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Is ‘Intelligent Design’ Really Scientific?
by Dr. Wayne Frair
Wayne Frair, Ph.D., is past president of the Creation Research Society, professor emeritus in biology at The King’s College, the author of more than 50 research papers, co-author of A Case for Creation, and an AIIA Resource Associate since 2000.
The modern Intelligent Design (ID) movement is held to have had its beginning in the early 1980s. The Mystery of Life’s Origin by Thaxton, Bradley and Olson was published in 1984, and followed by Denton’s Evolution: A Theory in Crisis in 1985.
During the early 1990s, spurred by writings of lawyer Phillip Johnson and mathematician-scientist William Dembski, the movement exploded, with subsequent worldwide impact.
The concept of ID is integral to every person’s thinking, whether they realize it or not. Evidence of order and useful complexity point toward ID. In a person’s home or office virtually everything one sees has been intelligently designed: chairs, clocks, rugs, windows, pencils-it’s inescapable!
My wife and I used to live near a region formerly inhabited by American Indians, and we would look for arrowheads. These intelligently designed artifacts could be distinguished almost without exception from stones worn or broken by nature.
One excellent example of ID from biological science is the origin of life, even with its most basic composition. Currently the most simple living thing (a mycoplasma) has 468 proteins, each consisting of an average of about 250 units. According to all that is known concerning reactions in chemistry and physics, not even one protein could be formed by the forces of nature alone. To synthesize 468 “cooperating” proteins can be compared to the probability of winning 468 lotteries simultaneously!
In addition to proteins, large nucleic acid molecules (DNA and RNA) and complex carbohydrates are needed in all living cells. We can say without hesitation that on the basis of all we know from science today, life could not originate by natural forces. Something more would be required.
This may not absolutely prove that life could not have originated only by forces in nature. But to any reasonable person the implications are clear-something else is necessary.
It is logical within a scientific framework to recognize that Intelligent Design and creation are involved.
Some scientists today are resisting this idea because they seem to think it is an argument from ignorance, or only gaps in current knowledge.
I have personally spent years doing basic research with the “chemicals of life.” Now I recognize that the evidence for ID is compelling. But many thousands of scientists who also believe as I do think that the general scientific community needs to become more realistic and at least admit ID as a possibility.
Other examples illustrating ID are the human brain, precise distance of earth from the sun (any closer and we roast; any more distant and we freeze), and even forensic investigations.
“Intelligent Design” thinking is unavoidably, instinctively human, and the current ID scientific emphasis is making us all more aware of that fact. Think about it!
…and by Jim Clayton
Mr. Clayton is president of Polymer Assembly Technology, Inc. He and his wife, Debby, are members of AIIA’s board.
Intelligent Design (ID) seems to be in the cross hairs of methodological naturalists and the courts they influence. U.S. District Judge John E. Jones III fired a sharply worded rebuke on December 20th that was directed at the “breathtaking inanity” of the defendants of the Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District trial held last fall near Philadelphia PA. The comment was meant to vilify the ID movement and the evidence for purposeful design in biological organisms as “nothing less than the progeny of creationism.” The Judge’s point was that Intelligent Design is a Fundamentalist plot to subvert true science from the gospel according to Darwin, and is therefore unconstitutional.
To be fair, the defendants in this trial apparently earned the Judge’s rebuke by supposedly allowing the ends to justify the means and “to time and again lie to cover their tracks and disguise the real purpose behind ID Policy.”
Since the object of telling the “truth” was of particular importance to this court, as it concerned the defendants’ testimony, how ironic to read that: “After a searching review of the record and applicable case law, we find that while ID arguments may be true, a proposition on which the Court takes no position, ID is not science.”
This absurd conclusion arises from the so-called “ground rules” of modern materialist science that prohibits any possible inference that might suggest that God was involved in the process. And therein is the problem. It may be true, but so what if it can’t qualify as Science.
If Darwinism held the real answers, why would it be necessary to use a court of law to censor any opposing theory? Perhaps it’s because, like its progeny, Marxism and Freudianism, the end of Darwinism is drawing nigh.