In Why Evolution is True, Jerry Coyne writes that gradualism is one of the six tenets of “the modern theory of evolution” (which he equates with Darwinism – see page 3).
Eugene Koonin writes that the tenet of gradualism is known to be false (The Logic of Chance p. 398).
Yet gradualism is obviously still quite popular here in “The Skeptical Zone.”
Surely gradualism is not a logical requirement or entailment of the theory of evolution. Neither is it supported by the evidence.
So given what we know about evolution, why do evolutionists still cling to gradualism? My suspicion is that the alternative smacks too much of miracles. So gradualism is more of a religious conviction than a scientific one.
What is the evidence for and against the gradualist hypothesis?