Friday, February 13, 2004
Heres how University of Nebraska-Lincoln biochemistry major Ben Kissling (www.geocities.com/intelligentdesignunl/idtn.html) came to know that the theory of evolution can't be true, despite the propaganda often taught in school and unfortunately in place in Nebraska's official science standards. He now finds himself teaching others about the new science he hopes to make his life's work, intelligent design. Ben writes:
''It all started with 'Bomby the Bombardier Beetle.' It was a children's book put out by ICR (Institute for Creation Research) about the bombardier beetle, which squirts chemicals out of its hiney that makes an explosive mixture for its predator to swallow. The argument goes that evolution could never make such an animal in slow, gradual steps because the chemicals involved were so volatile that intermediates would all blow up. It was a rather unsophisticated argument, but it started me along a path.
''The real kicker came in high school. I went to a Christian high school that still taught the literal Genesis as the truth about creation and our beginnings. By the time I was old enough to start questioning my own beliefs, I had already seen enough to not question that basis. I knew that you could never prove such a thing, aside from quoting the Bible, but I also saw that no other scenario about something so distantly in the past could ever be 'proven' even in a rudimentary way. I questioned many of my parents' beliefs and my own, growing up, but I never really questioned that one.
''So here I am in high school, bored to death, knowing I'm going to college but not knowing why. I guess it's just what you do after high school, so, like, whatever. My dad gives me this book called 'Darwin's Black Box' (by intelligent design leader Michael Behe, a biochemistry professor at Lehigh University) and I'm like, 'Sounds cool.' So I read it because I'm bored.
''But it turns out this book might just have determined the course of my life. It introduced me to biochemistry and intelligent design. Being the incredibly smart person I am (!), I immediately latched on to them. Biochemistry is a combination of two disciplines (biology and chemistry) creating an entirely new one, and intelligent design, using the biochemistry and much more, makes sense of an age-old scientific mystery.
''The idea of the black box being opened intrigued me greatly. I always liked the idea of pulling a rabbit out of a hat. I love mysteries. I was always one to look for the root cause, the bottom line of everything -- what really makes things tick. And all of a sudden, I saw that cells weren't just blobs of cytoplasm with a nucleus. There were things in there that interlocked like pieces in a puzzle . . . and I was hooked.
''Chemistry became real, rather than just something that made liquids turn colors. It was cool, but kind of meaningless, unless you're into fabric softeners and Ajax. Ajax is what you use to clean the toilet. I mean, come on.
''So anyway, after a freshman year as a chemical engineering major (I chose that solely because it meant I didn't have to take English, a fact which I bragged about to my senior English teacher all year. Boy did I have to eat crow), I switched to what I was interested in and should've been in since the start, biochemistry.
''The more science classes I took, and the more evolution got preached, the more comparisons I could make between the way evolution was taught and the way I heard a pastor preach on Sunday morning. It was assumed (in science class) everyone who was there already believed (in evolution), and if you didn't already, you were there to learn. It's really funny how the more teachers tried to convince me, the more firmly I became convinced how wrong they were.
''I could tell several stories but one that sticks out is when my organic teacher told us about some enzyme or something that had all this RNA-like 'junk' attached to the active site. Apparently, the active site was small and did all the chemistry, while all that RNA 'junk' was (supposedly) simply evidence that RNA was the first basis of life and was simply hanging on waiting to be selected out!!! The teacher then went on to teach us the way humans do the same reaction in the lab, with a totally different chemical.
''I waited till the appropriate time and asked why we don't use the enzyme. A grave and discerning look came over my teacher's face as he explained that enzymes are incredibly specific as to what they will react with, and humans usually want one reagent that will do the same reaction with many different substrates.
''I should've asked WHY enzymes are so specific. Could it possibly be because of all that RNA-like 'junk' hanging off the end? (Meaning, that it isn't ''leftover'' from evolution, but highly functional and there all along -- by design -- on purpose.)
''Hmmm. . . .
''Well, I was satisfied, but I'm not sure I got my point across.
''I could today take you to sections of my textbooks and read passages about evolution, laughing the whole way. It's so obvious no one knows what's going on since the biochemical revolution turned the cell into the most intricate, complex, and small machine man has ever known and turned homologous morphology into nothing more than a flawed classification system.
''All the stuff I'm seeing now in my classes makes me excited about my career. I wonder how much hasn't been discovered because no one's looking at problems the way ID (intelligent design) does and I will.
''I already have a few rudimentary ideas, one I ran past Behe (author of the life-changing book on intelligent design) last summer in an online conference. He seemed intrigued, which excited me all the more. I intend to make a career in research and hopefully advance scientific knowledge. It will be fun.’’
It sure will, Ben: watching a fine young Nebraska scientist get in there and make as exciting an assault as a giant bombadier beetle on the crumbling, false dogma of evolution!
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