[COMMENT: The article below by B Chapman in the Washington Post defends ID for which (in the Post!) we can be grateful. But Chapman gives religion the usual bad rap. That is unintelligent defense of Intelligent Design. The author assumes that religion is associated with lack of intellectual credibility. That is a sad part of the history of religion, for sure, especially in the West since the rise of science, of which many believers were petrified, fearing that honest discussion might lead to the dumping of their beliefs.
But it is equally part of the history of secularism, which is NOT neutral, and which is inherently amoral - no intelligent design means logically no objective morality. And it is not inherently a part of (at least) Biblical religion. Quite the contrary. Biblical culture has always been high on the literacy scale because if God talks to us through the written word, people want to know how to read. Simple.
Biblical religion is the main impetus for honest intellectual engagement, at least as important as Greek philosophy, because -- there is a moral commitment to the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth -- inherent in Biblical religion, and in no other. (See "The Authority of the Bible in a Scientific Age" at http://theroadtoemmaus.org/RdLb/12The/Bbl/00Bibl.htm, and also "Defining 'Oughtness' & 'Love' at http://theroadtoemmaus.org/RdLb/21PbAr/Eth/DefO&L.htm )
Judeo-Christians must regain their intellectual credibility and get back into the fray. We are losing only because of wrong choices we have made to not engage openly and honestly, and instead to hide behind circular and unsupportable theories of infallibility. See Elijah on Mount Carmel, I Kings, 18 for the Biblical view of open engagement -- truth at any cost. And that was ca. 900 BC, four centuries before any Greek philosophers showed up. E. Fox]
There really is a scientific case against Charles Darwin's theory of
evolution, and another for the alternative of intelligent design, but you
will not find them in The Post. Instead, we have Peter Slevin ["Evolution's
Grass-Roots Defender Grows in Va.," Metro, July 20] regaling us about a
group of underemployed 1960s activists who were looking for a cause and
picked the defense of Darwin's theory. On June 3 a Post editorial derided
"The Privileged Planet," a film about cosmology, as "religious" -- an untrue
description that nonetheless has the apparent merit of ending discussion on
any number of questions these days.
Darwin apologists are happy to opine on religion and politics, of course.
What they will not do is address the growing evidence against Darwin's
theory. More than 400 brave scientists now question that theory publicly.
Whether to teach the evidence both for and against Darwin's theory is the
only question before most school boards -- not intelligent design.
Intelligent design is another matter, and it is almost always misrepresented
in the media. Simply put, intelligent-design theorists contend that
scientists have uncovered demonstrable indicators of design in nature. The
theory holds that certain features of the universe and of living things are
best explained by an intelligent cause, not an undirected process such as
natural selection. It goes no further. It is not creationism. It is not
The only religious believers in all this are the Darwinists who refuse to
air the strengths and weaknesses of Darwin's theory and who seek to punish
the scholars and teachers who do.
-- Bruce Chapman
The writer is president of the Discovery Institute.
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