Saturday, April 03, 2004
Google Bomb: Intelligent Design
The short version:
Google bomb the phrase "intelligent design" so any subsequent search points to a definitive article from Scientific American refuting the faith based argument against evolution.
The long version:
Of all the absurdities of the modern world, few can match the silliness of the Science deniers. A small but vocal group of religous fanatics seeks to subvert local school boards and governments in order to substitute their own religon for modern scientific theories.
The doctrine of the seperation of Church and State means little to this group. Even worse, they demonstrate a lack of respect for other people's religons by seeking to employ public schools to prosletyze their own religon to other people's children -- regardless of their religous beliefs.
The flash point of this creeping evangelism is evolution. Since "biblical creationism" is so obviously a phrase of religon, the favorite substitute is "intelligent design." Its has enough of a pseudo scientific sound to be the buzzword of choice. As Scientific America described it:
"Embarrassingly, in the 21st century, in the most scientifically advanced nation the world has ever known, creationists can still persuade politicians, judges and ordinary citizens that evolution is a flawed, poorly supported fantasy. They lobby for creationist ideas such as "intelligent design" to be taught as alternatives to evolution in science classrooms. As this article goes to press, the Ohio Board of Education is debating whether to mandate such a change. Some antievolutionists, such as Philip E. Johnson, a law professor at the University of California at Berkeley and author of Darwin on Trial, admit that they intend for intelligent-design theory to serve as a "wedge" for reopening science classrooms to discussions of God."
In order to prevent the "intelligent design" virus from infecting more unsuspecting youths, I propose the following: Webloggers, science journals, college biology departments should link to the following article:
An interested or curious student searching the web for information on "intelligent design" will be pointed to a page that provides persuasive scientific arguments against anti-evolution rhetoric.
As Stephen Jay Gould so eloquently argued, we should encourage a "healthy debate about theory that has brought new life to evolutionary biology." In particular, he wrote:
"Scientists regard debates on fundamental issues of theory as a sign of intellectual health and a source of excitement. Science is—and how else can I say it?—most fun when it plays with interesting ideas, examines their implications, and recognizes that old information might be explained in surprisingly new ways. Evolutionary theory is now enjoying this uncommon vigor. Yet amidst all this turmoil no biologist has been lead to doubt the fact that evolution occurred; we are debating how it happened. We are all trying to explain the same thing: the tree of evolutionary descent linking all organisms by ties of genealogy. Creationists pervert and caricature this debate by conveniently neglecting the common conviction that underlies it, and by falsely suggesting that evolutionists now doubt the very phenomenon we are struggling to understand."
What could be more apropros than using the tools of computer sciences to point curious young minds to factual information on the biological sciences?
NOTE: This is a long and easily broken URL. Please verify your links and make sure their are no spaces in the web addresses. We don't want to create a 404 google bomb.
Evolution as Fact and Theory
Stephen Jay Gould,
"Hen's Teeth and Horse's Toes" [New York: W. W. Norton & Company, 1994, pp. 253-262]
The Unofficial Stephen Jay Gould site
The New Creationist Assault on Science Education
News & Media Coverage
The Panda's Thumb
Dedicated to explaining the theory of evolution, critiquing the claims of the anti-evolution movement, and defending the integrity of science and science education in America and around the world.
The Index of Galapagos Related Articles and Publications
BBC Presents: History of Evolution
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