So I was driving home and saw this sign in front of the church. In bold letters was the question, “If man came from apes, why are there still apes?” I know very little about the church, so I’ll try not to give undue credence to the question, but it isn’t the first time I’ve seen it.
Typically the question is used as evidence for creationism. The logic goes, if man came from apes, then all the apes should have turned into men. Therefore, since there are apes, man couldn’t have come from them. Hence evolution is wrong.
There was a time I could have pulled the correct name for the fallacy employed here, but Logic 312 at Auburn was a long time ago. Nevertheless the fallacy is there.
I could go into the biology, but why? The question makes it clear that biology is of no concern to the questioner. There isn’t one species of apes, there are several. Some are extinct, like giant ape. Others are still here, like the gorilla and chimpanzee. The logic of the argument falls apart right there. Evolution doesn’t claim man evolved from all apes, just one.
But again, that isn’t the point. Ultimately the questioner is looking for “God in the gaps” to appease their distrust of science.
They Might Be Giants tells us “Science is Real” and they are right. I don’t want science that relies on faith. Science need never fear being wrong, good science gladly accepts correction. If new evidence disproved the ape theory, science will adapt.
For example, the venerable triceratops is currently under attack. Some scientists now think it may not have been a unique animal, but the juvenile form of yet another beast. Science can change.
That’s not to say it can’t be dogmatic. It can. It’s fairly clear to me that much of the global warming, in both sides, has reached that point. But Evolution? Not so much.