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A Thought Experiment

Ann Gauger
Image credit: Elf-Moondance, via Pixabay.

I’d like to propose a thought experiment for you. I will ask three questions and offer three possible answers for each. I would like you, the reader, to consider the answers as objectively as you can, and pick the answer that is correct. It shouldn’t be too hard, right? 

Ah, but if your worldview is at stake, what then?

1. A doctor, having found out that I did intelligent design research, asked me if my research indicated something could evolve that I had thought could not, would I publish it?

A. Of course.

B. No.

C. Keep trying until I get the answer I want.

2. A doctor, having found out that I did evolutionary biology research, asked me if my research indicated something could not evolve that I had thought could, would I publish it?

A. Of course.

B. No.

C. Keep trying until I get the answer I want.

Question 1 happened to me. I answered, “Of course.” This is because I am a scientist first, and an intelligent design advocate second. To even ask the question impugned my integrity as a scientist. That was the point of the question, I suppose.

The same doctor would not ask question 2 of an evolutionary biologist. He was already sure evolution was true, so the question would be meaningless for him. 

Final question.

3. Why should anyone think it is OK to question the integrity of a scientist (or anyone) because of her views on intelligent design or evolution?

A. Because they are JUST WRONG. And they ought to know it.

B. Because they are just protecting their turf.

C. It’s not OK.

Well?

Ann Gauger

Senior Fellow, Center for Science and Culture
Dr. Ann Gauger is Director of Science Communication and a Senior Fellow at the Discovery Institute Center for Science and Culture, and Senior Research Scientist at the Biologic Institute in Seattle, Washington. She received her Bachelor's degree from MIT and her Ph.D. from the University of Washington Department of Zoology. She held a postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard University, where her work was on the molecular motor kinesin.

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