Darwin vs. Design: An Engaging Debate Topic

Robert L. Crowther, II

From the very beginning, the Darwin vs Design conferences organized by Discovery’s Center for Science & Culture were always envisioned as educational endeavors. Many people don’t understand what intellligent design is, and they don’t understand what it is that scientists and scholars at the Discovery Institute are arguing for in the ongoing debate over Darwinian evolution and ID. These conferences are a chance for us to present some of the work and research we’ve done on these subjects.

When some of the science faculty at SMU demanded that the conference planned for their campus be cancelled we decided to issue an invitation to them to come and air their objections to intelligent design in public, and to ask their most challenging questions of the conference speakers. We made the necessary plans to drastically rearrange the first evening of our conference in order to accomodate this. That turns out to have been unnecessary as the faculty don’t want to engage in public debate on the issue. Fine, we’ll proceed as originally planned. Likewise at future conferences we will plan them as educational events primarily, but will remain open to considering options to include public debates.
These conferences were never planned to be debates. We do a LOT of debating with Darwinists. Just this week we were notified that PBS’s Think Tank with Ben Wattenberg has posted a two-part series that features Dr. Stephen Meyer debating Dr. Michael Ruse.

CSC Fellow Dr. Paul Nelson recently was part of a panel discussion on The Agenda on Canadian TV. Dr. John West appeared in late March on panel with Dr. Ken Miller at a conference in New Hampshire. Dr. Jonathan Wells appeared on Uncommon Knowledge alongside Dr. Massimo Pigliucci to debate intelligent design. Dr. Stephen Meyer debated Dr. Peter Ward at a major debate event in Seattle last year. Last year Biola University hosted the “ID Under Fire” event where five ID scientists were challenged with questions from a panel of Darwinists including biologists from Cal State Fullerton and Cal Poly Pomona. And our Fellows and staff often appear on TV and radio programs alongside Darwinists to discuss intelligent design.

Robert Crowther, II

Robert Crowther holds a BA in Journalism with an emphasis in public affairs and 20 years experience as a journalist, publisher, and brand marketing and media relations specialist. From 1994-2000 he was the Director of Public and Media Relations for Discovery Institute overseeing most aspects of communications for each of the Institute's major programs. In addition to handling public and media relations he managed the Institute's first three books to press, Justice Matters by Roberta Katz, Speaking of George Gilder edited by Frank Gregorsky, and The End of Money by Richard Rahn.



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