Her words me of this exchange between Paul Owen, who like Melissa Travis, is a Biola grad, and John Weldon, who does not have an accredited degree, on discussing Mormon scholarship:
The article was based on research papers as recent as 2011 from geneticists, physical anthropologists, and archaeologists that was covered in one of my grad school human origins courses. I didn't include even half of the resources in the article, since it was intended for the popular-level audience.
This is even stranger in Melissa Travis's case because her degree is accredited and she is trained in science communication. Melissa continues:How convenient it is to take the "Keep It Simple Stupid" (KISS) approach. That way, whenever someone points out that you have neglected important scholarly arguments against your position, you can just say that you were more interested in communicating to the "simple laypeople."
I was not asking for a full-blown rebuttal of FARMS arguments. The problem with her article is that she does not demonstrate any awareness of genetic drift, a basic principle in evolutionary biology. I suspected that this stems from that the curriculum through which she was trained does not require any training in evolution. She does not explain if she is not aware of genetic drift, or she just refuses to engage it. She hides from her readers the complexity of the issue.It's a blog article, not a journal paper. However, I stand behind all assertions, and I can provide sound scholarship to support them. Of course, the LDS church has their own rebuttals. I read the FARM arguments. None were compelling.
I agree with her that Mormonism doesn't stand or fall on this issue. I am also raising this issue because it is a hard-science issue, not because the DNA issue is central to the LDS Church's claims. But if she is as interested in genetics as she claims to be (and I believe she is), why did she not talk about genetic drift? Who isn't interested in genetic drift? My guess is that anything about evolution is blacked out in the Biola curriculum. In regards to "The argument from genetic analysis isn't even necessary for discrediting Mormonism (it falls all on its own)," I recommend she take her own advice. Finally, Melissa said:They have their own version of which data is "good" and which data is "bad." The argument from genetic analysis isn't even necessary for discrediting Mormonism (it falls all on its own), I just found it particularly interesting, since my background is genetic research.
I made the change without further argument. In our subsequent discussion, she notified me that the Bat Creek Stone finding has been challenged. I will post the link she provided, here: http://www.ramtops.co.uk/bat1.You use the term "fundamentalist" improperly. Anyone who holds to any religion or atheistic belief system can be correctly termed a fundamentalist. Using it pejoratively is intellectually careless.