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Science Uprising 06: Mutations

Michael Behe Exposes How Mutations Fail To Invent

Are chance mutations really “the key to our evolution” like they claim in the X-Men films? Or are there strict limits to what mutations can accomplish, limits that point to the need for an overarching designer and the failure of Darwinian evolution to create fundamentally new things? Be sure to visit to find more videos and explore related articles and books.

In this episode of Science Uprising, we’ll take a look at the real evidence for the supposed powerhouse of evolution. The featured expert is biochemist Michael Behe of Lehigh University, author of the books Darwin’s Black Box, The Edge of Evolution, and Darwin Devolves.

Well-known scientists have been preaching a materialistic worldview rather than presenting the public with all the evidence. We are here to change that. The objective scientific evidence does not prove our universe is blind and purposeless. It does not show we are simply meat machines. It does not prove that evolutionary mechanisms can completely account for the diversity of life on earth. This is what THEY want you to think. Think for yourself and make an informed decision. Are you ready? The uprising has begun.

In a lecture, Phillip Johnson cited physicist Richard Feynman on a scientist’s obligation to be honest — not only with himself or in other scientific contexts but, not one bit less, when speaking to the lay public. “You should not fool the laymen when you’re talking as a scientist.” That such a thing would need to be said is itself revealing. What’s more, Feynman insisted, you should “bend over backwards to show how you may be wrong.”

The comments are taken from a Commencement address by Feynman in 1974 at Caltech. Johnson, a founding father of modern intelligent design, was so moved by this that he said “I wish it could be set to music.”

As far as I know it hasn’t been set to music. But the idea is a major theme in the new Science Uprising series. Scientists fool themselves and they fool non-scientists, not about dry technical details with no special significance, but about matters that bear on huge, life-altering world picture issues. One example is the role of mutations in evolution. That is the topic of Episode 6 of Science Uprising, “Mutations: Failure to Invent.”

The idea that random genetic mutations lead to wondrous, creative innovations is so influential that it forms the premise of a movie franchise, X-Men, that has grossed $6 billion worldwide over the past couple of decades. That’s a lot of “fooling the laymen”!

The alternative perspective would be open to the possibility of creative evolution requiring intelligence guidance. The producers of the X-Men movies aren’t scientists. However, the science media have done their best to mislead about the work of real scientists, including National Academy of Sciences member Richard Lenski. We’re all victims of that hype, including Hollywood moviemakers. Dismantling the hype about Lenski occupies biochemist Michael Behe for a significant part of his recent book, Darwin Devolves.

Super-Challenges Not Super-Powers

As Professor Behe explains in Science Uprising, the Long-Term Evolution Experiment conducted by Lenski has demonstrated not the creative power of unguided evolution but the occasional benefits of devolution, of breaking or disabling genes. That’s the opposite lesson from the one drawn by media such as the New York Times in reporting on Lenski’s efforts. “Think about it,” says the masked narrator of Science Uprising, “significant mutations don’t create superpowers. They create super-challenges. Sometimes those mutations are even life-threatening.”