Following Up On a Messy, and Still Missing, Link
On May 20, 2009, media hype over a fossil from Germany ran remarkably high. Supposedly, a 47-million-year-old lemur-like creature, affectionately dubbed Ida, was the earliest link between humans and primates. Several facts militated against this being the case, notably the reality that evolution did not occur and there are no legitimate evolutionary links between humans and primates. My co-worker, Eric Lyons, and I wrote an article refuting the find’s status as a “missing link” (Lyons and Butt, 2009).
In the wake of the media hullaballoo, a cadre of evolutionary scientists have also begun to shoot holes in Ida’s status as a link between humans and primates. In the May 29, 2009 edition of Science, Ann Gibbons penned an article titled “Celebrity Fossil Primate: Missing Link or Weak Link?” (2009, 324:1124). In that article, Gibbons points out several of the problems plaguing the alleged link. She wrote: “Many of the leading scientists who study primate evolution don’t think Ida lives up to Hurum’s billing as a human ancestor; most think she’s a relative of lemurs instead.” Paleoanthropologist Elwyn Simons forthrightly stated: “A lot of articles say it is a missing link. That is wrong.... It has no convincing links to monkeys, apes, and humans” (as quoted in Gibbons, 2009, p. 1124).
The media frenzy surrounding Ida brought to light the fact that scientists do not always follow objective evidence where it leads. In fact, Ida’s case is a classic example of a scientific group deliberately pushing an agenda, in spite of a lack of evidence, and an overeager media willing to sacrifice truth for a “scoop.” When questioned about his media tactics, JØrn Hurum, Ida’s lead researcher and promoter, said: “Yes, I am shaking things up. If you want kids to be interested in science, we need to start packaging it in many different ways” (as quoted in Gibbons, p. 1125). Surely you did not miss Hurum’s objective—to “interest” kids in “science.” Yet, the “science” involved in this escapade is not objective, fact-based knowledge. Rather, it is a blind adherence to the rotting corpse of Darwinian evolution that true science buried long ago. The editorial section in New Scientist succinctly summarized the situation with these comments: “By the time doubts about Ida’s role in our past emerged, the circus had moved on” (“Overselling Ida,” 2009, p. 3). How many times will such dishonest “scientific” shenanigans have to occur before our society realizes that it has been sold a bill of goods packaged under the heading of evolution?
Gibbons, Ann (2009), “Celebrity Fossil Primate: Missing Link or Weak Link?,” Science, 324:1124-1125, May 29.
Lyons, Eric and Kyle Butt (2009), “Ida—A Missing Link?”, [On-line], URL: http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/240160.
“Overselling Ida” (2009), NewScientist, 202:3, May 30-June 5.