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Monday, December 1, 2008

Don Parker Spreading Creationist Propaganda in Madison

No, no, no—just as we strike a small victory for science and intellect by electing the smartest man on the ballot to the White House, self-published author (it's like blogging, but with paper) Don Parker decides to give Madison a shove back toward the Dark Ages. Elisa Sand reports in tonight's Madison Daily Leader that Parker is forming a Madison chapter of IDEA—Intelligent Design and Evolution Awareness.

Mr. Parker has already mastered the standard propaganda of the creationist wolves in scientist's clothing:
  • Parker: "It's promoting freedom in science to go where the evidence leads."
  • Sand: "While the concept sounds like an argument for creation, Parker says it's more than that. Creation has a religious theme that says everything was created by God. The theory of intelligent design says a higher intelligence had to be responsible for certain things, but it doesn't define what that higher intelligence is."
  • Parker: "I want to provide awareness.... My primary concern is we're losing our freedom to discuss it. Some states have passed laws against teaching intelligent design."
Bunk, bunk, bunk. Parker wants to muck up education by fooling folks young and old into thinking that supernatural hokum is equivalent in intellectual merit to genuine biology and evolutionary research. He takes the standard fundagelical tack, ignoring science and the law and dressing up a fool's crusade and a noble stand for freedom.

Parker is saying nothing that wasn't found to be utter nonsense in the famous 2005 case of Kitzmiller et al. v. Dover School District et al. If you want to understand why Parker and his fellow travelers are wrong on so many levels, read the ruling of Judge John E. Jones, III. It is a lengthy decision, but a tour de force of legal and scientific explication.

Don tells Elisa he's hoping to schedule a debate with a college professor. Even if I were a full-bird prof, I would not have time for this nuttiness. Let David Bergan drop in for a guest lecture. Let Sibby come to town and live-blog the IDEA events. Let folks huddle in the library to cling to visions of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. Intelligent design is a canard, a parlor game that contributes nothing to our scientific understanding of the universe.

I can live with Don's using the schools to promote his happy little books. But Don, if you and your anti-science club come anywhere near the school board and our public school science curriculum, I will raise heck.

-------------
Update 22:55: Madison's anti-science crusader club already has its own website, or, in this case, its own Ning. Knock yourselves out, kids!

Update 2008.12.23: Just in time for Christmas: The IDEA Obituary. ID is dead on university campuses, says Cornell biologist James MacNeill. Must not have been a terribly well-designed movement....

46 comments:

  1. An excellant book on the Dover case is Gorilla Girl. It was written by a reporter that covered the trial and presents the background on the case. It clearly shows the "design" advoctes for the creationists they are.

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  2. How about you let people believe what they want to? Nobody is bashing your athiest propaganda. Just because somebody is starting a group you don't like, doesn't mean you can stop them. The Constitution guarantees citizens freedom of assembly and freedom of religion. Looks like your quest to persecute these folks is over.

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  3. Cory:

    A while back I saw a very funny bumper sticker. It said "God Loves You!" in big letters. In smaller letter underneath it read "Everyone else thinks you're an ***hole".

    Tolerance...but not for those who have no tolerance of their own.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Anon 6:40: Gorilla Girl -- sounds like an interesting read!

    Anon 7:08: Hold on a moment:

    (1) "Nobody is bashing..." -- have you read some of the comments I get? ;-)

    (2) "atheist propaganda" -- Please cite for me one instance of my alleged "atheist propaganda" -- i.e., information, true or not, that I have spread for the purpose of promoting atheism.

    (3) "Let people believe what they want" -- I didn't say you aren't free to believe in baloney. I just said it is baloney.

    (4) "quest to persecute these folks"? Hee hee. What quest? What persecution? I made no declaration of intent to stop the formation or meeting of any group. I just said this particular group's mission is to spread baloney.

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  5. Oh, we do love playing word games with the leftist lingo, don't we, Anon 7:30?

    Remind me again: why am I obliged to tolerate falsehood and deception?

    ReplyDelete
  6. Truth is in the eye of the beholder.

    Perception is truth.

    What is the greatest thing? Love.

    Instead of being upset at some quirky religious zealot, you should be absolutely unhinged at the federal gov't for their incompetent stupidity - 6.5 trillion dollars worth. The markets will still fail regardless and generations to come will be repaying the interest.

    ReplyDelete
  7. What might be baloney to you is fact to someone else.

    I believe in both creationism and evolution. God is doing the creation through evolution. Simple.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Religous teachings have no business in the public schools. If people want their kids taught that send them to Christian schools.

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  9. Anon 8:06: Believe me, I'm plenty riled up about the federal government's profligacy. Review the past year's blog posts, and you'll find a lot more written about hard policy issues like that than fringe issues like ID. But it's still worth noting that the only thing scientific about ID is the movement's calculated plot to manipulate public opinion to overthrow real science.

    Anon 8:23: I can live with the view of evolution as God's tool for creation. But I doubt that's the real message Don Parker's club is trying to promote.

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  10. As a scientist, I don't have any problem with people believing that God created human beings directly, or that the stars govern the fate of humanity, or that ghosts haunt the Bullock Hotel in Deadwood.

    I do have a problem when people treat religious, astrological, or new-age notions as if they were scientific theories, and then go about attempting to prove these theories without rigorously adhering to the principles of logic and the scientific method.

    The scientist embarks on a quest for truth which differs fundamentally from the methodology of the priest, the astrologer, or the ghost-buster, just as music communicates emotion in a different way than do paintings or poetry.

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  11. Since you are openly public about the fact that you are an atheist and your wife is Christian, how does she feel about the fact that you think her beliefs are "baloney"? How does she raise her child to be a Christian in a household where her Daddy thinks Christianity is hocus-pocus?

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  12. Everyone, read Stan's comment. He gets the problem perfectly.

    Anon 2:39: My wife may check in to correct me later, but I'm pretty sure she thinks the mission of Don Parker's club is misguided. Even Don Parker says "intelligent design" isn't about Christianity. Therefore, I can call the openly public beliefs of his club baloney (or "hocus-pocus," which is appropriate, given the verbal sleight of hand Parker is playing) without making any statement at all on the validity of Christianity.

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  13. Wow. Answered (Anon 2:39) with more grace and insight than I could have. Well done, CAH.

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  14. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_1EAmfOu9lE&feature=related

    Corey, check this out...it blew me away...it takes more faith to believe this all happened by accident, so congrats to you for being more faithful than Darwin himself. In the end he didn't even believe the book he wrote.

    Think about it...if the Earth was a golf ball...

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  15. WTF? Get out much? People have the basic freedom of belief, and they don't need bigots like you bashing them about it. Don Parker seems like he has rationally thought about his beliefs and he has been very welcoming of debate, so who are you to call it "propaganda". YOU are the one, if anything, spewing dogma and propaganda. The last thing we need is more bigoted propaganda.

    By the way, Obama also believes in God and has been an orthodox Christian for decades -- is he full of "baloney" as well?

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  16. Thanks, Anon 12:11. I think Brian must have missed that memo.

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  17. Cory. Do you love anyone or anything? If so, why. Show me where science has said that love exists. Tell your mother, father, or partner that you do not love them, because it has not been proven. Love is intangible. The message of the Bible remains unchanged. It is fact. It does not need to be re-tested. The message of science changes faster then the diapers of a new born baby. In other words, science always likes the option to update its hypothesis. Why is this? You may have Anon help you explain. Further, please explaint to me why the smartest man on the ballot always starts a sentence with ah, now look, or now listen.

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  18. Just because somebody is starting a group you don't like, doesn't mean you can stop them.

    This is a free country. Uneducated god-soaked hicks can spread lies about science if they want to. Also, educated people can laugh at the breathtaking stupidity of Christian idiots who prefer living in the Dark Ages instead of the 21st century.

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  19. By the way, Obama also believes in God and has been an orthodox Christian for decades -- is he full of "baloney" as well?

    I voted for Obama because it's obvious he's very intelligent. I hope he was just faking his Christianity to get elected. Anyone who really believes Jeebus was a god is just plain nuts.

    Believing in God, also known as the Magic Fairy, is not a virtue. It's a mental illness.

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  20. Actually, I'm glad President-Elect Obama is a Christian: he could do a world of good in reminding Christians that their faith ought to focus on doing practical good in the world rather than grandstanding on fringe issues and bad science.

    Reminder: as I said above, I can criticize the IDEA club's false philosophy without criticizing Christianity. Separate issues, kids.

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  21. Searaven said...

    The message of science changes faster then the diapers of a new born baby. In other words, science always likes the option to update its hypothesis. Why is this?

    Maybe it's because science is not dogmatic.....

    ReplyDelete
  22. Re: “Don Parker Spreading Creationist Propaganda in Madison”
    Posted by Cory Heidelberger 12/2/2008 in Madville Times.
    As I read the article, I was struck by the vicious tone of the article. Certainly, Cory would do well to learn something about which she writes.

    Micro-evolution..variation Within a species (Sometimes referred as breeding of Animals and plants). Evidence for Micro-evolution (Breeding) has been demonstrated to be true using scientific methods before and after Darwin.

    Macro-evolution..changing from one body plan to another outside species or subspecies levels.( ex. changing from hippopotimus to a whale as sometimes speculated upon by believers in evolution).

    The point about all of this is that evolutionists in the past 150 years have not been able to scientifically show that Macro-evolution by mutation, natural selection, or by the fossil record, to be true. I always say that if you or anyone else can show just one example of macro-evolution using scientific methods you would become a sensation overnight. So, Cory you can huff and puff but remember this, there is more scientific evidence for Intelligent Design than has ever been shown for Darwins evolution. You might do well to look up such words as RNA, DNA, Codons, Proteins, Amino acids, Genes, Cells, Probability theory, String and Information theory and many others that show Darwins evolutionary ideas widely missed the mark.

    To spew such vitriol would suggest you have another ax to grind. MY guess is that you fall into one or more of the following groups; Homosexual, atheist, Secular Humanist, Devil Worshipper, Darwinist or Neodarwinist. I hope you will someday get over it. tfagan

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  23. Wow, tfagan, conflating homosexuality and devil worship? I'll leave it to my readers to decide who sounds more like the vitriolic meathead in this discussion. You have much more to "get over" than I.

    I am an atheist and secular humanist (give yourself a prize, tfagan, you're just so gosh-darn perceptive). I am also a Democrat, a dad, a doctoral student, a bicyclist, a South Dakotan, a man, a graduate of the same high school as Don Parker, an oral interpretation judge, a mediocre do-it-yourself carpenter... none of which mean I have any axe to grind other than the defense of science from baloney like yours and Don's. Ad hominem attacks on who I am distract from but do not change the fact that "intelligent deisgn" is a political and religious movement masquerading as science.

    "Certainly, Cory would do well to learn something about which [he] writes." I'm not as smart as David Bergan, but reading Kitzmiller v Dover, Michael Behe, and some other texts, as well as a number of conversations with smarter, less hostile people than tfagan, have given me at least a smidgeon of understanding of the issues involved. As I said in an e-mail to another ID huffer-puffer, I've already had this conversation with other smart people, offered my proofs, and found their responses lacking. If I spent my days refuting every sophist in the street, I'd never get the driveway shoveled, let alone get universal health coverage through Congress.

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  24. My friend RR points me (and the rest of us) toward Olivia Judson, who says some wonderful things about why the assault on science (and the IDEA club is part of that) is so dangerous. For tfagan, she also notes that Darwinism (or neoDarwinism) isn't really a useful term... despite her opening statement that "Charles Darwin was a giant."

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  25. One more from Olivia Judson:

    "But for me, the most important thing about studying evolution is something less tangible. It’s that the endeavor contains a profound optimism. It means that when we encounter something in nature that is complicated or mysterious, such as the flagellum of a bacteria or the light made by a firefly, we don’t have to shrug our shoulders in bewilderment.

    "Instead, we can ask how it got to be that way. And if at first it seems so complicated that the evolutionary steps are hard to work out, we have an invitation to imagine, to play, to experiment and explore. To my mind, this only enhances the wonder."

    [Olivia Judson, "Optimism in Evolution," New York Times, 2008.08.12]

    ReplyDelete
  26. Tfagan: Microevolution is not referred to as breeding. Breeding is artificial selection, which fed into Darwin’s thinking of natural selection. If breeders could artificially select desired traits to rapidly create diverse varieties such as with dogs from wolves or modern crop plants from wild relatives, then nature may do something analogous but on a slower time scale.

    If you accept the mechanism of microevolution then you may want to explain why macroevolution is not possible since it utilizes the same mechanism. While you’re at it you could provide a universal definition for species. I also suspect your version of ‘scientifically show’ is flawed and would invalidate much of accepted science. Are you implying that one day there’s a hippo and the next day there’s a whale? That’s not a prediction of evolution. Sounds like you want to create an impossible standard. The relationship of hippos to whales can be shown by the DNA sequences and the fossil record.

    But if instant speciation is what you’re after, it’s been clearly demonstrated in plants like wheat and sunflowers. There are also examples in animals--frogs, insects, and mice come to mind.

    If you’re after recent publications on macroevolution, dramatic changes in a natural population of lizards, including new structures, have been shown 40 generations after introduction to a new environment. Novel functions have been induced in bacteria, protists, and fungi. Following a population over 20 years, bacteria have been shown to develop the ability to feed on a new nutrient source due to several mutations. And there are numerous examples of developed reproductive isolation between populations.

    As far as body plans are concerned there are many examples of altering a single homeotic gene and dramatically altering a body plan.

    There are also numerous examples of transitional forms in the fossil record. One recent example is using the geologic record to predict where such a form could be found, searching for it, and finding Tiktaalik.

    All that scientific evidence for intelligent design and they can’t be bothered to publish in an actual scientific journal? Must be a homosexual/secular humanist/devil worshiper/Darwinist/neodarwinist conspiracy.

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  27. Having been born and lived the first twenty-three years of my life in South Dakota, I am disappointed at the tone, not to mention the content, of your piece. The editorial was like a sassy playground school child frightened and defensive, so untruths fly about like a clever tantrum. Not much more really needs to be said than this: Creation evidence abounds. Darwinian evolution is the lie. Men and women have a deep propensity toward pride and believing deception due to something very wrong within the human heart. If the evolutionary establishment truly wanted to finally invalidate creationists, they would be more than willing to have national debate on the clear, scientific evidence from specialists chosen by the respective sides, NOT by the evolutionists alone. Their excuses for not wanting to are dishonest and hypocritical. It's time to state the case as it really is, not forgetting that what we believe about our origins significantly impacts our view of God and life itself. As I view media content on origins, not only do they state untruths as facts, but they are increasingly moving into the realm of science fiction to try and explain what happened before the "big bang" and the origin of the first living cell. Time for intelligence.

    Steve Sorensen
    Columbia, MD

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  28. You can comfort yourself by distracting attacks on the tone of the original commentary, but the truth of the argument remains: "intelligent design" is a cover for a political and religious movement injecting religion into the schools and replacing science with... well, something else. Someone could stand up and say gravity is actually the product of will of God, but it would be silly to drop everything and conduct a "national debate" over such an assertion. (Our time would still be better spent fixing the bridges that gravity clearly pulls down.) Intelligent design offers no testable or provable hypotheses and no really useful practical advice for how to go about our business... at least no advice that the Bible, Koran, good parenting, and common sense (among other things) don't already give us. It's the people who feel the need to dress up their faith as science who sound "frightened and defensive."

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  29. It appears you missed the main point. Don't try and speak for everyone. Just let the debates begin! General evolutionism is not testable. It is a faith matter, as well. Were you there? So, again, just let both faith sides speak. True science is true knowledge. It is not clever fairy tales. General evolutionism is not testable. And your use of a gravity argument? We still do not understand gravity. That illustration does not apply here. There is so much evidence that supports significantly younger ages for the universe, our solar system, earth, and the fossil record. Yes, the evidence supporting our side does exist. Now, you are the one, if you are not a hypocrite, who should stop comforting YOURself by distracting attacks on the silliness of much younger creation evidences. Let both sides of scientists (and there are PhDs from well known institutions on both sides; yes there are) simply lay out their material in as clean a fashion as they want to. Then, let the people decide on the facts; truthful, verifiable, and accurate. It is not complicated. The intimidating efforts must stop if truth is truly desired here. Or are you just angry at God?

    Steve Sorensen
    Columbia, MD

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  30. "Or are you just angry at God?"

    Oh, Pastor Steve, that's just silly. I thought Don said intelligent design wasn't about God at all. As I have said previously, I can with complete intellectual honesty indict the authenticity of the claims of the ID movement without saying anything about the merits of Christianity. I could even argue that I'm trying to save Christianity from the ID movement... not that Christianity needs my saving.

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  31. Awh come on, Cory.

    The whole issue is evolution vss. creation. God is intelligent. He is the designer. We are now in a very broken world for other reasons. Answers are there for that, too. Why fight ID unless God is not wanted in all areas of thinking? It's like this: "I don't want God in the science classroom! I am going to answer origins without God! Then we can answer other things without God, too; like why this is a broken world with evil and death!" ID has every connection with Christianity. It's true that ID in certain cases does not use the "God" word, but that's the point. People don't like ID because it draws them precariously close to God. That's all. That's why they don't like ID. They are alienated from God, who would like them to love Him. Sure, I believe the "God" word ought to be used. But one thing this brings out is that much of the "scientific" establishment is, again, intimidated by any reference to God in origins.

    Curious: How did you find I was a pastor? Google search with my name and city, right?

    I really do care about this issue. It definitely is in the realm of spiritual oversight. And I care about you, too.

    Steve

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  32. "Curious: How did you find I was a pastor? Google search with my name and city, right?"

    Um, actually, I just clicked on your name, which took me to the profile you enabled.

    Hyperlinks. Amazing.

    "ID has every connection with Christianity. It's true that ID in certain cases does not use the 'God' word, but that's the point."

    Just so we're clear: you're telling us that ID is a religious movement that avoids mentioning God purely for marketing purposes, right?

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  33. Forgot I did a profile on this one.

    Anyway, there are apparently IDers who believe it is God, and those who might say aliens did it.

    I do not believe IDers refrain from "God" for marketing purposes. Many of them know God is not liked very much, and then the "church/state" matter and certain court decisions. Many of them are sincerely trying to approach it from the "obvious evidence" position. They are not "allowed" to use "God" so they will simply present the evidence that makes Darwinian evolution bogus as a verifiable fact (as it is constantly touted). In a sense, they are playing the game evolutionists started. "OK. Let's just see where the evidence alone points." What else are they supposed to do in view of court decisions? At least this way they can gain a hearing. But I think the battle ought to include God all the way; take that fight through the courts. There is too much history in this nation that allows "God" practically everywhere, from the public square to classrooms. This nation has drifted in many ways not good. But that's a different topic, though they are connected.

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  34. Oops! Wrong delete button. Let me restore a comment from an Anon, just arrived today:

    "Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Don Parker Spreading Creationist Propaganda in Mad...":

    I stumbled upon this post...I wish hover that I had not. It is filled with nonsense. First, you go from attacking a man (Parker) on his views, because yours are different. Okay that happens everyday, but then as I read, I discover that you are in fact not attacking these views, but more the man himself. I saw the comment of "God Loves You!" bumper sticker and the other part says "Everyone else thinks you're an ***hole". Your tactics of saying that intelligent design needs to be struck down and the only way is science reminds me of one concept..."Ask why, ***hole." If you understand where I get that from then you will understand that scientist seem more and more to have that same slogan. They are a black box of faith themselves, not faith as in religious faith, but the kind that says hey, nothing proves that...not saying, nothing does NOT prove that. The simple idea that there is something that does not have a reason why allows scientist to shrug any proceedings.

    Now enough with that rant...Cory...you attack a man on God when he is not preaching about it. You attack a man on his views, even though you do not take time to understand them. Intelligent design at the basis...is just as much against the idea of an all holy deity as every scientist is. The idea of Intelligent Design strikes down religion. It strikes down the idea that there is one power. It instead provides a theory that something of higher power had something to do with the creation. The most important fact about Intelligent Design is the fact that even above this higher power there is another! It does not ask you to worship anything, to protest to some people's illusion. What started evolution? A cell reproduction? What started that cell reproduction? What changed? An electrical storm, right...Ask Why, ***hole.



    Posted by Anonymous to Madville Times at 2/12/2009 4:25 PM

    ---CAH again: I'm not attacking Parker. I'm attacking his views, his propaganda, and the disingenuousness of the ID movement. And I'm not attacking any man on God (but please, don't tell me that's not what ID is about).

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  35. Oh wow, so you delete my post on the Russ Olson article about you ranting on about just not liking somebody, and then you delete this one too and repost it. I don't have to tell you that ID has nothing to do about God, because you should have already done your research and discovered that ID is as much against religion as anyone. Almost all researchers that study ID refrain from going to church and believing in god within the first year.

    **Hopefully this one gets read before it is deleted**

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  36. You'll have to contact me privately (see link above the comment box) and clarify: I don't recall deleting any post about Russ Olson. And if the above comment is yours, I obviously didn't delete it. Pay attention, quit lying.

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  37. Okay enough with all this side talk lets get down to it. Cory ID IS science!! So you think ID is religious...well lets check, the ID theory is that some way [unknown really because there is no concrete evidence, thus it's a theory of science] that the first cell was able to reproduce and thus became man. They do NOT believe that the world was created in seven days like the bible! It is completely not religious, most ID believers are agnostic!! As far as evolution goes, ID states that it believes in adaptations to our surroundings and the ability to change according to long term environments but to say that we were UAC and all evolved from one uniform animal is RIDICULOUS.

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  38. Ridiculous: trying to convince people that "intelligent design" is an agnostic movement. ID is creationism dressed up (unsuccessfully) to sneak by the courts and put God in the science classroom. Your claim that most ID believers are agnostic is baseless (care to include a link) and counterfactual. Don Parker is definitely not agnostic. Neither is anyone else I've spoken to who peddles this pish-posh.

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  39. http://www.arn.org/blogs/index.php/2/2008/11/08/straws_in_the_wind_atheists_and_agnostic
    Steve Fuller
    Dr. David Berlinski

    http://redstaterabble.blogspot.com/2005/03/how-intelligent-design-is-making.html
    William Harris and John Calvert

    http://www.discovery.org/csc/topQuestions.php
    Stephen Meyer

    http://www.uncommondescent.com/education/agnostic-pro-id-vs-theist-anti-id/
    Prof. Steve Fuller (Prof. of Sociology at Warwick University


    There ya go Cory, now read up and come back and post about what you think about those articles. Any other things you would wish for me to look up for you before you start throwing false accusations around the room?

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  40. Oh look, kids! John just proved that "most ID believers are agnostic" by giving me six names. I may wet myself with laughter.

    I actually would agree that ID conceptually is inimical to Christianity. If you believe we weak, disease-ridden organisms were designed, you must believe the designer is a shoddy workman. I could sketch better designs for child-bearing organs in five minutes on the back of a napkin. "Sloppy and incompentent"? Not the words I'd want describing my God.

    But now let's get silly. How many Christians believe in ID?:

    **"The ruling is a blow to certain Christian conservatives, who have been pushing intelligent-design initiatives in upwards of 30 states" [Peter Grier and Josh Burek, "Banned in Biology..." CSM, 2005.12.21]: Christian conservatives, plural. That's at least two.

    **David Bergan

    **Frank Sherwin

    **Don Parker

    **William Dembski

    **First Christian Church of Pheonix—the endorsement on the church website signifies the approval of the congregation... consisting of at least a hundred people in this photo...

    Well, that's 106 Christians to 6... whatever they are that John links to. Next!

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  41. Oh ouch, sorry I only had five minutes to post and didn't want to take time to actually find a million people. Now I wanted to go through your links, but than I saw that you mentioned Don Parker himself where this all started and I remembered some of the things he has said in public on radio shows.

    Don quotes the movie Expelled with Ben Stein as being one of the most factual documentations on ID he has ever seen (which he has only been studying for less than two years) and in this movie Richard Dawkins himself explains ID as the result of life through a higher power, WHICH has another higher power. It's like all scientific domino effects, the classic cause and effect, one thing must and always will have a more dominant thing. Our simple human minds can not solve this puzzle. God is created as a cushion, something to believe in. To believe in ID does not mean to believe in God, Don Parker is not trying to push God on to you just because he believes in him. He is pushing the idea of a higher being/power.

    I hate to break something so trivial down into stupid facts, because really I feel things get so twisted that we are always looking for more, but the idea of ID to the creation of life is like an open freeway that only reaches one place. It doesn't matter what you drive to get there, the main goal is the same, the main concept. It's like John and Jeff both believe that the best basketball players are in the NBA, John thinks Kobe, Jeff thinks Lebron. Although they don't agree they both maintain the same concept that the best player is in the NBA. ID says John and Jeff both believe that life was created by some higher power/force, Jeff thinks God, John thinks the earth itself is a higher being. They both maintain the same concept, just different roads to the destination.

    I know you might get all jumpy about me breaking something down so sadly into something like a basketball choice but it helps me describe to people that don't understand.

    The idea that things were just magically perfect for evolution to take place...if the earth regulated one degree higher or lower, or was made of .01% less oxygen or carbon dioxide, or if our atmosphere was one variable different, or if hydrogen formed with something else to make water. Life would be over...it would have never been to start.

    I just don't understand how as a scientist you can ask yourselves these questions and come to a positive answer when there is no evidence. When Darwin's theory is a black box of faith itself...

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  42. John, you're talking about what the ID movement could be. I'm talking about what the ID movement is. I agree that one could believe ID and yet not be religious. However, the vast majority of ID believers are Christian creationists trying to push their propaganda into the public classroom. Don is advocating for his God. To discuss ID as an agnostic movement is to place oneself at the far fringe of the main discussion taking place... or to engage in deceptive sophistry.

    And "magically perfect"? Again, you miss the glaring imperfections of biology. Childbirth, appendices, psoriasis, cancer, and all those other imperfections make the creator look sloppy. That's fine if you're an atheist who thinks we are some alien grad student's xenogenetics experiment, but it's bad news if you're trying to reason your way to God by design. All those theist ID proponents seem to miss that point.

    That's not a scientific domino effect you describe; it's actually infinite regress, turtles on turtles, forever and ever. And if every creator as to have a higher creator, this hypothesis doesn't really help us much, does it?

    ID = misguided creationist/Christian ploy. The score is still 106–6. If this were basketball, we'd call the mercy rule.

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  43. John, perhaps more important than counting the number of agnostics who believe in ID (6—pretty short task) is pointing to the number of religious leaders who think our little debate here is silly and agree that evolution has "overwhelming evidence, hugely strengthened by recent advances in genetics, which testifies to the theory's validity."

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  44. Ahh true "Darwin's theory of how life on Earth has developed." - from that same link.

    We have to remember that the key of the debate stems from where did this all start from. What was the beginning. That is the debate, it is not whether evolution takes place while we are alive, but if it is a viable reason of how we became.

    I noticed that article and video were based out of the UK, is there any talk of what to teach students going on there?

    Also, I noticed the last sentence - "strengthened by recent advances in genetics, which testifies to the theory's validity."

    Advancements in genetics...evolution genetics...so I wonder if Hitler was just testing his theory. Maybe we should give him a day too, I mean he was just a political leader carrying out Darwin's theories wasn't he? Are we not teaching our youth that it is the survival of the fittest and those who are handicapped and not sustainable are just using up our good air?

    ^^Yes the above paragraph is quite an extreme, but it is something that I have heard around and would like to hear your feelings on it.

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  45. [Hitler?! This started simply as an effort to establish that ID is a decpetive movement promoted mostly by misguided Christians. But if you insist...

    Darwin's theories—and the evolutionary science that has evolved from those beginnings—is descriptive, not normative. Saying that "survival of the fittest" explains which organisms enjoy greater reproductive success does not justify hunting down and murdering the organisms you consider "unfit". Evolution doesn't declare any organism "good" or "superior". Evolution is simply about what works. I can teach evolution and still teach kids that the rights of minorities, the handicapped, etc., are still worth protecting.

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  46. "I can teach evolution and still teach kids that the rights of minorities, the handicapped, etc., are still worth protecting."

    Ahh the wonderful rights brought forth by our founding fathers! Our Bill of Rights! The good ol' Amendments. Amendments...oh yeah that first one...

    Can you teach evolution and yet teach that their first amendment right and the free exercise clause are worth protecting?

    And yes Darwin in no way intended for his theories to be used in that way, but can you not say it was based upon them? I was in no way trying to condemn them, I just wanted to hear your views. Someone made the knife and people are stabbed every year, doesn't mean the knife should not be used to cut produce.

    What I was more trying to get at is that I do believe that the debate we are having will be one that will always exist. To not have another side to this debate I believe would bring about things like Hitler, in which the idea/theory, is used in a misinterpreted way.

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