“Water doesn’t spontaneously create reproducing organisms.”

Jay Richards puts some perspective on this new just-right planet that's been in the news lately:

Whenever you read a story like this (and there will be many more in the next few years), it's important to remember two things. First, Venus and Mars are much more Earth-like that this or any other extrasolar planet we've yet been able to detect. For instance, they're around a star known to host a habitable planet, and they're both quite close in orbit to that habitable planet. And yet, neither is home to life of any sort.

Second, even if a planet has all of the necessary conditions for hosting life, it doesn't follow that it has life. There's a difference between necessary and sufficient conditions. Astronomers often seem to forget this in the excitement of discovering extrasolar planets. In this story, Steven Vogt of the University of California at Santa Cruz (co-discover of the new planet) is quoted as saying: "It's pretty hard to stop life once you give it the right conditions." I have no idea what the empirical basis for such a claim would be. Water doesn't spontaneously create reproducing organisms.

Read the rest of this article here: Science Reporters Should Quit Crying "Life!" Mr. Richards has also written in the pages of Salvo. Another good read: Can ID Explain the Origin of Evil?

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