Time Magazine sticks to science when comparing humans to chimpanzees

October 4, 2006 | By | 2 Replies More

I’m applauding the cover story of the October 9, 2006 edition of Time:  “What Makes Us Different?”   [The quick answer is that, out of 3 billion base pairs in the human genome, only 1.23% are different than those found in the chimpanzee genome].

The writers based this article solely on the expert opinions of scientists.  The fundies didn’t even get a foot in the door.   It was wonderfully refreshing.  Here’s how quickly the article dealt with the creationism crowd: 

Much of the vitriol directed at Charles Darwin a century and a half ago came not from his ideas about evolution in general but from his insulting but logical implication that humans and the African apes are descended from a common ancestor.

The article goes on to show how Darwin’s “insulting but logical” comparison is now undeniable in light of recent scientific advances.


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Category: Evolution, Religion, Science

About the Author ()

Erich Vieth is an attorney focusing on consumer law litigation and appellate practice. He is also a working musician and a writer, having founded Dangerous Intersection in 2006. Erich lives in the Shaw Neighborhood of St. Louis, Missouri, where he lives half-time with his two extraordinary daughters.

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  1. Jennifer says:

    Read it last night and I agree – well done. I have to laugh, though, at the writer's attempt to diffuse the creationists by dating the "vitriol" to 150 years ago.

  2. grumpypilgrim says:

    I read the article, too, and this is the comment that caught my attention: "When it comes to DNA, a human is closer to a chimp than a mouse is to a rat."

    I no longer have the URL, but I recently read a science article on the web that said human and chimp DNA is somewhat less similar than a simple comparison would suggest, because some sections of DNA are more active than others. When the DNA differences are weighted by their activity level, human and chimp DNA turn out to be only about 95% similar, rather than 97-98% similar as is usually quoted in popular news articles.

    Still, it does seem very odd that God would create humans in His image, but then also create another primate species that is 95-98% in God's image. I previously discussed this topic in more detail in my "Apes Wearing Pants" post, found here: http://dangerousintersection.org/?p=467.

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