I understand your argument just fine; I’m just baffled as to why you think it somehow challenges evolution.

You might want to reread the article

Okay. I’ll go back to it and address specific points.

So what if Neil deGrasse Tyson or Bill Nye endorses an idea? What we should be concerned with is the validity of their reasoning not their status.

First you make the insinuation Bill Nye and Neil deGrasse Tyson are somehow relying on their celebrity cred as an appeal to authority. Neither Tyson nor Nye are biologists, so if they were offering an opinion that was different from the established consensus among the world’s biologists, then you might actually have a point.

But they’re not doing that. They’re just saying what 99% of biologists are saying.

Now, referring to scientific consensus is NOT an appeal to authority, because biologists are not saying “We’re right and you have to listen to us because we all agree.” Rather, they’re saying, “This is what the evidence shows. If you think we’re wrong, you need to address the evidence.”

Circling back to Neil deGrasse Tyson’s response: “the egg ­­ — laid by a bird that was not a chicken”. We see that even the eggs of such a bird would have run into the same improbable scenario as the chicken egg. Namely, how did that bird come to be — did the egg or the bird come first?

Skipping ahead to this Tyson quote, because nothing before it is worth addressing.

Tyson’s answer isn’t the infinite regress that you seem to think it is.

Before the chicken, there was the chicken-like bird that Tyson refers to.

Before that bird, there was the dinosaur.

Before the dinosaur, there were fish.

So far it seems like there’s a regression — but keep looking back, and eventually you’ll get to the point in evolutionary history before the egg had evolved as a reproductive mechanism, before there was even sexual reproduction. Yet there were still multicellular organisms, which would one day evolve into the first species of organisms that would lay the first eggs.

So the answer is, definitively, that the egg did not come first.

— — —

My point, however, is that it doesn’t matter. Even if we couldn’t answer the question of whether the chicken (or whatever) or the egg came first, it wouldn’t matter. That in no way challenges the validity of evolution.

The question isn’t so much misleading as it is irrelevant.

but we should definitely test accepted beliefs whenever we can

Yes, we should. Science is built upon that principle, and it’s why it is a superior methodology over all others, especially religion. Because science has a built-in error-correcting mechanism. It welcomes challenge — provided that the challenge is in good faith, and that the challenger can back up his or her claims with evidence.

Writer.

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