News to Note, May 9, 2009

A weekly feature examining news from the biblical viewpoint

on May 9, 2009

Antique protein, racing to a conclusion, the latest animal virus, and more!

1. Antique Protein

An incredible discovery that shocked the “millions of years” camp is back—with further verification.

Ten years ago, anyone—scientist or otherwise—claiming to have discovered soft (i.e., unfossilized) dinosaur tissue would have been ridiculed and dismissed by the scientific community as a quack or a young-earth creationist. Yet within the last decade have come two such crushing blows to the idea that dinosaurs died out some 65 million years ago.

2. Racing to a Conclusion

Africa may be the most genetically diverse place on earth. Is that evidence of evolutionary origins?

Evolutionists have long called Africa the “cradle of humanity,” a reference to several supposed apeman fossils found on the continent. Now, the largest genetic study ever undertaken on Africa reveals the extent of genetic diversity there.

3. The Latest Animal Virus

An “evolving” virus is in the news again—but this time, skunks and foxes are at the center, not swine.

4. The D(esigned)-Word

An element of nature “designed”—a slip-up or a rare admission?

“Sea urchin digging teeth are designed to stay sharp,” begins a news release from the Weizmann Institute of Science.

5. The First European?

The mock-up represents the “earliest known modern European,” supposedly 35,000 years old—yet he looks just like what creationists would suggest.

And Don’t Miss . . .

  • Many have already seen the Internet sensation of the dancing bird—though it’s worth watching a second time. Not only does it remind us of bird intelligence (a “pet” topic of ours), it also shows us a human behavior that chimps cannot duplicate.
  • Two weeks ago we covered the latest chapter in the ongoing debate over the Indonesian hobbit, a diminutive human fossil. Now two new papers argue that the hobbit was a unique species, with both human and “primitive” traits. (Watch out for evolutionary assumptions any time the word “primitive” floats around.)
  • Asteroids may be younger than they appear (to old-agers, anyway): space weathering doesn’t take billions or even millions of years, as some thought.
  • A new bill in Alberta, Canada, would reaffirm parent rights to exempt children from classes on evolution and homosexuality.
  • In related news, a California student has won his lawsuit against his former high school teacher who, the student argued, violated the First Amendment by calling creation “superstitious nonsense” (among other attacks on religion). The lawsuit did not seek monetary damages, with the goal instead to prohibit the teacher’s onslaught on religion in history lectures.
  • At 1.8 million years, a patch of Israeli desert is claimed to be the oldest surface on the planet. Scientists know this based on ongoing video surveillance of the entire surface of the earth for the past 2 million years. Wait, our notes were mixed up—it’s actually radiometric dating that gave scientists the idea.
  • Along the same sarcastic line, a new physics device will be able to travel back in time to the “first trillionth of a second after [the] big bang.” But we jest; rather, the device will travel through the imagination of astrophysicists’ minds, with interpretations riding on the presupposition that there was a big bang.
  • Why do evolutionists believe life originated by chance despite the astounding odds to the contrary? “But life DID begin!” cries the circular reasoning of one “scientific” blogger.
  • In a strange “coincidence,” evolutionists are increasingly crediting snakes with enlightening humankind—giving us the “evolutionary nudge . . . to communicate for social good, a critical step toward the evolution of language, and all that followed.” Including the knowledge of good and evil, perhaps (Genesis 3:1–4)?
  • The New York Times gets tripped up on the canard that the swine flu virus is “evolution in action,” a claim we rebutted last week.
  • Resurrecting an ancient gene—will it be evolution at work or natural selection at work?

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Remember, if you see a news story that might merit some attention, let us know about it! (Note: if the story originates from the Associated Press, Fox News, MSNBC, New York Times or another major national media outlet, we will most likely have already heard about it.) And thanks to all of our readers who have submitted great news tips to us. If you didn’t catch last week’s News to Note, why not take a look at it now? See you next week!

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Answers in Genesis is an apologetics ministry, dedicated to helping Christians defend their faith and proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ effectively. We focus on providing answers to questions about the Bible—particularly the book of Genesis—regarding key issues such as creation, evolution, science, and the age of the earth.