One reason WLC became so interested in this topic is that the scientific understanding being put forward by Rana, Venema, and others was in such disarray. The reason that Mouflon sheep paper became important for RTB was only because Venema was pressing a wrong-headed argument against a single-couple bottleneck. Of course, the use of that paper to rebut all population genetics estimates was totally overreaching.
WLC was left totally confused by this debate, until we talked:
Notice that WLC absolutely cares about the evidence coming from science. He only asks that it be explained to him carefully and clearly without polemics. The existing organizations out there totally failed at this. They were far to interested in getting him to a predetermined conclusion, scientific accuracy of the argument be damned. For that reason, and for good reason, he was distrustful of what he was hearing.
Observing this as a person new to his work. WLC is far more engaged with science than most philosophers, and most Christian leaders. Far more engaged. I’ve been really impressed by his nuanced grasp of big bang cosmology, and he appears to have run circles around Laurence Kraus on this.
My sense is that WLC sensed that the historical Adam question:
- Was immensely important for the Church.
- Was beeing horribly mishandled by all the major organizations here.
- The science was complex and interesting, and was being misrepresented by Rana and Venema and others.
- He did the math and his killer instinct kicked in. This is a place to do significant work.
That, I think, is why he is here pursuing this question. It is not because he does not care about the evidence. He seems to deeply care about it. When is book comes out, I wouldn’t be surprised if it has better science in it than Adam and the Genome.