For the last twenty million years or so, Darwinists believe, giraffes have looked like today's giraffes ---- and also like the very first ma and pa giraffe.
But the giraffe-like creatures the five million years before that ? Not so much so.
Those particular and precise giraffe-making genes, say the Darwinists, have been passed down generation from generation, unbroken, over all those millions of years, from the first two giraffes to then four giraffes then eight giraffes all the way up to their peak population at an estimated one million plus giraffes.
That's a rigid Darwinist's take on the giraffes, anyway.
A rigid Reductionist from chemistry or physics might explain it all this way:
'Think of giraffe making genes as being like atoms of a particular element, say gold.
Once you know how a gold atom acts as a single atom, Reductionism says you can accurately predict how it will act when it is in a group of two gold atoms, or four or eight gold atoms, a million or a trillion gold atoms.
Ditto the giraffe-making genes : when you see how they act on one giraffe, you can predict how they will act in a one million plus sized herd of giraffes.'
I say that both concepts tend to foster a belief in their true believers that at some time in the past there evolved a perfectness of quality that became fixed, was unbrokenly passed on and could smoothly and unchangingly scale up from one to a trillion or more.
Gould's suddenly punctuated evolutionary equilibrium was as foreign to this kind of rigid thinking as was the idea of sudden changes in an element's behavior as it scaled up in size and passed through different phases...