Anthropocentrism!

For some reason, monotheism seems to go hand-in-hand with the idea that all of Creation is here ‘for us’, including all of the stuff outside the observable universe that we’ll never, ever be able to interact with. (Alternatively, one can go with the idea that everything is in existence ‘for God’, but it very frequently amounts to the same thing.) This is, I’m convinced, why so many people have a problem with evolution – it’s just not dignified enough to think that we (wait for it) ‘came from monkeys’.

I wouldn’t have thought that this concept coult extend to something as trivial as the size of the human genome, but PZ Meyers reveals otherwise:

4) The Human Genome Project showed that only 1-2% of Human DNA codes for proteins, or about 25,000 genes. These are not enough to account for the complexity of the organism. What is the other 98% of the genome’s function? We don’t know.

This is fast becoming one of the most popular assertions by creationists. Exactly how many genes would be sufficient to account for the complexity of a human being? Show your work. How many genes do we need to have to make you happy, and why should your sense of self-worth be a reason for us to have more?

Less than 25,000 genes is simply the number. It’s what has been counted in analyzing the genome. I don’t quite get the point of complaining that it’s not enough, becaust obviously, it is enough, or we wouldn’t be here.

They always seem so dismayed that humans have that number — it’s never shock that mice or birds have that many, or that flies have about half as many. It’s apparently a very personal issue to them, sort of like how many millimeters long their penis is. Come on, creationists! Be proud of your 25,000 micrometers! (Source)

The article he’s quoting can be found here, and seems to be part of the Creationist ‘find a PhD’ game. I was under the impression that doctors actually have to know something about science, but Jeffrey Dach appears to have slept through the important lectures on that one.

The true horror only comes in his ‘references’ section, though: he links to the Discovery Institute and Conservapaedia, twin intellectual cess pits of the internet. Ouch. If I was running the Salon.com servers, I’d be looking into industrial strength hard drive bleach right about now.

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2 Responses to “Anthropocentrism!”


  1. 1 Zack January 29, 2009 at 3:20 am

    Although how the Discovery Institute kept going after the Wedge document was leaked, I have no idea.

  2. 2 augustine January 29, 2009 at 12:12 pm

    Tenacity? Hey, they’ve kept going in the face of near-total derision by the scientific community, so I doubt the Wedge document was much of a blow!


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