Letter to the Editor: Commentary on alien DNA is flawed rhetoric


I was disappointed by your Oct. 22 publication of the Roy Mullins commentary. It’s unfortunate your paper would present such a flawed, inconsistent opinion in such a way as to suggest it reasonable.

Mullins’ tone suggests his driving force is an unfortunate experience with Christianity, thus all religious belief should be expunged. If true this might explain his thinking. For example, he admits at the end of the piece that “no one can know the verifiable truth of what happened in our distant past.” But if this is true, his alternate explanation is equally unreliable. Why should we jettison what has guided humankind for centuries for the unproven, implausible idea of alien DNA?

His suggestion that aliens aided evolution is a more reasonable belief than Christianity likewise misses an obvious consideration. Like Richard Dawkins, he moves the question of origins further back in time. He seems to tout modern technology as an aid against religion without realizing this actually works against him.

Science informs us there’s little time in the universe’s history for our own evolution much less a more ancient superior race elsewhere. Noted evolutionist Stephen Gould proposed sudden bursts of evolutionary progress (dinosaur lays egg, bird hatches) to solve the dilemma. But the problem remains as do others like the Cambrian explosion.

He suggests we “stand up [and] take the next step in our evolution” without recalling that evolution by definition is a random uncontrolled process. He suggests we reject belief in God as no longer necessary while referring to god-like aliens whose help we apparently did need in that unverifiable past.

The bulk of his comments convey the tired refrain that no sensible, intelligent person could believe in God over evolution. Perhaps he’s unaware that Francis Collins of the Human Genome Project believes God created the world through evolution. While this is debated in the Christian community, it nevertheless undermines his assertion.

In short, it is flawed rhetoric aimed at denigrating the beliefs of thousands of valley residents. With so many other issues before us, this defective reasoning is unworthy of your publication.

William Shifflett, Edinburg