Creationist Wisdom #1,072: The Divine Gift of DNA

Today’s letter-to-the-editor — it’s a column, actually — appears in the St. Catharines Standard of St. Catharines, which Wikipedia says is "the largest city in Canada's Niagara Region and the sixth largest urban area in the province of Ontario." The column is titled Humans designed by an intelligent master craftsman, and the newspaper doesn’t seem to have a comments feature.

Unless the letter-writer is a politician, preacher, or other public figure, we won’t embarrass or promote him by using his full name — but today we’ve got a preacher. It’s Rob Weatherby, described at the end as “a retired pastor who now attends his home church, Fonthill Baptist.” We’ll give you some excerpts from the rev’s column, enhanced with our Curmudgeonly commentary, some bold font for emphasis, and occasional Curmudgeonly interjections that look [like this]. Okay, here we go:

Have you ever asked how we came to be? It may seem too philosophical for some, but your answer will have a profound influence on your worldview, values and behaviour. Here is a fairly simple exercise to help us figure it out.

This is the simple exercise:

You’re holding a newspaper right now (unless you’re reading the e-version). So, did this newspaper create itself or happen by accident? In other words, did the letters, words, colours, photos and materials just happen to come together or fall from the sky by accident? Most people respond by laughing and saying, “Of course not. That’s ridiculous and completely illogical.” And I would agree.

Clever, huh? Then the rev says:

The fact is a lot of work and brain power (design, writing, editing, arranging, etc.) went into the product in your hands — just ask the editor. Plus, it took a lot of really smart people to design the printing machines that took this material and produced a practical product that is useful in our daily lives. … And so, our unanimous conclusion is this newspaper is not the result of accident or chance but rather the product of a lot of thinking, design, intelligence and work.

After that brilliant analogy, the rev tells us:

DNA has been called the “book for life” or, for my comparison, I’ll call it “life’s newspaper. Those three letters stand for “deoxyribonucleic acid.” It has existed for a long time but we just didn’t know it. … We now know that everything alive has DNA. That includes plant life, animal life and human life. … If uncoiled, each human cell’s DNA would be a very thin thread measuring about three metres. Your body has about 37 trillion cells.

Then the rev gives us a really astounding fact:

So, if you uncoiled all the DNA in your body, it would measure 107.8 billion kilometres (or 150,000 round trips to the moon). [Ooooooooooooh! It’s overwhelming!]

The rev continues:

DNA contain the instructions needed for every living organism to develop, survive and reproduce. It is estimated that one person’s DNA would fill about 100 encyclopedia volumes with information and instructions. Bill Gates concluded, “DNA is far, far more advanced than any software ever created.”

Utterly amazing! Now the rev gets to the point:

So, let’s ask ourselves a question related to our first one: “Did DNA create itself or happen by accident?”

Clever, huh? In his final paragraph, the rev wraps it all up for you:

Our answer to the first newspaper question seemed like a no-brainer. No, newspapers don’t happen by accident or create themselves. Why is it that many people hesitate to answer no to this second question which involves so much more complexity, design and intelligence?

Well, dear reader, you must admit that the evidence of Oogity Boogity is overwhelming. You can’t possibly escape the conclusion that you owe your DNA to the intelligent designer — blessed be he!

Copyright © 2021. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

11 responses to “Creationist Wisdom #1,072: The Divine Gift of DNA

  1. I just realized that after some newspaper inserts, the column continues for a few more paragraphs, but you’re not really missing anything. One of those paragraphs says: “As soon as we consider intelligent design, we are obliged to think of an intelligent designer. Christians describe that person or being with words such as God, Creator, Heavenly Father, the Eternal One.”

  2. Who would accept this kind of answer, about anything … except when it proves god? “It is designed”
    Where did this newspaper come from? It was designed.
    How come cars have four wheels? They are designed.
    Who invented the light bulb? It was designed.
    When did people go to the Moon? It was designed.
    What makes an airplane fly? It was designed.

  3. chris schilling

    “Have you ever asked how we came to be?”

    Why, yes.

    Long, long ago, a couple of Devonian sarcopterygians had sex, which eventually led to Rob, and everyone else. Rob the modified fish even implicitly conceded the point — “We now know that everything alive has DNA” — but you can bet dollars to donuts he doesn’t accept common ancestry.

    I have no idea what he thinks he’s saying about newspapers, except it’s a change, I guess, from tornadoes in junkyards producing Boeing 747’s.

  4. “We know newspapers are designed. Therefore, we know human beings are designed.”

    That’s it, right there. That’s the whole of it. That’s all the semantic content of Rob’s column, laid out, in sum total.

    What more need be said? What more is there to say?

    I suppose one might observe that old age often has the effect it has apparently had on Rob. On the other hand, I have no idea what he was like in his youth. He might have always been like this. But that this utter tosh gets published, in a newspaper, yet… well, there’s nothing to say about that, either. Because words fail me.

  5. @DaveL: “What more need be said? What more is there to say?”
    This: in the case of the newspaper we have a good idea who made “the letters, words, colours, photos and materials”, how they did and which tools they used. We can visit the places where they are printed and do research on the process.
    In the case of YHWH creating DNA not so much. Pastor Robbie unwillingly but excellently has demonstrated why Paley’s Watchmaker Analogy is a false one.

  6. That’s absolutely true, FrankB, but it’s like laboriously explaining that water is wet, or that fire can burn. It shouldn’t need to be said at all.

  7. @DaveL: indeed. When I was looking for an example of a non-creationist promoting a variation on Paley (to tease ChrisS) I found this:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Watchmaker_analogy#Contemporary_usage

    – In his ruling, the judge stated that the use of the argument from design by intelligent design proponents “is merely a restatement of the Reverend William Paley’s argument applied at the cell level,” adding “Minnich, Behe, and Paley reach the same conclusion, that complex organisms must have been designed using the same reasoning, except that Professors Behe and Minnich refuse to identify the designer, whereas Paley inferred from the presence of design that it was God.” The judge ruled that such an inductive argument is not accepted as science because it is unfalsifiable.”

    – “It is readily apparent to the Court that the only attribute of design that biological systems appear to share with human artifacts is their complex appearance, i.e., if it looks complex or designed, it must have been designed. (23:73 (Behe)). This inference to design based upon the appearance of a “purposeful arrangement of parts” is a completely subjective proposition, determined in the eye of each beholder and his/her viewpoint concerning the complexity of a system.”

    The funny aspect is that the analogy can be used to make divine design compatible with evolution theory and abiogenesis. Pastor Robbie just needs to accept the conclusion of Judge Jones (a practising christian – lovely irony!): Paley’s analogy is theology, not science. But hey, pastor Robbie probably ain’t no kin of no monkey.
    Which is a sort of a cardinal sin. I think I can agree that that’s bad theology indeed.

  8. DNA is either a development of evilution or
    YOUR GAWD is totally incompetent designer and needs to be fired!! Need evidence? Get naked and look in a mirror and tell me that a PERFECT creator made that mess!

  9. @L.Long
    Everything was perfect and then Eve bit in an apple (well, a fruit).

  10. @Eddie … because the FATHER was again totally incompetent at raising and teaching his “kids” about right & wrong and totally incompetent at making the garden child proof by putting the forbidden fruit right in reach. Any parent knows better. And every parent should teach kids NOT to talk to strangers, again incompetent.

  11. Prepare for more “Fresh DNA found in ancient animal” from the creationists.
    https://freethoughtblogs.com/kriswager/2021/02/20/ancient-dna-just-became-older/