On today’s ID the Future, Casey Luskin rebuts the oft-repeated claim that the human and chimp genomes are 98-99% similar and therefore surely resulted from Darwinian common descent. Luskin cites an article in the journal Science which describes the 98-99% claim as a myth. The original figure was derived from a single protein-to-protein comparison, but once you compare the entire genomes, and use more rigorous methods, the similarity drops several percentage points, and on one account, down into the mid-80s. Additionally, the chimp genomes used in the original comparison studies borrowed the human genome for scaffolding, thus artificially boosting the degree of similarity. What about supposed junk DNA similarities between human and chimp? Why would an intelligent designer put the same useless “pseudogene” in both the original chimp population and original human population? Surely a better explanation, the evolutionists argue, is Darwinian common ancestry. The problem with that argument, according to Luskin, is that pseudogenes are turning out to have functions. In other words, they aren’t, as evolutionists had assumed, just so much junk DNA. One example: evolution advocates Kenneth Miller and Eugenie Scott cited the beta-globin pseudogene as knockdown evidence of common descent between humans and apes. But the beta-globin pseudogene, it turns out, is essential for producing red blood cells. This means that finding this gene in both apes and humans is no more indicative of mindless common descent than finding wheels on both cars and airplanes. An intelligent designer would be expected to use the successful design element in both cases. Luskin provides still other lines of evidence undercutting the DNA-similarity argument for chimp-human common ancestry. Tune in to hear it all. And to read Luskin’s latest work on the subject, get the new free online ID book from South Africa, Science and Faith in Dialogue, with contributions from Luskin, Stephen Meyer, Hugh Ross, Guillermo Gonzalez, James Tour, Fazale Rana, Marcos Eberlin, and others.
Today’s episode of ID the Future features Part 1 of a talk bestselling author Eric Metaxas gave at the 2019 Dallas Conference on Science and Faith in Dallas. His topic was the miracle of our fine-tuned universe, taken in part from his book Miracles: What They Are, Why They Happen, and How They Can Change Your Life. Metaxas also discusses another thing he finds amazing: that so many people think the progress of science means the retreat of religion.
On this episode of ID the Future host Andrew McDiarmid continues his series with science historian Michael Keas about Mike’s new work from ISI Books, Unbelievable: 7 Myths About the History and Future of Science and Religion. Here they focus on the myth that a vast cosmos renders humanity insignificant, and in the process, discredits the Judeo-Christian worldview. As Keas notes, science popularizer Bill Nye recently dusted off this old saw, but the Old Testament itself, in the Psalms, depicts man and the earth as tiny in compared to a vast universe. Keas also discusses C.S. Lewis’s take on the matter. Lewis pointed out that atheists have argued that a universe where earth is the lone habitable planet argues against God. And they have argued that a universe filled with many habitable planets argues against God. Heads the atheists win; tails the theists lose. As Lewis and Keas suggest, we are rightly skeptical of such rigged games. Listen in to learn more about this complex and fascinating issue touching on philosophy, theology, and the history of science. Please consider donating to support the IDTF Podcast.
On this episode of ID the Future, Research Coordinator Casey Luskin discusses the recent debate between Ken Ham and Bill Nye that pitted Young Earth Creationism against neo-Darwinian evolution. Since the great majority of Ham’s arguments amounted to “Because the Bible says so,” the powerful evidence for design in nature was hardly even touched upon. Listen in as Casey explores “what could have been” in the Creation Debate, responding to some of Bill Nye’s points about Tiktaalik, hominid skulls, and more.
On this episode of ID the Future, Big Think has a new video out featuring Bill Nye “The Science Guy” lamenting the fact that many people in the United States are skeptical of Darwinian evolution. Nye makes the claim that this skepticism holds back our country and society, and even goes so far as to call for Darwin-doubting parents to stay out of their kids’ science education. Listen in as Casey Luskin responds to Nye’s assertions.