Cytogenetics—another blow to evolution
EDITOR'S NOTE: This magazine article, written in 1979, is retained for historical reasons, but the principal argument it contains, even though it was presented by one of the most distinguished authorities in the field at the time, should not be used. It has been known for a considerable time that the information on a strand of DNA can be read in either direction. That does not of course mean that humans descended from chimps, merely that it is not appropriate to use this argument to indicate otherwise. As we have stated elsewhere, we should always be 'hanging loose' about any particular argument, prepared to abandon it in the face of information to the contrary.
Professor Jerome LeJeune, a very distinguished French cytogeneticist and holder of the chair of Fundamental Genetics, University of Paris, claims that modern knowledge of chromosomes makes it impossible for a human to have evolved slowly and gradually from a pre-human. From other things he mentions, it appears that Prof. LeJeune is not a creationist—he appears to hover somewhere between theistic evolution and ‘progressive creation’. However, his comments denying Neodarwinism (see also Quotes to Note, this issue) are very relevant to us, since this is the mechanism of evolution which is being taught in our schools and universities. His statements here mentioned were made at a conference of mostly Catholic doctors and theologians, entitled ‘The Quality of Life’ and dealing mainly with abortion, euthanasia and other pro-life issues. (Combined conference, Guild of St. Luke, SS Cosmos and Damian, Wairakei, N.Z. Ott 9-12, 1975, proceedings edited by D. Bonisch) For example:
‘And just from what we know from primates, that is, from the gorilla, from the chimpanzee, from the orangutan and from man, we can safely say that the very ingenious simplification of Neodarwinists is now just good to put in the museum of old news—that is, the museum in which you put past discoveries that no longer have any explanation-interest.’
A little further on:
‘Because from the actual structure of the chromosome we can demonstrate that the human species did not come from a progressive humanization of a prehuman. We can be as sure that the gorilla never came to be a gorilla by a progressive gorillization of a pregorilla. These things are not true. They are told as telltale in classic books, but they are not any longer true.’
Prof. LeJeune does not delve into technicalities or all his reasons for saying this, but one apparent reason seems to be as follows: A chimp has two more chromosomes than man, which two appear as if ‘homologous’ to a single one in man. The evolutionist would have to say that in the process of the chimpanzee and man’s common ancestor becoming ‘humanized’, the two chromosomes (which remained independent in the chimp) became joined in man. The strong biochemical resemblance between man and chimp would be used as further evidence to support the notion that the chromosomes are indeed homologous. The blow for Neodarwinism comes, however, with the discovery that the theoretical ‘join’ is head-to-head. Since the chromosomes are always ‘read’ in the same direction, this means that the same ‘sentence’ would be read backwards, and would make no biochemical sense!
The vast majority of evolutionists are Neodarwinists, of course, for the simple reason that there is no better mechanism on the horizon. The evidence continues to mount against this model of evolution, and dissatisfied rumbles are heard; but most of the critics of Neodarwinism are, for personal/philosophical reasons, unwilling to embrace the only logical alternative—the separate creation of the distinct animal and plant kinds with all their variation potential built in at the beginning by an omnipotent, omniscient Creator.
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Creation 2:1 (January 1979)