Scientists who believe in evolution despise nothing more than the suggestion that an intelligent designer could be responsible for the variety of living beings we see around us. They insist that the only logical explanation is that all living beings have developed from a common single-celled ancestor. But some of their arguments against design are transparently ridiculous.

One such argument appeared in a recent issue of Discover magazine. In words dripping with scorn, the author declared, "Careful study of living creatures reveals innumerable features that would never exist if species had been designed exnihilo, as the creationists claim…. A fish's fin, the flipper of a penguin or porpoise, the leg of a lizard or lamb, the wing of a bird or bat, and the well-shaped forearm of Sophia Loren: each is used for its own distinct purpose, yet all share the same basic arrangement of bones."

Comparing Sophia Loren and the fish, the author says that "there's no way, if evolution hadn't occurred, that her arm would have had any internal resemblance to a fish's. The similarity of anatomy is evidence of evolution: the fish's forelimb and Sophia's show a common ancestry."

How many people have read that passage and uncritically accepted this patently false line of reasoning? Perhaps many millions. But a simple truth is apparent: similarity of structures can also be taken as evidence for an intelligent designer.

Let's consider an example. Over the past century, the first automobiles have spawned a number of offspring. There are tractors, buses, high-performance sports cars, stretch limos, military vehicles that scurry along the seabeds, and more. All of them have similar mechanical anatomies. Yet all of them were independently designed. An intelligent engineer would not find it necessary to literally reinvent the wheel every time he designed a variation of the original motorcar. So it is quite possible that God could have come up with a basic structure for a forelimb and modified it in various ways in the design of the different bodily forms.

The idea of design rather than evolution fits in well with the fossil record, which fails to show the myriad transitional forms that would lead from a fish to Sophia Loren. George Gaylord Simpson, one of the leading figures in modern evolutionary theory, noted that fossil evidence shows all thirty-two orders of mammals appear on the scene fully developed. "This regular absence of transitional forms," he said, "is not confined to mammals, but is an almost universal phenomenon, as has long been noted by paleontologists." Some evolutionists have made some very creative suggestions for getting around this difficulty, but all in all there is to date no compelling reason to exclude intelligent design as an explanation for the origin of species.

The Vedic scriptures of India are clear on this point. Srila Prabhupada, in his commentary on the Srimad-Bhagavatam, states, "Various types of living entities were created simultaneously at the very beginning of creation. The nonsensical Darwinian theory of evolution is not applicable here."