Happy Darwin Day

By Hilda Scott email: , Feb 13, 2013 01:07 AM EST

Tuesday was Darwin Day, the 204th birthday of Charles Darwin, known as the father of evolution. Darwin's theories on evolution came to be held in high regard after initial rejection.

In 1859 he published "On the Origin of Species," establishing his beliefs that all species evolved and share common ancestors. His scientific theory was based on a process in which the struggle to exist has the same effect as artificial selection that occurs in selective breeding. This concept is often referred to as "survival of the fittest."

To honor Darwin's work, on January 22, New Jersey Representative Rush D. Holt, Jr. introduced a resolution to the United States Congress designating February 12, 2013 "Darwin Day." Other members of Congress are also dedicated to the promotion of science and the importance of scientific literacy among children in schools.

"The passage of Rep. Rush Holt's proposed resolution in Congress would send a strong message to the world that the United States supports science education," said American Humanist Association Executive Director Roy Speckhardt in a press release. "Charles Darwin's significant contributions to the advancement of science and our understanding of the world deserve recognition."

Darwin's scientific discovery explains the diversity of life. Darwin began his detailed investigation when he was fascinated and puzzled by wildlife and fossils collected on a five-year voyage on the HMS Beagle. Darwin kept a journal of this travels as the ship sailed across the Atlantic Ocean, surveying the lands of South America, Tahiti and Australia. Publication of his journal "Voyage of the Beagle" in 1839 brought him fame and respect as a writer and scientist of biology, geology and anthropology.

"There is no valid excuse for failing to recognize the person behind one of the top scientific discoveries of all time. This worldwide annual event was developed to make sure Charles Darwin and his contributions to science are honored," said Speckhardt. To learn more about Darwin Day, visit

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