Missouri Scientists Stand Against "Intelligent Design" Bill

250 scientists and science educators from the state of Missouri have released a joint statement pointing out the unscientific nature of "Intelligent Design"(ID) and taking a public stand against Missouri House Bill 911. This bill is the most cleverly worded and detailed ID bill yet introduced in any state. Contrast the text in the Missouri bill with the text of the Michigan bill that is sitting in committee and you'll see what I mean. The Missouri bill was obviously written with the help of top ID advocates, perhaps even written by one of the pro-ID attorneys like David Dewolf. I highly doubt it was written by a state representative on his own.

Why is this important? First, because it is clear to those of us who are active in this dispute that the ID crowd very much wants to fight this out in a courtroom sometime fairly soon. They are looking for just the right opportunity, though. They don't want a southern state because those states tend to have a long history of having "equal time for creationism" legislation passed and struck down by the courts and they want to avoid any association with "creation science". Most importantly, they want a state in a federal judicial district whose judges are primarily Reagan or Bush appointees, as they would tend to be more sympathetic to the ID cause. Missouri may well fit the bill, so to speak. ID advocates have tried mightily to avoid any association with "creation science", since that idea has been consistently struck down by the courts. That avoidance is, as I've shown previously, by design, intelligent or otherwise. Ironically, ID advocates always show up to promote and defend such legislation despite their leader, Phillip Johnson, publicly claiming:

We definitely arent looking for some legislation to support our views, or anything like that. What our adversaries would like to say is - these people want to impose their views through the law - No' that's what they do. We're against that in principle and we dont need that.

Okay, I'm a poker player. I'll call that bluff. If you're not looking for legislation to support your views, if that's only what they do, why are you pushing legislation - perhaps even writing legislation - that would mandate inclusion of your views in science classes and terminate teachers who refuse to do so? The answer is simple, of course - because Phillip Johnson lied when he said that they weren't looking for such legislation. And this from the man who decries the loss of morality allegedly brought about by widespread belief in "naturalism".

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Whoa! Slow down turbo!

Just because ID proponents take legal actions contrary to statements made by Phillip Johnson does not necessarily make him a liar. Certainly he could be a liar, but one would have to show that he is now not only supportive of and instrumental in the taking of legal action, but that he has not altered his public stance on the issue. This, of course, presupposes that the quote you provided was not taken out of context a point to which I will grant you the benefit of the doubt.

Remember:
"Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance."
So why bother?

By Darwinist (not verified) on 18 Feb 2004 #permalink

Darwinist-

I have absolutely no idea what your point is in quoting the Universal Declaration on Human Rights to me in this context. The essay you are responding to had nothing to do with what anyone has a right to believe, which I would not challenge in any event, it deals only with the question of what should be taught in public school science classrooms.

Well, to clarify (if you really did not get my point) it strikes me that when France prefers equality above freedom in their public schools they are "authorianistic", so you start referring to artical 18 of the Universal declaration on Human Rights, thereby dismissing the educational value of valuing equality.
When the educational curriculum in your own country is concerned, this principle (freedom as defined in article 18) does not count?
Ofcourse I am pro teaching of evolution in scienceclass, but given the fact that you seem to prefer freedom first, why not give other ontological explanations equal time? If not in scienceclass, maybe in culture, or worldreligion class.
So, I am refering to the 'freedom' you were propagating yourself. Why not let the pupils decide what's the bullshit? That's freedom.

By Darwinist (not verified) on 18 Feb 2004 #permalink

Wow, that is simply one of the dumbest arguments I've ever seen. First, the argument that the issue in France is "freedom vs equality" is ridiculous. Allowing students to wear religious clothing does not make anyone "unequal", any more than having different shoe sizes makes them "unequal". Since violating their freedom doesn't make anyone else more equal, all you've done is created a false dichotomy.

Second, the question of what to teach in science classrooms has nothing to do with freedom. No one's freedom is being taken away, everyone is free to believe whatever they wish. But having the freedom to believe in something does not imply an authority to require that it be taught to others.

Seriously, you are just completely clueless on this issue and every time you come back, you make an even stupider argument than you did before. Give up, for crying out loud.

Is this Mr Ed, the talking horse speaking?

Reply to your first: The conflict in France is obviously one of conflict between them two principal ( and conflicting) values. You seem to be so narrowminded that whatever a religious sign symbolizes never gets to your brain. Kids in France have been killed for NOT wearing a symbol, or wearing the WRONG one according to some denominations. Please stay in your Ivory tower I already referred to in other posts.

Second:
First of all, I was NOT refering to science class only, so stop selective reading, second, as long as you can't give me the 100 percent assurance you are right (and you never can), you can't prove you are right, its all probability.
So why oppose all kinds of creation explanations, if you are so shure that evolution explains all, you can certainly answer alternative explanations, that's freedom.

By the way, with creation opponents like you, its no suprise to me that 60 percent of your fellow americans still believe in a 6 day creation :)

second: freedom starts with freedom of information.

By Darwinist (not verified) on 18 Feb 2004 #permalink

Oi vey. You have long since lost any hope of making a coherent argument on this. I'm not even going to waste my time answering you anymore. You said you were going to go away a week and a half ago on my other blog. How about just doing that? You've become little more than a nuisance.