News to Note, July 16, 2011

A weekly feature examining news from the biblical viewpoint

Doonesbury’s deception The functional fin Closing in on K-T Tiktaalik time again RNA world

1. Doonebury Comic Drips With Twisted Information

Doonesbury drips with twisted information.

2. Vestigial Salmon Organ Actually Useful

Another so-called vestigial organ finds a function.

3. Closing In On the K-T Boundary of Dinosaur Extinction

Closing in on the K-T boundary.

4. Fish Still Considered a Transitional Form of Evolution

Tiktaalik tries again.

5. The RNA-Way From Molecules-to-Man Remains Muddled

The RNA-way from molecules-to-man remains mired by its complete lack of information.

And Don’t Miss . . .

  • Polar bears and brown bears freely interbreed, so they are from the same created kind. Genomic analysis of mitochondrial DNA has demonstrated that today’s polar bears have a common brown bear ancestor in Ireland. Brown bears do not live in Ireland today, but their remains have been found in caves. Geneticists were able to extract their DNA. Bears got off the Ark and established populations that spread and diversified into the sorts of bears we see today, including polar bears so well adapted for Arctic life.
  • A nearly complete pliosaur skull has been pieced together from fossil fragments found at Weymouth in the U.K. This extinct marine reptile had a short neck and a long jaw with sharp teeth. Thus it differs from another extinct marine reptile, the long-necked plesiosaur. These creatures were last seen in the fossil record of the Cretaceous layer. They, like dinosaurs, were predominantly preserved below the K-T boundary. Evolutionists claim the pliosaur fossil is 155 million years old, but these fossils would have been rapidly buried during the global Flood.
  • An Austrian atheist has obtained the right to have his “religious headgear,” a pasta strainer, photographed for his driver’s license. He claims to be a “pastafarian” member of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. The organization’s website says, “The only dogma allowed in the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster is the rejection of dogma.” Obviously intended to mock Christianity, the group illustrates a couple of truths. First of all, everyone has a faith of some sort. Atheists have faith that there is nothing to have faith in, but their stand is as much a position of faith as ours. Secondly, ludicrous as pastafarianism intends to be, like all man-made religions, it is a mere substitute for the true way to know God as Creator, Savior, and Lord. Only faith which trusts in Christ’s sacrifice has power to save. Man’s attempts to reach God through any other route—pagan, cultish, or pastafarian—are all ineffective. Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” (John 14:6)
  • Moles come equipped with two thumbs, sort of. So do pandas. But the mole’s extra thumb can only wiggle, not bend. It seems to improve digging efficiency. Moles with less well-developed thumbs tend to dig less. An evolutionary biologist at Zurich found that the extra thumb is part of its wrist. The researchers say, “Over evolutionary time, [the thumb] extended like a claw until it reached the other fingers.” Since some extinct vertebrates had more than five digits, evolutionists believe the five-fingered limb won the evolutionary day. Evolutionists are relieved that the mole was “an evolutionary rule-breaker.” Creationists remain confident God designed the mole to dig well.
  • Jawless ancient fish apparently had efficient feeding equipment which allowed them to coexist with their jawed neighbors. Dr. Philip Anderson evaluated fish fossils using engineering principles and concluded, “Long-held assumptions concerning the replacement of jawless fishes by newly evolved jawed forms are likely wrong. The variety of feeding mechanisms in early jawed animals appears to have had little to no affect on the diversity of jawless fishes, which shared ecological space with the jawed fishes for at least 30 million years before beginning to notably decline. When the jawless fishes do decline, we see no indication that their jawed cousins took up new functional roles, calling into question old ideas of ecological replacement.” We are not surprised to learn that God designed both sorts of fish to function well. There were no “primitive” or inferior jawless fish, just jawless fish designed to function properly from the beginning, about 6000 years ago.
  • A butterfly which is literally half-male and half-female is living out its last days at the London Museum of Natural history. The butterfly is a gynandromorph. This condition occurs in 0.01% of butterflies hatched. The sexual chimera results from “failure of the butterfly's sex chromosomes to separate during fertilization.” Since males and females of this species look very different, this butterfly is half-and-half inside and out. The same sort of genetic malfunction occurs in many animals and even human beings, but without obvious external differences the condition is often not easily detected. Read more about this situation in humans at Feedback: Hermaphroditism.

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