If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

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seladore
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If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby seladore » Mon Jul 14, 2008 9:01 pm UTC

You know what really irks me about this argument?

What really, really gets me?


Not the flagrant misunderstanding of the most basic high school biology.

Not the unspoken assumption that biologists are too stupid to have recognised this when studying evolution (though this is a close second)


It's that even in the model of the evolutionary strawman that the creationist paints, even in the midst of the warped biological picture they draw, the argument still falls down.
Even if you imagine evolution to be a ladder with humans at the top, and organisms move up the ladder as they evolve, the organisms on the 'monkey' rung moving up to the 'human' rung wouldn't leave the 'monkey' rung empty. It would be filled by whatever was below monkeys when monkeys evolved into humans. There are still monkeys because the creatures below monkeys became monkeys.


I KNOW I've got my biology wrong. I KNOW this isn't true. It just annoys me that the creationist lobby are so stupid that they can't even mischaracterise their opponents properly. If you are going to freely misquote and abuse science, at least be able to build a proper argument with the lies.


Feel free to move this (to Science / SB / Trash) as appropriate.
Just needed to express my frustration at hearing this from someone in the pub when they found out that i was a scientist.

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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby doc leech » Mon Jul 14, 2008 9:24 pm UTC

You should have thrown a Bunsen burner at him
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Awia » Mon Jul 14, 2008 9:40 pm UTC

I have actually never heard anyone outside of the internet use this argument, or actually argue against evolution, I must just be lucky.

Even so, this is an extremely stupid argument, and I was using it when I was 5 (Not to disprove evolution, just out of childish curiosity) and had worked that out at 6.

moral of the story, think through your arguments before you speak.
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby 0.0 » Mon Jul 14, 2008 9:42 pm UTC

You should have said

"WHOA! A talking monkey!"
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Belial » Mon Jul 14, 2008 9:42 pm UTC

To be honest, even when I was a kid and this kind of thought made *any* kind of sense...

I immediately answered the question with "Duh, there's more than one species of monkey. Obviously the *other* monkeys just haven't caught up yet..."

I was dumb as hell, but this still only remained a compelling argument for about 30 seconds.
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Awia » Mon Jul 14, 2008 9:47 pm UTC

Belial wrote:I immediately answered the question with "Duh, there's more than one species of monkey. Obviously the *other* monkeys just haven't caught up yet..."


And this is why creationists who use this argument are exceedingly dim, they cannot recognise the fact that there are more than one species of monkey.
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Jack Saladin » Mon Jul 14, 2008 10:32 pm UTC

I have actually never heard anyone outside of the internet use this argument, or actually argue against evolution, I must just be lucky.

What's with that? Why are there all these stupid people on the internet who don't seem to exist in real life? Where are they hiding out?

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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Felstaff » Mon Jul 14, 2008 10:36 pm UTC

Jack Saladin wrote:
Awia wrote:I have actually never heard anyone outside of the internet use this argument, or actually argue against evolution, I must just be lucky.

What's with that? Why are there all these stupid people on the internet who don't seem to exist in real life? Where are they hiding out?
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I've always wondered why, if we're so closely related to monkeys, there aren't more 'in-betweeners' like some kind of hybrid man-ape (remove the hyphen and you've a word rhyming with canapé). I'm guessing they sorta... died out? Slaughtered by Neanderthals, Cro-Magnons, and other large ape-like creatures that sport tommy-guns, fedoras, and grace the pages of DC Comics.
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby tday93 » Mon Jul 14, 2008 10:59 pm UTC

well that kind of in-between species would have A. required human/ape breeding, as well as producing non-sterile offspring and B. a niche for it to fill that neither humans nor other apes were sufficiently capable of filling



other than that, this is why i love Baha'ism, the religion itself supports the validity of science!
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Alpha Omicron » Mon Jul 14, 2008 11:21 pm UTC

Felstaff wrote: I'm guessing they sorta... died out?

s/died out/we fucking killed all those bitches/
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby LE4dGOLEM » Tue Jul 15, 2008 12:15 am UTC

Alpha Omicron wrote:
Felstaff wrote: I'm guessing they sorta... died out?

s/died out/we fucking killed all those bitches/


Alpha Omicron, as a proposition, wrote:I'm guessing they sorta... we fucking killed all those bitches


Really.
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Blokey » Tue Jul 15, 2008 12:26 am UTC

Felstaff wrote:
I've always wondered why, if we're so closely related to monkeys, there aren't more 'in-betweeners' like some kind of hybrid man-ape (remove the hyphen and you've a word rhyming with canapé). I'm guessing they sorta... died out? Slaughtered by Neanderthals, Cro-Magnons, and other large ape-like creatures that sport tommy-guns, fedoras, and grace the pages of DC Comics.

6 million years ago (give or take a week), the lines that would retrospectively 'lead to' chimpanzee's, and to us, diverged. There's no reason to expect any in-betweenism. Or am I misinterpreting you?

Also, we're similar enough for a hybrid to seem kinda insignificant. Humans are basically apes who've undergone neoteny (keeping aspects of the juvenile stage for longer). This is why we're hairless*, and why baby apes resemble people more than adult apes.

*the neoteny also explains the fact that, though we don't develop as much hair on our bodies as our ape cousins, we still retain about the same density of hair follicles as them.


Also: We're closest related to chimps, then gorillas (both apes), then various monkeys. As a general rule, apes are tailless, monkeys tailed. (There are some exceptions, only one I can think of at the mo' is the Macaque monkey.)
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Flying Betty » Tue Jul 15, 2008 3:01 am UTC

Alpha Omicron wrote:
Felstaff wrote: I'm guessing they sorta... died out?

s/died out/we fucking killed all those bitches/


s/we fucking killed those bitches/got fucking killed, those bitches/
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby kovan » Tue Jul 15, 2008 3:24 am UTC

Because there'd be too many bananas otherwise.

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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby quintopia » Tue Jul 15, 2008 4:23 am UTC

If scientists evolved from people like you, why am I still talking to people like you?

Oh, wait, that's right. You didn't evolve. Too bad.

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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby gibberishtwist » Tue Jul 15, 2008 5:09 am UTC

As stated before, monkeys are close enough to us that an in-between isn't really necessary (YET!). I mean, there are monkeys who can do sign language (Albeit with a very limited vocabulary), they enjoy recreational sex, and they even feel empathy. Close enough, imo.
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Mercurius » Tue Jul 15, 2008 5:14 am UTC

Do Creationists really, honestly believe this? Because I'm not even sure the idiotic Young Creationists actually subscribe to this, I thought it was a kind of rhetorical "gotcha!" question to try and mock evolutionary theory.

Of course, if it turns out I'm wrong, I'm going to have to lower my expectations of humanity once again....
You know, I'm not really sure what "socioeconomic class" I am. I'm richer than my parents, I don't have a real job, and my mannerisms tend to match up with whomever I'm talking to.

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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby benjhuey » Tue Jul 15, 2008 5:28 am UTC

Mercurius wrote:Do Creationists really, honestly believe this? Because I'm not even sure the idiotic Young Creationists actually subscribe to this, I thought it was a kind of rhetorical "gotcha!" question to try and mock evolutionary theory.

Of course, if it turns out I'm wrong, I'm going to have to lower my expectations of humanity once again....

Minus 50 points for Gryffindor humanity then.

While the more astute ones will use it mockingly, you just know there are those who'd use it as a serious argument. Then again, you can say almost anything you want, truth or not, and someone will believe you. People just aren't that smart, and I'm very pessimistic today.
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Gadren » Tue Jul 15, 2008 5:35 am UTC

I've seen examples of this "argument" being used honestly, both online (archived at FSTDT) and in real life. A few months ago, I heard a couple other college students, who had obviously just gotten out of a biology class about evolution. This is at the University of Utah, which means that there's a fair number of LDS members, some of whom don't really think all that scientifically. Anyway, one of the college girls said that her mom often mentioned the monkey argument, but thankfully the other college girl debunked it.

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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Indon » Tue Jul 15, 2008 5:31 pm UTC

Felstaff wrote:Slaughtered by Neanderthals, Cro-Magnons, and other large ape-like creatures that sport tommy-guns, fedoras, and grace the pages of DC Comics.


Clearly, this phenomenon is indicative of an ancient, genetically-imbedded respect towards what must have been our ancient enemies.
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby sje46 » Tue Jul 15, 2008 6:20 pm UTC

Hey, I thought both apes and humans evolved from a common ape-like creature that isn't around anymore.
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby clintonius » Tue Jul 15, 2008 6:58 pm UTC

Yeah, people actually use this argument IRL. Around freshman year in high school I drank the evangelical creationist punch in a big way, and would get into arguments with my biology teacher about creationism. Man, people (me) can be stupid.

Luckily, I recovered. My roommate's boyfriend recently said something to the effect of "Dawkins religiously defends atheism. It's kind of ironic," and the illogic shook me to my primate core.
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby SecondTalon » Tue Jul 15, 2008 6:59 pm UTC

Yeah, that's why Dawkins is a douchenozzle.
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Avram » Tue Jul 15, 2008 7:26 pm UTC

What I think Felstaff is getting at is, why are there no extant species of Hominids more closely related to modern humans, and with similar characteristics (e.g., upright posture, larger brain, etc.).

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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Belial » Tue Jul 15, 2008 7:32 pm UTC

And the answer is: because there is no unique environmental niche for them to occupy, and therefore they are (or were) outcompeted by the two or more nearest species.

In other words, a semi-intelligent, upright walking species would be:

Not as good at climbing trees and living in the jungle as a chimpanzee (because their body structure is altered)
Not as good at tool-based hunting and forming environment dominating social colonies as a human (because their brain isn't as developed)

And would therefore get stomped out of existence by those two.

In fact, they did. That's why all of those transitional species of humans (homo erectus, homo habilis...) aren't around anymore. The next species to come after them ate all their food.
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Baza210 » Tue Jul 15, 2008 8:22 pm UTC

Calvin: Do you believe in evolution?

Hobbes: No.

Calvin: You don't think humans evolved from monkeys?

Hobbes: I sure don't see any difference.
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Irrefutable » Tue Jul 15, 2008 9:54 pm UTC

This reminds be of an argument i heard used in an argument between an Atheist and a Catholic.

(Warning, half remembered paraphrasing ahead)

Atheist - 'If god realy existed why would he allow mankind to suffer so much. Why allow stuff like AIDs to even exist'

Catholic - 'Prehaps the person god intended to find a cure for AIDs was aborted.'

Im fairly sure it was said as a joke but i honestly cant remember, i just remember finding it hilarious at the time.
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby 0.0 » Tue Jul 15, 2008 10:45 pm UTC

You guys totally forgot about all the Yetis!!
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby ParanoidAndroid » Wed Jul 16, 2008 1:31 am UTC

I've only ever heard this one used sarcastically by atheists and creationists alike. My next favorite is, "If monkeys turn into humans, then why don't we see it happen at zoos?"

Last year, an 8th grade girl in my crazy fundamentalist school gave a five minute speech titled "How Evolution Has Been Disproved". I was really upset that I couldn't go. Ah, the stories I could tell about that place...
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby noparenthesis » Wed Jul 16, 2008 3:41 am UTC

There are still monkeys because monkeys are fuckawesome.

Seriously, they need to ask?
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Gelsamel » Thu Jul 17, 2008 9:00 am UTC

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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Iori_Yagami » Thu Jul 17, 2008 4:40 pm UTC

Mercurius wrote:Do Creationists really, honestly believe this? Because I'm not even sure the idiotic Young Creationists actually subscribe to this, I thought it was a kind of rhetorical "gotcha!" question to try and mock evolutionary theory.

Of course, if it turns out I'm wrong, I'm going to have to lower my expectations of humanity once again....

Oh, stop pretending you don't understand the situation. There are just people, who listen to other people, take their beliefs because they like them, and carry those belief further. They don't understand and do not really want critical assessment and verification. Just repeat beautiful ideas. Just in the same manner I at the age of 5 believed my mother my stomack would glue itself if I ate dough she prepared for baking. Of course, she only wanted to keep me off the dough... :mrgreen:
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby wst » Thu Jul 17, 2008 8:01 pm UTC

Iori_Yagami wrote:Words

I get the meaning, the sentiment is correct, but the grammar there made me stupider than before I read that post.
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby SecondTalon » Thu Jul 17, 2008 8:40 pm UTC

wst wrote:
Iori_Yagami wrote:Words

I get the meaning, the sentiment is correct, but the grammar there made me stupider than before I read that post.

And how well do you form grammatically correct sentences in Russian?
(though, after quickly searching Iori's posts, I'm not quite sure where I got that from.)
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Belial » Thu Jul 17, 2008 8:43 pm UTC

Or Latvian, as the case may be.
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby SecondTalon » Thu Jul 17, 2008 8:45 pm UTC

Whoops. Sorry there, Iori.
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby parkaboy » Thu Jul 17, 2008 9:11 pm UTC

evolution is mostly luck: being in the right place at the right time. Or the right place at the wrong time and having to adapt to it. Or being in the wrong place at the right time and having to adapt to it. Whatever. LETS TALK ABOUT MONKEYS!

Fun activity time! Research Chimpanzee society and then Bonobos society.

Chimps: aggressive, patriarchal, territorial, solve problems by killing the problem.
Bonobos: Pacifistic, matriarchal, known to assist migrating clans through their territory, solve problems with sex (and say hello, and goodbye and "dinner time" with sex, and just have sex whenever they feel like it. and not just male/female sex for reproduction - same sex sex, AND face to face sex - the only other primate [besides humans] that do that!)

These two are the closest evolutionary relatives to homosapiens - kind of funny that they individually display humanity's duality, huh?
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby telcontar42 » Thu Jul 17, 2008 9:28 pm UTC

parkaboy wrote:Bonobos: Pacifistic, matriarchal, known to assist migrating clans through their territory, solve problems with sex (and say hello, and goodbye and "dinner time" with sex, and just have sex whenever they feel like it. and not just male/female sex for reproduction - same sex sex, AND face to face sex - the only other primate [besides humans] that do that!)


A good friend of mine just returned from spending several months in the Congo studying bonobos. From what he has told me, people have tried to present bonobos as having a "love, not war" society, but this probably isn't true. Sex is very important to their societal interactions, but they also can be violent. Different groups are often hostile to each other. They hunt mammals, and its possible that they hunt other apes or monkeys. They are known to violently attack each other in captivity, but that is not necessarily representative of their wild behavior. I don't think they have been studied enough yet for us to really know what they are like in the wild.

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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby clintonius » Thu Jul 17, 2008 9:39 pm UTC

telcontar42 wrote:
parkaboy wrote:Bonobos: Pacifistic, matriarchal, known to assist migrating clans through their territory, solve problems with sex (and say hello, and goodbye and "dinner time" with sex, and just have sex whenever they feel like it. and not just male/female sex for reproduction - same sex sex, AND face to face sex - the only other primate [besides humans] that do that!)


A good friend of mine just returned from spending several months in the Congo studying bonobos. From what he has told me, people have tried to present bonobos as having a "love, not war" society, but this probably isn't true. Sex is very important to their societal interactions, but they also can be violent. Different groups are often hostile to each other. They hunt mammals, and its possible that they hunt other apes or monkeys. They are known to violently attack each other in captivity, but that is not necessarily representative of their wild behavior. I don't think they have been studied enough yet for us to really know what they are like in the wild.

Yeah, but. . . they say "dinner time" with sex. Methinks we have a thing or two to learn from them.
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Re: If we evolved from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

Postby Iori_Yagami » Fri Jul 18, 2008 6:52 am UTC

Now I feel like a moron. :( That'll teach me to write in a hurry...
Okay, I missed plural 's' ending once, and probably a couple of articles... Don't feel too bad about your favourite English, I am terrible at making elegant sentences in ANY language :|

Iori_Yagami wrote:Oh, stop pretending you don't understand the situation. There are some people who listen to other people, who take their beliefs for granted because they like the speakers, and carry on those beliefs. They do not either understand or even want any of the critical assessment of information and verification of it. They just repeat those beautiful ideas. It happens just in the same manner as I, at the age of 5, used to believe my mother that my stomack would glue itself, if I ate dough she prepared for baking. Of course, she only wanted to keep me off the dough... :mrgreen:

I HOPE that's better. :|
And you guys are spies (or ninjas)! I am both Russian and Latvian (R by ethnicity, L by country and I speak both languages), you got it right. I don't even remember saying that... :mrgreen:
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