HOT DOC: Intelligent Design Is Stupid

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[via YAWOOT]

THE U.K. REGISTER: The [British] government has announced that it will publish guidance for schools on how creationism and intelligent design relate to science teaching, and has reiterated that it sees no place for either on the science curriculum. It has also defined “Intelligent Design”, the idea that life is too complex to have arisen without the guiding hand of a greater intelligence, as a religion, along with “creationism”. Responding to a petition on the Number 10 ePetitions site, the government said: “The Government is aware that a number of concerns have been raised in the media and elsewhere as to whether creationism and intelligent design have a place in science lessons. The Government is clear that creationism and intelligent design are not part of the science National Curriculum programmes of study and should not be taught as science. ”  MORE

DarwinEvolution.gifCNN: In an opinion issued Tuesday, U.S. District Judge John Jones ruled that teaching “intelligent design” would violate the Constitutional separation of church and state. “We have concluded that it is not [science], and moreover that ID cannot uncouple itself from its creationist, and thus religious, antecedents,” Jones writes in his 139-page opinion posted on the court’s Web site. (Opinion, pdf) “To be sure, Darwin’s theory of evolution is imperfect. However, the fact that a scientific theory cannot yet render an explanation on every point should not be used as a pretext to thrust an untestable alternative hypothesis grounded in religion into the science classroom or to misrepresent well-established scientific propositions,” Jones writes.  Intelligent design claims the complexity of some systems of nature cannot be explained by evolution but must be attributed to a designer or supernatural being. The Dover Area School District, about 25 miles from the state capital, sought to become the first in the nation to require high school science teachers to teach the concept of intelligent design as an alternative to Darwin’s theory of evolution. Jones described the school board’s decision as “breathtaking inanity.” “Because Darwin’s Theory is a theory, it continues to be tested as new evidence is discovered. The theory is not a fact,” said the statement that the old school board approved in a 6-3 vote in October 2004. “With respect to any theory, students are encouraged to keep an open mind.” MORE

darwin_copy.jpgNOVA: Ahead of his time is putting it moderately for Charles Darwin. The father of evolution had conjectures that were only proved, or greatly substantiated, decades after his death in 1882, in some cases not until recently. Today, evidence that unequivocally supports his theory of evolution by natural selection, as well as other surmises he had, comes from an array of scientific disciplines, including paleontology, geology, biochemistry, genetics, molecular biology, and, most recently, evolutionary developmental biology, or “evo devo.” “The notion that all these lines of evidence could converge and give a common answer to the question of where we came from is truly powerful,” says Brown University biologist Kenneth Miller. “This is the reason why scientific support for the theory of evolution is so overwhelming.” MORE

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