For some unknown reason, YouTube burped this excerpt of a greater debate featuring famous atheist Richard Dawkins, and some polite creationist (I frankly couldn't care less about the latter's identity or bona fides; he's an irrelevant variable) onto my feed.
You can watch this entire segment if you like, or even the entire program (it's on YouTube) and nonetheless be stupider for the time wasted.
Dawkins, and by extension Darwin, and all the lazy idiots of similar ilk always default to a knee-jerk lie, rather than address the actual question in this segment.
His idea that there's a "ramp of improvement", like Darwin's half-assed and ignorant suppositions in the mid-19th century, rest on wholesale ignorance of the physiology of vision. Darwin had an excuse: the science hadn't been performed then. Dawkins, however, is simply intellectually lazy, and deliberately mendacious, because by now, the mechanisms enabling sight, particularly human sight, are far better known and such research widely propagated.
The problem enters in when, rather than addressing the ponderous hole that physiologic truth has blown through his atheistic codswallop, he lazily chooses to simply lie his way around the Great Wall Of Reality into which he's just been run headfirst, at speed.
One cannot have "only a quarter of an eye, only a hundredth of an eye, or half an eye, is better than nothing " (3:50ff).
Basic physiology disagrees:
It doesn't work like that.
In the trade, there's a technical term for what you are when you have a half, a quarter, or a hundredth of an eye (and by this we mean not just the eyeball itself, but the entire cascade of processes enabling vision): BLIND.
Darwin, and Dawkins, have a four-year-old's scientific apprehension of how vision happens, which he exhibits in this debate, and which he shares with fellow lunkhead Casper Milquetoast, scientific imbecile, and Defender Of The Faith. Milquetoast should have trounced Dawkins' retardedly facile explanation and mopped the floor with him at that point, but he wasn't bright enough to attempt that, lacking even the most rudimentary concept of vision physiology himself. As this was programmed, he was either controlled opposition, or deliberately chosen for being this ignorant. The Washington Generals are everywhere, and about as obvious.
The so-called "debate", therefore, is simply a real-life exhibition match between Dumb and Dumber, to make the most annoying sound in the world.
The actual process of phototransduction, which is how reflected light and images are transmogrified into mentally usable images in the brain, is incredibly ridiculously complex. The idea that all the physical structures and biochemical processes that make those structures needful and useful all aligned precisely from beginning to end simultaneously out of random chance and selective evolution is akin to positing that a flight-worthy 747, whole, fueled, and ready for takeoff, would spontaneously generate from enough tornadoes hitting an airplane boneyard. Frankly, of the two cases, the spontaneously assembled 747 is the likelier of the two, by orders of magnitude.
|Sh'yeah, that engine could just appear randomly too.
There are thousands of biochemical actions and reactions in the cascade of vision, which have to happen immediately in forward and reverse, acting on microscopic and specialized physical structures that accommodate those processes, every fraction of a second, to get the image from one single light photon to the retina. And as many again to get from the retina to the visual cortex. And then it has to instantly reverse to reset the rods and cones so that you can receive the next image, rather than have visual imagery locked on, or see life like a flickering silent-movie-era projection, flickering in and out forever. And it has to happen the next instant. And the next. And the next, endlessly and seamlessly. As it has since you were born.
If any of the bio-mechanical structures of vision are missing or flawed, you won't see, at least not well. If some certain of them are missing, or if any one of those hundreds of thousands of biochemical and bioelectrical processes fail, you don't see dimly; you're simply and completely blind.
So you can't have any "fraction" of an eye, and build any delusional "ramp of improvement" on that. You have to have the whole process, top to bottom, front to back. There is no reason to expect 99.9999% of them to "evolve" and hang around just waiting perpetually, when they'd serve no purpose without the missing piece(s). One does not see a hubcap, and imagine an entire automobile will eventually spontaneously assemble around it either, and for the same reason: the entire idea is delusionally recockulous.
We'll leave off the problem of the lack of the billions and billions of fossils of blind animals necessary, even over billions of years, before sight developed. The process, even for relatively "simple" eyes in the animal kingdom, is all or nothing. And it's no more likely to have spontaneously and randomly generated than is the computer screen, tablet, or smartphone you're reading this on to have just been burped up by the cosmos out of blind luck.
|In Dawkins' delusional universe, these fall off of trees too.
Dawkins, and Evolution since Day One, skips that conundrum by saying, in effect, "but a Galaxy 1 is better than no Galaxy, and an iPhone 1 is better than nothing", which begs the question of how you got from Og and Thag beating on hollow logs to having any Galaxy or iPhone at all, plus the entire cellular telephone network worldwide, without someone to build them in the first place. Just like eyes, and a vision process.
Dawkins knows that (if he doesn't, he's a gibbering moron), and were he ever smacked in the face with that frozen mackerel of truth he's spent a lifetime ignoring, by someone scientifically brighter and rhetorically less handicapped than segment opponent Casper Milquetoast (which is an incredibly low bar), he'd dissemble, dig in and double down. Or else be forced to admit that his pet theory and favorite philosopher is so much codswallop, and had to be for the decades and decades of physiological discoveries of the complexity of vision, of a magnitude never imagined by 1800's dimwit Darwin. But I doubt, with Dawkins being so invested, intellectually and morally, in the lifelong lie, he'd ever be intellectually honest enough to admit that he, just like Darwin, had a grudge against the idea of the divine or supernatural, and both had therefore sunk their spurs into the idea that there is no god, because it makes the rest of their pathetic existence tolerable and comfortable, not to mention lucrative.
He's entitled to go to hell in whatever way he sees fit to do so; that's free will in action.
But to make it his life's work to try and bamboozle others by deliberately ignoring the utter lack of any scientific underpinning for his delusions, and furthermore ignoring the monumental evidence to the exact contrary, and outright lying about both in support of his line of twaddle, is quite inarguably and inexcusably monstrous and damnable.
But it obviously calms the simple-minded on their way to the abattoir.