Saturday, August 25, 2007

A Pillar of Darwinism is Falling

Darwinian evolution rests on two pillars: Natural Selection and Random Mutation. Random genetic mutations are supposed to provide new biological traits from which natural selection culls out those which are not useful for the organism and preserves the ones that are. This process is believed adequate to have produced all the world’s biological diversity.

Because Darwinists believe that evolution is a purposeless process, they believe that it should be riddled with useless, unnecessary products. The human appendix and the panda’s thumb are the two organs, which are most commonly cited as examples of the undirectedness of this process of random mutation. It is argued that the appendix has no known function with the possible exception of enabling children to obtain an immediate attention from parents by complaining of a pain in the side. The panda’s thumb however has recently fallen out of favor as an example of evolution’s randomness due to studies showing that it is actually a finely tuned adaptation, assisting the efficient stripping of bark from bamboo, it’s main food source thereby allowing the panda can get to the inner soft tissue more efficiently (But that is another story).

However, the most powerful evidence for the randomness of the evolutionary process was “Junk DNA.” Junk DNA’s are portions of DNA molecules that were believed to serve no useful purpose. They appeared to be inactive, not coding for the manufacture of proteins, which is the primary function of DNA. It was believed that junk DNA composed about 98% of all human DNA. The fact that so much DNA appeared to do nothing led to the conclusion that junk DNA represented the results of random natural processes mutating the DNA and producing unusable, nonsensical stretches of nucleotide code.

The New Discovery

In June of this year the Encode Project (Encyclopedia of DNA Elements) published a group of 29 papers produced by hundreds of scientists working in 11 different countries that have completely overturned the view of “Junk DNA” as useless. This work is still in its early stages but to sum it up briefly: the scientists found that over 50% of all human DNA actually codes for RNA’s which do not go on to produce proteins but seem to be involved in other regulatory functions. These functions include keeping chromosomes from unraveling and controlling cell division.

But the most surprising, indeed shocking, contention of all is that most of these RNA’s seems to be standing by in the event that the body is suddenly exposed to an environmental change. In that event, they are immediately available to produce an adaptation to enable the organism to meet this challenge. This raises an enormously difficult question for the Darwinian paradigm: how could these standby RNA’s be maintained throughout numerous generations, possibly even thousands of generations, until they are needed? With no utility to the current generation they should be quickly selected out of the population but they are not.

Why This is Important

If evolution is an undirected process, as Darwinists claim, it should produce nonsensical and useless outcomes on a prodigious basis as was once believed to be the case. It has been estimated that in humans, about 10,000 harmful or useless mutations should accompany every useful one. Junk DNA was thought to be “smoking gun” evidence for this random process. As it is turning out there is probably no such thing as “Junk DNA.” This is powerful evidence for the observation that evolution is not the result of a random natural process but is rather the result of purposeful design and that purposeful design requires a designer. This designer is, of course, God.


1. “Intricate Toiling Found in Nooks of DNA Once Believed to Stand Idle” Washington Post, June 2, 2007, p. A1.

2. , The Encode Project.

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