Natural selection only affects already living things (and evidence shows and therefore the theory is Dead On Arrival.
The Hypothesis claims that the first RNA within the first protocell to form the first life was assembled by a combination of fortuitous chance and natural chemical affinities. Perhaps in a warm pond, deep-sea vent (or some other place). The idea is Natural Selection (genetics) made non-living chemicals “evolve.” But wait, Natural Selection is what is being hypothesized to create genetics! Natural Selection requires preexisting genetics to operate– that is the mechanism.
Therefore, mere chemicals cannot evolve because they have no such mechanism yet invented. This is precisely what the RNA World Hypothesis is proposed to be proving! The effect cannot hinge on the existence of the cause– if it is the very thing it is proposed to be creating in the first place. Natural Selection, by definition, cannot work on mere chemicals because genetics have specifically ordered genetic sequences to drive Natural Selection. Without genetics, there is no Natural Selection. Without Natural Selection, there is no way to provide beneficial mutations to cause change.
The theory relies on natural selection to be the mechanism that converts chemicals to specified information. This might seem possible from a distance or by remaining vague, but the theory fails upon closer scrutiny. Natural selection cannot be proposed as the mechanism that creates genetics while relying on genetics to exist.
As you can see, this Hypothesis is filled with countless chicken-or-egg dilemmas and “just-so” stories. Harold Bernhardt of The US National Library of Medicine remarked, “The RNA World Hypothesis (is) the worst theory of the early evolution of life, except for all the others…” -1 It Seems Naturalists acknowledge that the RNA World Hypothesis is very bad indeed, but, it is the best they have so they must stick with it for now.
Naturalists (evolutionists) are imaginative about how marvelous spontaneous mutations beneficially affect genetics. Despite the evidence to the contrary, they claim mutations can be beneficial to build and add new genetic information, although this has largely never been observed.
Clearly, spontaneous mutations are definitively detrimental in present genetic research.
Natural selection is assumed to take edited genetics (due to spontaneous mutations) and gain information and benefits in living organisms. Here, the RNA World Hypothesis takes raw chemicals and gives natural selection a supernatural power to organize and self-generate the genetic material itself! Preposterous!
From the article by the US National Library of Medicine titled, “The RNA World Hypothesis: the worst theory of the early evolution of life (except all the others)” -1 identify many reasons to doubt the RNA World Hypothesis, “…problems associated with the RNA World Hypothesis are well known.”Bernhardt, Harold S., parenthesizes in original.
Other major problems include the obvious protein paradox: what came first RNA that built the protein or the protein of RNA? RNA World identified that it can catalyze replication but not without supporting components from living cells such as ribosomes, ATP, etc. Also, the RNA molecule is too complex to have arisen from a prebiotic soup and is structurally unstable. Additionally the long sequences required for RNA to catalyze are extremely rare and unlikely to ever emerge without enzymes in a prebiotic environment full of good and bad chemical components. Also, the half-life of many needed amino acids are only an hour or so and therefore they exist for way too short a time for random chance to do any magic. Lastly, RNA World fails because chemicals cannot create complex specified information.
1- Bernhardt, H.S. The RNA world hypothesis: the worst theory of the early evolution of life (except for all the others)a. Biol Direct 7, 23 (2012). https://doi.org/10.1186/1745-6150-7-23; https://biologydirect.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1745-6150-7-23#citeas