OneLight already asked this to be put in layman's terms once... I'll ask directly please:
A. Please identify as simply as possible what the purpose of this discussion is?
B. Please summarize the discussion in simple terms?
I know this is a long summary, but the discussion is long, so bear with me. I am mostly summarizing my position, and I will leave most of Ehud's summary to Ehud.
With my discussion with Ehud I think it has come down to two main questions: 1) What is the evidence for evolution or common descent? 2) Why does the scientific community accept evolution so much? And possibly a third category about how we as individuals should determine which is correct, evolution or creation, which is related to why the support for evolution in science.
Most of the points raised are related to question 2, thus all the polls about what scientists believe. In simplified terms, Ehud is saying that evolution is so widely accepted because of atheistic biases in science, and uses the fact that there are more atheists (over 50%) in science. Whereas I'm saying evolution's success cannot be because of an atheist bias as there are too many theists that accept evolution in science and too few theistic scientists rejecting evolution.
As for the evidence for evolution and common descent, I've presented a few lines of thought, but it hasn't gotten much attention so far. One thing that I've tried to hit on over and over again is that in science you have lots of facts, sometimes called observations, and the ultimate goal of science is to interpret these facts in a larger framework or model of reality known as a "theory". When you have two competing theories in science, for example evolution and intelligent design, a standard approach that's been used for hundreds of years in literally every field is to see which theory gives the best explanation of (or makes the most sense of) the facts and observations. So in the case of the human tail, the question becomes "does it support intelligent design or common descent more", or "which theory, evolution or intelligent design, makes the most sense out of the human tail facts"? And I would use this same type of set up for the other evidences I've mentioned.
Since human tails seems to be of interest, and the most talked about on this thread, this is how it has played out so far. Viole mentioned that sometimes humans are born with tails, and Ehud asked for references that such existed. I provided the reference as seen in post #50, which talks about the structure of the human tail which happens to be a complex structure with multiple types of tissue from blood vessels to fat to muscle to bone, and can be moved voluntarily by the person. IOW these tails are true tails and not just random malformations like a tumor or something. In addition we have found the genes responsible for our tails, everyone has them, just in most people the genes are turned off, and these same genes are found in other mammals with tails. Viole and myself are saying this is what we should expect to see if evolution is correct and we do have a common ancestor with apes and monkeys; even if we don't (normally) have a tail we would expect to see a genetic marker in our DNA that says 'genes for tail formation', and that's what we find. So I am saying that human tails, and the other evidences I mentioned, make the most sense in the evolutionary framework and evolution provides the best explanation of the all the facts and observations. Intelligent Design, as best I can tell, does not and cannot explain the human tail in any meaningful way. IOW, if God specially designed us in our current form from non-living matter (dust), why did God give us the genes for a tail and then suppress them with a few people having the genes turned on giving them a useless tail?
This is where the summary must stop as of now because there hasn't been a creationist response to the human tail that addresses the above, at least not yet. So this is where we are in the discussion now, along with the other evidence I have presented at the end of my last post.