January 3, 2022 | David F. Coppedge

Help Darwinists Kick the Habit in 2022

Out with the old dogma, “It evolved!”
In with the new realism, “Just the Facts”

 

This new year, help evolutionists come to grips with their bad habit of explaining everything with “It evolved.” It’s easy to assist them. Just follow up with, “But how?” If an evolutionist piles on more evolutionary assumptions, like “it must have provided an evolutionary advantage in the past,” ask it again, or inquire how he knows that. Keep it up until he realizes he has an addiction of talking in circles. Let’s try that on some recent news items.

Cartoons by Brett Miller, used by permission. All rights reserved.

 

How does a spider weave its web? (University of Wisconsin-Madison). Reporter Kelly April Tyrrell in the UW press office, dutifully shlooping Darwinese from her keyboard as she was trained to do, weaves a web of Darwin storytelling through the eyes of a grad student, Emily Setton. When the student wants to understand the origin of an exquisite design—the spider’s web—she goes to the only source of understanding that she has learned: the little red book of King Charlie the Magnificent, who taught the Stuff Happens Law (SHL) to the masses and brought them enlightenment.

“I really wanted to understand how spiders make spinnerets, and how their legs may have been modified over time [SHL] to make them. What’s the genetic architecture of the web-weaving appendages?” says Setton. “I am interested in how you make novel structureshow do they evolve [SHL] and how does nature create novelty at the genetic level?”

Alas. Setton, one of the novitiates in the lab of Indoctrinator Prashant Sharma, fails to find the desired understanding.

“My advisor wants to know why daddy long legs (or harvestmen, which are not spiders) have long legs. I want to know: How do spiders weave webs?” Setton explains. “The answer is, we don’t know. We don’t know how silk is made or how the spinnerets and the spigots in spinner­ets are made, at the genetic level. There is so much we don’t know; my inner child wants to know.”

The Indoctrinator takes pity over the pleading eyes of the child. “The work is hard, and there’s virtually no playbook,” Tyrrell laments. So the Indoctrinator sends her student out to hunt tarantulas, hoping that the enlightenment may one day come.

By chance in the forest, the student may experience tiny sparks of understanding about the mysterious ways of chance. Perhaps they were just spontaneous flashes in her retina, but Setton may interpret them as fleeting glimpses of Darwinian insight, to use some future day as motivations to indoctrinate the next generation.

Birds’ dazzling iridescence tied to nanoscale tweak of feather structure (Princeton University). Observation: Some birds have dazzling iridescent colors. Why, they must have evolved! Count the ways that is stated in this press release:

  • The researchers found an evolutionary tweak in feather nanostructure
  • This insight could help researchers understand how and when brilliant iridescence first evolved in birds
  • But why birds evolved iridescent nanostructures with so many different types of melanosomes has been a mystery
  • To answer this question, the researchers combined evolutionary analysis, optical modeling and plumage measurements
  • They then used a family tree of birds to illustrate which groups evolved the different melanosome types.
  • “This key evolutionary breakthrough — that melanosomes could be arranged in thin melanin layers — unlocked new color-producing possibilities for birds,” Stoddard said.
  • Iridescent nanostructures likely evolved many times in different groups of birds, but, by chance, thin melanin layers evolved from a thick rod in different ways.
  • Some groups evolved thin melanin layers by flattening the melanosomes, [etc.]
  • What if the different types of melanosomes initially evolved for some reason unrelated to the iridescent color….?”

The article mentions “design principles” of feather nanostructure that might “inspire the engineering of new materials that can capture or manipulate light.” Teacher, I have a question. If engineers could mimic these design principles, and nobody knows how they might have evolved, could we test if the nanostructures are irreducibly complex and are better explained by engineering design for a purpose?” [Audible gasp is heard.] Who let a creationist in here? Police!

Plant-eating lizards on the cusp of tooth evolution (University of Helsinki). If you thought the e-word count in the above article was over the top, see if you can endure 17 mentions of evolution in this short press release about lizard teeth. You will read about evolutionary advantage, evolutionary time scale, re-evolution, independent evolution (convergence), evolutionary adaptations and evolutionary success. Save a step and take out all the other sentences. ‘Evolutionary adaptations independently evolved and re-evolved over evolutionary time scales, leading to evolutionary success.’

Better yet: ‘Evolutionary evolution evolved evolutionarily.’ That’s it! The mantra form brings the hoped-for understanding. Close your eyes and chant!

 

How sea stars get their symmetry (MIT Whitehead Institute). This headline, in Kipling Just-So Story format, promises understanding of how something arose—in this case, a gene with the funny name “dishevelled. The understanding never comes. What the reader gets instead is an assumption of evolution.

Dishevelled — so named because a mutation in the homologous protein in fruit flies lends their tiny hairs a messy, tousled look — is a component of a common signaling pathway called the Wnt pathway, which is found in many creatures throughout the animal kingdom. The pathway serves various purposes in the cells, from body patterning to cell proliferation. “The Wnt pathway is evolutionarily ancient,” Swartz said. “Jellyfish use it, sea stars use it, people use it, and I think that’s really quite profound.”

If we take a “just the facts” approach to this article, we learn two things: (1) Many animals use the Wnt pathway, and (2) It serves various purposes. It may be “ancient” (as ancient as the first sea star or jellyfish), but it is not ipso facto evolutionarily ancient. Zak Swartz, a postdoc at MIT, repeats the error in the last sentence. He thinks the ability to activate the dishevelled gene is “a really critical feature of the evolution of the animal body plan.”

The follow-up response needs to be, “But how did the animal body plan evolve?” Where did the complex, hierarchical information for a body plan come from? That is the central mystery in the Cambrian explosion, about which evolutionists have no answers—only assumptions that “it evolved.” They assume the very thing they need to prove. The presence and function of the dishevelled gene in sea stars is not the issue. The origin of the sea star body plan, and the Wnt pathway, is the issue. Evolutionists are imposing their emotions (“I think that’s really quite profound”) on top of the evidence.

 

You can see that the work of CEH is still needed. Thanks to all who gave year-end gifts to keep us going. Everyone can join in the effort by tweeting links to these articles on their social media. The more the word spreads, the sooner Humpty Darwin falls.

Humpty Darwin sits on a wall of foam bricks held together by decayed mortar. Cartoon by Brett Miller commissioned for CEH. All rights reserved.

 

 

 

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