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Rabbi Jonathan Sacks Is 2016 Templeton Winner; Tweaked Dawkins with “Junk DNA” Myth

This is delightful news — I’m a big fan of Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks, who is this year’s Templeton Prize winner. The former Chief Rabbi of Britain, he’s an original thinker on faith and science and a wonderful example of humane wisdom. More to the point for our purposes here, in a memorable 2012 encounter he slipped under the radar of Richard Dawkins to tweak the atheist biologist with the myth of “Junk DNA.”

Normally Dawkins only has discussions with people who disagree with him if he thinks they couldn’t possibly know what they’re talking about. Thus he avoids any contact with ID scientists. But Rabbi Sacks was conversant with the ENCODE results that show widespread function across the human genome, and took Dawkins to task. Watch and enjoy (starting at 13:00). We noted this at the time.

David Klinghoffer

Senior Fellow and Editor, Evolution News
David Klinghoffer is a Senior Fellow at Discovery Institute and the editor of Evolution News & Science Today, the daily voice of Discovery Institute’s Center for Science & Culture, reporting on intelligent design, evolution, and the intersection of science and culture. Klinghoffer is also the author of six books, a former senior editor and literary editor at National Review magazine, and has written for the Los Angeles Times, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Seattle Times, Commentary, and other publications. Born in Santa Monica, California, he graduated from Brown University in 1987 with an A.B. magna cum laude in comparative literature and religious studies. David lives near Seattle, Washington, with his wife and children.