To Teach or Not to Teach: Common Misconceptions About Intelligent Design (Part 3)

[Ed: This post was written by a legal intern at Discovery Institute who has chosen to post anonymously.] The Establishment clause of the United States Constitution states that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof […].” Today the popular argument against intelligent design (ID) is that it is just an extension of creationism, which implicates ID as a religious theory. The argument begins when proponents of neo-Darwinian evolution attempt to use some definition of science to disqualify ID from being a scientific theory. Intelligent design is then equated with religion through the assertion that if the theory is not science, then it must be religious in nature. Even Judge Jones adopted Read More ›

To Teach or Not to Teach: Common Misconceptions About Intelligent Design (Part 2)

[Ed: This post was written by a legal intern at Discovery Institute who has chosen to post anonymously.] In 2006, Martha M. McCarthy wrote an article (“Instruction About the Origin of Humanity: Legal Controversies Evolve”) arguing that “concerns have been raised…that if the ‘controversy’ is taught and ID is actually subjected to scientific criticism, this may ‘be more confrontational to students’ beliefs than most high school teachers feel is appropriate.’” (FN 68) This misguided statement assumes four things. First, it assumes that students have a set of beliefs on the origin of humanity before they take biology. The second assumption is that high school teachers are the final authority on what is taught in public school science classrooms. The third Read More ›

To Teach or Not to Teach: Common Misconceptions About Intelligent Design (Part 1)

[Ed: This post was written by a legal intern at Discovery Institute who has chosen to post it anonymously.] Immediately following the publication of “Teaching the Origins Controversy: Science, or Religion, or Speech?” in 2000 in Utah Law Review, multiple law review articles appeared opposing the constitutionality of teaching intelligent design (ID). It seems that the law review article by Professors DeWolf and DeForrest and Meyer hit a nerve that incited various law students to ardently defend the evolutionary theory they were uncritically taught in high school. Once such student was Eric Shih, who published an article in the Michigan State Law Review in 2007 entitled, “Teaching Against the Controversy: Intelligent Design, Evolution, and the Public School Solution to the Read More ›

Spain Makes a Monkey of Naturalism

Spain’s parliament has taken the dubious first step in support of “our evolutionary comrades” in adopting special rights for apes akin to human rights, the first time any nation has done so. The decision of the Spanish parliament is manifestly the triumph of sentimentality over reason. Although the leftist politicos who supported the ruling no doubt view themselves as enlightened citizens of a scientifically progressive Europe, their emoting and posturing has blinded them to the contradictions entailed by their position.

Baron Münchhausen and the Self-Creating Universe

Poor Baron Münchhausen, drowning in a swamp without hope of rescue, had no choice but to lift himself from the predicament by a concentrated pulling on his own hair. The prolific theoretical physicist Paul Davies has recently attempted a similar solution in respect of cosmological fine-tuning, but alas, mostly to depilatory effect. It’s a safe bet that the emperor has no hair! In an op-ed published in The Guardian on Tuesday, Paul Davies eschewed both intelligent design and the meta-laws of the multiverse as explanations of the exquisite fine-tuning of the physical laws and constants of our universe, claiming that both are explanatorily vacuous (see here). We can in good conscience proclaim him half right in this judgment, which places Read More ›