Home Opinion Dear Editor Letter: Is there self-replicating chemistry on Venus?

Letter: Is there self-replicating chemistry on Venus?


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Looking Up writer Donald Burleson considerately defined life as objects possessing self-replicating chemistry in a column alerting readers to the possibility of life on Venus. He seemed sensitive to to the possibility members of our community might object to this “Godless” characterization of life.

This definition was also espoused by Richard Dawkins in his well known magnum opus “The Selfish Gene,” where he states a gene is a replicator.

Burleson’s definition of life is not without its detractors. In fact, some have claimed a crystal must be alive based on this definition.

A contradiction-free scientific definition will certainly remain a slippery task.

Steven Young

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