Why did it have to be “Adam” and “Eve”?

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Part of me wants to be excited about the genetic research that’s tracing the human species back to its origins. The latest word is that the male line has now been traced much as the female line was a few years ago.

The research also reveals (unsurprisingly) that this hypothetical male lived at roughly the same time — roughly being somewhere within 20,000 years — as the female.

But the part of me that wants to be thrilled and curious over such arcane scientific research coming to pass in my lifetime absolutely dreads what’s to follow. Researchers or at least the journalists who follow them have chosen to label these ancestors of humanity as “Adam” and “Eve.” Unfortunate choice.

But even if those names hadn’t been popularized by journalists, it would only be a matter of time before some Christian comes up and claims, with utter certainty and total misunderstanding of the science involved, “Scientists have now proved that Adam and Eve existed! So that proves the bible is true!”

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2 Responses to “Why did it have to be “Adam” and “Eve”?”

  1. justasqpeg Says:

    Even if you halve that 20,000 year window that would mean it’s pretty likely they were separated by 10,000 years or so. It’s hard for me to have sex or any type of relationship with someone who lived in 8,000 BCE. Sure, when you are talking about 150,000 years ago, 10,000 years doesn’t seem like too much, but put it in terms of the present…

    Of course, that estimated time of 120K – 156K years ago rather thoroughly demolishes the biblical timeline that says “Genesis” was in 4004 BCE, or whatever. And that is only this last chapter (so far) in the Earth’s geological and biological history.

    Science is awesome, so why would anyone insist on attaching silly religiously loaded names to scientific discoveries?

  2. justasqpeg Says:

    I forgot to quote the “roughly at same time” bit at the beginning of my comment. But I guess my point was still understandable: that “roughly at same time” for those two DNA donors would mean I live “roughly at same time” as Ötzi “The Ice Man”. Or even woolly mammoths on Wrangel Island. Which, geologically, I do. But for breeding purposes, not so much.

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