We all knew this was coming. Xiaotingia, the newly described feathered dinosaur, suggests a reevaluation of the taxonomic status of Archaeopteryx, so the creationists are stumbling all over each other to crow about the failure of science…which doesn’t make any sense, since reconsidering hypotheses in the light of new evidence is exactly what science is supposed to do.
David Menton and Ken Ham appear in WhirledNutDaily to say that 1) it’s all a lie anyway, so this evidence can’t teach us anything new, and 2) forget Archaeopteryx! It’s just another dinosaur!
Uncommon Descent, the intelligent design creationist blog, has a couple of posts on Xiaotingia. One claims that a big hole has just been blown in an icon of evolution, but that the “tenured Darwin bores” are all flapping their hands and telling everyone to ignore the damage. Another claims that evolutionary biology was looking for a simple linear trajectory in avian evolution, and now it’s shown to be a complex mess, therefore…what? Because creationists have a misconception about what was expected, evolution is wrong?
Ho hum. Science will keep on strengthening our understanding of the past with new evidence avidly sought, creationists will just keep on clamping their eyes even more tightly shut.