Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Brother Jed on campus - Day Two

As Amber already mentioned in an earlier blog, we did JedFest yesterday, raised a lot of moneys for Heifer International and bought rabbits and chickens for some hungry people thanks to it. Awesome awesome awesome. We worked with Brother Jed and it paid off for six families in impoverished parts of the world.

But today, things were back to normal.

Sister Pat says, "What? What? In the butt?"

Casey (right) says, "Hey, how are you today?"
Sister Pat (left) says, "Are you looking for attention? Your parents must not love you. And by the way, your belly button is showing and that's indecent. Boys are going to try to get in your pants!"

Sex??? Oh noes!!

Sister Pat asks, "Are you a virgin?"
This guy replies, "Yes. I mean, no. I have a kid."


After Ryan says he will convert to Christianity if Brother Jed gives him evidence as to why Christianity is more likely to be the one true religion over other religions, Brother Jed says, "Blah blah bible. Blah blah faith. Blah blah sin. Blah blah bible."

Ryan has a question.

Ryan says, "So can you give me evidence."

Brother Jed says, "I'm giving you evidence. Blah blah bible! Blah blah faith!"
Ryan says, "Shenanigans!"

Japheth and Ryan barbershop quartet some hymns for Brother Jed.


More photos coming soon.

Smacking Around Simpson

Andrew Simpson Foreign Born Patriot is making a fuss over on the forums in The Standard's website again.

He is really getting on my nerves. He managed to insult basically everything I hold dear, in a single comment.

Things Amber Holds Dear:
  • The scientific method. Check.
  • Darwin. Check.
  • Peer-review legitimacy. Check.
  • Evidence. Check.
  • My ability to pick apart his BULLSHIT. Check.
  • My ability to read. Check.
You can see the entire conversation HERE.

I feel pretty confident in my ability to knock him around, but if anyone wants to jump in, I would certainly encourage their participation.

Just to make you all angry, I will include the most recent Simpson Foreign Born comment, and my response.

[ Simpson Foreign Born]

MR JT: Peer reviewed is not what it is cracked up to be. Galileo, and Einstein discovered how hard it is to fight against peers in their day as they discovered things that others didn't want to accept as reality but the test of time has borne them out to be true. Peer review is only done according to what is acceptable. Nowadays if you refute evolution as a scientist, you are scorned, even though you might present EVIDENCE, not theories to your peers, nevertheless you are villified because it goes against the current feeling about the origin of man.
Ms Faegre, if you would have read carefully that scripture that you were misrepresenting then you would have seen that at the beginning of the chapter the description that you were referring to was His disciples asking Him about the destruction of the temple that He was referring to and indeed that happened in their lifetime. Nobody but the Father knows when He will send the Son of Man to collect those who are faithful to Him and whom He knows, not "knows Him".

[My Response]

Mr. Simpson,

You used Einstein as an example of a brilliant mind who had to fight against his peers to have his theories accepted.

Yes, when Einstein's initial theories were proposed, they were questioned. But, with time, the scientific community has come to accept that every shred of evidence points towards his theories holding true, at least in this part of the universe.

Similarly, when Darwin's initial theories were proposed, they were questioned. But, with time, the scientific community has come to accept that every shred of evidence points towards his theories holding true.

It is fair to note that Darwin's theory has actually stood longer then Einstein's. Darwin's theory of evolution was already beginning to receive acceptance from the scientific community at the time of his death, when Einstein was only three years old. For over a hundred years Darwin's theories have remained undefeated.

The idea that the scientific community is ostracizing those who explore their environment with an open mind to options besides evolution is patently false. What may be true however is that scientists are expected to shed their personal biases as much as is humanly possible. You cannot approach a problem looking for an answer that undeniably confirms your preexisting beliefs. That is not science, and therefore it would be ridiculous for the scientific community to accept it without questioning it's validity.

You speak of "evidence" brought forward against evolution. I would be interested in seeing the citations you speak of. I have time in the next few days to read through the articles. I would be very interested to see what sort of evidence refuting evolution has been acquired.

Sadly, the mantra of "we have evidence" is often unsubstantiated by Creationists. Take the film "Expelled" for instance. We sat through the entire film without hearing ANY of the scientific evidence they said was so powerful that it was being excluded from the debate.

-Amber Culbertson-Faegre

P.S. I will look further into the passages when I get home this evening, and have my copy of the bible in front of me.

[Response, Part 2]

Foreign Born Patriot,

Just to be sure that I was appropriately interpreting the text, I went back and reread the entirety of Matthew 24 again. You claim that I am misrepresenting the scripture. In the first portion of the chapter, it says clearly that the destruction of the temple would act as a sign of his coming and the end of time. "Tell us," they said, "when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?" (Matthew 24:3, NIV).

The next bit discusses in detail how we can recognize the coming of Christ. The destruction of the temple is just one way we know that the end has come. Since you question the validity of my interpretation of Matthew 24:34, I feel it is relevant to quote the entire portion of the text which is relevant (Matthew 24:30-35, NIV).

30"At that time the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and all the nations of the earth will mourn. They will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of the sky, with power and great glory. 31And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other.

32"Now learn this lesson from the fig tree: As soon as its twigs get tender and its leaves come out, you know that summer is near. 33Even so, when you see all these things, you know that it is near, right at the door. 34I tell you the truth, this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened. 35Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.

Are you really trying to interpret Matthew 24:34 as a mention of the destruction of the temple? I would certainly stand by my interpretation this as saying that within the next generation the Christ would appear.

Oh... wait...

How many generations have passed since Christ was around to talk to us about his second coming? At least 80?


My point is not to argue the "proper" interpretation of the text. My point is to point out the obvious fallacies which are included.

We argue over which interpretation is correct. What we should be arguing is if the bible holds a single ounce of authority. I believe we have overwhelming evidence to support the complete inaccuracy and fallacy of the bible. Besides the many contradictions, we have literally thousands of scientific studies showing the "whys" of life discussed in the bible are complete mythology.

There is no reason to assume that the bible speaks for the word of god, or that there is even such a being.


-Amber Culbertson-Faegre


Yesterday, April 29th, Teh Juggernauts brought JedFest to the Missouri State campus.

Everyone on campus knows the face and voice of Brother Jed Smock. The angry evangelical psychotic man has been traveling on college campuses nationwide since the late seventies. The Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster has been on him for the last few years, never backing down from the fight.

This semester, we decided to switch it up a bit. No yelling matches. No screaming. No logic.

This semester, we threw a carnival. There were cupcakes, face painters, street urchins playing music, tons of chalk, water balloon chucking, and lots and lots of pirates.

Over the course of the afternoon we raised $300.37. Carly Ann rocks so hard. She did all of the counting, organizing, and paperwork to put this shit together. She seriously rocked face.

We have already sent the money to Heifer International. It is an amazing program which I have unlimited respect for. It will buy six separate third world families a Hope Basket. The baskets each include two rabbits (one of each sex =P), and two chickens. When they accept the basket they agree to pass the gift on, giving other families rabbits and chickens once their new livestock reproduces. Not only does it fight world hunger, but it does it in a sustainable fashion.

I am so grateful for all the pirates and pirate allies that came out to offer support. Pirates may not tithe, but they certainly know how to throw down when it matters.

I am also thankful that Brother Jed was so supportive. He may be crazy, and he may be delusional, and he might have a slight masonic complex, but he really helped us out yesterday. He even took a water balloon in the face.

**hugs**, everybody.


Fun With Sentence Diagrams!

I recently stumbled upon this gem via

Someone took all eight of Bush's State of the Union addresses and diagrammed them out. His most frequently used uncommon words are all color coded and absolutely lovely. What a great legacy the 43rd president of the United States of America is leaving! (insert sarcasm here)

Check it out!

I think this is another great example of the power of art. Much like our 4,000 body outline campaign, this is a pretty good visualization of"intelligent" our president is.


Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Letter to the College Paper's Editor

So Tuesday, our group, Team The Juggernauts (the atheists you love to hate) had just finished packing up the Brother Jed Carnival. We raised $300.00 for Heifer International, a charity which allows you to buy livestock for destitute villages around the world. All the credit goes to the wonderful student body and a psychotic yet well-intentioned man named Brother Jed. Thanks, kids!
We used your money to buy live rabbits and chickens for six villages.

Anyway, we were naturally famished after a long day of saving the world, so we figured we'd go crash the Student Government Association banquet that they'd planned instead of a meeting.
You know, nom half a dozen slices of pizza each, stuff some brownies in our pockets, steal a couple 2 liter bottles of soda, and roll. We're pirates. We can't help ourselves.

So, anyway, about six of us stroll up to the PSU's fourth floor ballroom, and instantly we freeze. Here we are, half of us dressed in full pirate regalia (as our religion dictates), one of us holding a Satan costume complete with red trident and mask, and me wearing a freshly markered "Satan is my Homeboy" T-Shirt. Every one of us dirty and slimy and sweaty. Resting before us are dozens of tables surrounded by all the normal SGA kids in swanked out suits and dresses.
We're not talking buffet, people. We're talking courses. China plates with cake, salad, chicken... table cloths... more than one fork... the whole shebang. So between the time we hightailed it out of there and the time we arrived back at our base of operations for exorbitant amounts of self-congratulatory pizza, scrambled eggs, and beer (for the so inclined), I got to thinking.

How much is this costing you?

All this talk of missing money, of SGA waste, of cutbacks, of rising tuition, and we're still throwing massive bling away for a big end-of-semester party strictly for the bourgeois Student Government kids? And there's not even free pizza? What shenanigans! Call me ignorant, but I had no idea this kind of stuff was going on right here on our little campus. I knew the charlatans who run this country were blowing our money, but I never thought that it went so far down.

You know, I inquired, and someone told me that last year's banquet cost $300.00. That sounds lovely, but it just makes you wonder what someone could do with $300.00, doesn't it?

Monday, April 28, 2008


There's this theory going around that I'd like to dispell today. You've probably heard it all before; one side says, "The Bible doesn't mention your theory!"
The other side, compiled mostly of paleontologists, astronomers, geologists, cartographers, and other hogwash professions, says something like, "It's blatantly obvious that our 'theory' is correct!"
I'm going to weigh in on the issue and just say, once and for all, that I am of the former persuasion. I am absolutely certain that the theory of California is false. Let me explain.

The Bible, as we all know, is the unequivocal word of our Lord and Father who art in heaven, hallowed be His name, His kingdom come, and also let His will be done down here like up in Heaven. That's right. I'm talkin' about God; Jesus; Holy Ghost; the Holy Shebang.
Now, starting from the obviously logical preposition that everything in The Bible is correct, and everything outside of The Bible is incorrect, let's take a look at California. Nowhere in our Lord God's holy book, The Bible, does it mention a place called California. Heck, it doesn't even describe it. Now, I'm willing to stop right there, because I pride myself on being a God-Fearin' American. However, some (goddamn liberal) people might take a less literal viewpoint of God's The Bible, and need more proof.

Luckily, I have come prepared.

First, let me present to you my theory: that America ends where California is purported to be. Some of you may be liberals, so I'll illustrate this for you, so that you can understand it. I know you guys have a little bit of a thinking problem.
Now, I know I'll probably be getting a tide of heathenish naysayers writing in to tell me some hogwash about how they "live there" or some other shenanigans. I don't buy a word of it. How do they know that they don't just live off the coast of Arizona or maybe even Utah (we're not quite sure how far the scientists' treachery stretches)?
Maybe some of the bastard followers of dumb, pseudoscientist astrologer quacks like Eratosthenes might link me to some picture taken from "outer space." Pfft. Like humans have ever been to "outer space." That's where Heaven is, dummies. Next you'll be telling me that the Earth isn't a flat square with America smack dab in the middle.
Other people, being of the more "scientific" persuasion, might say something like, "Why don't you just figure out how far away we say it is, drive there, measure your speedometer, and then see if you get to the coastline a few hundred miles ahead of schedule?"
Oh, you'd like that, wouldn't you? You'd just love it if I succumbed to your sciencey ways. Sorry, no dice, liberal.
Anyway, even if I did try to use "logic" to figure out if California exists, how do I know that God's not messing with my speedometer to test my faith? After all, he is an all-powerful, future-seeing, infinitely wise bearded man who dabbles in each of our lives every day. Or, even more likely, how do I know that it's not just a massive conspiracy perpetuated by every single speedometer manufacturer, cartographer, geologist, and astronomer?

Frankly, I'll take my chances with The Bible.

-Ryan Culbertson-Faegre

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Mega Blog on Evolution

Greetings. The following is my best attempt to assemble a concise refutation of most of the religiously-based (as though there were any other kind) assaults on the theory of Evolution. This is a work in progress, and there will be several additions from myself and other contributors in the coming weeks. As of right now, it even lacks a conclusion. :P

It should be noted that the contents of this post represent only a very, very small portion of the evidence for Biological Evolution. There is much, much more, and it is out there for the reading. Scientists have no qualms with making their experiments, research, and conclusions available for everybody and anybody to read and critique. Such is the confidence one can draw from basing their ideas about the way reality works on logic and evidence.

~ JT
What is science?

“All evolution in thought and conduct must at first appear as heresy and misconduct.”
~ George Bernard Shaw

Science works under only one assumption: that the universe obeys a set of rules. If this assumption is true, then we should be able to observe the behavior resultant of these rules.

Here's an example: we observe something falling, and we notice that it falls more quickly as it approaches the Earth. After making this observation we can generate equations to explain these motions and use them in the future to predict how objects will fall. Guess what: it works! As a matter of fact, it works so well that our current understanding of gravitation allows us to fire objects with uncanny accuracy to certain points even beyond our solar system. This confirms our assumption and very, very strongly suggests that reality is following a set of rules. Moreover, it indicates that we can deduce them.

That is a very simple example, but I'm sure you're aware that more complex iterations of the scientific method are all around you. The computer you're reading this on right now is the product of hundreds of years dedicated to ascertaining the nature of electricity. It could not function if not for an understanding of how certain particles operate on a macroscopic level. Both of these are revealed only through observation and the predictability of living in a universe bound by rules. When his computer breaks, I'd wager that even the Pope will likely call somebody who understands the rules operant in making his computer function. Any business peddling their ability to pray computers back into working order will find themselves declaring bankruptcy in short order.

In science, it is never noble to pretend to know things you do not know, while religion depends on such self-deception. While you will receive a fair amount of praise in a church for claiming to have knowledge about the origin of the cosmos that no cosmologist has, science plays by considerably higher standards. If, in the course of an experiment or in the process of peer-review, you purport to have knowledge you do not have, you will be caught and swiftly penalized. Science depends on what you can establish; it is interested in seeing the world how it truly is, not how we wish it was.

What evolution is not.

If, at any time, somebody insinuates that Evolution posits where life came from, then they have just exposed their lack of knowledge surrounding the theory. The theory of Evolution deals only with how life arrived at the point it has, and it makes no claims about the origins of life.

Is Evolution disprovable?

Yes. If we were to find a fossilized rabbit in soil from the Triassic, that would disprove Evolution.

Distinctions in Terminology.


Those who reject evolution in favor of religion, often say they accept "Microevolution" but deny "Macroevolution." Such a distinction is like saying that one believes in inches but not miles. Small changes over enough time become big changes. While there are some notable differences between the two, it does not detract from the fact that the main difference between the two is how much time they have had in which to work.

The key point in this debate seems to be whether or not evolution can produce new species, so this portion of the entry will deal primarily with the idea of Speciation.

There are several books and peer-reviewed articles on the subject of Speciation (often hiding behind misdirecting titles, like Speciation). Beyond that, all of the below information is, and always has been, easily found on the internet. Those who reject Evolution because they believe there is no evidence for it have failed to take the 10 seconds necessary to google it.


While I may have a theory regarding what two cards my opponent is holding at the poker table, this is not the way scientists use the word. A theory is a hypothesis or collection of hypothesis, which has stood up to repeated rigorous testing and passed the test. A theory explains all relevant facts and is contradicted by none.

The difference between a scientific theory and a scientific law is not their degree of acceptance nor their explanatory power. It is typically (there are a few exceptions) whether or not they include an equation explaining the phenomenon in question. That's it.

For instance, on one hand we have theories like germ theory or the theory of gravity. On the other hand, we have something like Newton's Second Law of Motion:
The relationship between an object's mass m, its acceleration a, and the applied force F is F = ma.
See the difference? Is germ theory really more or less accepted than Newton's Laws of Motion? Not at all.

Christians and other religious people determined to see their personal creation myths of choice stand unopposed, even by reality, will continue to assert that Evolution is "just a theory." However, all of them are unlikely to walk off the top of a skyscraper any time soon because gravity is "just a theory."

Should we defer to experts?

The following argument originated with philosopher and scientist Daniel Dennett, mine is only a variation. It is a very key aspect to this argument that is often overlooked.

Consider the following proposition:
"Трава типично зелена"
I believe the above statement is true. I also confess that I have no idea what it means. Frankly, I don't even know how to pronounce it.

So why do I believe it? I believe it because I asked a Russian-speaking friend of mine to give me a sentence of Russian. I told her not to tell me what it means, and I said that no matter what the sentence is, it has to be true. So even though I have no clue what it says, I believe it - and I would be willing to bet a tremendous amount of money that it is true. I am willing to place my "faith" in an expert.

Let's consider another proposition:
Do you believe it's true?
Do you understand it?

I'd wager that most people would answer "yes" to the former and "no" to the latter - which is fine. In the case of both this example and in the Russian proposition, it doesn't matter if we understand it - it only matters that the experts do. This is very useful - even scientists utilize equations they couldn't personally extract any meaning from in their work.

We all do this. By taking a ride in an airplane, you are deferring to the expertise of physicists; by eating a cheeseburger, you are laying your well-being at the feet of people who understand bacteria; and every time you get a flu shot, you are eagerly embracing our understanding of how germs evolve - otherwise, you would not need a new shot every year for the same diseases.

The point is that you should not worry about deferring to the consensus opinions of experts - particularly in a field such as science. The universe is so vast that one cannot even imagine its size without invoking logarithmic scales, let alone even begin to imagine all of the stuff within it. Every human being who has ever lived, myself included, is ignorant of almost everything there is to know. It is through our dependence on experts in various fields that mankind, as a whole, can begin to construct a map of reality that is in-keeping with all of the facts we have revealed.

However, in this one lone instance when discussing the scientific concept of Evolution, we have people, virtually all of whom are non-experts, denying the breadth of our understanding of a subject. This is done exclusively out of deference to a myth that carries none of the evidential weight its followers demand of science (and which science happily provides in every case for which it makes claims to truth). While science, as always, is up to the challenge, this is an unfair fight in which many of those denying Evolution have not arrived at their particular world view through objectivity or consideration of tangible evidence - and you cannot reason somebody out of a position they did not reason their way into.

What drives Evolution?

Evolution is engineered by the same key forces that generate new order everywhere in our universe without the need for any appeal to god. They are:
1. Mutation.
2. Reproduction.
3. Competition.
That's it. If you have these three catalysts in place working over time, order and often improved functionality, are the end result. This goes for life on this planet and for the evolution of stellar bodies in galaxies light years beyond it.

While it is clear that human beings enjoy (or suffer through) reproduction and competition, as does almost every other animal, many people do not understand how mutation works. Mutations in DNA are actually more common than you might think, as Larry Moran explains:
"The haploid human genome is about 3 × 109 base pairs in size. Every time this genome is replicated about 0.3 mutations, on average, will be passed on to one of the daughter cells. We are interested in knowing how many mutations are passed on to the fertilized egg (zygote) from its parents. In order to calculate this number we need to know how many DNA replications there are between the time that one parental zygote was formed and the time that the egg or sperm cell that unite to form the progeny zygote are produced.

In the case of females, this number is about 30, which means that each of a females eggs is the product of 30 cell divisions from the time the zygote was formed (Vogel and Rathenberg, 1975). Human females have about 500 eggs. In males, the number of cell divisions leading to mature sperm in a 30 year old male is about 400 (Vogel and Motulsky, 1997). This means that about 9 mutations (0.3 × 30) accumulate in the egg and about 120 mutations (0.3 × 400) accumulate in a sperm cell. Thus, each newly formed human zygote has approximately 129 new spontaneous mutations."
The long and short of it is that each of us are trotting around with well over 100 "birth defects." While most of them are completely neutral, you must remember that we are spreading these mutations out over a vast population, which means we can expect Microevolutional changes in every generation, with speciation and other Macroevolutional changes over many generations.

Testable Hypothesis and other Evidences for Evolution.

The fossil record

Which transition are you interested in? Let's start with early reptiles to mammals (this is going to be very long - we have a lot of transitional fossils); later in this essay, Amber will discuss how we can view this piece of the fossil record in the human brain.

Anyway, we'll start with Paleothyris, and every subsequent transitional fossil will transition to the next transitional fossil. Most of these were found using predictions such as those used by Dr. Neil Shubin (more on him in the next section), we knew the age that such creatures must have existed in, went to places with dirt that old, and 'lo and behold we found them. It should be noted that this is only a tiny fraction of the fossil record, and that the fossil record is only a fraction of the overall evidence for evolution.
Diademodon (of the group Eucynodontia)
Probelesodon (of the Chiniquodon group)
Pachygenelus (1)
Diarthrognathus (2)
Kuehneotherium (an example of a Haramiyidan)
Haldanodon (Very similar to Castorocauda similis)
Pariadens (the first known marsupial, but only by the skin of his teeth - literally)
Tiktallik, a testable hypothesis in Evolutionary theory

Tiktallik is a transitional species that is part of the fossil record between early amphibians from bony fish. It is the link between Eusthenopteron (which arguably precedes Sterropterygion) and Panderichthys.

Tiktallik was discovered by a team led by paleontologist Neil Shubin of the Univesity of Chicago. Shubin describes how evolution was used to predict the location of Tiktallik this way:
"What evolution enables us to do is to make specific predictions about what we should find in the fossil record. The prediction in this case is clear-cut. That is, if we go to rocks of the right age, and the rocks of the right type, we should find transitions between two great forms of life, between fish and amphibian."
And that transition is precisely what they found.

Observed instances of speciation and the creation of new features

Speciation is a very lengthy process, which is likely why Creationists often employ statements such as:
"What we haven't seen is any species evolve to become an entire new species that can't reproduce with the former species."
Of course, when was the last time you saw any of the steps of stellar evolution occur (these tend to run in the millions and billions of years)? Do you deny their validity on the basis that they take a lot of time to complete? Of course not. We can see evidence of all the different stages and can extract a plethora of other evidences for how they function. The evidence that such stages occur in stars is so vast as to be undeniable by anybody who has studied the subject. The same is true with speciation. (It should also be noted that most people in America who deny Evolution on the supposed lack of evidence also believe that a man lived inside the belly of a fish for three days without being consumed by the beast's stomach acids. One cannot help but wonder what can be done to change somebody's mind at that point.)

Thankfully, we have several instances of observed speciation to fall back on. The most recent is the controlled experiment in evolution with the lizard species Podarcis sicula, in which the species developed a new feature not present in the ancestral population - the Cecal Valve. The old population of Podarcis sicula was still around and breeding, yet they had branched off to create a new animal that, though still a lizard, were a new species with adapted behaviors and features.

A few other noted instances of Macroevolution include:
Culex pipiens
Rhagoletis pomonella
Genetic evidence

One of the early arguments against the fact that mankind has evolved from earlier primates was the fact that we have 23 pairs of chromosomes - all great apes have 24. If we evolved from apes, we should expect to have at least 24 pairs. Acknowledging that such a fact would contradict all relevant facts about biology, scientists began to imagine where the 24th chromosome went. Their first hypothesis (notice how the hypothesis flows from what we already know) was that somewhere along the line a pair of chromosomes fused. So how can we tell whether or not this happened?

On the end of all chromosomes reside features called "telomeres." Telomeres function as a kind of genetic marker, indicating that the chromosome has ended. In the middle of chromosomes, there is another genetic marker called a "centromere." That means a simplified version of a chromosome would look like this (T=Telomere, C=Centromere):
T -------- C -------- T
However, the second chromosome is unique in that it looks like this:
T -------- C -------- T -------- C -------- T
What this indicates is that at one point two of our predecessor's twenty-four chromosomes fused to create our second. Science created a hypothesis, tested it, and came up with a confirmation. What was an argument against Evolution quickly became another brick in the wall of evidence for the theory.

Additionally, PZ Myers does a brilliant job of explaining the basics of synteny, one of the many types of genetic evidence, here.

Things that Evolution explains elegantly

And what comedian designer configured the region between our legs-an entertainment complex built around a sewage system?
~ Neil deGrasse Tyson, Astrophysicist

There are many things that fit into Evolutionary theory succinctly, but that make absolutely no sense if a god designed the universe. This includes things like why men have nipples, why we see in color like most lizards do (though most mammals do not), and why we have 32 teeth rather than the 36 of most great apes.

Conversely, the presence literally millions of engineering flaws simple enough for humans to notice helps to refute the idea that a designer more observant than human beings had a hand in producing them. Here are just a few of the big ones.

The DNA molecule is prone to a very high number of errors due to its awkward nature. The numerous flaws in DNA replication result in cancer, down syndrome, and a host of other conditions far too lengthy to list. It is hard to imagine an intelligent designer utilizing such an unstable system, let alone a flawless one.

The presence of the appendix:
The appendix is a very useful organ in many animals. However, humans are not one of those animals. In human beings, the appendix has no useful application whatsoever. It produces an insignificant amount of white blood cells, but we can do just fine without them, since other organs produce more than enough. Otherwise, the appendix makes us vulnerable to several types of infections, some of them fatal. It also poses the threat of rupturing which, according to those who have suffered a ruptured appendix, really, really hurts.

If a designer did include the appendix in the human design, he is most assuredly not a loving god, but rather a malicious one. On the other hand, a vestigial remnant like the appendix makes perfect sense within the evolutionary model.

Vestigial appendages:
Did you know that many snakes, such as pythons and boa constrictors, have hind leg bones? It's true:

See the bump where the bones are? Many whales also have them.

Speaking of sea life, did you know that many deep sea life forms like the Cave-dwelling tetra fish (Astyanax mexicanus) are blind? They have eyes, the eyes just do not work. Why would an intelligent designer provide them with those organs? Evolution though, can explain them succinctly.
"Genetic mutations that hamper eye development also may increase the number of taste buds. Thus, mutations that happened to give the fish an advantage in tasting and smelling—a huge benefit in a dark environment—might also have inadvertently, and harmlessly, caused the degeneration of their eyes."
As explained above, humans have an appendix, which is a vestigial appendage. We also have the Coccyx (human beings have leftover tails), Erectores Pilorum (the muscles that cause goose bumps), and Wisdom Teeth. All of these make no sense in the human design, but make perfect sense if we evolved.

Useful Predications Produced by Evolution

Evolution of Specific Features

The contents of this section, like the evidence listed in this whole entry, is just a very, very small part of the whole. Our knowledge of how various parts of the body evolved is more extensive than most of us can imagine, and any curiosity about it requires only google to be sated.

The Brain

(This section was authored by Amber)

If we have a soul, in which part of the brain would it reside? The part that loves? The part that thinks? That stares in wonder at a night sky?

All the permanent matter in your brain consists of two types of cells: neurons and glial cells. Neurons are what allow us to move, breathe, think, eat, love, and play. Glial cells provide physical support to neurons.

When somebody talks about consciousness, they are usually referring to your ability to think and consider your role in the world around you. Those abilities are located in the frontal lobes.

The frontal lobes are the portions of the brain that have developed most recently. We know this through our understanding of the similarities and differences between our brains and the brains of other species, both mammalian and non-mammalian.

The brain is separated into three main chunks, if you will. The oldest portion is referred to as the reptilian brain, or brain stem. This is our original brain. It takes care of many of the functions which are unconscious. For example, every time you breathe, every heartbeat, is a result of this portion of your brain. Basic sexual encounters, aka the physiology behind rudimentary desire, are also located here.

Most animals have a brain VERY similar to this. In 9th grade, in Honors biology, I dissected a crayfish, and examined a brain that looked and acted very similar to the reptilian brain. It gave the crayfish the ability to swim, drink, eat, and reproduce. Everything a good little lifeform needs.

Next, on top of the reptilian brain, is the mammalian brain, aka the cortex. This first appears as animals evolved from reptiles into mammals (see the section above on the fossil record). There are several improvements that the mammalian brain brings, with arguably the best being the hippocampus. The hippocampus gives us memory, and with that, intelligence was given the ability to flourish. Suddenly we could remember where we hid nuts, where the best hunting spots were, or which events seemed to precipitate others. Toss in the amygdala for good measure, and suddenly we have conscious feeling about events. This is important, because it gives us fear of the bigger, toothier animals.

We know that the mammalian brain came after the reptilian brain because many tasks of the reptilian brain were replaced with the mammalian brain. Parts of the reptilian brain are now ignored, overridden by the newer mammalian brain.