So we have been told by the Evolutionary establishment for the last thirty years. They have taught us and our children that there is only a 1% difference in the genome of a chimpanzee and a human. Thus, the only sequacious inference to be drawn from such an incontrovertible scientific fact is that humans are evolved from chimps; moreover, implicit in the 1% is that humans have not actually evolved very far from them either—the nut doesn’t fall far from the tree as the old saying goes. Consequently, quite contrary to the teaching of Scripture, that man is created in the image of God, and therefore categorically different from animals, man is really just a chimpanzee on steroids, an overachiever of sorts.
The “antitheist” ((this is his self-designation)) Christopher Hitchens recently used this scientific “fact” in a debate with Dinesh D’Souza, when he said “humans are one-half chromosome from a chimpanzee.” This was his attempt to explain why man has a tendency or proclivity to do wrong—what Christians call sin. ((the debate with Dinesh D’Souza was held at King’s college 10/22/07)) Later in the debate he said, in reference to man, “we are primates”.
I offer two considerations that display this evolutionary hypothesis as merely another attempt to advance the evolutionary fantasy far beyond what facts and logic warrant.
First, percentages can sometimes be extraordinarily misleading. One percent is a small number if you’re talking about a percentage of say ten; however, as a percentage of millions, it is actually quite large. For example, a business that only sold $100.00 worth of merchandise last year and $500.00 worth this year grew by 500% while a billion dollar company might have grown only by ½% but in actual dollars its sales absolutely dwarf the smaller company’s sales. For this reason alone, when one is dealing with the significance of percentages, it is essential to know the total volume or numbers in order to truly understand the importance of the percentage. The 1% difference touted between humans and chimps by the evolutionist is a lucid example of this.
Even if the 1% difference were true, the truth of the matter is that while the chimp and the human have 99% of the same genome, that 1% difference is 1% of 3.2 billion nucleotides, which means that there are over 3 million differences between humans and chimpanzees and there are only 300 thousand differences between humans. And oh by the way, what a difference 1% can make!
While there is an immeasurable supply of illustrations that demonstrate the immeasurable differences that this 1% actually generates, the space program provides a great example. In the early years of the Space Program, animals were sent into outer space as a precursor to humans in order to make sure it was safe. ((Dogs, mice and monkeys actually preceded the first chimpanzee in space travel. The first non-human primate in orbit was the chimp Enos launched November 29, 1961, in a Mercury capsule in preparation for manned flight. Enos was said to be the first “living being” sent to orbit by the United States. http://www.spacetoday.org/Astronauts/Animals/Dogs.html)) Therefore, it is true that chimps did partner with man. Basically the partnership went like this: humans studied space and developed the appropriate sciences like astronomy, physics…and then humans developed the technology needed to further study space, planned the trip, built the space ship, determined everything that would be needed, developed an answer to every need, set every goal, time sequence, limitation, purpose, paid for everything, educated all of the people who had anything to do with the program—including teaching and outfitting the chimps for the trip, and humans did….Well you get the idea, humans did everything.
You say if humans did all of that, what part did the chimp play? Well, the humans took the chimp to the space ship, showed him a banana—which by the way, the humans had cultivated, harvested, and transported to the site—and said to Enos, “how would you like that banana—referring to a strategically placed banana, which lay well inside the “banana express”—and of course Enos jumped in and “bananaed” himself right into outer space.
Consequently, the moral of the 1% difference is, that 1% and a ripened banana may well get you the unexpected ride of your life, but it will never make you almost human.
Second, and most importantly, the full truth about the supposed 1% difference has been revealed. The truth is that the 1% difference is a myth. Jon Cohen exposed the myth in the following article, which appeared in Science.
The Chimp-Human 1% Difference: A Useful Lie ((This article was e-mailed to me by Dr. Tom Woodward on 10/31/2007))
Jon Cohen made a remarkable admission in Science this week. ((Jon Cohen, News Focus on Evolutionary Biology, “Relative Differences: The Myth of 1%,” Science, 29 June 2007: Vol. 316. no. 5833, p. 1836, DOI: 10.1126/science.316.5833.1836)) The popular notion that humans and chimpanzees are genetically 99% similar is a myth, and should be discarded. Since 1975, textbooks, the media and museums have emphasized this close similarity; but now, Cohen quoted a number of scientists who say the number cannot possibly be that small and probably cannot be quantified. Since the statistic has outlived its usefulness, it should be discarded.
The original claim by Allan Wilson in 1975 came from studies of base substitutions when genes were compared side by side. Other comparisons, however, yield very different results. Human and chimp genomes differ markedly in:
• Chunks of missing DNA
• Extra genes
• Number of chromosomes and chromosome structure
• Altered connections in gene networks
• Indels (insertions and deletions)
• Gene copy number
• Coexpressed genes
In this last measure, for instance, a 17.4% difference was found in genes expressed in the cerebral cortex. Cohen recalled the December 2006 paper from PLoS One where Matthew Hahn found a “whopping 6.4%” difference in gene copy numbers, leading him to say, “gene duplication and loss may have played a greater role than nucleotide substitution in the evolution of uniquely human phenotypes and certainly a greater role than has been widely appreciated.”
But even that number is misleading. Different measures produce such different results, it is probably impossible to come up with a single percent difference that wouldn’t misrepresent the picture. Scientists are not sure how to prioritize the measures to study, because “it remains a daunting task to link genotype to phenotype.” Sorting out the differences that matter is “really difficult,” said one geneticist. A stretch of DNA that appears meaningless may actually be vital for gene regulation.
What’s most remarkable about this confession is how certain evolutionary biologists are evaluating the claim in hindsight. In the 1970s, it was considered a “heretical” view that our genomes could be that similar, but Cohen comments, “Subsequent studies bore their conclusion out, and today we take as a given that the two species are genetically 99% the same.” But “Truth be told,” he begins in the next sentence, the inaccuracy of the statistic was known from the start:
“But truth be told, Wilson and King also noted that the 1% difference wasn’t the whole story. They predicted that there must be profound differences outside genes—they focused on gene regulation—to account for the anatomical and behavioral disparities between our knuckle-dragging cousins and us. Several recent studies have proven them perspicacious again, raising the question of whether the 1% truism should be retired.
“For many, many years, the 1% difference served us well because it was underappreciated how similar we were,” says Pascal Gagneux, a zoologist at UC San Diego. “Now it’s totally clear that it’s more a hindrance for understanding than a help.”
At the end of the article, Cohen quoted Svante Paabo, who said something even more revealing. After admitting he didn’t think there was any way to calculate a single number, he said, “In the end, it’s a political and social and cultural thing about how we see our differences.”
Editorial Comment at Creationsafaris.com: This is a very disturbing article. We have basically caught the Darwinists in a bald lie that has hoodwinked the world for over 30 years. Gagneux says, “For many, many years, the 1% difference served us well” – stop right there! Who is “us”? Was it the millions of school children and laymen who were lied to? Was it the majority of people who believe God created mankind, suffering under an onslaught of lies told in the name of science?
No! “Us” refers to the members of the Darwin Party, the dogmatists who shamelessly lied to advance their agenda. They had a strategy to portray humans and chimpanzees as similar as possible, in order to make their myth of common descent seem more plausible. Now, 32 years later, they have come clean, without any remorse, only because the usefulness of that lie has run out, and needs to be replaced by new lies. They had a political, social and cultural agenda that, in many cases, worked for 32 years. “Truth be told,” he said. Too late. These guys wouldn’t know Truth if it bit them on the lips. Truth that evolves, or that is an emergent property of material particles, is not the Truth.