When Stephen King came out last May as a supporter of intelligent design, you could maybe, maybe, maybe write it off as a slip of the tongue. Perhaps he didn’t know what the phrase means, or hadn’t been advised by his fans that he was playing with fire. But now he’s gone and said much the same thing, while focusing more on the cosmic than the biological side of ID.
Speaking with Josh Zepps of HuffPost Live, King acknowledges having a "tendency to believe in intelligent design." See the interview and accompanying article here or click on the screenshot above. He says:
The very construction of the world and the fact that we seem to be the only blue populated planet in the universe — and we’ve been looking for quite a while now, since the late 50s — it makes you have to believe that if we happened by accident, it would make winning the lottery look like flipping a coin. It’s so complex. So I have a tendency to believe in intelligent design.
Does he appear to have read The Privileged Planet where astrophysicist Guillermo Gonzalez and our Discovery Institute colleague Jay Richards give the deepest treatment to the case for cosmic fine-tuning to which King alludes? No, I don’t think so. Is Stephen King a scientist, or "just" a brilliantly creative and supremely successful author of novels and stories? The latter.
Still, the interview is of interest because it emphasizes yet again what a fib it is to say that ID draws support exclusively from folks motivated by their right-wing Christian religious faith. King is not only a man of the Left, but a critic of "organized religion" and a self-described "agnostic" on the afterlife, as he also made clear to Mr. Zepps. He thinks the most popular religious faiths on offer "cancel each other out" with their competing views on God, so while belief in a higher power is "enriching" no religion deservers "particular credence."
Anyway, you can add him to the list of other stereotype-shattering free thinkers — whether of the ID-sympathizing or Darwin-doubting variety — from Vladimir Nabokov to John Lennon, from celebrated atheist philosopher Thomas Nagel to the Dalai Lama. As a design-advocate he also joins Dean Koontz, his colleague in the horror-novel genre, who warmly endorsed Stephen Meyer’s book Darwin’s Doubt.
Defenders of scientific materialist orthodoxy habitually use cultural and religious stereotyping to avoid having to weigh the evidence for design in nature. Stephen King’s frank talk about ID makes it a little harder for them to do that. Of course he can get away with it, because he’s too big for the censors to intimidate.
It’s only a shame that Josh Zepps didn’t draw King out a little more on the subject. It sure would be fascinating to talk further with Mr. King (of whom I’m a big fan) about what of course is an ultimate question, whether you’re a religious believer or not.