A Little Quiz for Journalists who think they know Darwin

Our fair-minded media have decided to make Darwin’s theory of evolution a test of presidential qualifications. Governor Scott Walker refused to answer on the basis that he wasn’t a biologist. Nobody knows if Obama knows anything about science -- like climate prediction, solar energy, shale, or Iran’s nuclear bomb program. Or, say, economics.

Media heads are basically filled with straw when it comes to science. Just ask them the pros and cons of solar energy. They can’t tell you. It’s just another superstition they heard from somebody.

So here is a little quiz for your favorite news guy or gal about Darwinian evolution. Any biology student should ace it.

  1. What is a biological species? How does it differ from a variety? Give examples.
  2. How has Darwinian theory changed since Darwin? (Be specific.)
  3. Define the two criteria for “Darwinian fitness.”
  4. What are “Darwin finches?” Where are they found?
  5. What is the function of HOX genes?
  6. What is meant by “ultra-conservation” in evolution? Give two examples.
  7. Give an example of a recent evolutionary change in humans, within the last 10,000 years.
  8. What is parallel evolution? Give an example.
  9. What is meant by “genetic drift”?
  10. Why are there two sexes in most species?

Please ask your favorite journalist or talking head to return their answers (without cheating) to you, and grade according to the answers in Wikipedia. Then send us your journalist’s score to be published to the world.

Next: A quiz about the U.S. Constitution. If your journo flunks it, s/he gets fired.

            We wish.

Our fair-minded media have decided to make Darwin’s theory of evolution a test of presidential qualifications. Governor Scott Walker refused to answer on the basis that he wasn’t a biologist. Nobody knows if Obama knows anything about science -- like climate prediction, solar energy, shale, or Iran’s nuclear bomb program. Or, say, economics.

Media heads are basically filled with straw when it comes to science. Just ask them the pros and cons of solar energy. They can’t tell you. It’s just another superstition they heard from somebody.

So here is a little quiz for your favorite news guy or gal about Darwinian evolution. Any biology student should ace it.

  1. What is a biological species? How does it differ from a variety? Give examples.
  2. How has Darwinian theory changed since Darwin? (Be specific.)
  3. Define the two criteria for “Darwinian fitness.”
  4. What are “Darwin finches?” Where are they found?
  5. What is the function of HOX genes?
  6. What is meant by “ultra-conservation” in evolution? Give two examples.
  7. Give an example of a recent evolutionary change in humans, within the last 10,000 years.
  8. What is parallel evolution? Give an example.
  9. What is meant by “genetic drift”?
  10. Why are there two sexes in most species?

Please ask your favorite journalist or talking head to return their answers (without cheating) to you, and grade according to the answers in Wikipedia. Then send us your journalist’s score to be published to the world.

Next: A quiz about the U.S. Constitution. If your journo flunks it, s/he gets fired.

            We wish.