“Intelligent design itself does not have any content.”
First, it would be helpful to see the quote in context of what was being discussed, namely Discovery Institute’s position on education policy.
“I’m not pushing to have [ID] taught as an ‘alternative’ to Darwin, and neither are they,” he says in response to one question about Discovery’s agenda. “What’s being pushed is to have Darwinism critiqued, to teach there’s a controversy. Intelligent design itself does not have any content.”
I understood what Gilder was driving at, but decided to ask him to clarify the statement, which he has done:
“My point was that intelligent design does not answer the question of the source of the design. Use of the term points the argument toward what we don’t know scientifically and probably cannot know (the designer or intelligent force in the Universe) rather than toward what we do know: the flaws in the materialist Darwinian model.”
It is exactly those flaws that Discovery has always advocated be included in science classes. Gilder is right in insisting that be the focus in the classroom, not the requiring of inclusion of intelligent design or any other alternative theory.
I wouldn’t be surprised to find out that this quote was truncated from what Gilder actually said in the interview, as it is likely that he gave a much longer answer than what we see in the article.
Anyone who wonders what Gilder thinks about the content of ID only need read a couple of his writings to get the picture.