Macro-Mutation Myth, The

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Evolutionists' inability to find any of the intermediate forms that they claim must once have existed led them to come up with new theses. One of these is the theory of punctuated evolution, which hypothesizes that the mutations necessary to form a new species took place, or that some individuals were exposed to intense, consecutive mutations.

One law revealed by Fisher, one of the century's best known geneticists, on the basis of experiment and observation clearly invalidates that hypothesis. In his book, The Genetical Theory of Natural Selection, Fisher states that "the likelihood that a particular mutation will become fixed in a population is inversely proportional to its effect on the phenotype."25 In other words, the greater the effect of a mutation, the less chance it has of becoming permanent in a population.

In addition, mutations cause random changes in living things' genetic data, and do not improve it. On the contrary, individuals exposed to mutations typically suffer serious diseases and deformities. Therefore, the more an individual is affected by a mutation, the less that individual's chances of survival.

Professor Walter L. Starkey of Ohio University writes about these damaging effects of mutation:

Being bombarded by mutation-causing radiation, would be like shooting a new car with a 30-caliber rifle . . . Similarly, it would be highly unlikely that mutations would do anything other than damage you or an animal. Mutations caused by DNA copying errors would have a similar result . . . Mutations are harmful by a ratio of at least 10,000 to one. Radiation and copying errors do not produce new features that are beneficial.26

The geneticist Lane Lester and the population geneticist Raymond Bohlin describe the mutation impasse as follows:

The overall factor that has come up again and again is that mutation remains the ultimate source of all genetic variation in any evolutionary model. Being unsatisfied with the prospects of accumulating small point mutations, many are turning to macromutations to explain the origin of evolutionary novelties. Goldschmidt's hopeful monsters have indeed returned. However, though macromutations of many varieties produce drastic changes, the vast majority will be incapable of survival, let alone show the marks of increasing complexity. If structural gene mutations are inadequate because of their inability to produce significant enough changes, then regulatory and developmental mutations appear even less useful because of the greater likelihood of nonadaptive or even destructive consequences. . . But one thing seems certain: at present, the thesis that mutations, whether great or small, are capable of producing limitless biological change is more an article of faith than fact.27

Experiment and observation show that mutations do not improve on genetic data but rather, damage living things. So it is clearly inconsistent for the proponents of punctuated evolution to expect great successes from mutations.

25. R. A. Fisher, The Genetical Theory of Natural Selection, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1930.
26. Walter L. Starkey, The Cambrian Explosion, WLS Publishing, , 1999, p. 158.
27. Lane Lester, Raymond Bohlin, The Natural Limits to Biological Change, Dallas: Probe Books, 1989, pp.141-142.

2009-08-15 17:29:34

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