To the Editor: Jim Holt’s piece “Unintelligent Design” is filled with the usual Darwinist canards about how various designs found in living things are suboptimal according to the writer’s undefined and untested opinions on optimality. That’s all standard fare–chock full of unexamined theological presuppositions (of the “God wouldn’t have done it that way” variety) and not worth a response. Holt also trots out the usual nonsense about Pope John Paul II somehow accepting Darwinian evolution.
From “The Scientific Status of Intelligent Design” By Stephen Meyer Unobservables and Testability [A frequent argument against intelligent design] that appears frequently both in conversation and in print finds expression as follows: “Miracles are unscientific because they can not be studied empirically. Design invokes miraculous events; therefore design is unscientific. Moreover, since miraculous events can’t be studied empirically, they can’t be tested. Since scientific theories must be testable, design is, again, not scientific.” Molecular biologist Fred Grinnell has argued, for example, that intelligent design can’t be a scientific concept because if something “can’t be measured, or counted, or photographed, it can’t be science.” Gerald Skoog amplifies this concern: “The claim that life is the result of a design created by Read More ›
John Derbyshire is on The Corner arguing that we can never safely infer that certain biological structures were designed. To a reader who asserted that organizational complexity cannot arise from impersonal processes, Derbyshire replies, “How do you know it can’t? It is true that the genesis of organizational complexity is not currently well understood; but to leap from that to telling me we shall NEVER be able to find a natural-law explanation for it is just dogma.” Derbyshire’s argument is worth confronting because it represents the opinion of leading Darwinists. Biologist Kenneth Miller, for instance, routinely makes just such an argument. Design theorist William Dembski responds thus: Miller claims that the problem with anti-evolutionists like Michael Behe and me is Read More ›
BY KEITH PENNOCK Some school boards seem to have confused their role with that of the FDA, placing warning labels on textbooks as though they were a package of cigarettes that should be kept out of the hands of minors. Fortunately, there’s a better way. Rather than noting the scientific controversy over Darwinism by placing stickers on textbooks, we advise that school boards attempt to teach the controversy by augmenting their curriculum using supplemental materials. Ohio and Minnesota followed this approach, and now students there can learn both the strengths and weaknesses in Darwin’s theory. And neither state has been drawn into a legal flap. Smart.
John Derbyshire of The Corner, and Darwinists on every street corner, insist that we should never cram God into the gaps of our scientific knowledge. As if detecting design meant cramming the designer into the work itself: Imagine Leonardo da Vinci trapped inside the Mona Lisa. Derbyshire proceeds apace: “History shows that these puzzles always get resolved sooner or later in a natural way, … sending the ‘God of the Gaps’ traipsing off to find a new place where he can hang his starry cloak for a while.” Bracket off for the moment that this particular history of modern science is an urban legend. Derbyshire’s argument falls apart all by itself, apart from the historical record. Because more and more Read More ›