One of the most common arguments against evolution is that we only have evidence for microevolution, this is change within species (or now apparently changes within kinds), but not changes from one species (or now kind) into another. This is just plain false. YEC’s now use kind, because this is the term the Bible uses, and because indeed we have seen species changing into other species before our very eyes. We have seen new, and fascinating complex structures arise in bacteria.
YEC’s use of “kind” is a term from Genesis and is equivocated with the classification of family, taken from the animal kingdom classifications arising from Linnaeus in the 1700’s. I think that is is exactly that, a fallacy of equivocation. I may be wrong, but I do not think that when the Biblical writer(s) used the term “kind” in Genesis, they had in mind our notion of animal kingdom classifications. It just meant simply that a horse gives birth to a horse and not another animal (and no scientist would actually disagree with that). My wife, who is pregnant, is not going to give birth to a fish. No evolutionist has said that, or tried to make that argument. Ken Ham and the like, pretend to be very clever in making that distinction, but it is simply the error of trying to force modern science on ancient thought.
There is absolutely NO reason to think that genetic changes passed on, and spreading throughout a population that gives rise to a new species could not eventually produce a new kind, given enough time and evolutionary changes. All animals, including humans, use the same basic genetic materials and markers for all our biological functions. In some cases, even minor mutations can produce large effects. This means that there is no imaginary barrier keeping one species (or kind) from turning into another.
As it so happens we do have evidence for changes of species (or kind) in both the fossil record and in our genetic codes. There is a plethora of transitional fossils out there, such as Australopithecus africanus, which is definitely a variant of an ape, but one beginning to walk upright. One thing to keep in mind, is you are never going to see a fossil half one modern animal and half another modern animal. What you will see instead are elements of different animals together. One such fossil is archaeopteryx, which is a feathered dinosaur that is a transitional fossil to birds. We have found multiple archaeopteryx fossils. There are also fossils showing evolution of ancient land mammals to whales. I say ancient because it is not going to look like a modern land animal, so we must not try to think of any modern land animal evolving into a whale.
The genetic evidence is even more compelling, but much more difficult, and (me not being a geneticist) I don’t want to butcher it, so I am providing a link for those who want to go more in depth, so they can do so.
This post is the first of another intermittent series I am starting that covers common misconceptions about evolution. Hopefully, this can provide some correctives, that can better show the evidence for evolution, the weaknesses of counter-arguments, and create better dialogue between special creationists and evolutionary creationists.