Darwin Devolves by Michael J. Behe News, Responses to Critics, Purchasing

News

From Evolution.News

Helpful Devolutionary Mutations Are Rapid and Unavoidable: Paper Reinforces Darwin Devolves

An interesting paper that strongly reinforces the lessons of Darwin Devolves was recently published in Nature Ecology and Evolution.1 University of Michigan biologists Piaopiao Chen and Jianzhi Zhang looked at the effect of changing environments on the evolution of laboratory yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. They grew 12 replicate cultures of a pure yeast strain separately for 1,120 generations in each of five disparate, challenging environments: 1) in the presence of the carcinogenic dye Congo Red; 2) in the presence of copper ion; 3) at pH 8; 4) in the presence of hydrogen peroxide; and 5) in the presence of the antibiotic neomycin. They also grew replicate cultures successively for 224 generations apiece in the five conditions  —  that is, the first 224 generations in

Behe and Swamidass Debate Evolution and Intelligent Design at Texas A&M

Biochemist and CSC Senior Fellow Michael Behe shared the stage with physician and computational biologist Joshua Swamidass this past Thursday evening at an overflow event at Texas A&M’s Rudder Theatre in College Station, TX.  The meeting, titled “God and/or Evolution?” was part conversation, part debate. Behe made the case for intelligent design in biology. Swamidass argued for methodological naturalism and modern evolutionary theory while also allowing for the separate de novo creation of Adam and Eve, an idea outlined in his new book. The format had Behe going first and then Swamidass responding. Then each speaker got a shorter chunk of time for follow-up comments, followed by a Q&A sent via tweets that were selected and read by the moderator.  Behe

Critic Josh Swamidass Meets Michael Behe Tonight at Texas A&M

Someone had a clever idea: stage a debate between biologist Michael Behe and his critic Joshua Swamidass on “God and/or Evolution?” Proof that it was a clever idea is that the event, tonight at Rudder Theatre at Texas A&M University, is already sold out. The sponsor, Veritas Forum, was urging as of yesterday, “If you are unable to attend tomorrow’s Forum, please cancel your order so we can release tickets to our waitlist.” Josh Swamidass was one of the trio of authors who reviewed Professor Behe’s book Darwin Devolves: The New Science About DNA That Challenges Evolution in the journal Science. If you are disappointed that you can’t attend, don’t worry. You can assume that the debate will reprise the exchange over Darwin Devolves. But the review’s criticisms,

Philosophical-ish Objections to Intelligent Design: A Response to Paul Draper

Recently I was asked by several people whether I had ever responded to an old review of Darwin’s Black Box by Purdue University philosopher of religion Paul Draper. I had not done so, but will use the occasion to respond now and to clear up a couple of philosophical-ish objections that have been raised against intelligent design over the years. In 2002 Draper — then on the faculty of Florida International University — published a paper in the journal Faith and Philosophy: Journal of the Society of Christian Philosophers, entitled “Irreducible complexity and Darwinian gradualism: a Reply to Michael J. Behe.”1 Draper wrote that “My goal in this paper will be to show that, while this challenge is both more original and, with a few modifications, more powerful than many of

If Human Eugenics Wouldn’t Work, Human Evolution Has a Big Problem

Richard Dawkins got his wings clipped over the weekend, following a claim on Twitter that human eugenics, whatever its demerits otherwise, would certainly work. After all, it does with animals: “It works for cows, horses, pigs, dogs & roses. Why on earth wouldn’t it work for humans?” It’s one thing to deplore eugenics on ideological, political, moral grounds. It’s quite another to conclude that it wouldn’t work in practice. Of course it would. It works for cows, horses, pigs, dogs & roses. Why on earth wouldn’t it work for humans? Facts ignore ideology. — Richard Dawkins (@RichardDawkins) February 16, 2020 He was quickly forced to backpedal a bit, “For those determined to miss the point,” saying he “deplores” it as a policy, “I simply said

Darwin Day Is Here! Discover the Cell’s Secrets with Michael Behe

Don’t look there too closely. Don’t worry, it all came together by chance. Show us your PhD in evolutionary biology. Don’t you trust the scientists? What right do you have to an opinion of your own? These are, in effect, the response from Darwinian evolutionists to doubts from the public that the wonders of the living cell evolved without intelligent guidance. Those doubts, though, are not unreasonable. A Beautiful, Accessible Video Today, for the birthday of Charles Darwin, celebrated around the world as Darwin Day, Discovery Institute is proud to launch a new, five-part video series. It’s Secrets of the Cell with Michael Behe. You can see Episode 1 here: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=4YngarAhh0M&feature=youtu.be Has there ever been a more beautifully produced

Important Medical Effects but Modest Mutations

I was asked to address a comment left by a viewer of one of Discovery’s YouTube videos. The comment is:1 Some monkeys have a mutation in a protein called TRIM5 that results in a piece of another, defunct protein being tacked onto TRIM5. The result is a hybrid protein called TRIM5-CypA, which can protect cells from infection with retroviruses such as HIV. Here, a single mutation has resulted in a new protein with a new and potentially vital function. New protein, new function, new information. A bit of Googling shows that the text was taken word-for-word from an old article (2008) on the New Scientist website2 (perhaps by way of intermediate copying). That was during a period when the 150th anniversary of the publication of the Origin of Species was fast approaching, and many

Stars of ID Were Out for the Day: More Photos from the Dallas Science & Faith Conference

The Dallas Conference on Science & Faith this past Saturday was a smash success — not least as a great publication party for the newly re-released and expanded classic, The Mystery of Life’s Origin: The Continuing Controversy, by Thaxton, Bradley, and Olsen with numerous new scientific contributions.  Photographer Chris Morgan shared with me these photos of the event: Stephen Meyer on “The Return of the God Hypothesis” and the contributions of Charles Thaxton. John West on “Darwin’s Corrosive Idea.” Robert J. Marks introduces The Mystery of Life’s Origin co-author Walter Bradley. Michale Behe on “Darwin Devolves.” Douglas Axe on “Undeniable: How Biology Confirms Design.” Discovery Institute Dallas chief Pam

The Long View: Michael Behe Pays Tribute to Phillip Johnson

On a new episode of ID the Future we continue a series of messages from a November 2019 symposium in Berkeley, California, presented in honor of the late Phillip Johnson, who played a crucial role in the flowering of the intelligent design movement. Download the podcast or listen to it here. On today’s episode Lehigh University biology professor Michael Behe, author of Darwin’s Black Box, The Edge of Evolution, and Darwin Devolves, tells about his earliest memories of Phillip Johnson and speaks about the long history of science: how ancient science pointed to purposeful design in life, and how current science is coming full circle. Considering this long view, the conclusion of design is as strong as or stronger than it has ever been. Photo: Phillip and Kathie Johnson at

Mystery of Life’s Origin Authors Reunite for Dallas Conference on Science & Faith

There was a wonderful turnout this past Saturday for the 2020 Dallas Conference on Science & Faith, with more than 1,400 in attendance. A highlight was the reunion of the three scientists who sparked the modern intelligent design revolution. That was in 1984 with the publication of The Mystery of Life’s Origin. The pioneering authors, biochemist Charles Thaxton, materials scientist Walter Bradley, and geochemist Roger Olsen, are pictured above (from right to left, Thaxton, Bradley, Olsen), being interviewed by Stephen Meyer about the paradox-filled intellectual world of origin-of-life researchers. To Carry On a Legacy The audience, which had already nearly filled the parking lot 45 minutes before the event began, were rewarded with a very entertaining conversation celebrating