Dennis Venema writes at BioLogos:
The fact that several amino acids do in fact bind their codons or anticodons is strong evidence that at least part of the code was formed through chemical interactions
My grandchildren have a set of magnetic letters and a magnetic whiteboard to stick them to. Suppose I stuck several letters on the whiteboard in the following configuration:
MY DOG WAGGED HIS TAIL AND JUMPED IN THE CAR
This is code just like the genetic code. The word “dog” is not a dog. The word “car” is not a car. Those words signify dog and car. That is the essence of a code, one thing arbitrarily signifying another.
Now, the letters that make up the code have an affinity for the whiteboard – they are magnetic and stick to it. Using Venema’s logic could we not adjust his statement as follows
The fact that several letters do in fact bind to the whiteboard is strong evidence that at least part of the code was formed through electromagnetic interactions
I think we would all agree that the second formulation is just stupid. The fact that the letters stick to the whiteboard plays absolutely no role in the meaning of the code. Sure, it facilities the transmission of the code, but it is not the code. So why isn’t the first formulation just as stupid?