It’s OK to admit it: abiogenesis is (still) a stretch

According the National Center for Science Education (NCSE):

All of this demonstrates that Yockey (1977a and b), Hoyle and Wickramasinghe (1981), the creationists (Gish, 1976), and others who should know better are dead wrong about the near-zero probability of new enzyme formation. Biologically useful macromolecules are not so information-rich that they could not form spontaneously without God’s help. Nor is help from extraterrestrial cultures required for their formation either. With this information in hand, we can wonder how creationists can so dogmatically insist that life could not have started by natural processes right here on earth.

But it’s a stretch to equate opposing views as a “dogmatic” insistence; a more honest assessment comes from naturalists who can see beyond the NCSE’s radar:

Evolution should be able to explain, in theory at least, all the way back to the very first organism that could replicate itself through biological or chemical processes. And to understand that organism fully, we would simply have to know what came before it. And right now [23 years after the NCSE’s quote above] we are nowhere close. I believe a material explanation will be found, but that confidence comes from my faith that science is up to the task of explaining, in purely material or naturalistic terms, the whole history of life. My faith is well founded, but it is still faith.

Quote sources

  1. Thwaites, W.M. (1985). “New Proteins Without God’s Help” in Creation Evolution Journal. Volume 5, Number 2, p. 3. Available http://ncse.com/cej/5/2/new-proteins-without-gods-help. Last accessed 6th Jul 2015.
  2. Slack, G. (2008). What neo-creationists get right. The Scientist. Available http://www.the-scientist.com/?articles.view/articleNo/26504/title/What-neo-creationists-get-right/. Last accessed 6th Jul 2015.
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