Science Magazine Stands Up for Science Fiction

Science Magazine’s “Netwatch” for today has an item titled “Standing up for Darwin.” I hope the magazine’s review process for scientific articles is better than its apparently non-existent fact-checking of news items. In typically histrionic tones, the piece laments: Evolution is under attack again, as school boards in Kansas and other states consider whether to mandate teaching of “intelligent design”… As we’ve reported repeatedly on this blog, Kansas is NOT considering whether to mandate the teaching of intelligent design. The Kansas Board of Education has made this point very clear. Indeed, the latest draft of the science standards under consideration in Kansas

Hijacking Intelligent Design in Utah

While it’s frustrating when critics of intelligent design mischaracterize what ID is about, it’s even worse when people billing themselves as friends of ID do the same thing. As the term “intelligent design” has increasingly entered the public discourse, the number of people misusing the term to advance their own agendas by calling it “design” has increased. Take the recent proposal by a Utah legislator for something he calls “divine design,” by which he clearly seems to mean creationism. According to a recent article in the Salt Lake City Tribune: Evolution has not been a big issue in Utah until now. On June 3, Sen. Chris Buttars of West Jordan said he would propose giving equal time to what he Read More ›

Smithsonian Premiere of Privileged Planet Tonight; Seth’s Free Help for Critics

The long-awaited screening of The Privileged Planet documentary at the Smithsonian takes place this evening in Washington, D.C. Stay tuned for some first-hand reporting of the event later tonight and on Friday from Rob Crowther. In the meantime, I want to express my heartfelt appreciation to all of the Darwinists who provided free publicity for the screening by denouncing a film they had never even seen. (If they had seen the film, they would have known that it doesn’t deal with biological evolution. See Rob Crowther and Bruce Chapman’s prior posts, here and here, respectively.) After tonight’s screening, I’m sure we can look forward to still more encores from the pro-Darwin chorus. Keeping in mind that the most vocal critics Read More ›

Discovery Institute Sends Letter Opposing ID Legislation in PA

Since the newsmedia have frequently misreported Discovery Institute’s position on the teaching of intelligent design, I thought I would highlight a letter Seth Cooper and I just sent to the Pennsylvania State Legislature opposing a pro-ID bill under discussion there. The Pennsylvania bill would authorize local school boards in the state to require intelligent design as part of their standard curriculum if they so choose. While well-intentioned, we think this proposal is unhelpful for a variety of reasons. As Seth and I explain,

The New York Times’ Bowdlerized Version of the Kansas Evolution Hearings

Yesterday’s New York Times carried an article about the Kansas evolution hearings. Well, sort of. While the article discoursed at length about the pro-Darwin scientists who did NOT participate in the Kansas hearings, it never actually got around to mentioning any of the people who DID testify. That’s a novel way to cover an event—only talk about the people who did not participate in it. I was interviewed for the article, and I’d like to commend the reporter for (on the whole) quoting me accurately. In particular, she made clear that Discovery Institute does not oppose the teaching evolution, and it does not favor requiring the teaching of intelligent design. However, I can’t commend the bowlderized version of the Kansas Read More ›