Friday, January 06, 2006

Deceptive Religion Exposed: "Intelligent" Design Skewered

It's not a latebreaking news story that a judge in Pennsylvania struck down mention of so-called "intelligent design" in science classes as unconstitutional. Chaos recommends reading the entire 139 page opinion, however, to really understand the depths to which fundamentalist Christians will sink to advance their cause. Page after page in the opinion documents how, for example, intelligent design is just creationism, relabled in response to a Supreme Court decision (Edwards) striking down mentioning it in schools:

“By comparing the pre and post Edwards drafts of Pandas, three astonishing points emerge: (1) the definition for creation science in early drafts is identical to the definition of ID; (2) cognates of the word creation (creationism and creationist), which appeared approximately 150 times were deliberately and systematically replaced with the phrase ID; and (3) the changes
occurred shortly after the Supreme Court held that creation science is religious and cannot be taught in public school science classes in Edwards.”

In addition, the Court’s opinion notes that intelligent design rests merely on the syllogism, first promoted by Aquinas in the 13th century, that “wherever complex design exists, there must have been a designer; nature is complex; therefore nature must have had an intelligent designer.” Intelligent design is nothing more than this, along with trying to cast doubt on the validity of Darwinism.(“ID is at bottom premised upon a false dichotomy, namely, that to the extent evolutionary theory is discredited, ID is confirmed.”) Intelligent design is not science:

“Not a single expert witness over the course of the six week trial identified one major scientific association, society or organization that endorsed ID as science. What is more, defense experts concede that ID is not a theory as that term is defined by the NAS and admit that ID is at best “fringe science” which has achieved no acceptance in the scientific community.”

Of further note is the utter lack of credibility of the creationists. Time and again, they disclaim memory of events, testify falsely under oath, and are deemed “inconsistent,” and “non-credible” by Judge Jones. In addition, their actions were deceptive:

“The testimony at trial stunningly revealed that Buckingham and Bonsell tried to hide the source of the donations because it showed, at the very least, the extraordinary measures taken to ensure that students received a creationist alternative to Darwin’s theory of evolution.”
“We are accordingly presented with further compelling evidence that Bonsell and Buckingham sought to conceal the blatantly religious purpose behind the ID Policy.”

As has been noted many times previously, this opinion comes from a conservative Republican judge. His final comments are most damning: “It is ironic that several of these individuals, who so staunchly and proudly touted their religious convictions in public, would time and again lie to cover their tracks and disguise the real purpose behind the ID Policy.”

Chaos has noted this before, but it bears repeating: what kind of religion is this whose adherents believe that the ends justify the means? Why do christians seem so prone to deception? Fundamentalism explains part of it: its disciples are fanatics by any definition, but even the Catholic church is willing to spread lies to promote its peculiar and archaic form of reproduction regulation. Don’t believe? Read this for one of the best examples ever, but it is far from the only one. This church promotes and spreads lies and death, is the only conclusion one can draw.

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