Myths and misconceptions about evolution – Alex Gendler


Myths and misconceptions about evolution. Let’s talk about evolution. You’ve probably heard that some people consider
it controversial, even though most scientists don’t. But even if you aren’t one of those people and you think you have a pretty
good understanding of evolution, chances are you still believe
some things about it that aren’t entirely right, things like, “Evolution is organisms
adapting to their environment.” This was an earlier, now discredited, theory of evolution. Almost 60 years before Darwin
published his book, Jean-Baptiste Lamarck proposed that creatures evolve by developing certain traits over their lifetimes and then passing those
on to their offspring. For example, he thought that because giraffes spent their lives stretching to reach leaves
on higher branches, their children would be
born with longer necks. But we know now that’s not
how genetic inheritance works. In fact, individual organisms
don’t evolve at all. Instead, random genetic mutations cause some giraffes to be
born with longer necks, and that gives them
a better chance to survive than the ones who weren’t so lucky, which brings us to “survival of the fittest”. This makes it sound
like evolution always favors the biggest, strongest, or fastest creatures, which is not really the case. For one thing, evolutionary
fitness is just a matter of how well-suited
they are to their current environment. If all the tall trees suddenly died out and only short grass was left, all those long-necked giraffes would be at a disadvantage. Secondly, survival is not
how evolution occurs, reproduction is. And the world if full of creatures like the male anglerfish, which is so small and ill-suited
for survival at birth that it has to quickly find
a mate before it dies. But at least we can say that if an organism dies
without reproducing, it’s evolutionarily useless, right? Wrong! Remember, natural selection happens not at the organism level, but at the genetic level, and the same gene
that exists in one organism will also exist in its relatives. So, a gene that makes an animal
altruistically sacrifice itself to help the survival
and future reproduction of its siblings or cousins, can become more widespread than one that is solely concerned
with self-preservation. Anything that lets more copies of the gene pass on to the next generation will serve its purpose, except evolutionary purpose. One of the most difficult things
to keep in mind about evolution is that when we say things like, “Genes want to make more
copies of themselves,” or even, “natural selection,” we’re actually using metaphors. A gene doesn’t want anything, and there’s no outside mechanism that selects which genes
are best to preserve. All that happens is that random
genetic mutations cause the organisms carrying them to behave or develop in different ways. Some of those ways result in more copies of the mutated gene being passed on, and so forth. Nor is there any predetermined plan progressing towards an ideal form. It’s not ideal for the human
eye to have a blind spot where the optic nerve exits the retina, but that’s how it developed, starting from a simple photoreceptor cell. In retrospect, it would have been much more advantageous for humans to crave nutrients and vitamins rather than just calories. But over the millenia, during which our ancestors evolved, calories were scarce, and there was nothing to anticipate that this would later change so quickly. So, evolution proceeds blindly, step by step by step, creating all of the diversity
we see in the natural world.

100 thoughts on “Myths and misconceptions about evolution – Alex Gendler”

  1. I remember when I was a kid, the science teacher just briefly mentioned evolution because she said, since we're Christians we don't really need to believe in it…..

    Religious indoctrination really is hard to shake off. It's almost like a mental disorder.

  2. هناك اصلا اخطاء كثيره في النظريه مثلا الحفريات ليست في صالح النظريه

  3. وش صار قبل الانفجار العظيم ؟ من سبب الانفجار العظيم؟ هل حدث من العدم؟ كل فكرة تقودنا لفكرة

  4. Are we all ok with the fact that out of the thousands of fossils found, only a few somewhat represent a transitional form? There should be tons, right? Are we happy with the evolutionary trees that never quite show a picture or fossil example of the organism that branches off? There should be tons. And how often are germ mutations (mutations that can be passed on to offspring) actually beneficial to the organism? Does anyone know the stats on that? There should be tons but all the mutations I’ve studied and heard of are neutral or harmful loss-of-function mutations. Do they just randomly not exist today? So is evolution over then if there are little to no gain-of-function germ mutations occurring today? Creationists ask questions like these and I’m honestly not sure how to answer them.

  5. One way to understand Evolution is to first understand “Artificial Selection”. Wolves and Dogs are descended from common ancestors (which looked more like modern wolfs than dogs). Over many generations, Humans selected the “favourable” traits (e.g., long shiny fur, or stocky legs etc) to produce the many different types / breeds of modern dogs that we have today. The keyword here is “over many generations”. There are modern dogs that, of course, are still very much wolve-like in appearance (e.g., Huskies, German Shepherd etc). Some dog breeds are much less wolf-like in appearance (Chihuahua, Shih Tzu etc) as they have been artificially selected for their small size and “cute” traits. So why is it known as artificial selection? This is because the Human (the dog breeders) are the ones determining which individual dogs they would prefer to produce offsprings, thereby continuing the genes they would like to retain. Prior to this, it is also important to understand the idea of Variation. This means that in a litter of puppies, not every puppy is physically identical (even though they may look identical to the untrained eyes). Some puppies have slightly longer legs, some shorter legs. Very small differences, but, yes, the differences are there. It is due to this physical variations that the breeders (humans) select which dogs possess the traits he wants, thus the term “Artificial Selection”. This Selection process is repeated over many generations and the result is the modern dog breeds we have today.

    Once we understood Artificial Selection, it will be easy to understand Natural Selection. In Natural Selection, Mother Nature (instead of Human) is the factor deciding which traits survive through the generations. How? One example is Food Source. Many species of birds have developed the ability to swim to obtain their food (Adaptability). One pre-requisite of aquatic birds is having water-proof feathers. In this case, this is the “Favourable Trait”. One group of birds may live nearer to the seasides and Individual birds with more waterproof feathers is seen by Mother Nature as a “favourable trait”. And so individual birds with this trait has a much higher chance of survival and passing on this gene to the next generations. This is Adaptation. It has to be highlighted that Adaptation takes place over many generations. Physical Adaptations (e.g., change in body shapes) DO NOT take place in just one generation. In other words, an individual animal will not change physically to obtain that trait in its lifetime, unless it’s metamorphosis which is a totally different thing. We also observed this in rabbits in deserts and rabbits in cold countries. The long ears in rabbits act as effective heat radiators. So the rabbits living in deserts adapted to the environment (over many generations) by developing very long and erect ears. But rabbits living in cold countries tends to have shorter ears (some even have lop ears). All animals (and yes, that includes humans) are still in the midst of evolution. Evolution is a very slow on-going process. It will never be “complete”, as change is the only constant. We can see this fact more prominently in the seals / walruses. Their ancestors are land animals, but their body shapes are evidence that they are in the midst of “transition” from land animals to aquatic animals, as their main source of food is in the sea. Of course, we cannot see an appreciable change in their appearances in our lifetime, as the change is happening too slowly over many generations. So presently, we can only imagine the current physical appearances of seals/walruses as being “frozen-in-time”, as with the rest of the millions of species of animals currently living on this planet Earth. And do appreciate their beauty in their current physical form (and the diversity of the Tree of Life), as they will never be the same again one million years from now.

  6. Good video 🙂 I missed the "Evolution is just a theory" misconception. Evolution is a fact. How exactly it happend is proposed in the theory of Evolution. This is "just" a theory. But a scientific one, meaning it has gathered a huge amount of supporting evidence and that it is potentially falsifiable, but so fair it has not been proven wrong. Theory is a misleading word, but in science everything is a theory, like the theory of gravity, or the theory of the heleocentric solar system. This doesn't mean they are just ideas without evidence, but that there is many evidence and there is still new information added.

  7. Human will change to any other structure?
    Its already 100000-200000 years humans living in same conditions?
    The human skeleton find in different parts of the earth with 13-16 feet?
    Please if anyone knowns

  8. Wait so why is it so wide spread? If the mutations are random and confined to a single organism and thier offspring, why is it so common in animal species? Is there a driving force that isn't random that causes it?

  9. Is this nonsense understandable?
    The giraffe lengthened its neck due to random spikes, and since this corresponds to the environment, the giraffes did not show that
    This is very funny for two reasons
    The first is where the middle attempts, which are supposed to be unsuccessful, will make the giraffes impossible to survive
    Second, what are the random mutations that occur all at the same moment to remove the neck of the giraffe with this magnificence I mean, of course, internal organs of the giraffe
    Unfortunately, you are adopting a failed issue: evolution

  10. هل يعقل هذا الهراء
    الزرافه أستطال عنقها بسبب طفرات عشوائية ونظرا لأن ذلك يوافق البيئة فظلت الزرافه تدل علي ذلك
    هذا مضحك جدا لسببين
    الاول هو أين المحاولات الوسطي والتي من المفترض أنها فاشله وسيجعل من بقاء الزرافات مستحيل
    ثانيا ما هي الطفرات العشوائية التي تحدث جميعا في نفس اللحظة لإخراج عنق الزرافه بهذه الروعة أقصد طبعا الأجهزه الداخليه للزرافه
    للأسف أنتم تتبنون قضية فاشلة ألا وهي التطور

  11. Very cool video with lovely animations! But saying that Lamarcks theories are discredeted today is just simply wrong. Because in fact his theory (kinda) proved to be true and is what we call Epigenetics today 🙂

  12. There is a video game i play called natrual selection 2 that tought me about how any animals can learn and adapt to avoid predators

  13. Now can you provide a single piece of observable scientific evidence that this process can even produce something like the human eye? By the way, the blind spot exists because the nerves for the rods and cones are in front of those cells so that they can have access to the nutrient-rich blood behind them and to protect them from ultraviolet light. They also have other cells that act like fiber optics to get the light to each cell.

  14. Ni🅱🅱as with shlongs get more kitty than ni🅱🅱as with Shmeats, so Shlong ni🅱🅱as reproduce and shmeat ni🅱🅱as don't reproduce leaving the shlong Ni🅱🅱as left so only baby ni🅱🅱as with shlongs are made and they survive. This is an example of natural selection modernized so millennials will understand!!!😎😎👌

  15. Read this bible study going into detail as to why the teaching of "evolution" is among the most absurd beliefs that exists today, yet many deliberately choose to believe this lie, because they do not want to believe the truth. Read the bible study here http://www.wisdomofgod.us/2019/01/31/the-lie-of-evolution-and-the-stupidity-of-those-who-believe-it/ .

  16. كيف كانت جميع الزرافات تتغذى قبل حدوث الطفره الجينيه لها

  17. Here's another myth. That there is epigenetic evolution. There is NO. Epigenetics is pseudoscience, therefore using epigenetics to explain evolution is also pseudoscientific endeavor.

  18. New organs or traits cannot emerge in living things through Natural selection. A species genetic data does not develop by means of it, and it cannot be used to account for the emergence of new species. Natural selection has no intelligence. It does not possess a will that can decide what is good and what is bad for living things. As a result, natural selection cannot explain how biological systems and organs that possess the feature of "irreducible complexity" came into being. These systems and organs are composed of a great number of parts working together, and are of no use if even one is missing or defective. The human eye cannot function unless it exists with all it's components intact. The will that brings all these parts together should be able to foresee the future and aim directly at the advantage that is to be acquired at the final stage. Since natural selection has no consciousness or will, it can do no such thing. This fact demolishes the foundations of the theory of evolution.

  19. This video perpetuates another myth about Evolution, that it is a completely random and unpredictable process where anything that "works" is just coincidental. The eye is not an intelligent design, but the eye and its function had to be perfected in evolution many millions of years before it would still be found in highly developed organisms today. In physics, systems favor equilibrium, and this rule is found in the various biomechanical processes down to the molecular level; it works because it obeys the laws of physics and allows the propagation of the cycle of life, not because it just "happened" to work and there exists some other possible wildly different configuration that could also work. Mutations are also mostly caused by some sort of gene-environment interaction on the molecular level (new research shows that DNA is better at "dealing" with these environmental changes than we thought), not some random process that we cannot seem to decipher. Even viruses must rely on the most basic prokaryotic organism in order to replicate itself.

  20. The example of altruism being beneficial due to multiple copies of the gene existing within a population downplays that behavioral mechanisms in organisms are orientated by and large around self preservation. The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins better explains why altruism is in no way the primary method of genetic replication.

  21. Evolutionists say nothing exploded and it created everything
    When they are asked:
    What is nothing? They say, vacuum.
    Was it an explosion? They say, it was an expansion.
    How can vacuum in expansion produce the universe? They say, there are particles in the vacuum that pop in and pop out into the existence, it happens all the time.

    This is evolution science, a fact.

  22. U really should delete this video, contains false info. Outdated. Or should you say, what disproves it, actually proves it, as you always do. Evolution'S' is a religion, far fom science.it is a myth

  23. Evolution is a fake there’s no such thing. Really think about it for Ex scientists say we come from bananas, so if we come from bananas then why is my brother allergic to them so basically your saying he’s allergic to himself and we also eat bananas so we’re eating ourselves guys. Plus we keep bananas in our house for a long time and I don’t see any humans coming out of them. Humans come from other humans and if your wondering where the first ever living human came from read the Bible.

  24. The fossil records are the only evidence we have of evolution ever having taken place, as such they're the only means we have of viewing the process occurring. I was fortunate enough to have had access to the fossil records, while attending The University of Texas, and researched them thoroughly. They looked nothing like Darwin's "imaginary tree of life", one single common ancestor producing nonillions of transitional variations of living things that became more and more complex by some mythical undirected force. That process isn't seen occurring in the "factual fossil records". Instead they revealed highly complex living things appearing abruptly and fully developed, with each species maintaining genetic stability throughout every geological period without any progressive transitional intermediates falling between and linking any two.

    Charles Darwin concurred with my findings that the fossil records are lacking intermediates and distinct species suddenly appear in them, stating; "the distinctness of specific forms, and their not being blended together by innumerable transitional links, is a very obvious difficulty…Why then is not every geological formation and every stratum full of such intermediate links?… Geology assuredly does not reveal any such finely graduated organic chain; and this, perhaps, is the most obvious and gravest objection which can be urged against my theory…it becomes more difficult to understand, why we do not therein find closely graduated varieties between the allied species which lived at its commencement and at its close. Some cases are on record of the same species presenting distinct varieties in the upper and lower parts of the same formation…Hence, when the same species occur at the bottom, middle, and top of a formation…On the sudden appearance of groups of Allied Species in the lowest known fossiliferous strata. There is another and allied difficulty, which is much graver. I allude to the manner in which numbers of species of the same group, suddenly appear in the lowest known fossiliferous rocks…The abrupt manner in which whole groups of species suddenly appear in certain formations…Some of the most ancient Silurian animals, as the Nautilus, Lingula, &c., do not differ much from living species; and it cannot on my theory be supposed, that these old species were the progenitors of all the species of the orders to which they belong, for they do not present characters in any degree intermediate between them…The several difficulties here discussed, namely our not finding in the successive formations infinitely numerous transitional links between the many species which now exist or have existed; the sudden manner in which whole groups of species appear in formations."*

    Darwin did add "The explanation lies, as I believe, in the extreme imperfection of the geological record…So that the number of intermediate and transitional links, between all living and extinct species, must have been inconceivably great. But assuredly, if this theory be true, such have lived upon this earth…What an infinite number of generations, which the mind cannot grasp, must have succeeded each other in the long roll of years! Now turn to our richest geological museums, and what a paltry display we behold!"*, however he never once made the definitive statement ; "I observed one distinct living thing, after going through the innumerable progressive transitional changes I predicted, becoming a completely different distinct living thing in the fossil records. My theory has been proven!"

    150 years of continued fossil collecting has made the problem worse. Paleontologist still have not found any progressive transitional intermediates falling between and linking any two species.

    *On the origin of species, Chapter 9; The imperfection of the geological record—http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/origin/chapter9.html

  25. Don't mean to ruffle your "evolutionary feathers" here, but
    there are several leading scientific theories that cast serious doubts
    on the theory of macroevolution. The Chaos Theory questions the concept
    of adaptation to the environment driven by natural selection, implies that environment does not produce complex adaptations, and says that evolution is chaotic. The Punctuated
    Equilibrium Theory casts serious doubts on Darwinian gradualism. The
    Tangled Tree or Lateral Gene Transfer Theory casts serious doubts on the
    idea of Tree of life and splitting (speciation) that require only
    vertical gene transfer which is based on pure lineages/common ancestry.
    The Convergent Evolution Theory casts serious doubts on common
    ancestry. With all these problems, how can it be considered a fact?
    Why not mention all these scientific theories in the books of evolution?
    Why are these theories not presented as counter-theories? Why is
    evolution advertised as "the only theory" or as an “undeniable fact"
    when above theories have challenged many aspects of it? If evolutionists
    don't tell us about such counter-theories, they're making evolution
    look like a religion that turns blind eye to counter-theories. As it
    stands, evolution is a work-in-progress at best.

  26. Wonder what kind of mutation caused the evolution of fox like mammals into giant whales and cute dolphins

  27. There is new evidence suggesting that the Lamarkian model has merit. Not in the same way as he thought because he had no idea about DNA and how it get's modified. This modification turns out to get inherited and does cause phenotypic changes.

  28. Evolution doesn't work at all. Never observed, to where a creature evolved into a completely different creature, so it's not even science. It's pure IMAGINATION… making it nothing more than a religion.

  29. The biggest misconception I see is people saying we didn't evolve from apes, that we just have a common ancestor with them.

    I know when they say apes they mean chimps, but it is still a misconception.

    We did evolve from apes, and we are still apes, that is because of the law of monophyly, which states that you will always be in the same clade as your ancestors.

  30. Charles Darwin explained about how animals were evolved
    But
    My question is how plants came into existence

  31. You said a lot, but didn’t really say anything. You are wrong about evolution.
    What you presented is an explanation of “micro-evolution” only which is the only form of “evolution” that is observable & true. Macro-evolution, where a pine tree is related to a human, is not scientific and also not true = a lie. It takes “faith” to believe that macro-evolution took place = a religion. “All living things being related” is what evolutionists believe and teach. You have to “believe” that those radical changes happened (an amoeba produced a giraffe over “millions of years” – the secret sauce.) No one has ever observed this and ALL of the so-called fossil evidence for it has been proven untrue and hoaxes. Therefore, evolution (specifically macro-evolution) is a religion. You have to have faith to believe it’s true. You cannot observe an oak tree producing a mouse or a monkey becoming a man. The truth is “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” Genesis 1:1. Discover the truth of that statement, and the rest of the Bible is easy to understand. God Bless You!

  32. You had me shocked at first when you said it is wrong to say organisms adapt to their environment, you meant individual ones don´t on a smaller timescale.

  33. The latest scientific discoveries debunk the hypothesis (not theory, not fact) of Darwinian evolution. Although species adapt within their own species, no species evolves into another species.

  34. Christians have been right along . The buried dead will rise again . Yes , they will rise again as dust in the wind .

  35. Yes these atheist believes that we came from the apes. And guess what human form is not a final form. They expecting human to have a wing,a horn and a tail. And they are feeling it right now.😄😄

  36. playing with these theories killing your times, in the end, The Creator is waiting for you just don't worry be ready

  37. The biggest misconception about evolution is that it can create higher life forms or new biological functions, while in reality evolution is as creativity powerless as fog or wind – https://evofact.wordpress.com/

  38. Lamarckism:"we know now that this is not how evolution procxeeds" So typical of the arrogance of scientists; in fact epigenetics,a form of lamarckism it could be said, is now thought to possibly be how evolution DOES proceed. This, and a great deal more,is problematical with the theory.

  39. Misconceptions of a scientific theory seem to come from those who are desperately tring to strengthen their position… belief! I have seen 1 theist strongly exsplain the difference between evolution & adoptation! Simply because he was very inteligent and frustrated at the ignorence wothin the aurgument between the 2 people!

  40. Evolution explains nothing. Being based on random mutations, which happen to be almost always harmful, it's predicted outcome should be extinction of every species. We don't mention that even the simplest cell has tons of quaternary code information which dictates the development of the organism. Sorry but evolution has been a busted theory since long ago.

  41. Has anyone ever seen a giraffe with a short neck? Where is the fossil evidence of giraffes with short necks?

  42. The first FALSIFICATION of evolution (known in 1900, courtesy of Charles Darwin):
    The BUTTERFLY: This creature has two body plans but only the second one can lay eggs and reproduce. The evolutionary (common) ancestor is unknown because it doesn't and cannot exist. Why? Because to evolve a butterfly from a creature with a single body plan that lays its own eggs means it must first evolve a second body plan BEFORE it looses the ability to lay its own eggs! But that second body plan has NEGATIVE FITNESS VALUE and by the very explanation given would tend to be be eliminated not favoured in reproduction.
    Charles Darwin said If any structure can be found which cannot be achieved by a series of slight modifications my theory fails. The butterfly is just one of many.

  43. Mars. Humanity destroyed it's ecosystem and mined the resources out of the place. Diminishing resources and a dying planet with a species decimation through chain-link extinction. Earth was their goal as it had an emerging ecosystem. Only one mission was possible. Although others were sent on deep space missions to find Mars like habitable planets. They landed in the Great Rift Valley. The landing was probably not clean. Technology could not be maintained and skills and knowledge were lost. They survived and the rest lurks in the mists of time, legend and supposition.
    Some of the others also achieved their goal and have changed physically for their environment as did Earth humanity. Their knowledge and technology survived the landings and thus advanced further. They are aware of us and there are visits but due to personality characteristics of Earth humanity, they keep a low profile from a distance usually. There would not be mutual comprehension due to the development over thousands of years in different environments. They observe our society and it's merits, and also it's flaws. They cannot intervene. It is a cycle they know occurred before. Only harmony between people and it's environment can sustain. Earth humanity cannot achieve this as a whole.
    (It's just a story).
    But they are there.

  44. i dont know how people cant see natural selection at play almost everyday.
    i live in a city
    and the other day i watched young pidgeon holding himself on the wall
    i guess he couldnt fly yet
    and cat was just waiting for him to fall

    if he doesnt learn to fly he is dead
    if he does he will reproduce

    edit: if you are wondering what happened
    co-worker saved the pidgeon

  45. We are creation of God very hand
    No need to doubt no need to do the research
    Jesus love You the péon reading this

  46. Given that the term “survival of The fittest” pertains to the ability to pass on genetic material and essentially continue to exist as a species.
    Every currently endangered species is pretty much rubbish at surviving (I’m looking at panda bears 🐼 in particular) in the current world since humans have to intervene to save them (even though humans are mostly the reason why they are endangered)🤔

  47. This video never explained the development of gene or cell from elements. My understanding is that living cell can not survive in parts (having mitochondria but no cell membrane ), it is all or nothing. Building a car is different than building a living being. Key terms: there must be a Designer, who is the Builder. Our gene contains instructions that would fill a room, yet most people believe these instructions came about themselves.
    Who believes a short book could be produced if you put letter A and water, which contains all the ELEMENTS needed to make other letters, in a jar and shake it, shock it, and bake it until 20 M – 3.4B years. How do one rationalize or believe this?

  48. So many rude creationists and rude militant atheists from both camps in the comments. It seems to me that a lot of these people forget that most theists accept that evolution is a fact because it’s demonstrable. I’m probably wrong, but that’s the impression that I’m getting.

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