On October 21st, the American Enterprise Institute sponsored a forum on the issue of teaching Intelligent Design in the public schools. C-Span has Real Media videos of all three sessions available to view online at least through the first or second week of November. I haven’t watched them all yet as they total about 5 hours of video but I have heard it was a good event for supporters of Evolution.
First up was Michael Behe, a Lehigh University biochemistry professor and author of “Darwin’s Black Box,” who is considered an expert on Intelligent Design (ID). He has written that “intelligent design theory focuses exclusively on proposed mechanisms of how complex biological structures arose,” but when asked to name the driving force behind the concept, Behe could not.
Contrast that with Evolution. Darwin named “natural selection” as its driving force.
Evolution is the scientific concept describing adaptation of organisms and how that leads to changes. Those organisms that don’t adapt or adapt incorrectly go extinct. It really says nothing about “how life begins”. That charge is simply a strawman created by religionists. The changes that evolution describes is backed up with evidence and hundreds of years of research. ID is not being kept from the table, it just hasn’t presented itself properly.
The most interesting bit from Barbara Forrest’s time on the stand was the introduction of an early draft of the text book “Of Pandas and People” that the Dover district included as a reference in their disclaimer about Evolution. The early drafts show that all the publisher did was replace all instances of the word “creationism” with the phrase “Intelligent Design”.
In testimony on Thursday September 20th, former Dover school board member Carol “Casey” Brown explained that a mural painted by a recent grad of Dover High showing elements of Evolution including the classic assent of man from ape-like ancestors, that the student had donated to the science department in 1998 , had been burned by the high school janitor in 2003.
The janitor never received any punishment for the incident.
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