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Strengths and Weaknesses in David Hillis’s Arguments about the Cambrian Explosion

Casey Luskin

Tonight in Texas, pro-Darwin expert David Hillis testified that the Cambrian explosion took many tens of millions of years, also stating that there are no credible scientific weaknesses in neo-Darwinian evolution. His evolutonary theory of the Cambrian Explosion has a grave weakness. One of the 100+ mainstream scientific papers discussing weaknesses in evolution that Stephen Meyer presented to the Texas State Board of Education today absolutely refuted Hillis’s argument:

“Until 530 million years ago, multicellular animals consisted primarily of simple, soft-bodied forms, most of which have been identified from the fossil record as cnidarians and sponges. Then, within less then 10 million years, almost all of the advanced phyla appeared, including echinoderms, chordates, annelids, brachiopods, molluscs and a host of arthropods. The extreme speed of anatomical change and adaptive radiation during this brief time period requires explanations that go beyond those proposed for the evolution of species within the modern biota ”

(R. L. Carroll, “Towards a new evolutionary synthesis,” Trends in Ecology and Evolution, Vol. 15(1):27-32 (2000) (emphasis added).)

It sounds like David Hillis’s arguments for evolution may have weaknesses after all. Too bad he doesn’t want students to learn about any of them.


Casey Luskin

Associate Director, Center for Science and Culture
Casey Luskin is a geologist and an attorney with graduate degrees in science and law, giving him expertise in both the scientific and legal dimensions of the debate over evolution. He earned his PhD in Geology from the University of Johannesburg, and BS and MS degrees in Earth Sciences from the University of California, San Diego, where he studied evolution extensively at both the graduate and undergraduate levels. His law degree is from the University of San Diego, where he focused his studies on First Amendment law, education law, and environmental law.



David HillisTexas