:55 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          topher
          There is no problem with carbon 14 dating , especially when coupled with the myriad other methods we use to date things.

          September 25, 2013 at 4:59 pm |
        • Topher

          Richard Cranium

          "There is no problem with carbon 14 dating ,"

          You sure you want to stick with that answer? Might want to do some research and get back with us.

          "especially when coupled with the myriad other methods we use to date things."

          90% percent of which point to a young earth.

          September 25, 2013 at 5:10 pm |
        • Cpt. Obvious

          Topher, you prove that you have no idea what you are talking about. I'm glad you're not an atheist but are firmly in the Christian camp. Thank you.

          September 25, 2013 at 7:00 pm |
        • Topher

          Cpt. Obvious

          "Topher, you prove that you have no idea what you are talking about."

          Prove me wrong then.

          "I'm glad you're not an atheist but are firmly in the Christian camp. Thank you."

          I'm a former atheist. I didn't have enough faith to stay in your camp.

          September 25, 2013 at 7:27 pm |
        • sam stone

          it's not faith you lack, gopher, it's critical thought

          September 26, 2013 at 6:01 am |
        • AtheistSteve

          "I'm a former atheist. I didn't have enough faith to stay in your camp."

          Oh look. A William Lane Craig parrot. Atheism doesn't require faith. Quite the opposite in fact. Atheism is arrived at naturally when evidence of any god is completely absent. It's a default position. Unless you are schooled in some various god myth there isn't any reason to believe or even imagine a god.

          September 26, 2013 at 6:11 am |
    •  

      Godless Vagabond
      And evolutionists appear to have much higher intelligence and education levels than christians. Various studies have shown this to be true, but simply reading the comments on this blog reveals that.

      September 25, 2013 at 3:34 pm |
      • Craig

        Well, that is just your opinion.

        September 25, 2013 at 3:35 pm |
        •  

          Godless Vagabond
          No, Craig. It is not my opinion. Studies (with which I had nothing to do with) support my statement.

          September 25, 2013 at 3:41 pm |
        • Craig

          So evolutionists evolved into higher beings and Christians did not? Are you now claiming somehow evolution was not a global phenomena and was applied to a subset of beings??

          September 25, 2013 at 3:48 pm |
        •  

          Godless Vagabond
          Craig, you must think stupidity is a positive virtue.

          September 25, 2013 at 3:53 pm |
        • Craig

          Well, that is just your opinion, don't portray yours on others!

          September 25, 2013 at 4:00 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Craig, So you secretly agree with evolution. I think the point is that generally people who are smarter are less likely to be superstitious and understand the science.

          September 25, 2013 at 4:44 pm |
        • sam stone

          as you only speak your opinion, craig

          September 26, 2013 at 6:09 am |
  4.  

    Godless Vagabond
    The day you show an IQ greater than your shoe size is the day I'll take you seriously.

    September 25, 2013 at 3:09 pm |
  5. Alias

    I can prove evolution.
    We are here.

    September 25, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
  6. Joey

    I love the way that micro and macro evolution allows bible beaters to say that evolution happens while at the same time they get to claim the evolution doesn't happen.

    September 25, 2013 at 1:55 pm |
    • Topher

      One is proven. The other is not. The one that is not is the one taught as fact to our children. The one that is not is the one that says man came from apes and took millions of years. The one that is not is anti-science. Why do you believe in it?

      September 25, 2013 at 1:58 pm |
      • Joey

        Because all of the evidence collected so far points to evolution being true.

        September 25, 2013 at 2:04 pm |
      • Joey

        Also the two terms describe the exact same processes, but on a different time scale, so you can't claim that one is possible and the other is not.

        September 25, 2013 at 2:06 pm |
        • Mae

          Young Earth has been disproven again and again and again. If you choose to believe that, go for it. But do not expect anyone to respect such a belief as being valid. I can respect your belief in God. I cannot respect your belief in a young Earth, simply because you believe it when the evidence proves otherwise.

          September 25, 2013 at 4:12 pm |
        • Topher

          Mae

          The evidence doesn't prove otherwise. If it does, please explain those problems I presented above.

          September 25, 2013 at 4:18 pm |
      • Topher

        Joey

        "Because all of the evidence collected so far points to evolution being true."

        What evidence? You have nothing.

        "Also the two terms describe the exact same processes, but on a different time scale, so you can't claim that one is possible and the other is not."

        OK, then let's see the change in kinds. The problem you have here is that there haven't been millions of years. Even science points to this. So even if you wanted to test this over time, you couldn't.

        September 25, 2013 at 2:11 pm |
        • Joey

          All evidence shows that the Earth is at least 4 billion years old, what scientific evidence do you have to the contrary?

          September 25, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
        • niknak

          Haven't you learned yet Joey Jeans, that science is fine and all, until is refutes the babble.
          Gopher does not need scientific facts to back his claim that the earth is only 6k old or so, because he has a 2000 year old book of magic spells which is far more persuasive then some stinky facts.

          September 25, 2013 at 3:02 pm |
        • Joey

          Down below he claims that we will have to prove a lot of science false in order for Earth to be more than 10,000 years old.

          September 25, 2013 at 3:09 pm |
        • Topher

          Joey

          "All evidence shows that the Earth is at least 4 billion years old, what scientific evidence do you have to the contrary?"

          Well, for starters, 90% of dating mechanisms point to a young earth. Then, if we have had millions of years, you have a moon problem, sea salt problem, star-age problem ...

          September 25, 2013 at 3:11 pm |
        • Topher

          ... a diamonds problem ...

          September 25, 2013 at 3:18 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          Topher
          The only problem is your connection with reality Topher. You've proven many times you do not understand science, and you LOVE to twist science to try to fit your book. It never works. Your book is fantasy, science is reality.

          September 25, 2013 at 3:35 pm |
        • Topher

          Richard Cranium

          "You've proven many times you do not understand science, ..."

          Wait, I don't understand it? It's your worldview that screams "Science! Science! Science!" but then believes in things science says isn't true.

          "and you LOVE to twist science to try to fit your book."

          I don't need to twist science to fit my book. Observational science agrees with my book.

          "Your book is fantasy, science is reality."

          I'd say they are both reality. So why are you holding on to your fairy tale?

          September 25, 2013 at 3:39 pm |
      • EnjaySea

        There is no evidence that a god exists. Why do you believe it?

        September 25, 2013 at 3:32 pm |
        • Topher

          EnjaySea

          "There is no evidence that a god exists."

          I disagree there's no evidence. You might not find that evidence compelling enough, but I do.

          "Why do you believe it?"

          There's actually a LOT of reasons I believe it. But we can start with the basics. God said He gave us a Creation and a conscience to know He exists ... and thus have no excuse on Judgment Day.

          September 25, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
        • Joey

          That is proven false as my conscience screams to me that god is not real.

          September 25, 2013 at 3:42 pm |
        • Topher

          Joey

          "That is proven false as my conscience screams to me that god is not real."

          I don't believe you. You might reject it, but I believe your conscience tells you otherwise. Plus you still have the Creation.

          September 25, 2013 at 3:59 pm |
        • EnjaySea

          "You might not find that evidence compelling enough, but I do."

          Finally we agree on something.

          September 25, 2013 at 4:01 pm |
        • Topher

          EnjaySea

          "Finally we agree on something."

          So you are rejecting something you don't know about? That doesn't seem very rational.

          September 25, 2013 at 4:20 pm |
        • EnjaySea

          "So you are rejecting something you don't know about? That doesn't seem very rational."

          I'm sorry, did I say I rejected something? I implied that the "evidence" so far presented for a god's existence is not compelling. You're allowed to think it is, but I'm not allowed to think it's not?

          I don't reject things that I don't know about, I withhold judgement, and avoid speculation. Show me some evidence (something to know about it), and then we can talk.

          In the meantime, I take the default position that there is no god. In other words, I don't believe in god yet.

          September 25, 2013 at 4:54 pm |
      • truthprevails1

        Ah Topher, very good little one. You're right...CREATIONISM is not proven, Evolution is. Scopes Monkey Trial ended the debate on which is real and which isn't. Your acceptance of incestuous relations (ie; creationism) says very little about you.

        September 26, 2013 at 6:16 am |
  7. EnjaySea

    The day you start putting a period at the end of your sentences, is the day I'll start taking you seriously.

    September 25, 2013 at 12:35 pm |
  8. Colin

    Topher, let me give you one CLEARLY DEMONSTRATED example of how one species has evolved into another. Let's stick with your example of the kangaroo. The Eastern Grey Kangaroo (Macropus giganteus) ranges over eastern Australia. Tasmania was once joined to Australia and the range of the Eastern Grey Kangaroo once included Tasmania. After the last Ice Age, Tasmania became isolated from the rest of australia. A population of Eastern Grey Kangaroos in Tasmania became isolated from the rest of the population.

    Under the local selection pressures in Tasmania, and over many thousands of yeras, a new species evolved from the Eastern Grey Kangaroo. It is called the Tasmanian Wallaby.

    September 25, 2013 at 11:45 am |
    • Robert Brown

      Don't freak out Colin, but it is still a kangaroo. The mice are still mice. The moths are still moths.

      September 25, 2013 at 12:40 pm |
      • In Santa we trust

        You and Topher are implying that one day we were chimpanzees and the next we were humans. That's not what happened. The fossil record shows intermediate fossils such as a whale with legs showing that the whale was originally an animal with legs that therefore walked on land or the seashore. Time scale is a factor and intermediate fossils are not readily available as most animals just rot and are not preserved.

        September 25, 2013 at 12:46 pm |
        • Topher

          In Santa we trust

          "You and Topher are implying that one day we were chimpanzees and the next we were humans."

          Because that's what would have to have happened for evolution to be real. If the generations continue long enough, at one point a female that is still a monkey (though she may be quite different from her ancestors) would give birth to something no longer a monkey. That's never been demonstrated. In fact, your own standard of science says it can't. Why do you believe?

          "The fossil record shows intermediate fossils such as a whale with legs showing that the whale was originally an animal with legs that therefore walked on land or the seashore."

          Even if that were true, the whale with legs could have only come from another whale. You could argue it's microevolution, but not Darwinian.

          "Time scale is a factor and intermediate fossils are not readily available as most animals just rot and are not preserved."

          True, we actually have very few fossils considering how much life has been on this planet. But in your worldview you say there's been millions and millions of years. In all that time NO evidence was left behind?

          September 25, 2013 at 1:49 pm |
        • Joey

          Topher there is plenty of evidence, but you just refuse to look at it objectively.

          September 25, 2013 at 1:52 pm |
        • Topher

          Joey

          "Topher there is plenty of evidence, but you just refuse to look at it objectively."

          I've been BEGGING to see the evidence for two days now. We've been talking about this subject longer than Sen. Cruz spoke. If you know of a change in kinds, then let's see it. If you don't, just admit that you believe on faith and we can all move on.

          September 25, 2013 at 2:00 pm |
        • Joey

          Topher, all life on Earth started as single celled organisms, so to suggest there has never been a change in kind is absurd. Also, kind is still not the way that science classifies animals.

          September 25, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Topher
          My point was that is not what would have to have happened for evolution to be real. Over thousands of years adapations take one branch far enough away from the other that it is considered a new species. Chimpanzees and humans are still both apes. Chimpanzees also have genetic modification over that period and also become different to our common ancestor. Apes are descended from other mammals. The norm is that when something dies it just rots, it takes special conditions at the time of death to preserve a fossil, especially a complete skeleton.

          I should have said whale-like. What other expalnation do you or creationism offer for a whale-like mammal with legs. It can only be an intermediate species which you claim do not exist.

          There isn't really a micro- and macro-evolution but to use your terminology macro-evolution is what happens to micro-evolution over long periods of time.

          September 25, 2013 at 2:15 pm |
        • Topher

          Joey

          "Topher, all life on Earth started as single celled organisms, so to suggest there has never been a change in kind is absurd. Also, kind is still not the way that science classifies animals."

          You might believe that, but it doesn't stand up in science. It's not testable or repeatable. You can't prove it.

          September 25, 2013 at 2:17 pm |
        • Topher

          In Santa we trust

          "Over thousands of years adapations take one branch far enough away from the other that it is considered a new species."

          OK. That would be a change of kinds. So ... give me an example of that.

          "Chimpanzees and humans are still both apes."

          No.

          "The norm is that when something dies it just rots, it takes special conditions at the time of death to preserve a fossil, especially a complete skeleton."

          I agree with that.

          "What other expalnation do you or creationism offer for a whale-like mammal with legs. It can only be an intermediate species which you claim do not exist."

          As far as I know a whale with legs is right up there with Piltdown man. But I'll look into later, I promise. So for now let's say it's true. And we can demonstrate the whales once had legs. What you would have had is a WHALE with legs. That's not Darwinian evolution. That's speciation.

          "There isn't really a micro- and macro-evolution but to use your terminology macro-evolution is what happens to micro-evolution over long periods of time."

          There clearly is a micro and macro. The only ones that say there isn't is the ones who hope that Darwinian evolution is true. And I don't believe you've got "long periods of time" unless a couple thousands years is considered a long time. You'll have a lot of science to prove false to help your argument. So now you've got a worldview that pretty much worships at the alter of science, but science says your god — evolution — is wrong and then you have to say other parts of science are wrong and untrustworthy. Your worldview is kind of falling apart, don't you think?

          September 25, 2013 at 2:25 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Topher, The evidence for evolution includes testable or repeatable experiments but also the evidence of geographical distribution – why certain life is only in places that were connected, DNA – where many generations can be seen, tree of life – older life is simpler, newer life has common descent which can be categorized (in fact that was classified before Darwin).

          As has been said before creationism is not testable or repeatable, yet you apparently believe it. Why?

          September 25, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
        •  

          Godless Vagabond
          Actually some whales alive today have vestigial hind legs. These legs are internal to the whale's body and can only be seen after the whale dies and decomposes, revealing its bones. Go to the Monterrey aquarium sometime and look at the blue whale skeleton hanging in the main lobby area. Can you explain these legs, Topher? Were they put there by god to mislead us? Inquisitive minds want to know, Topher, so please answer.

          September 25, 2013 at 3:06 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Topher,
          Bill Deacon can help you out with your spelling.

          Yes time measured in thousands of years is considered a long time.
          You religious types have to worship something and project that need onto others; I do not worship at the altar of science, and I don't view evolution as a god.
          I don't see how you came to the conclusion that I'm saying other parts of science are wrong and untrustworthy.
          My worldview is not falling apart, you only say that because you have no evidence for creationism and use pseudo-science in an attempt to discredit evolution and any science that exposes the lies.

          September 25, 2013 at 5:12 pm |
        • Topher

          In Santa we trust

          Sorry, dude, I didn't see this response earlier. We're posting in a lot of places ...

          "I don't see how you came to the conclusion that I'm saying other parts of science are wrong and untrustworthy."

          There's lots of science that says the earth could only be thousands of years old. I'm guessing you would say that science is wrong. Right?

          "My worldview is not falling apart, you only say that because you have no evidence for creationism and use pseudo-science in an attempt to discredit evolution and any science that exposes the lies."

          What "pseudo-science" do you claim I am using? I haven't really discredit evolution ... science has. Science ITSELF has exposed the lies of evolution. Believe me, dude, I used to be evolution's biggest proponent ... until I actually read about it.

          September 25, 2013 at 5:57 pm |
        •  

          Godless Vagabond
          Topher, you didn't address my question above about whale legs. Are you dodging me?

          September 25, 2013 at 7:20 pm |
      • sam stone

        And you are still a pretentious person who purports to know the mind of god

        September 25, 2013 at 4:59 pm |
  9. NotFooled

    I am not NOT **NOT** a monkey. End of argument about 'evolution'

    September 25, 2013 at 7:03 am |
    • Lawrence of Arabia

      The problem with evolutionists is that they confuse "adaptation" with "macro-evolution." We see adaptation in organisms, but one type (kind) of organism cannot "adapt" into another kind of organism... That has never been observed, neither is it even possible.

      Here's an analogy. If a car assembly plant works on new models of cars every year in order to remove imperfections, how many years will it take for the car manufacturer to produce a 747 airplane?

      Answer – it can't. One car can be changed somewhat into another type of car, but it still has wheels... It still has an engine... It still is a car.

      September 25, 2013 at 7:52 am |
      • Richard Cranium

        Terrible analogy. The cars do not have the ability to adapt and change over millenia. Life forms do. Cars do not have DNA that mutates. Life does.

        September 25, 2013 at 8:16 am |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          But you don't know that... No one does.
          All that has ever been observed is that life ADAPTS...
          Scientists then assume that if an organism can develop an immunity, or if it can change color, or if it's beak can change size and shape, then it must be able to change into something else entirely.

          That's a false assumption based upon observations of adaptation, since adaptations have never changed a moth into a bird.

          Because of adaptations and mutations, we have foxes, dalmations, and basset hounds – but they are all still dogs.

          September 25, 2013 at 8:34 am |
        • Richard Cranium

          Yes we do know that. Evolution is for all intents and purposes a fact. You have shown that not only do you not understand the science but your willful ignorance is extremely tiresome.
          EVERYONE know evolution is real, just some choose to ignore reality. The rest of the world has moved on.

          September 25, 2013 at 8:55 am |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          No, evolution is not a fact, and not everyone "knows" evolution is real. You are deluding yourself along with every other evolutionist who submits observations of adaptations as evidence of evolution.

          As I said, organisms adapt. But they are still the same type (kind) of organism.

          Evolutionists posit that with enough adaptations, a fish can become an amphibian, and a reptile can become a bird. That isn't observed anywhere – it is merely an assumption from scientists who observe adaptations within kinds of organisms.

          September 25, 2013 at 9:01 am |
        • Richard Cranium

          Loa
          Ok...theres the rest of the world, and then there are those religious fundimentalists who will not accept it.
          The proof is in the DNA, the fossil records and on and on.

          Why do we grow gill slits when we are in the womb? Simple, the FISH DNA that WE have turns on and creates those gill slits. That DNA gets turned back off and the slits fade, and our lungs develop. but the FISH DNA is there and DOES still work. It just gets turned off. The entire history of our ancestors are in our DNA. If there is a word of god, it is absolutely certain it is not your false, dis-proven book. Gods word is DNA, and it tells a long long story.

          Keep denying reality, you have proven that is all you want to do anyway.

          September 25, 2013 at 9:20 am |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          Neither gills nor their slits are found at any stage in the embryological development of any mammal including man. The folds in the neck region of the mammalian embryo, that are erroneously called "gills", are not gills in any sense of the word and never have anything to do with breathing. They are merely flexion folds, or wrinkles, in the neck region resulting from the sharply down turned head and protruding heart of the developing embryo. These folds eventually develop into a portion of the face, inner ear, tonsils, parathyroid and thymus. No reputable medical embryology text claims that there are "gill slits" in mammals.
          http://bestbiblescience.org/slits.htm

          September 25, 2013 at 9:25 am |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          And as for the fossil record... The Bible talks about a world-wide flood. And if there really was a world wide flood, what would the evidence be? Billions of dead things, burried in the rock layers, layed down by water, all over the earth.
          (thank you Buddy Davis)

          September 25, 2013 at 9:28 am |
        • Richard Cranium

          Your bible psuedo science website is wrong. VERY wrong. It is pointless to debate with you . The FACT of evolution is irrefutable. You keep wailing at that wall though. It shows the ridiculous lengths that fundies will go to to try to show their flawed man-made book real when reality completely rolls over it.

          We know evolution is reality. You are just showing how desperatley you are clinging to your delusion, and it is pointless to debate with your delusion.

          The debate is long over. You are wrong.

          September 25, 2013 at 9:38 am |
        • Lawrence of Arabia

          If the debate was over, then there wouldn't be a debate...
          Oh, well, I've got to go do the whole "work" thing anyway.
          If you enjoy having electricity, you can thank me later.

          September 25, 2013 at 9:44 am |
        • Topher

          Richard Cranium

          "Evolution is for all intents and purposes a fact."

          It is?! Then perhaps you can show us an example of one creature become a completely different creature — a change in kinds.

          "You have shown that not only do you not understand the science but your willful ignorance is extremely tiresome."

          Wait a minute. You're the one that seems to be confused. You're bringing up science. And yet it is the god of your worldview — evolution — that doesn't stand up in science. It's not testable or repeatable.

          "EVERYONE know evolution is real, just some choose to ignore reality. The rest of the world has moved on."

          Ha! Only those that want evolution to be real believe it to be so ... but they have to take it on faith.

          September 25, 2013 at 10:13 am |
        • Richard Cranium

          I'm not going to argue this with you. Topher/Lie4him/LoA.
          The only ones debating it are the ones who refuse to accept reality. Your debate is reality vs belief.
          Reality+evolution
          belief=myth ( in your case)
          Go and argue it on a genetics site.
          Creationism is nothing but fantasy. to think that it represents reality is absurd, just like all the other creation stories from the myths that are religions.

          September 25, 2013 at 10:29 am |
        • Topher

          Richard Cranium

          "I'm not going to argue this with you. Topher/Lie4him/LoA."

          That's fine because there not much of a debate to be had.

          "The only ones debating it are the ones who refuse to accept reality. Your debate is reality vs belief."

          No. The ones debating it are just being consistant and demanding evidence. You say it's a fact. You teach it as such to children. Yet there's no transitional fossils. There's no proof. And it fails meeting sciences' standard of being testable and repeatable.

          "Reality+evolution"

          Then lets see the change in kinds.

          September 25, 2013 at 10:39 am |
        • Colin

          Topher- do you accept that all breeds of dog today are descendents of the Eurasian wolf?

          September 25, 2013 at 10:42 am |
        • Richard Cranium

          Topher
          The evidence is all around us. You just won't accept it.

          Your bible is wrong, creationism is ridiculous.

          September 25, 2013 at 10:45 am |
        • Topher

          Colin

          "Topher- do you accept that all breeds of dog today are descendents of the Eurasian wolf?"

          I have no idea what the ancestor was, but I believe all breeds today come from a common canine, yes .. as a wolf and my lab puppy are both still canines.

          September 25, 2013 at 10:50 am |
        • Topher

          Richard Cranium

          "The evidence is all around us. You just won't accept it."

          It is? What is your example of a change in kinds?

          "Your bible is wrong, creationism is ridiculous."

          Creationism isn't on trial here. Evolution is. Now if you want to continue to believe in evolution, that's fine. Just admit you have to take it on faith.

          September 25, 2013 at 10:53 am |
        • Richard Cranium

          Topher
          A Milk cow, a bison, a buffalo are all bovines. Are you saying they are the same animal?

          September 25, 2013 at 10:53 am |
        • Colin

          So, if organisms as different as p.oodles, pomeranians, Great Danes, Dalmatians, German Shepherds, wieners, Old English Sheep dogs, Saint Bernards and chihauhas can all evolve from a wolf, what is it about evolution that you do not believe?

          September 25, 2013 at 10:56 am |
        • Topher

          Richard Cranium

          They would be of the same KIND, sure.

          September 25, 2013 at 10:58 am |
        • Colin

          Compare a tiny Chihuahua to Great Dane. They both evolved from a wolf. How can you not accept that evolution can cause great differences in organisms?

          September 25, 2013 at 11:00 am |
        • Topher

          Colin

          That's speciation, not evolution. Darwinian evolution says that over time that wolf would have become a kangaroo (or at least something that is not another dog.) It must be a change in KIND.

          September 25, 2013 at 11:01 am |
        • Colin

          Topher- your first point "that's speciatio"n not eviolution"makes no sense. Evolution casues speciation. So when you say KIND, if a Great Dane is not different enough to a Chihauhua to be a different KIND, what is? What is the dividing line, in your view, between what one animal can evolve into and what it can't?

          September 25, 2013 at 11:06 am |
        • Colin

          Clearly, if Chihuahuas and Great Danes can both evolve from a wolf, you must accept that an the animal's size, bone length, bone thickness, skull size, coat, length, color and thickness of hair, size of internal organs, size and shape of reproductive organs, diet, and accuity of senses can all evolve.

          So, if all parts of an animal can evolve, what is to stop a wolf ultimately evolving into something like a kangaroo, given enough time.

          September 25, 2013 at 11:11 am |
        • Topher

          Colin

          Good questions. This is where we get into the differences in microevolution and macroevolution. Micro is real. We can see it happening. This is when you get an animal, such as the wolf having changes over time. But those changes will result in, say, the great dane. A canine changes, but it's still a canine. Atheists often use bacteria or fruit flies as examples. But after the changes, the bacteria is STILL bacteria.

          Macro, or more commonly, Darwinian evolution, says that after the changes you get a completely different creature ... ape to man.

          "What is the dividing line, in your view, between what one animal can evolve into and what it can't?"

          I agree it can't because Darwinian evolution is a fairy tale. It doesn't meet science's standard ... it's not testable nor repeatable. Yet we're continuously told it's a fact. It's not. And it's taught to children in schools as a fact.

          September 25, 2013 at 11:15 am |
        • Colin

          Topher, you didn't answer my question. If all aspects of an organism (bones, organs, senses) can evolve, what is to stop one organism evolving into another, given enough time?

          September 25, 2013 at 11:18 am |
        • Topher

          Colin

          "So, if all parts of an animal can evolve, what is to stop a wolf ultimately evolving into something like a kangaroo, given enough time."

          According to the evolutionary worldview its already had millions of years. It should be able to be demonstrated by now. But all we see is a dog making dogs. Which is what the Bible says — animals bring forth after their own kind. Evolution is a fairy tale.

          September 25, 2013 at 11:18 am |
        • Colin

          Topher, I look forward to you answering my question above.

          You said, "According to the evolutionary worldview its already had millions of years. It should be able to be demonstrated by now" It is demonstrated. We have a very good idea of how most organisms on Earth evolved and their closest extant relative.

          September 25, 2013 at 11:23 am |
        • Topher

          Colin

          "Topher, I look forward to you answering my question above. "

          I believe I answered that with my response above yours. But if you don't think I have, please ask it again and I'll do my best.

          "It is demonstrated. We have a very good idea of how most organisms on Earth evolved and their closest extant relative."

          You have an IDEA. So it's not demonstrated. And science itself says you CAN'T demonstrate it. Where's the proof? Where's the change in kind?

          September 25, 2013 at 11:28 am |
        • Colin

          Topher, I guess you didn't quite understand my question. If all aspects of an organism (bones, organs, the five senses) can evolve, what mechanism stops one organism evolving into another, given enough time?

          September 25, 2013 at 11:34 am |
        • Topher

          Colin

          "Topher, I guess you didn't quite understand my question."

          Very possible. I'm as fallible as the next person.

          "If all aspects of an organism (bones, organs, the five senses) can evolve, what mechanism stops one organism evolving into another, given enough time?"

          Biologically all I can tell you is that there has never been a demonstration of a dog giving birth to ANYTHING other than a dog. An evolutionist would say that this has happened many times over millions of years. Unfortunately, there's no evidence this is the case. And in fact, science says evolution is not testable nor repeatable. So obviously it is nothing more than faith on the part of the believer. Spiritually, I'd tell you that it's because God is in control and that's how he's set things up. Again, science and the Bible are in agreement. Animals only bring forth after their own kind.

          September 25, 2013 at 11:44 am |
        • In Santa we trust

          LofA,
          "And as for the fossil record... The Bible talks about a world-wide flood. And if there really was a world wide flood, what would the evidence be? Billions of dead things, burried in the rock layers, layed down by water, all over the earth.
          (thank you Buddy Davis)"

          The fact that there are fossils is not proof of the biblical flood. For that to be proof, all of the fossils would be at the same level with evidence of water and at the correct age. That is not the case. Then there's the fact that there's not enough water to cover all land and even if there were the Ark would be above Everest – very cold and low in oxygen. Then there's the logistics of retrieving and returning animals from lands unknown to Bronze Age Middle Eastern tribes – the Americas, Arctic, Antarctic, Australia, etc. Global flood didn't happen.

          September 25, 2013 at 11:47 am |
        • Richard Cranium

          Topher
          "Biologically all I can tell you is that there has never been a demonstration of a dog giving birth to ANYTHING other than a dog"

          False. There are often mutations in which an animal gives birth to some genetic mutation of the DNA. Most often these mutations are harmful and the life form either does not develop or is not fully formed. Most often fatal results. But to say it has never happened is ignorant.

          What you meant was that a dog never gave birth to a cat. That is correct, but mutations happen all the time.
          My mother was born with six fingers. She must not have been human since humans do not have six fingers. The fingers were not fully formed as they had no bones so they tiesd them off as an infant.
          If mutations do not happen, how do you explain a human being born with 6 fingers?

          September 25, 2013 at 11:50 am |
        • Colin

          Topher, that is not how it works. No biologist thinks that a dog, (or kangaroo or any other organism) gives birth to a different organism in one birth. Let me repeat that because it is a very, very common misconception. NO BIOLOGIST THINKS ONE SPECIES GIVES BIRTH TO A DIFFERENT SPECIES IN ONE BIRTH.

          What happens is that the offspring will have a trait or traits that make them differ a little from their parent, but which give them a survival advantage. Over many, many generations these small changes add up (like in the case of wolves evolving into Chihuahuas and Great Danes) to result in a new species.

          September 25, 2013 at 11:54 am |
        • Topher

          Richard Cranium

          "False. There are often mutations in which an animal gives birth to some genetic mutation of the DNA. Most often these mutations are harmful and the life form either does not develop or is not fully formed. Most often fatal results. But to say it has never happened is ignorant."

          Yes, mutations happen. But if a puppy is born with a mutation it's still a PUPPY.

          "My mother was born with six fingers. She must not have been human since humans do not have six fingers".

          That's very disrespectful to say your mother is not a human. I bet she'd disagree with you.

          "If mutations do not happen, how do you explain a human being born with 6 fingers?"

          I never said mutations don't happen. But even people who were born with no limbs at all are still human.

          September 25, 2013 at 11:55 am |
        • Topher

          Colin

          "Topher, that is not how it works. No biologist thinks that a dog, (or kangaroo or any other organism) gives birth to a different organism in one birth. Let me repeat that because it is a very, very common misconception.

          Obviously I agree. But if you took a dog and were able to watch it for perhaps thousands of generations and if evolution were true, at some point you'll have a mother that would still be classified as a dog giving birth to something that would not be able to be classified as a dog. The problem is, that's never happened.

          "What happens is that the offspring will have a trait or traits that make them differ a little from their parent, but which give them a survival advantage. Over many, many generations these small changes add up (like in the case of wolves evolving into Chihuahuas and Great Danes) to result in a new species."

          But they are still dogs. Not a different KIND. That's not Darwinian evolution.

          September 25, 2013 at 12:00 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Topher. You keep saying that evolution is not testable nor repeatable. Firstly that's not true, obviously we cannot create humans from amino acids but that's not because it didn't happen over millions of years, it's because we couldn't conduct an experiment over that length of time and because evolution could take a different path if we did. Human ascent was helped by such things as the extermination of the dinosaurs which may not happen.
          Secondly, how is creationism testable or repeatable.

          September 25, 2013 at 12:01 pm |
        • Topher

          In Santa we trust

          "You keep saying that evolution is not testable nor repeatable. Firstly that's not true, obviously we cannot create humans from amino acids but that's not because it didn't happen over millions of years, it's because we couldn't conduct an experiment over that length of time and because evolution could take a different path if we did."

          If it happened millions of years ago, at best you could say is it's historical science. And thus you CAN'T test it and it's not repeatable. And since there's no physical evidence (no known changes of kinds) you have zero evidence. So you are taking it all on faith.

          " Secondly, how is creationism testable or repeatable."

          We're not debating creationism here. We're debating whether there's a single shred of evidence for evolution. Which there isn't. If there was even ONE example of a change of kinds you atheists would be shouting it from the rooftops, running commercials, talking about it non-stop. Instead, the only thing you've tried to present as evidence is that a dog evolved over millions of years and produced ... a dog. That's not Darwinian evolution. And that's because it's a fairy tale.

          September 25, 2013 at 12:10 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          Topher
          It is absolutely not disrespectful to my mother. She proclaimed she was a witch because being born with six fingers is supposed to be the sign of a witch. your ancestors would have had her killed.

          My point is, that if that mutation survived, and all of my family was born with 6 fingers, then somewhere a few generations, another mutation, then another and another, on and on for millenia, you can clearly see that at some point, there will be enough mutations that the end resulting animal is no longer representative of the animal that it came from.

          If there is sufficient DNA difference, no a dog might not give birth to a puppy, since its dna will have changed enough to classify it differently.

          A small change over time can be the differnce in a fish that walks on land, and a human, who evolved from that fish over MILLIONS of generations.

          The evidence is overwhelming.
          Evidence the bible is right = Nothing....evidence the bible is wrong, throughout, most specifically genesis. Many science disprove that ridiculous myth.

          September 25, 2013 at 12:12 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Topher, I was using humans as an example but evolution can be sen in many examples.
          Yes creationism is on trial because you say that despite all of the evidence for evolution you don't believe in it, so the alternative promoted by christians is the biblical creation myth for which there is no evidence at all. If you condemn evolution because we can't produce a human from amino acids, you must condemn creationism as we cannot reproduce a universe and all in it.

          September 25, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
        • Topher

          Richard Cranium

          "My point is, that if that mutation survived, and all of my family was born with 6 fingers, ..."

          And were you born with extra fingers? Your children?

          "If there is sufficient DNA difference, no a dog might not give birth to a puppy, since its dna will have changed enough to classify it differently."

          Even if the puppy had ever malformation possible it's still a puppy. You could test its DNA and still know it came from a dog.

          "A small change over time can be the differnce in a fish that walks on land, and a human, who evolved from that fish over MILLIONS of generations."

          How is that testable and repeatable? Where's the transitional form? You have no evidence for this, thus you are taking it on faith. I agree we have small changes. Microevolution is demonstratable. But fish only give birth to fish. And humans to humans.

          "The evidence is overwhelming."

          Then show me the change in kinds. We're all waiting.

          "Evidence the bible is right = Nothing....evidence the bible is wrong, throughout, most specifically genesis. Many science disprove that ridiculous myth."

          You've got two problems here. One, everything you believe in takes faith. Second, you hate God and reject Him because "all we have is faith." Science has disproven nothing in the Bible. Don't fool yourself in to believing that.

          September 25, 2013 at 12:24 pm |
        • Topher

          In Santa we trust

          "Topher, I was using humans as an example but evolution can be sen in many examples."

          Then PLEASE show it to me. I want to see the change in kinds.

          September 25, 2013 at 12:25 pm |
        • A Frayed Knot

          " Science has disproven nothing in the Bible. Don't fool yourself in to believing that."

          Sure, Topher, everyone knows that striped goats are bred by having the mating pair stare at striped objects like it says in Genesis 30:35. Can't refute that. No siree!

          September 25, 2013 at 12:30 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          Topher
          "kind" is not a classification. At which level would you accept the evidence?
          Life, domain, kingdom, phylum, class, order, family, genus or species. There is evidence for any of these classifications.
          Kind is not a classification.

          September 25, 2013 at 12:36 pm |
        • Topher

          A Frayed Knot

          "Sure, Topher, everyone knows that striped goats are bred by having the mating pair stare at striped objects like it says in Genesis 30:35. Can't refute that. No siree!"

          Umm ... you're only supposed to take that medication once a day. What in the world are you talking about? Have you read that passage?

          September 25, 2013 at 12:40 pm |
        • A Frayed Knot

          Topher,

          Ah, ok, make that Genesis 30:37-39.

          September 25, 2013 at 12:45 pm |
        • A Frayed Knot

          p.s. And your jab at "medications" is extremely sopho.moric and trite.

          September 25, 2013 at 12:51 pm |
        • In Santa we trust

          Topher, So look at the fossil record. Read "Your Inner Fish" by Neil Shubin which explains not only how we evolved from fish but also how we and other mammals retain much of the evolutionary evidence, e.g. whales still have the remnants of legs from when they were a land mammal.

          September 25, 2013 at 12:53 pm |
        • Topher

          Richard Cranium

          "Kind is not a classification."

          biology-online.org ... KIND "Race; genus; species; generic class; as, in mankind or humankind."

          September 25, 2013 at 1:00 pm |
        • Richard Cranium

          Topher
          Kind is still not a classification. Yes it has a definition, but not a classification. Which classification?

          September 25, 2013 at 1:06 pm |
        • Topher

          Still waiting for that example of a change in kinds.

          September 25, 2013 at 1:06 pm |
        • Joey

          Evolution is a change in species, not a change in kind. There is no such classification system in biology as kind.

          September 25, 2013 at 1:16 pm |
        • Topher

          Joey

          "Evolution is a change in species, not a change in kind."

          Tell that to Darwin.

          September 25, 2013 at 1:33 pm |
      • Colin

        Topher, if all aspects of an organism (bones, organs, its five senses) can evolve, what is to stop one organism evolving into another, given enough time?

        September 25, 2013 at 11:21 am |
        • Topher

          If it hasn't happened in the umpteen-million years your worldview says it has had ... and hasn't happened yet, what makes you think it will later? Science and the Bible agree. A dog will never bring forth ANYTHING

          September 25, 2013 at 11:34 am |
        • Topher

          ... except its own KIND.

          September 25, 2013 at 11:35 am |
      • Colin

        Topher, I guess you didn't quite understand my question. I asked, if all aspects of an organism (bones, organs, the five senses) can evolve, what mechanism stops one organism evolving into another, given enough time?

        September 25, 2013 at 11:33 am |
    • NotFooled

      I wanna see every fossil b/w old monkey and me. In court if they cant prove a crime man is free. likewise evolution is on trial here.

      September 25, 2013 at 9:48 am |
      • Richard Cranium

        No. Evolution is not on trial. The debate is long over. You can either accept reality or you can jump up and down screaming no, no no...it won't change the reality of evolution.

        September 25, 2013 at 10:34 am |
        • Richard Cranium

          All over the world.

          September 25, 2013 at 10:52 am |
      • EnjaySea

        There aren't fossils for every creature that ever lived. Do you understand that?

        I can walk out into a field and see a few old dead branches and a portion of an old trunk, and know that a tree was there. I don't need to have every branch to prove that there was a tree. I can see some branching of species to know that evolution has been in play. I don't need to see every species.

        September 25, 2013 at 12:08 pm |
      • EnjaySea

        Everyone who paid attention in school understands evolution, and how it perfectly explains the progression of life on this planet. The only people left on earth who can't accept it are Christians.

        Evolution has been operating on this planet for billions of years, and will continue to do so for billions of years after there are no longer any people left to complain about it.

        September 25, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
      • Joey

        Actually, creationism was on trial fairly recently and it lost.

        September 25, 2013 at 1:11 pm |
      • Joey

        I bet every time a new fossil is found you get excited because that presents two new missing links for you to complain about.

        September 25, 2013 at 1:12 pm |
        • Topher

          A new fossil proves only that something died.

          Please show an example of a change in kinds.

          September 25, 2013 at 1:41 pm |
        • Joey

          Every single animal alive today is an example as the fossil record clearly shows.

          September 25, 2013 at 1:50 pm |
        • EnjaySea

          Topher, evolution occurs gradually over millions of years. There was never a case of a female monkey, for instance, suddenly popping out a human. Or as Christians seem to think we're saying: no monkey ever spun around three times and turned into a human either.

          However, over millions of years, an organism gradually, gradually, morphs into something significantly different than what it used to be.

          September 25, 2013 at 3:29 pm |
  10. worldcares

    If an individual wants to become involved in a religion or religious sect, it is up to that individual to decide how they chose to live their lives and the decisions they make.

    September 25, 2013 at 3:46 am |
  11. Billy da kid

    Billy da kid
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    Funkster, why'd you hijack the definition of faith?? You sound gayish..

    September 24, 2013 at 7:22 pm |
  12. Billy da kid

    Billy da kid
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    "Bootyfunk
    christians that don't believe in evolution –......"

    Correct, the rest was you jumpin' off the cliff with the other piggies.

    September 24, 2013 at 7:17 pm |
  13. Bob

    fred, both your religion and your "reasoning" are very messed up. Your belief in your genocidal, human rights -abusing, hateful sky creature and your support of the blood cult around it is an embarrassment to humanity.

    September 24, 2013 at 7:15 pm |
    • Billy da kid

      Never seen a collective blush. Commies have no heart.

      September 24, 2013 at 7:19 pm |
      • Bob

        Speaking for yourself, I presume. As for me, I'm a very successful capitalist.

        September 24, 2013 at 8:48 pm |
    • jacee

      You're pathetic and malignantly self-assured and self absorbed.

      September 24, 2013 at 9:47 pm |
  14. Billy da kid

    Billy da kid
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    It was a two man gunfight. One man showed up.

    September 24, 2013 at 7:13 pm |
  15. Billy da kid

    September 24, 2013 at 2:56 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    Billy da kid
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    The A&A's don't even comprehend the wickedness of Sodominian bullyhood. Watch out when they shuv evilution down yer throats.

    September 24, 2013 at 7:10 pm |
  16. Billy da kid

    Billy da kid
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    Billy da kid
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    The A&A's are big on gubmint gods. The pope and friends are perfect for them . Quit b*i*t*chin'. All hail to the Beasts.
    Billy da kid
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    The A&A's are big on gubmint gods. The pope and friends are perfect for them . Quit b*i*t*chin'. All hail to the Beasts.

    September 24, 2013 at 7:09 pm |
  17. Billy da kid

    Billy da kid
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    The A&A's are big on fantasy and fairylands alright. Look what they do with the Beasty Budget!!

    September 24, 2013 at 3:27 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    Billy da kid
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    Billy da kid
    Good and evil play out on planet earth. Ain't nobody else. You are in the center, so vote yer soul. Central enuff fer ya??

    September 24, 2013 at 7:06 pm |
  18. bostontola

    A question for evolution deniers:

    How can you deny evolution if you accept that 1) genetics is sound science and 2) life has been on the earth for billions of years?

    September 24, 2013 at 6:06 pm |
  19. bostontola

    Evolution is the change in the characteristics of biological populations over successive generations. A decent and concise definition from Wikipedia.

    Key Hypotheses (by no means complete):
    1) Characteristics are inherited.
    2) Variation in characteristics comes from errors.
    3) Some characteristics are better matched to the environment for food gathering and reproduction.

    Evidence and tests of these hypotheses (by no means complete):
    1) Mendel's genetic experiments, DNA science.
    2) DNA manipulation with observed changes to characteristics, fruit fly experiments.
    3) Moths on a smoke stack evolve darker coloration as the smoke stack darkens from soot to avoid predators.

    September 24, 2013 at 5:12 pm |
    • Anon

      Dear bostontola, you are indeed fighting a good fight, but there will always be deniers of evolution; it is much more comfortable for people to willfully remain ignorant of a subject they won't understand. I give you kudos for even trying to educate, though.
      I enjoy your posts. Keep them up.

      September 24, 2013 at 5:18 pm |
    • SoldierOfConscience

      moths etc are micro-evolution. But the origin of man or for that matter of whales from land mammals or for that matter flagella and other irreducibly complex things are not explainable by evolution.

      September 24, 2013 at 5:41 pm |
      • So God did it

        Brilliant.

        September 24, 2013 at 5:50 pm |
      • bostontola

        So you agree that "micro-evolution" is a fact?

        September 24, 2013 at 5:54 pm |
        • bostontola

          Soldier, are you out there?

          September 24, 2013 at 6:01 pm |
      • In Santa we trust

        Irreducibly complex is a bogus concept invented by creationists to muddy the water and try to deny evolution. As to flagella, did you see how well that argument went in the Dover school trial? Failed miserably.

        September 24, 2013 at 6:00 pm |
      • Athy

        Why do some whales still have small, useless hind legs?

        September 24, 2013 at 7:07 pm |
      • tallulah13

        Correction, SoC. There is no micro or macro. Evolution is evolution. The only difference is time frame. Evolution is indisputable.

        September 28, 2013 at 3:39 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      What's particularly striking is how principles of evolution can be seen as features, inevitable features, of information systems that are like the one we are part of. What is difficult is for someone to defend the idea of perfect transmission of genetic information through generations with selection pressures that favor changes and with imperfect error correction. Really, how can evolution not occur?

      Wait, I see... God is always at work keeping it's unruly Creation from getting out of hand.

      September 24, 2013 at 5:46 pm |
      • Dippy

        Its, not it's.

        September 24, 2013 at 7:09 pm |
    • Robert Brown

      Bostontola,

      Thanks for all the good info. I do have one question about the moths. Will the new darker moth mate with one of the lighter colored moths, and if so, will the offspring be light or dark?

      September 24, 2013 at 7:48 pm |
      • Dippy

        I used to put Barbie together with Ken's black friends in store displays. They were discontinued soon after that. I think that was around the time they put out the Klaus Barbie.

        September 24, 2013 at 8:51 pm |
    • a reasonable atheist

      Canis lupus -> canis lupus familiaris is an example of evolution accelerated by humans.

      September 30, 2013 at 11:41 am |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.