Evolution as Lottery Manipulator
Lady Luck is often clearly the stated referee of evolutionary events, but the vast number of times evolution wins suggests design afoot.
In “Lucky You! Accidents of evolution that made us human” on New Scientist, Clare Wilson was unabashed in stating that “Evolution is a game of chance.” Here’s how she started her story with hysterical drama:
EARTH, several million years ago. A cosmic ray blasts into the atmosphere at close to the speed of light. It collides with an oxygen atom, generating a shower of energetic particles, one of which knocks into a DNA molecule within a living creature.
That DNA molecule happens to reside in a developing egg cell within an ape-like animal living in Africa. The DNA is altered by the collision – mutated – and the resulting offspring is slightly different from its mother.
The mutation gives the offspring an advantage over its peers in the competition for food and mates, and so, as the generations pass, it is carried by more and more of the population. Eventually it is present in nearly everyone, and so the altered version of the DNA should really no longer be called a mutation – it’s just one of the regular 23,000 or so genes that make up the human genome.
While cosmic rays are thought to be one source of mutations, DNA-copying errors during egg and sperm production may be a more common cause. Whatever their origins, these evolutionary accidents took us on a 6-million-year journey from something similar to a great ape to us, Homo sapiens.
Surely a string of lucky wins like that qualifies as lottery jackpot of the past billion years, but evolutionary theory is chock full of similar stories of lucky wins – not just for humans, but for every cell, plant and animal on the globe. Wilson listed six such accidents that “made us human” but hardly a day passes without evolutionists claiming multiple lottery winnings that beat astronomical odds. Here are some recent examples:
Fast-folding protein machines by chance: Science Daily admitted that there exists an “astronomically large number of other possible forms” that protein chains can fold into, but somehow they get it right every time, even within fractions of a second too quick to observe. How did that happen? According to evolutionary thought, the universe’s premiere gambler, evolution, had plenty of opportunities to roll the dice: “Proteins are made of long linear chains of amino acids, which have evolved over millions of years to self-assemble extremely rapidly — often within thousandths of a split second — into a working nanomachine.”
Sex, rock & roll: How did sex originate? In ‘Sex born from hard rock and heavy metal,” New Scientist reporter Will Ferguson said it’s easy; just add granite. The granite that started erupting onto the crust two billion years ago wasn’t trying to invent anything, Ferguson knows; sex was just an unintended consequence of granite’s erosion providing more variety of elements for evolution to play with. This lottery was won on one of the first draws, too: “The findings offer further evidence that evolution on land may have commenced far earlier than previously thought,” he quoted a scientist stating. (Ferguson did not connect the dots between complex life and sex).
Taken for granite: PhysOrg reporters watched the gambling table and validated the winnings: “Now scientists have discovered that granite played an important role in a major episode over 1.5 billion years ago, which eventually led to human life on Earth.”
Gambler’s hunch: The origin of life remains a “puzzling question” to astrobiologists, but Harry Lonsdale (himself a chemist and entrepreneur) is willing to spend up to $2 million of his money to fund research on the puzzle. The article on Astrobiology Magazine admits that natural selection doesn’t work before replication, leaving chance alone as the cause of the first self-replicating entity (see online book). Since evolution seems to have been on a roll with the lottery, it sounds like a good bet for a gamblin’ man. Strange that there aren’t many other gamblers investing, though (except NASA, which has its own hunches that life began in outer space). Reporter Nola Taylor Redd noted that there are “very little international or multinational opportunities” for astrobiologists to research the mystery of life’s origin – a question that remains unanswered (by evolutionists) ever since Darwin looked into his imaginary warm little pond.
Evolutionists, be forewarned: we are saving up all these quotes for a gigantic laugh fest after your Bearded Buddha idol topples.