On the Right Side by George V. Caylor

"The Biologist"

One of the best aspects of my wife JoAnne's Bed and Breakfast is the chance for a great conversation with an interesting guest. People fascinate me, and the laid-back atmosphere of the bed and breakfast allows me to get to know our guests well. I was with a congressman the moment the Monica Lewinsky story broke, and discussed the possible impeachment. I enjoyed visiting with a Russian attorney who wrote the post-communism Russian Constitution. But all our guests have good stories, and I like to hear them all. I 'replay' them later, and I have the ability to remember conversations nearly word for word. That memory skill comes from either thirty years as a financial planner, or six years as a touring musician.

One of the most interesting, and disturbing conversations, was with a molecular biologist working in genetic research. Jeff and his wife were in from New York to celebrate the 2000 New Year. I think they just wanted out of New York City, and Lynchburg is about as "out" as he could get! Jeff described himself as a "secular Jew," which meant that he was not into practicing his religion. (There seems to be a lot of secular Jews and secular Christians around these days.) I asked Jeff about his profession and he told me that he was a molecular biologist, specializing in genetic research. He and his team were scientific "detectives" tracking down the cause of disease.

Our conversation went something like this:

G: "Sounds like pretty complicated work."

J: "You can't imagine how complicated!"

G: "Try me."

J: "I'm a bit like an editor, trying to find a spelling mistake inside a document larger than four complete sets of Encyclopedia Britanica. One hundred volumes, thousands and thousands of pages of small print words."

G: "With the computer, you can just use 'spell check'!"

J: "There is no 'spell check' because we don't know yet how the words are supposed to be spelled. We don't even know for sure which language. And it's not just the 'spelling error' we're looking for. If any of the punctuation is out of place, or a space out of place, or a grammatical error, we have a mutation that will cause a disease."

G: "So how do you do it?"

J: "We are learning as we go. We have already 'read' about two articles in that encyclopedia, and located some 'typo's'. It should get easier as time goes by." G: "How did all that genetic information get there?" J: "Do you mean, did it just happen? Did it evolve?"

G: "Bingo. Do you believe that the information evolved?"

J: "George, nobody I know in my profession believes it evolved. It was engineered by 'genius beyond genius,' and such information could not have been written any other way. The paper and ink did not write the book! Knowing what we know, it is ridiculous to think otherwise."

G: "Have you ever stated that in a public lecture, or in any public writings?"

J: "No. It just evolved."

G: "What? You just told me ---?"

J: "Just stop right there. To be a molecular biologist requires one to hold on to two insanities at all times. One, it would be insane to believe in evolution when you can see the truth for yourself. Two, it would be insane to say you don't believe in evolution. All government work, research grants, papers, big college lectures - everything would stop. I'd be out of a job, or relegated to the outer fringes where I couldn't earn a decent living."

G: "I hate to say it, Jeff, but that sounds intellectually dishonest."

J: "The work I do in genetic research is honorable. We will find the cures to many of mankind's worst diseases. But in the meantime, we have to live with the 'elephant in the living room'."

G: "What elephant?"

J: "Creation design. It's like an elephant in the living room. It moves around, takes up an enormous amount of space, loudly trumpets, bumps into us, knocks things over, eats a ton of hay, and smells like an elephant. And yet we have to swear it isn't there!"

I didn't use Jeff's family name, although I doubt many New Yorkers read the "Ledger." After all, Jeff is a good man who deserves to earn a good living. I am just a bit angry that we allow him to be bullied by evolutionists. It makes me yearn for the day when all molecular biologists will be able to say: "Hey, there's an elephant in our living room! Maybe we can make friends with it!"

Caylor is a syndicated writer with Press Media Group, LLC.

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