Re: [asa] Advice for conversing with YECs (Cheek turning)

From: D. F. Siemens, Jr. <>
Date: Mon Oct 27 2008 - 17:58:29 EDT

On Mon, 27 Oct 2008 20:58:17 +0000 writes:
> I had the same answer when we discussed this at RTB (I am a volunteer
> apologist there). No enzyme to create vitamin C means a healthier
> diet is needed. I still haven't seen a good reply, except that
> because the gene doesn't work it must be "broken".
> James Patterson
It's been a while since I checked the paper on the gene producing
ascorbate in most mammals but not in apes and man. As I recall, it is the
same change that makes the gene nonfunctional in all the latter. But RTB
holds that each species was created separately. Unfortunately for that
view, it is simpler to consider that all the creatures involved inherited
the nonfunctional gene from a single ancestral source. This conclusion is
strengthened by the evidence that human chromosome 2 represents the
fusion of 2 separate chromosomes in the apes. There is even, if I recall
correctly, some telomeric structures in the middle of the human
chromosome. Additionally, I believe that the rest of the human and ape
chromosomes can be closely paired.

I am puzzled by the claim that a diet providing ascorbate from external
sources in healthier than a situation in which there are more than one
source for the essential material. Taken seriously, this would require
that any situation in which a creature has a backup to an essential
process be a mistake. I take the argument as pure red herring.

Of course, if deleting just the nonfunctional ascorbate gene in an ape
produces a defective or nonviable individual, there would be an argument
that the state of the gene is essential. But this is experimental, not a
bald statement without evidence. But such evidence would not alter the
simpler view that apes and man evolved from a single ancestral species.
Dave (ASA)
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Received on Mon Oct 27 18:02:50 2008

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