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Reconciling Darwin's Theory Of Natural Selection And Intelligent Design

1008 words - 4 pages

Natural selection is an important component of evolution. Natural selection occurs when some members of a population are better fit for survival and reproduction than the others in that population (Phelan 284-85, 2011). The environment in which organisms live plays a part in natural selection as well. Depending on the conditions of the environment, the organisms may pass down selected traits to their offspring. These selected traits will allow for the next generation to better adapt and survive longer. One example of evolution that has occurred in the past ten years is that of hypolimnas bolina, or the blue moon butterfly. The blue moon butterfly evolved through the process of natural selection in order to survive. The male blue moon butterfly was facing extinction due to the parasitic bacteria, wolbachia. The bacteria were being passed down from the mother and were killing off male offspring before they were hatched (Sherriff 2007). Fortunately, the male population has increased significantly due to natural selection. Through heritability, a gene has successfully been passed down through the next ten generations of blue moon butterflies. This gene has been referred to as the “savior” gene. This gene allows infected female butterflies to produce male butterflies that are not affected by the previously fatal bacteria (Sherriff 2007). These newly adapted butterflies have a better fitness, or chance of survival, than those who were infected and did not inherit the “savior” gene. In the case of these butterflies, evolution occurred rather quickly and saved the population from extinction. Some believe that this gene could have resulted from a random mutation. Others believe that a migrating butterfly may have carried the gene to this colony (Sherriff 2007). This explanation pinpoints the idea of variation, or when different traits are present in individuals of the same species (Phelan 301-03, 2011). Over the years, the male population of the blue moon butterfly has increased to nearly forty percent and this is all due to evolution. (Sherriff 2007).
Human beings are still very much evolving. According to recent studies, genetic changes in women over the years have decreased the age at which they birthed their first child. In one study the age decreased as much as four years from age 26 down to age 22 (Allen 2011). Another concurrent study looked at women’s physical appearance in correlation with the number of children they had. The resulting data revealed that, “stout, slightly plump” women had more children. Researchers found that these characteristics are passed on from mothers to their offspring and so forth (Harrell 2009). Therefore, as these traits are passed from generation to generation, the population grows and these characteristics become more prominent in the population. All of these findings confirm that the evolution of human beings is still very much an ongoing process.
Intelligent design is not an alternative theory to evolution....

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