Wednesday, March 19, 2008
He Went and Did It Again!
You may remember that Casey Luskin, Gofer General of the Discovery Institute, let it out of the bag that the "academic freedom" bill it has been pushing, most recently in Florida, is intended to permit the teaching of Intelligent Design Creationism by individual public school teachers.
John West then rode to the "rescue," claiming Luskin was "misrepresented" and claiming that only "[i]f and when ID supporters are able to win the debate over whether ID science" will the pending legislation permit ID to be taught. Of course, West bizarrely claims it should be K-12 teachers, most of whom have no real science or philosophy of science training, who should decide "if and when" ID becomes science.
Now Luskin is back at the DI's Media Complaints Division making sure that nobody, including West, misrepresents him ... he can make a fool of himself on his own, thank you very much! According to Luskin, an editorial in Science unfairly equates ID with young-Earth creationism. But he goes on:
Darwinists are promoting a false dichotomy. If you want to have a scientific view about origins, they tell you that your only choice is neo-Darwinism. Otherwise, they tell you that you must believe in religion-based creationism. This is harmful because it tells people that if they want to be both religious and scientific, their only choice is to accept neo-Darwinian evolution. That’s a false dichotomy because it tells people that if they dissent from Darwinism, their only option is a religious view—it willfully ignores scientific skepticism of evolution or science-based ID. While religious persons can of course accept neo-Darwinism if they so choose, this false dichotomy ignores the fact that there are some alternatives to evolution that are scientific (i.e., intelligent design). [Emphasis added]This time there is no equivocation about ID being science in Luskin's "personal opinion;" only a straightforward claim that ID is a scientific alternative to evolution and, therefore, clearly falls within the legislation's protection of supposedly "scientific information relevant to the full range of views on biological and chemical origins."
We've known for a long time that the rank-and-file IDers have trouble with the whole "nudge, nudge, wink, wink" business but, apparently, so does Luskin.
Luskin also raises once again the claim that Judge Jones found that it is “utterly false” to believe that “evolutionary theory is antithetical to belief in the existence of a supreme being.” In fact, the Judge merely held, correctly, that the "presupposition . . . that evolutionary theory is antithetical to a belief in the existence of a supreme being and to religion in general" is not true. He was simply stating the well-known fact that many believers have reconciled evolution and their faith in a divine creator. Luskin's "example" of his alleged antithesis is paleontologist Stephen Godfrey, who, after a "painful transition from creationist to evolutionist" and the turmoil it caused in his YEC-believing family, said that:
He has flirted with atheism but found it too depressing. Several years ago, he stopped attending church for a year before returning. He believes in God today, he says, but tomorrow may be different. [Emphasi added]Here, Casey, let me help:
antitheticalThe very fact that Godfrey, despite any difficulties he may have faced, is still able now to believe in God demonstrates neatly that evolution and belief are not "antithetical."
ADJECTIVE: 1. Of, relating to, or marked by antithesis. 2. Being in diametrical opposition. See synonyms at opposite.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
It may not be easy, but who said that anything worthwhile comes easy?