News to Note, October 29, 2011

A weekly feature examining news from the biblical viewpoint

by Dr. Elizabeth Mitchell on October 29, 2011
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iSteve, flapping robots, the not-so-mighty meteorite, serpentine paternity, Great Oxidation Event

1. Steve Jobs’ Views of Religion Shown in Biography

Always prepared to give an answer

2. Winged Robots Look to the Past To Discover Flight

Robots arbitrate the flight debate.

3. New Model of Meteorite Strike Reveals Extinction Theory

Move over, mass extinction meteorite, says new model.

4. Vipers’ Reproduction Like Virgin Birth at First Glance

Sperm, or no sperm? That was the question.

5. Potential Evidence for The Great Oxidation Event

Oceanic chromium pins down date for the Great Oxidation Event.

And Don’t Miss . . .

  • Last week we reported a headline distressing to those who believe dinosaurs and humans never lived at the same time. The headline, “World’s Only Evidence of co-existing Humans, Dinosaur Tracks Found in China,” appeared in the English version of the Chinese Academy of Sciences newsletter. One of the researchers, saying the headline was causing a “nasty mess,” petitioned to have the title changed. The Chinese newsletter has now re-titled the article “Evidence of Human Interest in Dinosaur Tracks Found in China.

    We pointed out that to date there has been no indisputable evidence of fossils or tracks of humans and dinosaurs together. This statement generated questions from readers concerning the findings at Paluxy River. Creationists including some from Answers in Genesis have investigated the Paluxy River fossils in light of the claims made by some. Given the ambiguity of the evidence, we do not believe those claims are wholly supportable. This is discussed in several articles on ICR’s and our website:

    Our certainty that humans and dinosaurs lived at the same time comes not from the fossil record—where we actually do not expect to find it—but from the biblical record. Read more about it at Why Don’t We Find Human & Dinosaur Fossils Together?

  • A mastodon rib from Washington state is generating controversy among anthropologists. Many anthropologists have held that the “Clovis” people were the first humans in North America, having arrived about 13,000 years ago. The mastodon rib appears to be pierced by a sharp bone fragment with an attached shaft. Carbon dating of the fossil yields an age of 13,800 years, which is 800 years too early for the Clovis people. Michael Waters and colleagues have obtained a detailed 3D view of the tip with a CT-scanner and are convinced the embedded tip is an arrowhead. DNA analysis confirms that the arrowhead is made from a piece of mastodon bone. From the Bible we know that after dispersion from the tower of Babel people spread throughout the world. We would of course not be surprised to learn that more than one group who hunted to obtain their food would make it to America, likely crossing the land bridge exposed by lower sea levels in the post-Flood Ice Age. Carbon dating cannot be relied upon here. The dates obtained are inconsistent with Scripture. The Flood occurred less than 4,500 years ago, with the tower of Babel some years after it. Carbon dates are likely very distorted by the Flood, which buried large amounts of biomass, as well as by alterations in the earth’s magnetic field. Genesis reveals when people groups set out from their post-Flood habitations, and the global Flood helps us understand the distortions in the carbon dates we measure. Read more about it at Carbon-14 Dating, Carbon-14 in Fossils and Diamonds, Doesn’t Carbon-14 Dating Disprove the Bible?
  • Millions of tons of debris—appliances, furniture, boats—are floating across the Pacific in the aftermath of the March 11 tsunami which tragically killed so many in Japan. This tsunami reminded us of the awesome destructive power of water—that power having been most fully displayed in the global Flood. Now this very impressive floating island of debris is a visual image that should help some understand one way animals distributed themselves after the Flood from the mountains of Ararat to the world’s land masses. In the aftermath of the Flood, floating debris, even large masses including logs and all sorts of vegetation, could have conveyed animals across significant distances to new lands. Also, given the lower sea level resulting from several hundred years of Ice Age, we believe land bridges also enabled many creatures to simply migrate. Read more about it at How Did Animals Spread All Over the World from Where the Ark Landed?

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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, the 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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