Originally posted by dj2becker
[b]More than 100 cases of humans born with tails have been reported in the medical literature.
Are you saying that humans are evolving into monkeys? I thought it was supposed to be the other way around.
PS: See http://www.trueorigin.org/ca_ac_01.asp for a refutation of your little theory.[/b]
Your statement makes it clear that you have read neither article. Humans born with tails reflect our common heritage with other mammals (as well as, perhaps, other classes that have tails). Tails reveal neither that we have evolved from monkeys, nor that we are evolving into such--it certainly confers no evolutionary advantage to be born such, despite the rare cases when it has been passed down through as many as three generations. Tails reveal our kinship with other species, thus supporting the contention that we have a common ancestor.
Ashby Camp (in the link you present) does not address the issue of tails and atavism, except for one passing reference, which I quote here:
"There are various ways in which existing organisms could descend from a common ancestor and not exhibit a nested hierarchy. Anagenesis, loss of characters, replacement of characters, transposition of characters, atavism (masking and unmasking), and convergence all work against a hierarchical pattern, and the bare hypothesis of universal common ancestry says nothing about the rate or prevalence of those processes."
Douglas Theobald (author of the article I cited) has addressed Camp's particular claims here, so I quote it as well:
"Camp does not provide us with an example of a non-nested pattern produced by common descent. He reiterates the claim that various processes 'work against' a nested pattern, when in fact those very processes create a nested pattern. These processes cannot be 'invoked in whatever blend is necessary to explain whatever pattern is found.' Yes, 'bare' common descent may not state anything specifically about these processes, but universal common descent is constrained by gradualism, as has been explained many times over. We know empirically the maximum rates of anagenesis, character loss, and character replacement—such processes can be used in scientific explanations, of course, but there are limits on what rates can be used."
Since Camp has failed to address the substance of the argument that atavism offers evidence of common descent, your assertion that my original reply has been refuted is drivel. Slobber somewhere else if you wish your questions to be regarded as genuine, rather than weak and misguided fundamentalist apologetics.