There wasn’t much news of The Controversy this morning, so we decided to go dumpster diving and visit the Institute for Creation Research (ICR) — the granddaddy of all creationist outfits — the fountainhead of young-earth creationist wisdom. We hit pay-dirt! Their latest article is Brazil, Disease and Adam & Eve.
It’s written by Brian Thomas, described at the end as: “Science Writer at the Institute for Creation Research.” Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis:
Only one in a million U.S. Americans suffer from the horrible disease xeroderma pigmentosum, or “XP,” but one in 40 from the Brazilian town of Araras has it. The affliction leads to tumors where sun hits skin, often the face and hands. Why is the disease so highly concentrated in Araras, and how could answering that question help unravel some confusion about Adam and Eve?
XP? Egad, that’s the version of Windows we’re using. Oh, Wikipedia has an article on it, xeroderma pigmentosum, which informs us:
Xeroderma pigmentosum, or XP, is an autosomal recessive genetic disorder of DNA repair in which the ability to repair damage caused by ultraviolet (UV) light is deficient. In extreme cases, all exposure to sunlight must be forbidden, no matter how small; as such, individuals with the disease are often colloquially referred to as Children of the Night. [Bold font in the original.] … This disease involves both sexes and all races, with an incidence of 1:250,000 in the United States and a gene frequency of 1:200. XP is roughly six times more common in Japanese people than in other groups.
Why does ICR focus only on that one town in Brazil? Who knows? They must have read about it in some newspaper article, so that’s what they’re going with. After describing the plight of a man with the disorder, ICR says:
Because XP is inherited, its high rate of incidence in Araras stems from intermarriage within descendants of a small group who carried the mutation when they founded the village long ago.
That’s one of the problems of intermarriage. But where does creationism fit into this? Be patient, it’s coming. Let’s read on:
A clear principle emerges from these and so many similar observations: Intermarriage within descendants of small founding populations often produces harmful genetic defects. Assuming this has always been the case, some argue that all people could never have descended from only two progenitors — Adam and Eve. If we really came from Adam and Eve, wouldn’t we all be loaded with many more mutations than we already have?
Good question. And there’s the additional problem of a more recent genetic bottleneck. The creationists say that we’re all descended from only six passengers on Noah’s Ark — the three sons of Noah and his unnamed wife, plus their three wives, who may or may not have been as closely related as were their husbands. ICR continues:
Science and Scripture clearly show this intermarriage principle has not always been in effect.
Really? Here’s more:
For starters, genetic mutations have been building up over time, with each generation adding its toxic drop to the Olympic-sized swimming pool of human DNA. After several hundred generations since Adam, our 60 or so new mutations per generation cause many diseases today, but our earliest parents did not carry near the number of mutations that we do.
Well, yes. Each new generation adds to the inventory of mutations that were present in its ancestors, but wouldn’t every generation have its own inheritance of mutations? No, not according to ICR. They say:
So, if we were able to wind back time, wouldn’t we see thousands of years’ worth of mutations erased? Wouldn’t our ancestors have had cleaner genes? With mutation-free genes, family members could have intermarried without risk of disease.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! By the time there were humans, our genomes were enormously crammed with mutations inherited from ancestral species. No, ICR, even the earliest humans didn’t have “mutation-free genes.” It was mutations that made us human! But we know what ICR is trying to say, so let’s move along and let them say it:
This idea fits God’s assessment of His completed creation, including mankind, “Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good. So the evening and the morning were the sixth day.” [Footnote to a Genesis reference.] Adam and Eve therefore had “very good” DNA sequences — probably perfect.
ICR has a footnote to that “probably perfect” phrase, which says:
They possibly shared DNA (i.e., were genetic clones) since Eve was taken from Adam’s literal side. Also, their genomes must have been packed with inherent variations that were not mutations — built-in variations that evolutionists overlook when genetically modeling human origins.
Ah yes, Adam & Eve were clones — that makes the Genesis genetic bottleneck even worse than we thought. Another excerpt:
It wasn’t until sin’s curse that God’s creation began to decay, and it wasn’t until a few thousand years after Adam and Eve that God instructed His nation, through Moses’ law, to no longer marry close relations.
But until Moses, ICR assumes that marriages within a family were the human norm. Family life must have been, ah, rather interesting in those days. Here’s the end of their article:
Although the science of mutation buildup affirms Genesis history, xeroderma pigmentosum is a real and heartbreaking reminder of Adam and Eve’s original sin and the broken world that resulted.
So there you are. If it weren’t for original sin, we could all marry our siblings. Oh, the heavenly bliss we’ve missed because of sin!
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