All Politics is Loco: Intelligent Design is just plain stupid

By |2018-01-16T16:07:31-05:00September 8th, 2005|Opinions|

By Sean Kosofsky

The myth of “Intelligent Design” is the latest in a series of bizarre fantasies concocted by religious political extremists in order to merge church and state and push a new and improved brand of creationism.
For those of you not familiar, creationism is a Judeo-Christian belief that God (usually male and looking a lot like an angry Santa Claus up in the clouds) made everything on earth, as is, from scratch. Proponents reject the theory of evolution because it threatens their literal interpretation of the Bible. The religious right can’t get creationism taught in schools as actual science, so they have invented the “theory of intelligent design,” or ID, which is less like a theory and more like wishful thinking.
ID argues that some things are so complex, like DNA, that it must have had an intelligent creator. ID does not hold up to any standards of the scientific method. Real scientists are prepared to alter their views on scientific theories based on new data. Adherents of ID won’t change their minds no matter what. This reminds me of how the prune industry last year decided to change the name of “prunes” to “dried plums.” You can change the name, but it is still just a prune and if you ingest it you are going to be full of shit. Just like calling ID “science.”
That is so like the religious right. “Hey, we can’t understand the universe or DNA or weather conditions so instead of wasting all the time and money trying to understand it, let’s just call it a day and say God did it.” And they are tying to pass this off as a scientific theory.
The satirical online news site ran a hilarious spoof of ID recently claiming that Evangelical Physicists have now refuted gravity and claim that they have discovered “intelligent falling,” which purports that there is no gravity, but that God is pushing things toward the Earth.
President Bush (wielding his doctoral degrees in theology and biology) came out in support of teaching ID in schools. You have to give him credit for flushing science down the toilet and throwing a steak to the ravenous fundi’s in the red-states.
I am not trying to insult anyone who believes in creationism, but I am adamantly opposed to the right wing agenda of having it taught in schools alongside evolution in science classes. Proponents of ID are lying when they call it a “theory.” They damage authentic science and hurt their own cause by trying to confuse issues of faith with issues of proof. Why are fundamentalists so insecure with their own belief system that science threatens their beliefs? With every new scientific breakthrough that has helped explain the world around us, from Galileo to gene research, biblical literalists go into defense mode because they don’t want their flock turning to anyone but the Church for answers to life’s mysteries. This is unhealthy and does not encourage an open mind or critical thinking skills.
Fans of creationism should not be threatened by evolution. Progressive religious thinkers have found ways to reconcile literal translations from the Bible and modern science by arguing that evolution is part of God’s design. That way everyone wins. Instead they are waging a campaign of eyes-wide-shut, snake oil science that only confuses the public and aims to convert those who don’t understand science but like the comfort of easily explained stories.

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BTL Staff
Between The Lines has been publishing LGBTQ-related content in Southeast Michigan since the early '90s. This year marks the publication's 27th anniversary.