“The overzealous use of the term "black-on-black" crime is suggestive itself of racism. Do you people who utter this term ever use the term "white-on-white" when describing things that affect you, or white people generally? I'd be willing to bet your eagerness to drop that term would vanish. Prevalence of this and similar terms suggests the mindset of reinforcing stereotypes of black people as dangerous. It's not actually at all about addressing or understanding intra-group violence. If the term were intended as benign, we would use “white-on-white” crime to describe the crime that mostly affects white people ... but obviously we don’t see people clamoring to say that. People like me aren't just out looking for racism, it exists, and it's right out there. It's the obliviousness and denial of some people is so thick they can't (or won't) see it.”
“2 days after the bombing, bomber still at large, 2,000 people descended into the city silently with the sole purpose to block religious fanatics (Westboro Baptists) from the city memorial. We succeeded. We got sunburnt standing in silence, listening to the city's eerie stillness, unafraid for our own safety. We didn't care. That was our city's "knee jerk" reaction to this event. Nobody on this side of the state isn't connected by 1-2 degrees to someone who was injured.
The image choice is in bad taste. There are so many better ways to present a story of the type they wanted to do. An image on the cover of a culture magazine is a ticket into American cultural history. It is recognition, it is celebrity. As much "knee-jerk" as my reaction of disgust seeing the bomber's face may be, I feel it's also an appropriate reaction. They should have chosen better images for the story. It is insensitive.
Despite my curiosity about how he came to do what he did, I don't want to remember the face or name of this horrible person. I remember seeing people on crutches, wheelchairs, bandages and gauze in their ears, at the city memorial, paying respect to the few who had died. Even those who were injured, attended if they could. These are the people and the images I do care to remember.
I'll read the article. Seeing his face is emblazened on a cultural rag is indeed a bit much.”
“US citizens cannot be charged as an "enemy combatant". We cannot make such exceptions to law, no matter how horrible the crimes have been. If we make excption for one person, it's a slippery slope that can affect us all. We all want him to pay for his crimes, but overriding the justice system is not the way.
He should be made to face the families of the dead and injured. He will be held accountable.”
Unca Allen on Apr 23, 2013 at 00:26:17
“He can be tried for treason, which is a death penalty offense.”
“Boston resident here-- not really. "Lock down" is just a term. Watertown was on highest alert, surrounding towns had more discretion. They were knocking on doors first, informing the locals, and much of it was happening with the homeowners' total consent. One family that had small kids ran out of milk, and the officers went out and got them milk from the store. You conspiracy nut-jobs really need to stop being so cynical. It's just a story of people in a bad situation.”
“I think we both agree that Longisquama is a fascinating find - I hope we find a few more of them, because it would be wonderful to get a better imprint of it's anatomical features.
It's difficult using words like "bird" as taxonomically, the meaning can become vague when we reach back to origins of modern creatures we easily recognize. At what point does something become a true bird? Is sinornithosaurus just a bird?
Either way, I'm glad we both find this topic interesting.”
“I responded honestly, in stream of consciousness, as I would were I speaking. To have this regarded as "sophmoric," "senseless," and "grasping for straws" (itself an ad hominem/verecundiam fallacy) it really seems like you were not taking me seriously to begin with. I am a human being, giving you my honest thoughts and reactions as a person outside your particular system of self-conduct.
Yes, I am genuinely afraid of people who imply that they understand humans to be rapacious, murderous, aimless, sinful, without a particular God to "give" them morals or codes of conduct. (Notice how I didn't trot out the other inference I could have made -- that by contrast you likely see me as all of those things for being without God -- I could take that personally, but instead chose to make something more useful of the discussion, which you have now derailed.)
I am also limited by characters in this window, I had typed a longer reply but was forced to reduce it by about 30% -- so if there's something specifically that didn't make sense to you, typically a person at all interested in meaningful discourse would ask for more, or for clarification. You came in here, knowing full well the sort of people you might find posting on the topic, but I suspect you wanted only to pontificate, not interact.
All in all, I imagine this end simply means the internet is a lousy forum for discussions such as these.”
“It wasn't a Theory in his day - it was a hypothesis --- we have come so much further since his time.
I doubt very much that the writer of that page is a biographer of Charles Darwin - I'll have to overlook the disingenuous rhetoric of that website. If we're at all concerned with making cogent, subject-based arguments, then it doesn't matter what Darwin thought about his own idea - appealing to the author's own opinions does nothing to invalidate or compromise the integrity of the idea itself. Just because he "made" it doesn't mean he can also "unmake" it - Darwin wasn't a deity, he was just a man. Science is about showing through data, it is not a matter of arguing ins/outs from authority. Validity of a subject is only argued from a deep literacy of the content.
If you're the sort who is going to tell me that "Darwin had doubts" or that "he recanted on his deathbed" - both extremely fallacious if not entirely dishonest things to say, then you know nothing about the subject whatsoever, and probably have no interest in making serious discussion.”
“I don't see how abstracting it into mere "chemistry" versus "immaterial moral law" is apt to the phenomenon of human conscisoussness. There isn't a single pilot of perception - human behavior is a complex tapestry of social influences, as well as inner chemistry. There's a whole climate. This is why I will say the dichotomy isn't fitting.
I see no link between the holocaust and evolution - but my moral senses do find this comparison in bad taste - we're not discussing the political and religious environment of Europe which gave rise to it --- your use of the 'holocaust' comparison is "guilt by proxy" serving to distract and anger. It's also obvious by history that Hitler was Catholic, and held strong beliefs. An event as horrible as the holocaust deserves very serious thinking, not fallacious rhetoric.
To think that humans would not behave morally without God, is to have no faith in intrinsic human goodness. It is to look at all of us as sinful, dirty, animals in the spiritual wilderness. It is to say that we have no meaning, no purpose in the present. I understand this entire paradigm to be false....
...and if a belief in God is holding you back from murderous activities, I'm terribly afraid of you. If you don't do "good" for it's own sake, but only because you have someone (God) watching you, what sort of morality do you have? It's how we behave when nobody's watching us, that displays our inner character.”
“Sorry, that was a mistaken c&p from earlier people using similar statements --
I'm just using colloquial words -- "systematics" or "cladistics" is probably what you're expecting. The information we have shows that modern birds come through maniraptora - have you seen all the fossils with feather imprints lately?
Longisquama is the subject of debate only because the appendages resemble a feather. Just because something has structures resembling feathers does not make it a bird -- in the same way a thylacine is not a member of carnivora -- we can tell by it's physiology, which excludes it. While the appendages of Longisquama may seem like feathers at the level of the follicle, the structures have more in common with the tall quills of Tianyulong, of Psittacosaurus, or perhaps even the spines of a modern iguana, than with the derived structure of modern bird feathers. Longisquoma also doesn't fit the "bill" physiologically -- it's known anatomical features exclude it from being a member of Tetanurae.
On a practical note, it's also highly unlikely that feathers evolved more than once, they are complex in morphology, highly derived. The basal material, scales, have seen many modifications in several different lineages. I can't find any justification for finding homologous single features on a prior species (with so few fossils, in too), and declaring it the ancestral condition. It's wiser to respect the order / parsimony obtained from fleshed-out lineages (maniraptors) which actually do show the progression.”
trebuchet71 on Jan 30, 2013 at 09:24:58
“You seem to be the only one that has put together a reasonable argument, but I still disagree with you. You're right, feathers only evolved once. But, really, just look at Longisquama and then look at the so called "downy fuzz" feathers and put aside your prejudice to believe that birds are dinos, and see for yourself which one has more in common with a feather. The problem with Maniraptors is that more than half of these things are birds. You can't keep changing the qualifications for the phylum to suit bad science. It is a circular argument based on the premise that all birds are dinosaurs so these birds must be dinosaurs so they are then proof that dinos have actual feathers and proper tooth structure. Do you see the problem with this line of reasoning? You seem fairly intelligent, I would guess you have some academic background in paleo., though I doubt it is a degree. Put your bias aside, see for yourself. I know it is hard, I came into this field wanting to believe that when I looked out the window and saw a hawk flying around, it was a dinosaur. Then I became educated on the subject, looked at the evidence, went to the conferences like SVP and it became clear how wrong it all was, something that is slowly but surely coming clear to more and more paleontologists every day.”
“If you knew anything about how animals are classified, you'd know that humans *are* primates, classified not by fossils but in the modern day by physiology, genetics, and physiognomy. In the same way we're mammals, tetrapods, chordates, and animals. In rejecting that we're classified as primates, then by extension you reject the idea that we're animals, and therefore part of life on earth. This is an extraordinary sense of exceptionalism, the elevation of humans (and the self) above all else. When accompanied by illiteracy in the very subject you're criticizing, it is the complete opposite of humility.”
“If you were more familiar with the subject of ancestral lineage, you'd know that pterodactyls are not dinosaurs. The rest of your post makes no sense whatsoever. There are numerous fossils showing impressions of feathers and proto-feathers, especially among the small dinosaurs known as "maniraptors," from which all birds are descended.”
trebuchet71 on Jan 29, 2013 at 12:42:26
“I'm sorry I forgot that my MS in Vert. Paleo. made me illiterate on the subject of evolution, by the way you only use the term "ancestral lineage" when dealing with humans. Birds do not come from "maniraptors" as the first bird with actual feathers, Longisquama, showed up almost 15 million years before "maniraptors". Of course if you read the peer-reviewed literature on this subject as closely as you read these posts it would explain how you did not know that.”
“No, being "smart" is a matter of capacity. This is a matter of information. One cannot know anything about science without information. You do not care for it. This is not about anyone think they are smarter than you. This is about the genuine frustration of people insulting my academic subject interests, when they have NO LITERACY in those interests themselves. You are the one making it a false dichotomy of "faith." You don't need faith when there's information involved. I don't "believe" that the sun revolves around the earth.”
DK in MS on Jan 29, 2013 at 14:47:34
I thoroughly enjoyed your contribution to this conversation for your clear explanations of complex ideas, your refusal to be sidetracked by false equivalencies and straw men, your unswerving loyalty to the science, and your insistence on civility even in the face of blatant obfuscation.
I look forward to reading more of your posts. F&F”
“Fossils are rare, and tend to occur in abiotic circumstances where mummification first occurs, or they are buried rapidly. Yes, that part is accurate. We know how mineralization occurs as well.
The rest of this is just pure nonsense. Only a person who had NO knowledge of the natural world could believe it.
- Why didn't at least one dinosaur make it to the high ground with the elephants?
- Why don't any modern-looking plants low in the precambrian? Why no rabbits, or eagles?
- Why are some groups of organisms, such as mollusks, found in many geologic strata?
- How were coral reefs hundreds of feet thick and miles long preserved intact with other fossils below them?
- Why do small organisms dominate the lower strata, whereas fluid mechanics says they would sink slower and thus end up in upper strata?
- Why are artifacts such as footprints, coprolites (fossil dung), and burrows are also sorted?
- Why are no human artifacts found except in the very uppermost strata?
- Why were none of their tools or buildings mixed with trilobite or dinosaur fossils?
- Why do surface features of the earth appear deep in the geological column?
...it bogles the mind how any rational mind could entertain this idea of a "worldwide flood" -- This is just a handful of thousands of such questions that are not at all congruent with that...”
“You are trying very hard not to understand what evolution is -- you don't even know AT ALL how it works, and worse you're now parroting creationist talking points, which are either incorrect in conception, or have long been addressed explained by several people. Even so, you don't look at evidence - and it's now clear you wouldn't HEAR an explanation even if it were presented right to you, as unreasonable as that expectation is in itself. You expect people to appease specific things, even when your entire concept of what you expect, is wrong. This is unreasonable, and it's a powerful, willful ignorance. You obviously don't see it that way, but that's precisely what it is.”
RWBoss on Jan 28, 2013 at 23:46:32
“I get it. You are smart and everyone who doesn't believe like you is ignorant. If you were so smart you could explain what you are trying to say. All I am asking for is some proof of your belief. I know my belief and would be able to explain it to you. I am guessing I know a lot more about your faith than you know about mine.”
“Of course you'll get "dogs" from "dogs" -- you don't understand monophyly. If you did you'd, realize that expecting something other than "dogs," would actually go against evolution. Nothing ever evolves out of it's ancestry - what it is now, it always will be. Dogs will always be carnivores, mammals, tetrapods chordates and animals. The problem is that you have no correct concept of what evolution is. Monophyly, descent with modification, is a very specific morphological movement, a specific parameter / limitation. If you expect dogs to change into cats or horses, or anything other than dogs, then you've got it all wrong.”
“YTHRI is talking about something called monophyly. Evolution is monopyhletic - nothing ever evolves out of it's ancestry. If you have any interest whatsoever in at least understanding CORRECTLY the subject you're so eager to reject. Also look at Dollo's Law (of irreversibility) which depends on monophyly -- (...but who am I kidding, this argument really isn't about real-world information, is it?)”
“I doubt you'd apply the same logic to heliocentricity. Or plate techtonics, milankovitch cycles, or the carbon cycle. Nobody has directly observed these long-term natural phenomena, either. Would you have issues with them being "stated as fact" ...?
We call evolution "fact" because it's as much a fact as the fact that tectonic plates move, and metamorphic rocks form under pressure, or the earth's axis varies in space. We know life changes because we've see that variation (in populations) + heredity (dominance of certain alleles) + selection (natural pressures that winnow populations)_= change through time (evolution). -- We have inferred this in the same way, using the very same methodology. In the modern day we have A LOT of information about what it is, and how it works.
You can't doubt something legitimately without knowing how it works. Genuine criticism of anything takes place from subject literacy. You're just rejecting it on religious, or political biases only, which is why I doubt you apply the same criticism of other natural processes which require similarly long spans of time.”
“Yet you continue with the veiled insults, all while expecting me to hand-feed you something precise (and likely from you own inaccurate understanding). Don't tell me you can't take a species name from that list and type "__________ fossil" into Google Images -- anyone can do that. There are more fossils than the public could ever suspect. If a person cared to have the interest, it's all right there. It appears you don't understand the concept of evolution (descent with modification) in and of itself. It appears you are trying very hard NOT to understand information that's right at your fingertips.”
majistan on Jan 28, 2013 at 23:21:41
“The presence of fossils supports a worldwide cataclysm - rapid burial is needed for a fossil to form. To have so many millions of fossils around the world would require - you guessed it, a worldwide flood. Do you really believe that any dead animal, just left out in the rain, would stay intact long enough to become fossilized? Animals would tear it apart, spreading the bones far and wide. Weather would erode the bones before fossilization could occur, etc. Unless quickly protected by mud or pitch, fossilization is very unlikely to occur.”
“Yes, and that' because nothing "changes into" anything else fundamentally different than it's ancestry. Everything still bears the tags of the lineage it passed through - cats are still carnivores, miacids, placental mammals, tetrapods, chordates and animals.
Evolution is a process of incremental, subtle differences, compiled on tiers of basic SIMILARITY. Descent through modification -- this is the most basic concept of biological evolution. Cat's don't change into dogs, monkeys don't change into humans, fish don't change into lizards, or any other such nonsense. These are all dismissive straw-men, and this concept of 'evolution' is so entirely flawed at base, that they very thing you're expecting to happen, "something changing into a different kind" is practically the OPPOSITE of what evolution actually is.
And then, in this complete subject illiteracy, you manage the gall to tell me I have blinders on...”
ythri on Jan 28, 2013 at 21:50:27
“To be fair, it they had to argue against the real theory, they'd fail before they even started. Creating a straw man is their only hope of fooling anyone.”
“You're still doing it -- you continue to insult personal interest in the topic, and moreover you are expecting me to hand-feed you what you want to see, all while vehemently denying the validity of the field. Don't tell me you aren't even capable of using the internet. That is a website full of pictures of the actual fossils -- hundreds, showing all kinds of species from different ages of rocks.
Or, if you take any of the species on that previous list, and put the word "fossil" after it, in Google Images -- It's easy. If you CARED to do it. The fact is that you don't - you continue to deny a reality right in front of you, and you actively aim to insult those who study it. It's all so incredibly childish.”