This is a good example of quote-mining — or at least very selective reading — by Ken Ham (ol’ Hambo), the ayatollah of Appalachia, the world’s holiest man who knows more about religion and science than everyone else.
Hambo just posted this at the website of Answers in Genesis (AIG), his creationist ministry: Study: 90% of Species Have a Recent Origin. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis, and occasional Curmudgeonly interjections that look [like this]:
Nine out of ten species alive today have arisen in the last 200,000 years, according to a new genetic study.
He’s talking about this article from ten days ago in PhysOrg: Sweeping gene survey reveals new facets of evolution. We ignored it because we thought the methodology was unusual, and we haven’t seen any commentary about it anywhere else. But Hambo is all excited. He says:
This research looked at select portions of DNA from 100,000 different species, and “researchers found a telltale sign showing that almost all the animals emerged about the same time as humans.” Not only that, the study also found (rather unexpectedly for evolutionists) “species have very clear genetic boundaries, and nothing much in between.”
The PhysOrg article does say that, but it also says a few other things that Hambo ignored. For example:
[O]ne has to understand DNA barcoding. Animals have two kinds of DNA. The one we are most familiar with, nuclear DNA, is passed down in most animals by male and female parents and contains the genetic blueprint for each individual. The genome — made up of DNA — is constructed with four types of molecules arranged in pairs. In humans, there are three billion of these pairs, grouped into about 20,000 genes. But all animals also have DNA in their mitochondria, which are the tiny structures inside each cell that convert energy from food into a form that cells can use.
Mitochondria contain 37 genes, and one of them, known as COI, is used to do DNA barcoding. Unlike the genes in nuclear DNA, which can differ greatly from species to species, all animals have the same set of mitochondrial DNA, providing a common basis for comparison.
Somehow, Hambo overlooked that last sentence. Also the PhysOrg article says:
“The simplest interpretation is that life is always evolving,” said Stoeckle [one of the researchers]. “It is more likely that — at all times in evolution — the animals alive at that point arose relatively recently.” In this view, a species only lasts a certain amount of time before it either evolves into something new or goes extinct.
Hambo seems to have ignored that too. Reading this, ah, unique study very selectively, he says:
Hmmm . . . humans and animals arose at much the same time, and there are genetic boundaries. Sounds like what you’d expect to find based on the Genesis account of origins.
But this is what we’d expect in a biblical worldview — indeed it’s what creationists have been saying all along, although their timeframe of 100,000–200,000 years is inflated [Hee hee!], due to evolutionary assumptions.
That’s enough from Hambo. We don’t know what to make of the study PhysOrg reported, but Hambo is happy — at least with parts of it. We suspect that you, dear reader, have your own opinion, and we’d like to hear from you.
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