Tuesday, August 23, 2005
Intelligent Design Roundup
The great thing about Intelligent Design, apart from the embarassment of having a President who thinks Intelligent Design is one of two "sides" of a "debate" in the scientific world, is that it's inspiring some great writing. Here's some of the best:
- Jacob Weisberg writes about the consequences for evolutionists of "being right and yet so unpopular." Oddly, rather than a pragmatic, compromise approach (which seems to me to be politically necessary in America), Weisberg argues that evolutionists should quit kidding themselves about whether evolution can or should coexist with religious fate.
Evolutionary theory may not be incompatible with all forms of religious belief, but it surely does undercut the basic teachings and doctrines of the world's great religions (and most of its not-so-great ones as well).Which is certainly true, but it seems to me is kind of unhelpful to point out in places like Kansas.
- Christopher Hitchens, no fan of religion, actually welcomes the President's statement that "both sides of the debate should be properly taught." He'd like to take the President's words at face value, and even up the ante. Part of his modest proposal:
Houses of worship that do not provide space for leaflets and pamphlets favoring evolution (not necessarily Darwinism, which is only one of the theories of evolution and thus another proof of its scientific status) should be denied tax-exempt status and any access to public funding originating in the White House's "faith-based" initiative.
- The Onion has a great report on the theory of Intelligent Falling, which addresses holes in the theory of gravity. (Which, remember, is just a theory, not a fact!) Money quote:
Proponents of Intelligent Falling assert that the different theories used by secular physicists to explain gravity are not internally consistent. Even critics of Intelligent Falling admit that Einstein's ideas about gravity are mathematically irreconcilable with quantum mechanics. This fact, Intelligent Falling proponents say, proves that gravity is a theory in crisis.
- And last, but not least, you should be aware that Intelligent Design isn't the only alternate creation story that can and should be taught. Bobby Henderson believes that the earth was created by a Flying Spaghetti Monster, and he's been writing letters to the Kansas School Board pleading for
One third time for Intelligent Design, one third time for Flying Spaghetti Monsterism, and one third time for logical conjecture based on overwhelming observable evidence.I should add here that Henderson insists that Flying Spaghetti Monsterism can only be properly taught "in full pirate regalia" (which also helps reduce global warming).