Two members of the Raelian Movement did a PCR experiment and Jerry A. Coyne, a Professor in the Department of Ecology and Evolution at the University of Chicago, used his popular blog to promote it as science - “Science proves that consecrated wafers are still wheat and not Jesus.”
Coyne even chooses language to make it sound like the Raelian exercise is standard science:
Damien Marsic and Mehran Sam, identified as belonging to the Association of Raelian Scientists (in Las Vegas), have published a paper in a place called “Scientific Raelian”; the paper’s title is “DNA analysis of consecrated sacramental wafers refutes Catholic transubstantiation claim.“ (emphasis added)
Yet Prof. Coyne is misinforming the general public when he characterizes the Raelian project as “science” and a “published paper.” The Raelian project was not published; it was posted on a Raelian web site. There is no evidence the “paper” was sent out for independent peer-review. Instead, it looks like a couple of members of the Raelian Movement simply posted their work on a web page whose stated purpose is as follows:
SCIENTIFIC RAELIAN will focus on more in-depth articles on selected topics related to the Raelian philosophy. We will explain how recent scientific discoveries support the Raelian worldview, with references to original scientific research and publications.
In other words, the PCR work is an internet posting on a Raelian apologetics site. It is not a published paper and it is not science.
Remember that Prof. Coyne tries to make it sound like he is promoting this work as science because he is standing on principle:
Yes, a Raëlian group did some research, and I’m not going to dismiss it out of hand simply because of who did it (if that were the case, I’d dismiss the Human Genome Project simply because it was headed by born-again Christian Francis Collins). As always, we must evaluate the data on their own.
This is a ridiculous, mean-spirited analogy. Collins has a long history of publishing his work in the mainstream, scientific journals and the Human Genome Project involved a large team of mainstream scientists publishing their data in the mainstream scientific community. In contrast, the two Realians did not publish their data in a mainstream scientific journal. They posted their results on a Raelian apologetics website that also includes articles that supposedly support “the Raelian baptism…..as a wireless transmission of the baptized individual’s genome to an orbiting computer set up by the Elohim to record the information at the precise time of the ceremony.” That Prof. Coyne cannot see the difference between the Raelian internet posting and Collin’s scienctific acheivements shows us how his hatred of Collins and Catholics disables his brain.
So let’s look more closely at the posting Prof. Coyne insists is science.