intelligent design

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intelligent design
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{{About|a form of creationism|generic arguments from "intelligent design"|Teleological argument|the movement|Intelligent design movement|other uses of the phrase}}{{pp-vandalism|small=yes}}{{pp-move-indef}}{{short description|A pseudoscientific argument for God}}{{Featured article}}{{Intelligent Design}}Intelligent design (ID) is a pseudoscientific argument for the existence of God, presented by its proponents as "an evidence-based scientific theory about life's origins".Numbers 2006, p. 373; "[ID] captured headlines for its bold attempt to rewrite the basic rules of science and its claim to have found indisputable evidence of a God-like being. Proponents, however, insisted it was 'not a religious-based idea, but instead an evidence-based scientific theory about life's origins – one that challenges strictly materialistic views of evolution.' Although the intellectual roots of the design argument go back centuries, its contemporary incarnation dates from the 1980s"JOURNAL, Boudry, Maarten, Maarten Boudry, Blancke, Stefaan, Braeckman, Johan, Johan Braeckman, December 2010, Irreducible Incoherence and Intelligent Design: A Look into the Conceptual Toolbox of a Pseudoscience, The Quarterly Review of Biology, 85, 4, 473–482, 10.1086/656904, 21243965,weblink 1854/LU-952482, Article available from Universiteit GentPigliucci 2010Young & Edis 2004 pp. 195-196, Section heading: But is it Pseudoscience? Proponents claim 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."WEB,weblink CSC - Frequently Asked Questions: Questions About Intelligent Design: What is the theory of intelligent design?, Center for Science and Culture, Discovery Institute, Seattle, 2018-07-15,
  • WEB,weblink Intelligent Design Theory in a Nutshell, 2004, Intelligent Design and Evolution Awareness Center, Seattle, 2012-06-16,
  • WEB,weblink Intelligent Design, Intelligent design network, Intelligent Design network, Shawnee Mission, Kan., Intelligent Design network, inc., 2012-06-16, ID is a form of creationism that lacks empirical support and offers no testable or tenable hypotheses, so it is not science.JOURNAL, December 2007, An intelligently designed response,weblink Nature Methods, Editorial, 4, 12, 983, 10.1038/nmeth1207-983, 1548-7091, 2014-02-28, Nature Methods 2007, The leading proponents of ID are associated with the Discovery Institute, a fundamentalist Christian and politically conservative think tank based in the United States.WEB,weblink Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District Trial transcript: Day 6 (October 5), PM Session, Part 1, TalkOrigins Archive, The TalkOrigins Foundation, Inc., Houston, 2012-06-16, Q. Has the Discovery Institute been a leader in the intelligent design movement? A. Yes, the Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture. Q. And are almost all of the individuals who are involved with the intelligent design movement associated with the Discovery Institute? A. All of the leaders are, yes., — Barbara Forrest, 2005, testifying in the Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District trial.
  • Wilgoren 2005, "...the institute's Center for Science and Culture has emerged in recent months as the ideological and strategic backbone behind the eruption of skirmishes over science in school districts and state capitals across the country."
  • WEB,weblink Frequently Asked Questions About 'Intelligent Design', September 16, 2005, American Civil Liberties Union, American Civil Liberties Union, New York, Who is behind the ID movement?, 2012-06-16,
  • NEWS, Kahn, Joseph P., July 27, 2005, The evolution of George Gilder,weblink The Boston Globe, 2014-02-28,
  • NEWS, November 2005, WHO's WHO: Intelligent Design Proponents,weblink PDF, Science & Theology News, Durham, N.C., Science & Theology News, Inc., 1530-6410, 2007-07-20,
  • Attie, et al. 2006, "The engine behind the ID movement is the Discovery Institute."
Though the phrase "intelligent design" had featured previously in theological discussions of the argument from design, the first publication of the term intelligent design in its present use as an alternative term for creationism was in Of Pandas and People,COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/2:Context#Page 31 of 139|Context, pp. 31–33]].
a 1989 creationist textbook intended for high school biology classes. The term was substituted into drafts of the book, directly replacing references to creation science and creationism, after the 1987 United States Supreme Court's Edwards v. Aguillard decision, which barred the teaching of creation science in public schools on constitutional grounds.
COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/2:Context#Page 32 of 139|Context, p. 32 ff]], citing COURT, Edwards v. Aguillard, 482, U.S., 578, 1987,weblink From the mid-1990s, the intelligent design movement (IDM), supported by the Discovery Institute,WEB,weblink
author= website=Center for Science and Culture location=Seattle, 2014-02-28,
  • INTERVIEW, Johnson, Phillip E., James M. Kushiner, Berkeley's Radical,weblink (Touchstone Magazine, Touchstone: A Journal of Mere Christianity), Fellowship of St. James, Chicago, June 2002, 15, 5, 0897-327X, 2012-06-16, Johnson 2002, Johnson interviewed in November 2000.
  • NEWS, Wilgoren, Jodi, August 21, 2005, Politicized Scholars Put Evolution on the Defensive,weblink The New York Times, 2014-02-28, Wilgoren 2005,
  • Downey 2006

advocated inclusion of intelligent design in public school biology curricula.WEB,weblink Understanding the Intelligent Design Creationist Movement: Its True Nature and Goals, Forrest, Barbara, Barbara Forrest, May 2007, Center for Inquiry, Center for Inquiry, Washington, D.C., 2007-08-06, yes,weblink" title="">weblink May 19, 2011, This led to the 2005 Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District trial in which U.S. District Judge John E. Jones III found that intelligent design was not science, that it "cannot uncouple itself from its creationist, and thus religious, antecedents," and that the school district's promotion of it therefore violated the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.
COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/4:Whether ID Is Science#Page 69 of 139|Whether ID Is Science, p. 69]] and s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/6:Curriculum, Conclusion#Page 136 of 139|Curriculum, Conclusion, p. 136]].ID presents two main arguments against evolutionary explanations: irreducible complexity and specified complexity. These arguments assert that certain features (biological and informational, respectively) are too complex to be the result of natural processes. As a positive argument against evolution, ID proposes an analogy between natural systems and human artifacts, a version of the theological argument from design for the existence of God.COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/2:Context#Page 24 of 139|Context, pp. 24–25]]. "the argument for ID is not a new scientific argument, but is rather an old religious argument for the existence of God. He traced this argument back to at least Thomas Aquinas in the 13th century, who framed the argument as a syllogism: Wherever complex design exists, there must have been a designer; nature is complex; therefore nature must have had an intelligent designer. ......[T]his argument for the existence of God was advanced early in the 19th century by Reverend Paley... [the teleological argument] The only apparent difference between the argument made by Paley and the argument for ID, as expressed by defense expert witnesses Behe and Minnich, is that ID's 'official position' does not acknowledge that the designer is God." ID proponents then conclude by analogy that the complex features, as defined by ID, are evidence of design.WEB,weblink Guidance on the place of creationism and intelligent design in science lessons, Teachernet, Department for Children, Schools and Families, London, DOC,weblink November 4, 2007, 2007-10-01, The intelligent design movement claims there are aspects of the natural world that are so intricate and fit for purpose that they cannot have evolved but must have been created by an 'intelligent designer'. Furthermore they assert that this claim is scientifically testable and should therefore be taught in science lessons. Intelligent design lies wholly outside of science. Sometimes examples are quoted that are said to require an 'intelligent designer'. However, many of these have subsequently been shown to have a scientific explanation, for example, the immune system and blood clotting mechanisms.Attempts to establish an idea of the 'specified complexity' needed for intelligent design are surrounded by complex mathematics. Despite this, the idea seems to be essentially a modern version of the old idea of the 'God-of-the-gaps'. Lack of a satisfactory scientific explanation of some phenomena (a 'gap' in scientific knowledge) is claimed to be evidence of an intelligent designer., Detailed scientific examination has rebutted the claims that evolutionary explanations are inadequate, and this premise of intelligent design—that evidence against evolution constitutes evidence for design—is a false dichotomy.COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/4:Whether ID Is Science#4. Whether ID is Science|Whether ID Is Science, p. 64]].WEB,weblink A reducibly complex mousetrap, McDonald, John H., 2014-02-28,
  • WEB,weblink A Biochemist's Response to 'The Biochemical Challenge to Evolution', Ussery, David, December 1997, Book review, 2014-02-28, yes,weblink" title="">weblink March 4, 2014, Originally published in Bios (July 1998) 70:40–45. It is asserted that ID challenges the methodological naturalism inherent in modern scienceNEWS, Meyer, Stephen C., Stephen C. Meyer, December 1, 2005, Not by chance,weblink National Post, Don Mills, Ontario, Canwest, CanWest MediaWorks Publications Inc., 2014-02-28,weblink" title="">weblink May 1, 2006, MAGAZINE, Meyer, Stephen C., Nelson, Paul A., Paul Nelson (creationist), May 1, 1996, Getting Rid of the Unfair Rules,weblink Origins & Design, Book review, Colorado Springs, Colo., Access Research Network, 2007-05-20,
  • MAGAZINE, Johnson, Phillip E., Phillip E. Johnson, May–June 1996, Third-Party Science,weblink Christianity Today, Books & Culture, Book review, 2, 3, 2012-06-16, Johnson 1996b, The review is reprinted in full by weblink" title="">Access Research Network [archived February 10, 1999].
  • BOOK, Meyer, Stephen C., 2000, The Scientific Status of Intelligent Design: The Methodological Equivalence of Naturalistic and Non-Naturalistic Origins Theories, Science and Evidence for Design in the Universe: Papers Presented at a Conference Sponsored by the Wethersfield Institute, New York City, September 25, 1999,weblink Proceedings of the Wethersfield Institute, 9, San Francisco, Ignatius Press, 978-0-89870-809-7, 00102374, 45720008, 2014-12-01, Behe, Dembski & Meyer 2000,
  • COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005
, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/4:Whether ID Is Science#Page 66 of 139|Whether ID Is Science, p. 66]]
  • COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005
, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/4:Whether ID Is Science#Page 68 of 139|Whether ID Is Science, p. 68]]. Lead defense expert Professor Behe admitted that his broadened definition of science, which encompasses ID, would also include astrology.


Origin of the concept

{{See also|Creation science|Teleological argument|Watchmaker analogy}}In 1910, evolution was not a topic of major religious controversy in America, but in the 1920s, the Fundamentalist–Modernist Controversy in theology resulted in Fundamentalist Christian opposition to teaching evolution, and the origins of modern creationism. Teaching of evolution was effectively suspended in U.S. public schools until the 1960s, and when evolution was then reintroduced into the curriculum, there was a series of court cases in which attempts were made to get creationism taught alongside evolution in science classes. Young Earth creationists (YEC) promoted creation science as "an alternative scientific explanation of the world in which we live". This frequently invoked the argument from design to explain complexity in nature as demonstrating the existence of God.The argument from design, the teleological argument or "argument from intelligent design", has been advanced in theology for centuries.BOOK, Ayala, Francisco J., Francisco J. Ayala, 2007, Darwin's Gift to Science and Religion, Washington, D.C., Joseph Henry Press, 6, 15–16, 138, 978-0-309-10231-5, 2007005821, 83609838, Ayala 2007, Ayala writes that "Paley made the strongest possible case for intelligent design", and refers to "Intelligent Design: The Original Version" before discussing ID proponents reviving the argument from design with the pretence that it is scientific. It can be summarised briefly as "Wherever complex design exists, there must have been a designer; nature is complex; therefore nature must have had an intelligent designer." Thomas Aquinas presented it in his fifth proof of God's existence as a syllogism. In 1802, William Paley's Natural Theology presented examples of intricate purpose in organisms. His version of the watchmaker analogy argued that, in the same way that a watch has evidently been designed by a craftsman, complexity and adaptation seen in nature must have been designed, and the perfection and diversity of these designs shows the designer to be omnipotent, the Christian God.Pennock 1999, pp. 60, 68–70, 242–245
  • COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005
, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/2:Context#Page 24 of 139|Context, pp. 24–25]]. Like creation science, intelligent design centers on Paley's religious argument from design, but while Paley's natural theology was open to deistic design through God-given laws, intelligent design seeks scientific confirmation of repeated miraculous interventions in the history of life. Creation science prefigured the intelligent design arguments of irreducible complexity, even featuring the bacterial flagellum. In the United States, attempts to introduce creation science in schools led to court rulings that it is religious in nature, and thus cannot be taught in public school science classrooms. Intelligent design is also presented as science, and shares other arguments with creation science but avoids literal Biblical references to such things as the Flood story from the Book of Genesis or using Bible verses to age the Earth.Barbara Forrest writes that the intelligent design movement began in 1984 with the book The Mystery of Life's Origin: Reassessing Current Theories, co-written by creationist Charles B. Thaxton, a chemist, with two other authors, and published by Jon A. Buell's Foundation for Thought and Ethics.INTERVIEW, Forrest, Barbara C., Andrew Stephen, Know Your Creationists: Know Your Allies,weblink Daily Kos, Kos Media, LLC, Berkeley, Calif., March 11, 2006, 59226519, 2014-02-28, In March 1986, Stephen C. Meyer published a review of the book, discussing how information theory could suggest that messages transmitted by DNA in the cell show "specified complexity" specified by intelligence, and must have originated with an intelligent agent.MAGAZINE, Meyer, Stephen C., March 1986, We Are Not Alone,weblink Eternity, Philadelphia, Evangelical Foundation Inc., 0014-1682, 2007-10-10, He also argued that science is based upon "foundational assumptions" of naturalism which were as much a matter of faith as those of "creation theory".JOURNAL, Meyer, Stephen C., Scientific Tenets of Faith, The Journal of the American Scientific Affiliation 38, no. 1, March 1986,weblink 31 May 2019, In November of that year, Thaxton described his reasoning as a more sophisticated form of Paley's argument from design.CONFERENCE,weblink DNA, Design and the Origin of Life, Thaxton, Charles B., Charles Thaxton, November 13–16, 1986, Jesus Christ: God and Man,weblink" title="">weblink September 27, 2007, Dallas, 2012-06-16, At the "Sources of Information Content in DNA" conference which Thaxton held in 1988, he said that his intelligent cause view was compatible with both metaphysical naturalism and supernaturalism.Intelligent design avoids identifying or naming the intelligent designer—it merely states that one (or more) must exist—but leaders of the movement have said the designer is the Christian God.MAGAZINE, Dembski, William A., William A. Dembski, July–August 1999, Signs of Intelligence: A Primer on the Discernment of Intelligent Design,weblink Touchstone: A Journal of Mere Christianity, Chicago, Fellowship of St. James, 12, 4, 0897-327X, 2014-02-28, ...[I]ntelligent design is just the Logos theology of John's Gospel restated in the idiom of information theory., Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, (Wikisource:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/2:Context#Page 26 of 139|pages 26–27), "the writings of leading ID proponents reveal that the designer postulated by their argument is the God of Christianity." Examples include:
  • NEWS, Nickson, Elizabeth, Elizabeth Nickson, February 6, 2004, Let's Be Intelligent about Darwin,weblink National Post, Reprint, Toronto, Postmedia Network, 1486-8008, 2014-02-28, Our strategy has been to change the subject a bit, so that we can get the issue of intelligent design, which really means the reality of God, before the academic world and into the schools., yes,weblink" title="">weblink December 28, 2013, — Phillip E. Johnson (2003)
  • MAGAZINE, Grelen, Jay, November 30, 1996, Witnesses for the prosecution,weblink World, Asheville, N.C., God's World Publications, 11, 28, 18, 0888-157X, 2014-02-16, This isn't really, and never has been, a debate about science. It's about religion and philosophy.,
  • Johnson 2002, "So the question is: 'How to win?' That's when I began to develop what you now see full-fledged in the 'wedge' strategy: 'Stick with the most important thing'—the mechanism and the building up of information. Get the Bible and the Book of Genesis out of the debate because you do not want to raise the so-called Bible-science dichotomy. Phrase the argument in such a way that you can get it heard in the secular academy and in a way that tends to unify the religious dissenters. That means concentrating on, 'Do you need a Creator to do the creating, or can nature do it on its own?' and refusing to get sidetracked onto other issues, which people are always trying to do."EPISODE, Doubting Darwin: The Marketing of Intelligent Design,weblink 2014-02-28, Nightline, Koppel, Ted, Ted Koppel, American Broadcasting Company, New York, August 10, 2005, I think the designer is God ..., — Stephen C. Meyer
  • Pearcey 2004, pp. 204–205, "By contrast, design theory demonstrates that Christians can sit in the supernaturalist's 'chair' even in their professional lives, seeing the cosmos through the lens of a comprehensive biblical worldview. Intelligent Design steps boldly into the scientific arena to build a case based on empirical data. It takes Christianity out of the ineffectual realm of value and stakes out a cognitive claim in the realm of objective truth. It restores Christianity to its status as genuine knowledge, equipping us to defend it in the public arena." Whether this lack of specificity about the designer's identity in public discussions is a genuine feature of the concept, or just a posture taken to avoid alienating those who would separate religion from the teaching of science, has been a matter of great debate between supporters and critics of intelligent design. The Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District court ruling held the latter to be the case.

Origin of the term

{{See also|Timeline of intelligent design}}Since the Middle Ages, discussion of the religious "argument from design" or "teleological argument" in theology, with its concept of "intelligent design", has persistently referred to the theistic Creator God. Although ID proponents chose this provocative label for their proposed alternative to evolutionary explanations, they have de-emphasized their religious antecedents and denied that ID is natural theology, while still presenting ID as supporting the argument for the existence of God.WEB,weblink Report of John F. Haught, Ph. D, Haught, John F., John F. Haught, April 1, 2005, 2013-08-29, Haught's expert report in Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District.NEWS, Dao, James, December 25, 2005, 2005: In a Word; Intelligent Design,weblink The New York Times, 2013-08-23, Dao states that the Discovery Institute said the phrase may have first been used by F. C. S. Schiller: his essay "Darwinism and Design", published in The Contemporary Review for June 1897, evaluated objections to the teleological argument raised by natural selection, and said " will not be possible to rule out the supposition that the process of Evolution may be guided by an intelligent design." pp. 128, 141 {{webarchive |url= |date=October 29, 2013 }}While intelligent design proponents have pointed out past examples of the phrase intelligent design that they said were not creationist and faith-based, they have failed to show that these usages had any influence on those who introduced the label in the intelligent design movement.WEB,weblink The true origin of 'intelligent design', Matzke, Nick, August 14, 2007, The Panda's Thumb (blog), The Panda's Thumb, The TalkOrigins Foundation, Inc., Houston, Blog, 2012-07-03, Matzke gives as examples the August 21, 1847, issue of Scientific American, and an 1861 letter in which Charles Darwin uses "intelligent Design" to denote John Herschel's view that the overlapping changes of species found in geology had needed "intelligent direction": Variations on the phrase appeared in Young Earth creationist publications: a 1967 book co-written by Percival Davis referred to "design according to which basic organisms were created". In 1970, A. E. Wilder-Smith published The Creation of Life: A Cybernetic Approach to Evolution which defended Paley's design argument with computer calculations of the improbability of genetic sequences, which he said could not be explained by evolution but required "the abhorred necessity of divine intelligent activity behind nature", and that "the same problem would be expected to beset the relationship between the designer behind nature and the intelligently designed part of nature known as man." In a 1984 article as well as in his affidavit to Edwards v. Aguillard, Dean H. Kenyon defended creation science by stating that "biomolecular systems require intelligent design and engineering know-how", citing Wilder-Smith. Creationist Richard B. Bliss used the phrase "creative design" in Origins: Two Models: Evolution, Creation (1976), and in Origins: Creation or Evolution (1988) wrote that "while evolutionists are trying to find non-intelligent ways for life to occur, the creationist insists that an intelligent design must have been there in the first place."WEB,weblink Expert Witness Report, Forrest, Barbara, April 1, 2005, 2013-05-30, Forrest's expert report in Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District.WEB,weblink Enterprising Science Needs Naturalism, Elsberry, Wesley R., Wesley R. Elsberry, December 5, 1996, Talk Reason, 2013-08-23, The first systematic use of the term, defined in a glossary and claimed to be other than creationism, was in Of Pandas and People, co-authored by Davis and Kenyon.

Of Pandas and People

(File:Pandas text analysis.png|thumb|left|upright=1.5|Use of the terms "creationism" versus "intelligent design" in sequential drafts of the book Of Pandas and People.)The most common modern use of the words "intelligent design" as a term intended to describe a field of inquiry began after the United States Supreme Court ruled in June 1987 in the case of Edwards v. Aguillard that it is unconstitutional for a state to require the teaching of creationism in public school science curricula.A Discovery Institute report says that Charles B. Thaxton, editor of Pandas, had picked the phrase up from a NASA scientist, and thought, "That's just what I need, it's a good engineering term."WEB,weblink Dover Judge Regurgitates Mythological History of Intelligent Design, Witt, Jonathan, December 20, 2005, Evolution News & Views, Discovery Institute, Seattle, 2012-06-16, In two successive 1987 drafts of the book, over one hundred uses of the root word "creation", such as "creationism" and "Creation Science", were changed, almost without exception, to "intelligent design", while "creationists" was changed to "design proponents" or, in one instance, "cdesign proponentsists"{{sic}}.JOURNAL, Matzke, Nick, Nick Matzke, January–April 2006, Design on Trial: How NCSE Helped Win the Kitzmiller Case,weblink Reports of the National Center for Science Education, 26, 1–2, 37–44, 2158-818X, 2009-11-18, Matzke 2006a,
  • WEB,weblink Missing Link discovered!, Matzke, Nick, November 7, 2005, Evolution Education and the Law, National Center for Science Education, Berkeley, Calif., Blog,weblink" title="">weblink January 14, 2007, 2009-11-18, In June 1988, Thaxton held a conference titled "Sources of Information Content in DNA" in Tacoma, Washington.CONFERENCE,weblink In Pursuit of Intelligent Causes: Some Historical Background, Thaxton, Charles B., June 24–26, 1988, Sources of Information Content in DNA, Tacoma, Wash., 31054528, 2007-10-06, Revised July 30, 1988, and May 6, 1991. Stephen C. Meyer was at the conference, and later recalled that "The term intelligent design came up..."NEWS, Safire, William, William Safire, August 21, 2005, Neo-Creo,weblink The New York Times, 2012-06-16, In December 1988 Thaxton decided to use the label "intelligent design" for his new creationist movement.
Of Pandas and People was published in 1989, and in addition to including all the current arguments for ID, was the first book to make systematic use of the terms "intelligent design" and "design proponents" as well as the phrase "design theory", defining the term intelligent design in a glossary and representing it as not being creationism. It thus represents the start of the modern intelligent design movement.WEB,weblink Critique: 'Of Pandas and People', Matzke, Nick, November 23, 2004, National Center for Science Education, National Center for Science Education, Berkeley, Calif., Blog, 2007-09-24, "Intelligent design" was the most prominent of around fifteen new terms it introduced as a new lexicon of creationist terminology to oppose evolution without using religious language.WEB,weblink A Reader's Guide to Of Pandas and People, Aulie, Richard P., Richard P. Aulie, 1998, National Association of Biology Teachers, McLean, Va., 2007-10-05, yes,weblink" title="">weblink March 6, 2014, It was the first place where the phrase "intelligent design" appeared in its primary present use, as stated both by its publisher Jon A. Buell,JOURNAL, Scott, Eugenie C., Eugenie Scott, Matzke, Nicholas J., Nick Matzke, May 15, 2007, Biological design in science classrooms, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 104, Suppl 1, 8669–8676, 2007PNAS..104.8669S, 10.1073/pnas.0701505104, 1876445, 17494747, abstractWEB,weblink I guess ID really was 'Creationism's Trojan Horse' after all, Matzke, Nick, October 13, 2005, The Panda's Thumb, The TalkOrigins Foundation, Inc., Houston, Blog, 2009-06-02, yes,weblink" title="">weblink June 24, 2008, and by William A. Dembski in his expert witness report for Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District.WEB, Dembski, William A.,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink yes, September 30, 2005, Expert Witness Report: The Scientific Status of Intelligent Design, March 29, 2005, 2009-06-02, Dembski's expert report in Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District.The National Center for Science Education (NCSE) has criticized the book for presenting all of the basic arguments of intelligent design proponents and being actively promoted for use in public schools before any research had been done to support these arguments. Although presented as a scientific textbook, philosopher of science Michael Ruse considers the contents "worthless and dishonest".Ruse 1992, p. 41 An American Civil Liberties Union lawyer described it as a political tool aimed at students who did not "know science or understand the controversy over evolution and creationism". One of the authors of the science framework used by California schools, Kevin Padian, condemned it for its "sub-text", "intolerance for honest science" and "incompetence".MAGAZINE, Lynn, Leon, Winter 1997–1998, Creationists Push Pseudo-Science Text,weblink Rethinking Schools, Milwaukee, Rethinking Schools, Ltd., 12, 2, 0895-6855, 2009-02-08,


Irreducible complexity

missing image!
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thumbnail|The concept of irreducible complexity was popularised by Michael Behe in his 1996 book, Darwin's Black Box.
The term "irreducible complexity" was introduced by biochemist Michael Behe in his 1996 book Darwin's Black Box, though he had already described the concept in his contributions to the 1993 revised edition of Of Pandas and People. Behe defines it as "a single system which is composed of several well-matched interacting parts that contribute to the basic function, wherein the removal of any one of the parts causes the system to effectively cease functioning".WEB,weblink Molecular Machines: Experimental Support for the Design Inference, Behe, Michael, Michael Behe, 1997,, The Apologetics Group;Trinity College (Florida), Trinity College of Florida, Trinity, Fla., 2014-02-28, yes,weblink" title="">weblink August 1, 2012, "This paper was originally presented in the Summer of 1994 at the meeting of the C.S. Lewis Society, Cambridge University."Behe uses the analogy of a mousetrap to illustrate this concept. A mousetrap consists of several interacting pieces—the base, the catch, the spring and the hammer—all of which must be in place for the mousetrap to work. Removal of any one piece destroys the function of the mousetrap. Intelligent design advocates assert that natural selection could not create irreducibly complex systems, because the selectable function is present only when all parts are assembled. Behe argued that irreducibly complex biological mechanisms include the bacterial flagellum of E. coli, the blood clotting cascade, cilia, and the adaptive immune system.Irreducible complexity of these examples is disputed; see COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/4:Whether ID Is Science#Page 76 of 139|Whether ID Is Science, pp. 76–78]], and Kenneth R. Miller's January 3, 2006, lecture at Case Western Reserve University's Strosacker Auditorium, {{YouTube|id=Ohd5uqzlwsU|title="The Collapse of Intelligent Design: Will the Next Monkey Trial be in Ohio?"}}.WEB,weblink The Flagellum Unspun: The Collapse of 'Irreducible Complexity', Miller, Kenneth R., Biology by Miller & Levine, Miller and Levine Biology, Rehoboth, Mass., 2014-02-28, "This is a pre-publication copy of an article that appeared in 'Debating Design from Darwin to DNA,' edited by Michael Ruse and William Dembski."Critics point out that the irreducible complexity argument assumes that the necessary parts of a system have always been necessary and therefore could not have been added sequentially. They argue that something that is at first merely advantageous can later become necessary as other components change. Furthermore, they argue, evolution often proceeds by altering preexisting parts or by removing them from a system, rather than by adding them. This is sometimes called the "scaffolding objection" by an analogy with scaffolding, which can support an "irreducibly complex" building until it is complete and able to stand on its own.JOURNAL, Bridgham, Jamie T., Carroll, Sean M., Thornton, Joseph W., Joseph Thornton (biologist), April 7, 2006, Evolution of Hormone-Receptor Complexity by Molecular Exploitation,weblink Science (journal), Science, 312, 5770, 97–101, 2006Sci...312...97B, 10.1126/science.1123348, 16601189, 2014-02-28, Bridgham, et al., showed that gradual evolutionary mechanisms can produce complex protein-protein interaction systems from simpler precursors.Behe has acknowledged using "sloppy prose", and that his "argument against Darwinism does not add up to a logical proof."Orr 2005. This article draws from the following exchange of letters in which Behe admits to sloppy prose and non-logical proof:
  • WEB,weblink Has Darwin Met His Match? - Letters: An Exchange Over ID, Behe, Michael, Michael Behe, Dembski, William A., Wells, Jonathan, Jonathan Wells (intelligent design advocate), Nelson, Paul A., Paul Nelson (creationist), Berlinski, David, David Berlinski, March 26, 2003, Center for Science and Culture, Discovery Institute, Seattle, Reprint, 2014-02-28, Irreducible complexity has remained a popular argument among advocates of intelligent design; in the Dover trial, the court held that "Professor Behe's claim for irreducible complexity has been refuted in peer-reviewed research papers and has been rejected by the scientific community at large."

Specified complexity

In 1986, Charles B. Thaxton, a physical chemist and creationist, used the term "specified complexity" from information theory when claiming that messages transmitted by DNA in the cell were specified by intelligence, and must have originated with an intelligent agent.The intelligent design concept of "specified complexity" was developed in the 1990s by mathematician, philosopher, and theologian William A. Dembski.NEWS, Wallis, Claudia, August 7, 2005, The Evolution Wars,weblink Time (magazine), Time, New York, Time Inc., 2011-10-22, Dembski states that when something exhibits specified complexity (i.e., is both complex and "specified", simultaneously), one can infer that it was produced by an intelligent cause (i.e., that it was designed) rather than being the result of natural processes. He provides the following examples: "A single letter of the alphabet is specified without being complex. A long sentence of random letters is complex without being specified. A Shakespearean sonnet is both complex and specified."Dembski 1999, p. 47 He states that details of living things can be similarly characterized, especially the "patterns" of molecular sequences in functional biological molecules such as DNA.
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thumbnail|upright|William A. Dembski
proposed the concept of specified complexity.Photograph of William A. Dembski taken at lecture given at alt=Dembski defines complex specified information (CSI) as anything with a less than 1 in 10150 chance of occurring by (natural) chance. Critics say that this renders the argument a tautology: complex specified information cannot occur naturally because Dembski has defined it thus, so the real question becomes whether or not CSI actually exists in nature.JOURNAL, Fitelson, Branden, Stephens, Christopher, Sober, Elliott, Elliott Sober, September 1999, How Not to Detect Design,weblink PDF, Philosophy of Science (journal), Philosophy of Science, Book review, 66, 3, 472–488, 0031-8248, 188598, 2014-02-28, 10.1086/392699, WEB,weblink Another Way to Detect Design?, Dembski, William A., William A. Dembski, 2001, Metanexus, Metanexus Institute, New York, 2012-06-16, This is a "three part lecture series entitled 'Another Way to Detect Design' which contains William Dembski's response to Fitelson, Stephens, and Sober whose article 'How Not to Detect Design' ran on Metanexus:Views (2001.09.14, 2001.09.21, and 2001.09.28). These lectures were first made available online at Metanexus: The Online Forum on Religion and Scienceweblink This is from three keynote lectures delivered October 5–6, 2001 at the Society of Christian Philosopher's meeting at the University of Colorado, Boulder."WEB,weblink Not a Free Lunch But a Box of Chocolates: A critique of William Dembski's book No Free Lunch, Wein, Richard, 2002, TalkOrigins Archive, The TalkOrigins Foundation, Inc., Houston, 2012-06-16, The conceptual soundness of Dembski's specified complexity/CSI argument has been discredited in the scientific and mathematical communities.WEB, Baldwin, Rich,weblink Information Theory and Creationism: William Dembski, July 14, 2005, TalkOrigins Archive, The TalkOrigins Foundation, Inc., Houston, 2012-06-16,
  • JOURNAL, Rosenhouse, Jason, Jason Rosenhouse, Fall 2001, How Anti-Evolutionists Abuse Mathematics,weblink The Mathematical Intelligencer, 23, 4, 3–8, 10.1007/bf03024593, 3526661, 2012-06-16, WEB,weblink Dembski 'displaces Darwinism' mathematically – or does he?, Perakh, Mark, Mark Perakh, March 18, 2005, Talk Reason, 2012-06-16, Specified complexity has yet to be shown to have wide applications in other fields, as Dembski asserts. John Wilkins and Wesley R. Elsberry characterize Dembski's "explanatory filter" as eliminative because it eliminates explanations sequentially: first regularity, then chance, finally defaulting to design. They argue that this procedure is flawed as a model for scientific inference because the asymmetric way it treats the different possible explanations renders it prone to making false conclusions.JOURNAL, Wilkins, John S., Elsberry, Wesley R., November 2001, The Advantages of Theft over Toil: The Design Inference and Arguing from Ignorance,weblink Biology and Philosophy, 16, 5, 709–722, 10.1023/A:1012282323054, 0169-3867, 2014-02-28,
Richard Dawkins, another critic of intelligent design, argues in The God Delusion (2006) that allowing for an intelligent designer to account for unlikely complexity only postpones the problem, as such a designer would need to be at least as complex.Dawkins 2006 Other scientists have argued that evolution through selection is better able to explain the observed complexity, as is evident from the use of selective evolution to design certain electronic, aeronautic and automotive systems that are considered problems too complex for human "intelligent designers".JOURNAL, Marks, Paul, July 28, 2007, Evolutionary algorithms now surpass human designers,weblink New Scientist, 2614, 26–27, 0262-4079, 2014-02-28,

Fine-tuned Universe

Intelligent design proponents have also occasionally appealed to broader teleological arguments outside of biology, most notably an argument based on the fine-tuning of universal constants that make matter and life possible and which are argued not to be solely attributable to chance. These include the values of fundamental physical constants, the relative strength of nuclear forces, electromagnetism, and gravity between fundamental particles, as well as the ratios of masses of such particles. Intelligent design proponent and Center for Science and Culture fellow Guillermo Gonzalez argues that if any of these values were even slightly different, the universe would be dramatically different, making it impossible for many chemical elements and features of the Universe, such as galaxies, to form.Gonzalez 2004 Thus, proponents argue, an intelligent designer of life was needed to ensure that the requisite features were present to achieve that particular outcome.Scientists have generally responded that these arguments are poorly supported by existing evidence.Stenger 2011, p. 243Susskind 2005 Victor J. Stenger and other critics say both intelligent design and the weak form of the anthropic principle are essentially a tautology; in his view, these arguments amount to the claim that life is able to exist because the Universe is able to support life.WEB,weblink Is The Universe Fine-Tuned For Us?, Stenger, Victor J, Victor J. Stenger, Victor J. Stenger, University of Colorado, Boulder, Colo., 2014-02-28, yes,weblink" title="">weblink July 16, 2012, WEB,weblink The Anthropic Principle, Stenger, Victor J, Victor J. Stenger, Victor J. Stenger, University of Colorado, Boulder, Colo., 2012-06-16, yes,weblink" title="">weblink June 17, 2012, JOURNAL, Silk, Joseph, Joseph Silk, September 14, 2006, Our place in the Multiverse,weblink Nature (journal), Nature, 443, 7108, 145–146, 2006Natur.443..145S, 10.1038/443145a, 0028-0836, 2014-02-28, The claim of the improbability of a life-supporting universe has also been criticized as an argument by lack of imagination for assuming no other forms of life are possible. Life as we know it might not exist if things were different, but a different sort of life might exist in its place. A number of critics also suggest that many of the stated variables appear to be interconnected and that calculations made by mathematicians and physicists suggest that the emergence of a universe similar to ours is quite probable.Feinberg & Shapiro 1993, "A Puddlian Fable", pp. 220–221

Intelligent designer

The contemporary intelligent design movement formulates its arguments in secular terms and intentionally avoids identifying the intelligent agent (or agents) they posit. Although they do not state that God is the designer, the designer is often implicitly hypothesized to have intervened in a way that only a god could intervene. Dembski, in The Design Inference (1998), speculates that an alien culture could fulfill these requirements. Of Pandas and People proposes that SETI illustrates an appeal to intelligent design in science. In 2000, philosopher of science Robert T. Pennock suggested the Raëlian UFO religion as a real-life example of an extraterrestrial intelligent designer view that "make[s] many of the same bad arguments against evolutionary theory as creationists".Pennock 1999, pp. 229–229, 233–242 The authoritative description of intelligent design, however, explicitly states that the Universe displays features of having been designed. Acknowledging the paradox, Dembski concludes that "no intelligent agent who is strictly physical could have presided over the origin of the universe or the origin of life."WEB,weblink The Act of Creation: Bridging Transcendence and Immanence, Dembski, William A., August 10, 1998, Center for Science and Culture, Discovery Institute, Seattle, 2014-02-28, "Presented at Millstatt Forum, Strasbourg, France, 10 August 1998." The leading proponents have made statements to their supporters that they believe the designer to be the Christian God, to the exclusion of all other religions.Beyond the debate over whether intelligent design is scientific, a number of critics argue that existing evidence makes the design hypothesis appear unlikely, irrespective of its status in the world of science. For example, Jerry Coyne asks why a designer would "give us a pathway for making vitamin C, but then destroy it by disabling one of its enzymes" (see pseudogene) and why a designer would not "stock oceanic islands with reptiles, mammals, amphibians, and freshwater fish, despite the suitability of such islands for these species". Coyne also points to the fact that "the flora and fauna on those islands resemble that of the nearest mainland, even when the environments are very different" as evidence that species were not placed there by a designer.MAGAZINE, Coyne, Jerry, Jerry Coyne, August 22, 2005, The Case Against Intelligent Design: The Faith That Dare Not Speak Its Name,weblink The New Republic, 2014-02-28, Previously, in Darwin's Black Box, Behe had argued that we are simply incapable of understanding the designer's motives, so such questions cannot be answered definitively. Odd designs could, for example, "...have been placed there by the designer for a reason—for artistic reasons, for variety, to show off, for some as-yet-undetected practical purpose, or for some unguessable reason—or they might not."Behe 1996, p. 221 Coyne responds that in light of the evidence, "either life resulted not from intelligent design, but from evolution; or the intelligent designer is a cosmic prankster who designed everything to make it look as though it had evolved."Intelligent design proponents such as Paul Nelson avoid the problem of poor design in nature by insisting that we have simply failed to understand the perfection of the design. Behe cites Paley as his inspiration, but he differs from Paley's expectation of a perfect Creation and proposes that designers do not necessarily produce the best design they can. Behe suggests that, like a parent not wanting to spoil a child with extravagant toys, the designer can have multiple motives for not giving priority to excellence in engineering. He says that "Another problem with the argument from imperfection is that it critically depends on a psychoanalysis of the unidentified designer. Yet the reasons that a designer would or would not do anything are virtually impossible to know unless the designer tells you specifically what those reasons are." This reliance on inexplicable motives of the designer makes intelligent design scientifically untestable. Retired UC Berkeley law professor, author and intelligent design advocate Phillip E. Johnson puts forward a core definition that the designer creates for a purpose, giving the example that in his view AIDS was created to punish immorality and is not caused by HIV, but such motives cannot be tested by scientific methods.Pennock 1999, pp. 245–249, 265, 296–300Asserting the need for a designer of complexity also raises the question "What designed the designer?"WEB,weblink Intelligent Design: The Glass is Empty, Simanek, Donald E., February 2006, Donald Simanek's Pages, Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania, Lock Haven, PA, 2012-06-16, yes,weblink" title="">weblink 2012-07-14, Intelligent design proponents say that the question is irrelevant to or outside the scope of intelligent design.WEB,weblink FAQ: Who designed the designer?, Intelligent Design and Evolution Awareness Center, Casey Luskin; IDEA Center, Seattle, Short answer, 2014-02-28, One need not fully understand the origin or identity of the designer to determine that an object was designed. Thus, this question is essentially irrelevant to intelligent design theory, which merely seeks to detect if an object was designed.... Intelligent design theory cannot address the identity or origin of the designer—it is a philosophical / religious question that lies outside the domain of scientific inquiry. Christianity postulates the religious answer to this question that the designer is God who by definition is eternally existent and has no origin. There is no logical philosophical impossibility with this being the case (akin to Aristotle's 'unmoved mover') as a religious answer to the origin of the designer., Richard Wein counters that "...scientific explanations often create new unanswered questions. But, in assessing the value of an explanation, these questions are not irrelevant. They must be balanced against the improvements in our understanding which the explanation provides. Invoking an unexplained being to explain the origin of other beings (ourselves) is little more than question-begging. The new question raised by the explanation is as problematic as the question which the explanation purports to answer." Richard Dawkins sees the assertion that the designer does not need to be explained as a thought-terminating cliché.WEB,weblink Who Designed the Designer?, Rosenhouse, Jason, November 3, 2006, Committee for Skeptical Inquiry, Intelligent Design Watch, Amherst, N.Y., Center for Inquiry, 2014-02-28, Dawkins 1986, p. 141 In the absence of observable, measurable evidence, the very question "What designed the designer?" leads to an infinite regression from which intelligent design proponents can only escape by resorting to religious creationism or logical contradiction.See for example WEB,weblink Intelligent design is pseudoscience, Manson, Joseph, September 27, 2005, UCLA Today, 2014-05-14,weblink" title="">weblink May 15, 2014, yes,


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The Discovery Institute's Center for the Renewal of Science and Culture used banners based on The Creation of Adam from the Sistine Chapel. Later it used a less religious image, then was renamed the Center for Science and Culture.WEB,weblink Evolving Banners at the Discovery Institute, August 28, 2002, National Center for Science Education, National Center for Science Education, Berkeley, Calif., 2007-10-07,
The intelligent design movement is a direct outgrowth of the creationism of the 1980s. The scientific and academic communities, along with a U.S. federal court, view intelligent design as either a form of creationism or as a direct descendant that is closely intertwined with traditional creationism;JOURNAL, Mu, David, Fall 2005, Trojan Horse or Legitimate Science: Deconstructing the Debate over Intelligent Design,weblink Harvard College#Publications and media, Harvard Science Review, 19, 1, 22–25, 2014-02-28, Mu 2005, ...for most members of the mainstream scientific community, ID is not a scientific theory, but a creationist pseudoscience., COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/6:Curriculum, Conclusion#Page 136 of 139|Curriculum, Conclusion, p. 136]].JOURNAL, Wise, Donald U., January 2001, Creationism's Propaganda Assault on Deep Time and Evolution,weblink Journal of Geoscience Education, 49, 1, 30–35, 1089-9995, 2014-02-28, 2001JGeEd..49...30W, 10.5408/1089-9995-49.1.30, JOURNAL, Ross, Marcus R., Marcus R. Ross, May 2005, Who Believes What? Clearing up Confusion over Intelligent Design and Young-Earth Creationism,weblink Journal of Geoscience Education, 53, 3, 319–323, 1089-9995, 2012-06-16, 2005JGeEd..53..319R, 10.5408/1089-9995-53.3.319,, Numbers 2006 and several authors explicitly refer to it as "intelligent design creationism".Forrest & Gross 2004Pennock 2001, "Wizards of ID: Reply to Dembski", pp. 645–667, "Dembski chides me for never using the term 'intelligent design' without conjoining it to 'creationism'. He implies (though never explicitly asserts) that he and others in his movement are not creationists and that it is incorrect to discuss them in such terms, suggesting that doing so is merely a rhetorical ploy to 'rally the troops'. (2) Am I (and the many others who see Dembski's movement in the same way) misrepresenting their position? The basic notion of creationism is the rejection of biological evolution in favor of special creation, where the latter is understood to be supernatural. Beyond this there is considerable variability..."Pennock 1999JOURNAL, Scott, Eugenie C., Eugenie Scott, July–August 1999, The Creation/Evolution Continuum,weblink Reports of the National Center for Science Education, 19, 4, 16–17, 23–25, 2014-02-28, The movement is headquartered in the Center for Science and Culture, established in 1996 as the creationist wing of the Discovery Institute to promote a religious agendaWEB,weblink The Wedge, 1999, Center for Science and Culture, Center for the Renewal of Science and Culture, Seattle, The social consequences of materialism have been devastating. As symptoms, those consequences are certainly worth treating. However, we are convinced that in order to defeat materialism, we must cut it off at its source. That source is scientific materialism. This is precisely our strategy. If we view the predominant materialistic science as a giant tree, our strategy is intended to function as a 'wedge' that, while relatively small, can split the trunk when applied at its weakest points. The very beginning of this strategy, the 'thin edge of the wedge,' was Phillip Johnson's critique of Darwinism begun in 1991 in Darwinism on Trial, and continued in Reason in the Balance and Defeating Darwinism by Opening Minds. Michael Behe's highly successful Darwin's Black Box followed Johnson's work. We are building on this momentum, broadening the wedge with a positive scientific alternative to materialistic scientific theories, which has come to be called the theory of intelligent design (ID). Design theory promises to reverse the stifling dominance of the materialist worldview, and to replace it with a science consonant with Christian and theistic convictions., 2014-05-31, calling for broad social, academic and political changes. The Discovery Institute's intelligent design campaigns have been staged primarily in the United States, although efforts have been made in other countries to promote intelligent design. Leaders of the movement say intelligent design exposes the limitations of scientific orthodoxy and of the secular philosophy of naturalism. Intelligent design proponents allege that science should not be limited to naturalism and should not demand the adoption of a naturalistic philosophy that dismisses out-of-hand any explanation that includes a supernatural cause. The overall goal of the movement is to "reverse the stifling dominance of the materialist worldview" represented by the theory of evolution in favor of "a science consonant with Christian and theistic convictions".Phillip E. Johnson stated that the goal of intelligent design is to cast creationism as a scientific concept.WEB,weblink How The Evolution Debate Can Be Won, Johnson, Phillip E, Phillip E. Johnson, D. James Kennedy, Coral Ridge Ministries,weblink" title="">weblink Coral Ridge Ministries, Fort Lauderdale, Fla., November 7, 2007, 2014-02-28, I have built an intellectual movement in the universities and churches that we call The Wedge, which is devoted to scholarship and writing that furthers this program of questioning the materialistic basis of science. [...] Now the way that I see the logic of our movement going is like this. The first thing you understand is that the Darwinian theory isn't true. It's falsified by all of the evidence and the logic is terrible. When you realize that, the next question that occurs to you is, well, where might you get the truth? [...] I start with John 1:1. In the beginning was the word. In the beginning was intelligence, purpose, and wisdom. The Bible had that right. And the materialist scientists are deluding themselves., — Johnson, "Reclaiming America for Christ Conference" (1999) All leading intelligent design proponents are fellows or staff of the Discovery Institute and its Center for Science and Culture.WEB,weblink Fellows - Center for Science and Culture, Center for Science and Culture, Discovery Institute, Seattle, 2018-07-15, Nearly all intelligent design concepts and the associated movement are the products of the Discovery Institute, which guides the movement and follows its wedge strategy while conducting its "Teach the Controversy" campaign and their other related programs.Leading intelligent design proponents have made conflicting statements regarding intelligent design. In statements directed at the general public, they say intelligent design is not religious; when addressing conservative Christian supporters, they state that intelligent design has its foundation in the Bible. Recognizing the need for support, the Institute affirms its Christian, evangelistic orientation:{{quotation|Alongside a focus on influential opinion-makers, we also seek to build up a popular base of support among our natural constituency, namely, Christians. We will do this primarily through apologetics seminars. We intend these to encourage and equip believers with new scientific evidences that support the faith, as well as to "popularize" our ideas in the broader culture.}}Barbara Forrest, an expert who has written extensively on the movement, describes this as being due to the Discovery Institute's obfuscating its agenda as a matter of policy. She has written that the movement's "activities betray an aggressive, systematic agenda for promoting not only intelligent design creationism, but the religious worldview that undergirds it."Forrest 2001, WEB,weblink The Wedge at Work: How Intelligent Design Creationism Is Wedging Its Way into the Cultural and Academic Mainstream,weblink" title="">weblink September 5, 2014,

Religion and leading proponents

Although arguments for intelligent design by the intelligent design movement are formulated in secular terms and intentionally avoid positing the identity of the designer,WEB,weblink Does intelligent design postulate a "supernatural creator?, Discovery Institute, Discovery Institute, Seattle, Truth Sheet # 09-05, 2007-07-19, ...intelligent design does not address metaphysical and religious questions such as the nature or identity of the designer. [...] '...the nature, moral character and purposes of this intelligence lie beyond the competence of science and must be left to religion and philosophy.', the majority of principal intelligent design advocates are publicly religious Christians who have stated that, in their view, the designer proposed in intelligent design is the Christian conception of God. Stuart Burgess, Phillip E. Johnson, William A. Dembski, and Stephen C. Meyer are evangelical Protestants; Michael Behe is a Roman Catholic; Paul Nelson supports young Earth creationism; and Jonathan Wells is a member of the Unification Church. Non-Christian proponents include David Klinghoffer, who is Jewish,WEB,weblink Judaism & Intelligent Design, Kippley-Ogman, Emma,, MyJewishLearning, Inc., New York, 2010-11-13, But there are also Jewish voices in the intelligent design camp. David Klinghoffer, a Discovery Institute fellow, is an ardent advocate of intelligent design. In an article in The Forward (August 12, 2005), he claimed that Jewish thinkers have largely ignored intelligent design and contended that Jews, along with Christians, should adopt the theory because beliefs in God and in natural selection are fundamentally opposed., yes,weblink" title="">weblink March 6, 2014, Michael Denton and David Berlinski, who are agnostic,Meyer 2009, "Michael Denton, an agnostic, argues for intelligent design in Evolution: A Theory in Crisis, 326–43."Frame 2009, p. 291, "In contrast to the other would-be pioneers of Intelligent Design, Denton describes himself as an agnostic, and his book was released by a secular publishing house."WEB,weblink CSC - Frequently Asked Questions: General Questions: Is Discovery Institute a religious organization?, Center for Science and Culture, Discovery Institute, Seattle, 2018-07-15, Discovery Institute is a secular think tank, and its Board members and Fellows represent a variety of religious traditions, including mainline Protestant, Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Jewish, and agnostic. Until recently the Chairman of Discovery's Board of Directors was former Congressman John Miller, who is Jewish. Although it is not a religious organization, the Institute has a long record of supporting religious liberty and the legitimate role of faith-based institutions in a pluralistic society. In fact, it sponsored a program for several years for college students to teach them the importance of religious liberty and the separation of church and state., and Muzaffar Iqbal, a Pakistani-Canadian Muslim.Edis 2004, "Grand Themes, Narrow Constituency", p. 12: "Among Muslims involved with ID, the most notable is Muzaffar Iqbal, a fellow of the International Society for Complexity, Information, and Design, a leading ID organization."Shanks 2004, p. 11: "Muzaffar Iqbal, president of the Center for Islam and Science, has recently endorsed work by intelligent design theorist William Dembski." Phillip E. Johnson has stated that cultivating ambiguity by employing secular language in arguments that are carefully crafted to avoid overtones of theistic creationism is a necessary first step for ultimately reintroducing the Christian concept of God as the designer. Johnson explicitly calls for intelligent design proponents to obfuscate their religious motivations so as to avoid having intelligent design identified "as just another way of packaging the Christian evangelical message."MAGAZINE, Johnson, Phillip E., April 1999, Keeping the Darwinists Honest,weblink Citizen, Colorado Springs, Colo., Focus on the Family, 1084-6832, 2014-02-28, ID is an intellectual movement, and the Wedge strategy stops working when we are seen as just another way of packaging the Christian evangelical message. [...] The evangelists do what they do very well, and I hope our work opens up for them some doors that have been closed., Johnson emphasizes that "...the first thing that has to be done is to get the Bible out of the discussion. ...This is not to say that the biblical issues are unimportant; the point is rather that the time to address them will be after we have separated materialist prejudice from scientific fact."MAGAZINE, Johnson, Phillip E., July–August 1999, The Wedge: Breaking the Modernist Monopoly on Science,weblink Touchstone: A Journal of Mere Christianity, Chicago, Fellowship of St. James, 12, 4, 0897-327X, 2014-02-28, The strategy of deliberately disguising the religious intent of intelligent design has been described by William A. Dembski in The Design Inference.Dembski 1998 In this work, Dembski lists a god or an "alien life force" as two possible options for the identity of the designer; however, in his book (Intelligent Design (book)|Intelligent Design: The Bridge Between Science and Theology) (1999), Dembski states:{{quotation|Christ is indispensable to any scientific theory, even if its practitioners don't have a clue about him. The pragmatics of a scientific theory can, to be sure, be pursued without recourse to Christ. But the conceptual soundness of the theory can in the end only be located in Christ.Dembski 1999, p. 210}}Dembski also stated, "ID is part of God's general revelation [...] Not only does intelligent design rid us of this ideology {{Square bracket open|1}} materialism {{Square bracket close|1}}, which suffocates the human spirit, but, in my personal experience, I've found that it opens the path for people to come to Christ."WEB,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink yes, July 29, 2012, Intelligent Design's Contribution to the Debate Over Evolution: A Reply to Henry Morris, Dembski, William, February 1, 2005,, William Dembski, Pella, Iowa, 2014-02-28, Both Johnson and Dembski cite the Bible's Gospel of John as the foundation of intelligent design.Barbara Forrest contends such statements reveal that leading proponents see intelligent design as essentially religious in nature, not merely a scientific concept that has implications with which their personal religious beliefs happen to coincide.WEB,weblink Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District Trial transcript: Day 6 (October 5), PM Session, Part 2, TalkOrigins Archive, The TalkOrigins Foundation, Inc., Houston, 2014-02-28, What I am talking about is the essence of intelligent design, and the essence of it is theistic realism as defined by Professor Johnson. Now that stands on its own quite apart from what their motives are. I'm also talking about the definition of intelligent design by Dr. Dembski as the Logos theology of John's Gospel. That stands on its own. [...] Intelligent design, as it is understood by the proponents that we are discussing today, does involve a supernatural creator, and that is my objection. And I am objecting to it as they have defined it, as Professor Johnson has defined intelligent design, and as Dr. Dembski has defined intelligent design. And both of those are basically religious. They involve the supernatural., — Barbara Forrest, 2005, testifying in the Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District trial. She writes that the leading proponents of intelligent design are closely allied with the ultra-conservative Christian Reconstructionism movement. She lists connections of (current and former) Discovery Institute Fellows Phillip E. Johnson, Charles B. Thaxton, Michael Behe, Richard Weikart, Jonathan Wells and Francis J. Beckwith to leading Christian Reconstructionist organizations, and the extent of the funding provided the Institute by Howard Ahmanson, Jr., a leading figure in the Reconstructionist movement.

Reaction from other creationist groups

Not all creationist organizations have embraced the intelligent design movement. According to Thomas Dixon, "Religious leaders have come out against ID too. An open letter affirming the compatibility of Christian faith and the teaching of evolution, first produced in response to controversies in Wisconsin in 2004, has now been signed by over ten thousand clergy from different Christian denominations across America." Hugh Ross of Reasons to Believe, a proponent of Old Earth creationism, believes that the efforts of intelligent design proponents to divorce the concept from Biblical Christianity make its hypothesis too vague. In 2002, he wrote: "Winning the argument for design without identifying the designer yields, at best, a sketchy origins model. Such a model makes little if any positive impact on the community of scientists and other scholars. [...] ...the time is right for a direct approach, a single leap into the origins fray. Introducing a biblically based, scientifically verifiable creation model represents such a leap."MAGAZINE, Ross, Hugh, Hugh Ross (creationist), July 2002, More Than Intelligent Design,weblink Facts for Faith, Glendora, Calif., Reasons to Believe, 10, 52894856, 2014-02-28, Likewise, two of the most prominent YEC organizations in the world have attempted to distinguish their views from those of the intelligent design movement. Henry M. Morris of the Institute for Creation Research (ICR) wrote, in 1999, that ID, "even if well-meaning and effectively articulated, will not work! It has often been tried in the past and has failed, and it will fail today. The reason it won't work is because it is not the Biblical method." According to Morris: "The evidence of intelligent design ... must be either followed by or accompanied by a sound presentation of true Biblical creationism if it is to be meaningful and lasting."MAGAZINE, Morris, Henry M., Henry M. Morris, July 1999, Design Is Not Enough!,weblink Back to Genesis, Santee, Calif., Institute for Creation Research, 127, 26390403, 2014-02-28, In 2002, Carl Wieland, then of Answers in Genesis (AiG), criticized design advocates who, though well-intentioned, "'left the Bible out of it'" and thereby unwittingly aided and abetted the modern rejection of the Bible. Wieland explained that "AiG's major 'strategy' is to boldly, but humbly, call the church back to its Biblical foundations ... [so] we neither count ourselves a part of this movement nor campaign against it."WEB,weblink AiG's views on the Intelligent Design Movement, Wieland, Carl, Carl Wieland, August 30, 2002, Answers in Genesis, Answers in Genesis Ministries International, Hebron, Ky.,weblink" title="">weblink October 15, 2002, April 25, 2007,

Reaction from the scientific community

The unequivocal consensus in the scientific community is that intelligent design is not science and has no place in a science curriculum.See: , s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/4:Whether ID Is Science#Page 83 of 139|Whether ID Is Science, p. 83]]
  • The Discovery Institute's A Scientific Dissent From Darwinism petition begun in 2001 has been signed by "over 700 scientists" as of August 20, 2006. The four-day A Scientific Support for Darwinism petition gained 7,733 signatories from scientists opposing ID.
  • AAAS 2002. The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the largest association of scientists in the U.S., has 120,000 members, and firmly rejects ID.
  • More than 70,000 Australian scientists "...urge all Australian governments and educators not to permit the teaching or promulgation of ID as science."
  • National Center for Science Education: List of statements from scientific professional organizations on the status intelligent design and other forms of creationism in the sciences.
  • Nature Methods 2007, "Long considered a North American phenomenon, pro-ID interest groups can also be found throughout Europe. ...Concern about this trend is now so widespread in Europe that in October 2007 the Council of Europe voted on a motion calling upon member states to firmly oppose the teaching of creationism as a scientific discipline."
  • Dean 2007, "There is no credible scientific challenge to the theory of evolution as an explanation for the complexity and diversity of life on earth." The U.S. National Academy of Sciences has stated that "creationism, intelligent design, and other claims of supernatural intervention in the origin of life or of species are not science because they are not testable by the methods of science."National Academy of Sciences 1999, p. 25 The U.S. National Science Teachers Association and the American Association for the Advancement of Science have termed it pseudoscience.See:
  • PRESS RELEASE, Workosky, Cindy, August 3, 2005, National Science Teachers Association Disappointed About Intelligent Design Comments Made by President Bush,weblink Arlington, Va., National Science Teachers Association, 2014-01-14, 'We stand with the nation's leading scientific organizations and scientists [...] in stating that intelligent design is not science. Intelligent design has no place in the science classroom,' said Gerry Wheeler, NSTA Executive Director.[...]'It is simply not fair to present pseudoscience to students in the science classroom,' said NSTA President Mike Padilla. 'Nonscientific viewpoints have little value in increasing students' knowledge of the natural world.',
  • Mu 2005 Others in the scientific community have denounced its tactics, accusing the ID movement of manufacturing false attacks against evolution, of engaging in misinformation and misrepresentation about science, and marginalizing those who teach it.JOURNAL, Attie, Alan D., Sober, Elliott, Elliott Sober, Numbers, Ronald L., Ronald Numbers, Amasino, Richard M., Richard Amasino, Cox, Beth, Berceau, Terese, Terese Berceau, Powell, Thomas, Cox, Michael M., May 1, 2006, Defending science education against intelligent design: a call to action,weblink Journal of Clinical Investigation, 116, 5, 1134–1138, 10.1172/JCI28449, 0021-9738, 2012-06-16, 16670753, 1451210, Attie, et al. 2006, More recently, in September 2012, Bill Nye warned that creationist views threaten science education and innovations in the United States.NEWS, Lovan, Dylan, September 24, 2012, Bill Nye Warns: Creation Views Threaten US Science,weblink Associated Press, 2014-02-28, WEB, Fowler, Jonathan, Rodd, Elizabeth, Bill Nye: Creationism Is Not Appropriate For Children,weblink August 23, 2012, YouTube, Big Think, New York, 2014-02-28,
In 2001, the Discovery Institute published advertisements under the heading "A Scientific Dissent From Darwinism", with the claim that listed scientists had signed this statement expressing skepticism:{{quotation|We are skeptical of claims for the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life. Careful examination of the evidence for Darwinian theory should be encouraged.WEB,weblink Sign - Dissent from Darwin,, Discovery Institute, Seattle, 2014-02-28, yes,weblink" title="">weblink April 11, 2011, }}The ambiguous statement did not exclude other known evolutionary mechanisms, and most signatories were not scientists in relevant fields, but starting in 2004 the Institute claimed the increasing number of signatures indicated mounting doubts about evolution among scientists.WEB,weblink Doubts Over Evolution Mount With Over 300 Scientists Expressing Skepticism With Central Tenet of Darwin's Theory, April 1, 2004, Center for Science and Culture, Discovery Institute, Seattle, 2014-01-02, The statement formed a key component of Discovery Institute campaigns to present intelligent design as scientifically valid by claiming that evolution lacks broad scientific support,WEB,weblink Doubting Darwinism Through Creative License, Evans, Skip, April 8, 2002, National Center for Science Education, National Center for Science Education, Berkeley, Calif., Blog, 2011-04-25, NEWS, Kenneth, Chang, February 21, 2006, Few Biologists But Many Evangelicals Sign Anti-Evolution Petition,weblink The New York Times, 2008-01-04, with Institute members continued to cite the list through at least 2011.WEB,weblink A Scientific Analysis of Karl Giberson and Francis Collins' The Language of Science and Faith, Luskin, Casey, June 1, 2011, Evolution News & Views, Discovery Institute, Seattle, 2014-01-02, As part of a strategy to counter these claims, scientists organised Project Steve, which gained more signatories named Steve (or variants) than the Institute's petition, and a counter-petition, "A Scientific Support for Darwinism", which quickly gained similar numbers of signatories.


Several surveys were conducted prior to the December 2005 decision in Kitzmiller v. Dover School District, which sought to determine the level of support for intelligent design among certain groups. According to a 2005 Harris poll, 10% of adults in the United States viewed human beings as "so complex that they required a powerful force or intelligent being to help create them."WEB,weblink Nearly Two-thirds of U.S. Adults Believe Human Beings Were Created by God, July 6, 2005, The Harris Poll, Harris Insights & Analytics, Harris Interactive, Rochester, N.Y., #52,weblink" title="">weblink December 17, 2005, 2014-02-28, Although Zogby polls commissioned by the Discovery Institute show more support, these polls suffer from considerable flaws, such as having a very low response rate (248 out of 16,000), being conducted on behalf of an organization with an expressed interest in the outcome of the poll, and containing leading questions.WEB,weblink Sandia National Laboratories says that the Intelligent Design Network (IDNet-NM/Zogby) 'Lab Poll' is BOGUS!, New Mexicans for Science and Reason, NMSR, Peralta, N.M., 2007-07-13, WEB,weblink Polling for ID, Mooney, Chris, Chris Mooney (journalist), September 11, 2003, Committee for Skeptical Inquiry, Amherst, N.Y., Blog, Center for Inquiry,weblink" title="">weblink March 27, 2008, 2007-02-16, WEB,weblink 'Intelligent Design'-ers launch new assault on curriculum using lies and deception, Harris, David, July 30, 2003, Salon (website), Salon, San Francisco, Blog, Salon Media Group,weblink" title="">weblink August 16, 2003, 2007-07-13, The 2017 Gallup creationism survey found that 38% of adults in the United States hold the view that "God created humans in their present form at one time within the last 10,000 years" when asked for their views on the origin and development of human beings, which was noted as being at the lowest level in 35 years.WEB,weblink In U.S., Belief in Creationist View of Humans at New Low, Gallup, Inc., Previously, a series of Gallup polls in the United States from 1982 through 2014 on "Evolution, Creationism, Intelligent Design" found support for "human beings have developed over millions of years from less advanced formed of life, but God guided the process" of between 31% and 40%, support for "God created human beings in pretty much their present form at one time within the last 10,000 years or so" varied from 40% to 47%, and support for "human beings have developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life, but God had no part in the process" varied from 9% to 19%. The polls also noted answers to a series of more detailed questions.WEB,weblink In U.S., 42% Believe Creationist View of Human Origins, Gallup.Com, Omaha, Gallup, Inc., 2016-01-30,

Allegations of discrimination against ID proponents

There have been allegations that ID proponents have met discrimination, such as being refused tenure or being harshly criticized on the Internet. In the documentary film (Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed), released in 2008, host Ben Stein presents five such cases. The film contends that the mainstream science establishment, in a "scientific conspiracy to keep God out of the nation's laboratories and classrooms", suppresses academics who believe they see evidence of intelligent design in nature or criticize evidence of evolution.NEWS, Dean, Cornelia, September 27, 2007, Scientists Feel Miscast in Film on Life's Origin,weblink The New York Times, 2014-05-14, Dean 2007, PRESS RELEASE, Burbridge-Bates, Lesley, August 14, 2007, What Happened to Freedom of Speech?,weblink Los Angeles, Motive Entertainment; Premise Media Corporation, 2014-05-14, Investigation into these allegations turned up alternative explanations for perceived persecution.WEB,weblink Statement from Iowa State University President Gregory Geoffroy, Geoffroy, Gregory, Gregory L. Geoffroy, June 1, 2007, News Service: Iowa State University, Iowa State University, Ames, Ohio, 2007-12-16,
  • WEB,weblink Six Things in Expelled That Ben Stein Doesn't Want You to Know..., Rennie, John, John Rennie (editor), Mirsky, Steve, Steve Mirsky, April 16, 2008, Scientific American, Georg von Holtzbrinck Publishing Group, Stuttgart, Germany, 0036-8733, 2014-06-24,
  • NEWS, Vedantam, Shankar, February 5, 2006, Eden and Evolution,weblink 2008-02-16, The Washington Post, W08, GMU spokesman Daniel Walsch denied that the school had fired Crocker. She was a part-time faculty member, he said, and was let go at the end of her contract period for reasons unrelated to her views on intelligent design.,
The film portrays intelligent design as motivated by science, rather than religion, though it does not give a detailed definition of the phrase or attempt to explain it on a scientific level. Other than briefly addressing issues of irreducible complexity, Expelled examines it as a political issue.WEB,weblink Ben Stein: No argument allowed, Emerson, Jim, December 17, 2008,, Ebert Digital LLC, Chicago, Blog, 2014-05-14, One spokesman comes close to articulating a thought about Intelligent Design: 'If you define evolution precisely, though, to mean the common descent of all life on earth from a single ancestor via undirected mutation and natural selection -- that's a textbook definition of neo-Darwinism -- biologists of the first rank have real questions... 'Intelligent Design is the study of patterns in nature that are best explained as a result of intelligence.', The scientific theory of evolution is portrayed by the film as contributing to fascism, the Holocaust, communism, atheism, and eugenics.NEWS, Whipple, Dan, December 16, 2007, Science Sunday: Intelligent Design Goes to the Movies,weblink The Colorado Independent, Blog, Washington, D.C., American Independent News Network, 2014-05-14, NEWS, Catsoulis, Jeannette, April 18, 2008, Resentment Over Darwin Evolves Into a Documentary,weblink The New York Times, Movie review, 2014-05-14, Expelled has been used in private screenings to legislators as part of the Discovery Institute intelligent design campaign for Academic Freedom bills.NEWS, Simon, Stephanie, May 2, 2008, Evolution's Critics Shift Tactics With Schools,weblink The Wall Street Journal, 2014-05-14, Review screenings were restricted to churches and Christian groups, and at a special pre-release showing, one of the interviewees, PZ Myers, was refused admission. The American Association for the Advancement of Science describes the film as dishonest and divisive propaganda aimed at introducing religious ideas into public school science classrooms,WEB, Lempinen, Edward W., April 18, 2008, New AAAS Statement Decries 'Profound Dishonesty' of Intelligent Design Movie,weblink Washington, D.C., American Association for the Advancement of Science,weblink" title="">weblink April 25, 2008, 2008-04-20, and the Anti-Defamation League has denounced the film's allegation that evolutionary theory influenced the Holocaust.AV MEDIA, Frankowski, Nathan (Director), 2008, (Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed), Motion picture, Premise Media Corporation; Rampant Films, 233721412, WEB,weblink New Anti-Evolution Film Stirs Controversy, Mosher, Dave, April 3, 2008, LiveScience, New York, Imaginova, Space Holdings Corp., 2014-02-28, The film includes interviews with scientists and academics who were misled into taking part by misrepresentation of the topic and title of the film. Skeptic Michael Shermer describes his experience of being repeatedly asked the same question without context as "surreal".WEB, Josh Timonen,weblink Expelled Overview,weblink" title="">weblink March 17, 2015, The Richard Dawkins Center for Reason and Science, March 24, 2008, March 13, 2015,


Scientific criticism

Advocates of intelligent design seek to keep God and the Bible out of the discussion, and present intelligent design in the language of science as though it were a scientific hypothesis. For a theory to qualify as scientific,Gauch 2003, Chapters 5–8. Discusses principles of induction, deduction and probability related to the expectation of consistency, testability, and multiple observations. Chapter 8 discusses parsimony (Occam's razor).Elmes, Kantowitz & Roediger 2006. Chapter 2 discusses the scientific method, including the principles of falsifiability, testability, progressive development of theory, dynamic self-correcting of hypotheses, and parsimony, or "Occam's razor".COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/4:Whether ID Is Science#Page 64 of 139|Whether ID Is Science, p. 64]]. The ruling discusses central aspects of expectations in the scientific community that a scientific theory be testable, dynamic, correctible, progressive, based upon multiple observations, and provisional. it is expected to be:
  • Consistent
  • Parsimonious (sparing in its proposed entities or explanations; see Occam's razor)
  • Useful (describes and explains observed phenomena, and can be used in a predictive manner)
  • Empirically testable and falsifiable (potentially confirmable or disprovable by experiment or observation)
  • Based on multiple observations (often in the form of controlled, repeated experiments)
  • Correctable and dynamic (modified in the light of observations that do not support it)
  • Progressive (refines previous theories)
  • Provisional or tentative (is open to experimental checking, and does not assert certainty)
For any theory, hypothesis, or conjecture to be considered scientific, it must meet most, and ideally all, of these criteria. The fewer criteria are met, the less scientific it is; if it meets only a few or none at all, then it cannot be treated as scientific in any meaningful sense of the word. Typical objections to defining intelligent design as science are that it lacks consistency,See, e.g., JOURNAL, Perakh, Mark, 2005, The Dream World of William Dembski's Creationism,weblink Skeptic (U.S. magazine), Skeptic, 11, 4, 54–65, 1063-9330, 2014-02-28, violates the principle of parsimony,See, e.g., Fitelson, Stephens & Sober 2001, "How Not to Detect Design–Critical Notice: William A. Dembski The Design Inference", pp. 597–616. Intelligent design fails to pass Occam's razor. Adding entities (an intelligent agent, a designer) to the equation is not strictly necessary to explain events. is not scientifically useful,See, e.g., WEB,weblink Professor Schneider's thoughts on Evolution and Intelligent Design, Schneider, Jill E., Department of Biological Sciences, Lehigh University, Bethlehem, Pa.,weblink" title="">weblink September 2, 2006, 2014-02-28, Q: Why couldn't intelligent design also be a scientific theory? A: The idea of intelligent design might or might not be true, but when presented as a scientific hypothesis, it is not useful because it is based on weak assumptions, lacks supporting data and terminates further thought., is not falsifiable,See, e.g., COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/2:Context#Page 22 of 139|Context, p. 22]] and s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/4:Whether ID Is Science#Page 77 of 139|Whether ID Is Science, p. 77]]. The designer is not falsifiable, since its existence is typically asserted without sufficient conditions to allow a falsifying observation. The designer being beyond the realm of the observable, claims about its existence can be neither supported nor undermined by observation, making intelligent design and the argument from design analytic a posteriori arguments. is not empirically testable,See, e.g., COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/2:Context#Page 22 of 139|Context, p. 22]] and s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/4:Whether ID Is Science#Page 66 of 139|Whether ID Is Science, p. 66]]. That intelligent design is not empirically testable stems from the fact that it violates a basic premise of science, naturalism. and is not correctable, dynamic, progressive, or provisional.See, e.g., the brief explanation in COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/4:Whether ID Is Science#Page 66 of 139|Whether ID Is Science, p. 66]]. Intelligent design professes to offer an answer that does not need to be defined or explained, the intelligent agent, designer. By asserting a conclusion that cannot be accounted for scientifically, the designer, intelligent design cannot be sustained by any further explanation, and objections raised to those who accept intelligent design make little headway. Thus intelligent design is not a provisional assessment of data, which can change when new information is discovered. Once it is claimed that a conclusion that need not be accounted for has been established, there is simply no possibility of future correction. The idea of the progressive growth of scientific ideas is required to explain previous data and any previously unexplainable data.WEB,weblink Nobel Laureates Initiative, September 9, 2005, The Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity, Letter,weblink" title="">weblink October 7, 2005, 2014-02-28, The September 2005 statement by 38 Nobel laureates stated that: "...intelligent design is fundamentally unscientific; it cannot be tested as scientific theory because its central conclusion is based on belief in the intervention of a supernatural agent."WEB,weblink Intelligent Design is not Science: Scientists and teachers speak out, October 2005, Faculty of Science, University of New South Wales, Sydney,weblink" title="">weblink June 14, 2006, 2009-01-09, The October 2005 statement, by a coalition representing more than 70,000 Australian scientists and science teachers said: "intelligent design is not science" and "urge all Australian governments and educators not to permit the teaching or promulgation of ID as science."Intelligent design proponents seek to change this fundamental basis of scienceJOURNAL, Forrest, Barbara, Fall–Winter 2000, Methodological Naturalism and Philosophical Naturalism: Clarifying the Connection,weblink Philo (journal), Philo, 3, 2, 7–29, 1098-3570, 2007-07-27, 10.5840/philo20003213, by eliminating "methodological naturalism" from scienceJohnson 1995. Johnson positions himself as a "theistic realist" against "methodological naturalism". and replacing it with what the leader of the intelligent design movement, Phillip E. Johnson, calls "theistic realism".Johnson 1996b, "My colleagues and I speak of 'theistic realism'—or sometimes, 'mere creation'—as the defining concept of our [the ID] movement. This means that we affirm that God is objectively real as Creator, and that the reality of God is tangibly recorded in evidence accessible to science, particularly in biology." Intelligent design proponents argue that naturalistic explanations fail to explain certain phenomena and that supernatural explanations provide a very simple and intuitive explanation for the origins of life and the universe.NEWS, Watanabe, Teresa, March 25, 2001, Enlisting Science to Find the Fingerprints of a Creator,weblink Los Angeles Times, 'We are taking an intuition most people have and making it a scientific and academic enterprise. ...'We are removing the most important cultural roadblock to accepting the role of God as creator.', 2014-02-28, — Phillip E. Johnson Many intelligent design followers believe that "scientism" is itself a religion that promotes secularism and materialism in an attempt to erase theism from public life, and they view their work in the promotion of intelligent design as a way to return religion to a central role in education and other public spheres.It has been argued that methodological naturalism is not an assumption of science, but a result of science well done: the God explanation is the least parsimonious, so according to Occam's razor, it cannot be a scientific explanation.BOOK, Byron K., Jennings, In Defense of Scientism: An Insider's view of Science,weblink 2015, Byron Jennings, 978-0-9940589-2-8, 60, The failure to follow the procedures of scientific discourse and the failure to submit work to the scientific community that withstands scrutiny have weighed against intelligent design being accepted as valid science.COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/4:Whether ID Is Science#Page 87 of 139|Whether ID is Science, p. 87]] The intelligent design movement has not published a properly peer-reviewed article supporting ID in a scientific journal, and has failed to publish supporting peer-reviewed research or data. The only article published in a peer-reviewed scientific journal that made a case for intelligent design was quickly withdrawn by the publisher for having circumvented the journal's peer-review standards.JOURNAL, 2004, Statement from the Council of the Biological Society of Washington,weblink Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington, 117, 3, 241, 0006-324X, 1536434, 2014-02-28, The Discovery Institute says that a number of intelligent design articles have been published in peer-reviewed journals,WEB,weblink Peer-Reviewed & Peer-Edited Scientific Publications Supporting the Theory of Intelligent Design (Annotated), February 1, 2012, Center for Science and Culture, Discovery Institute, Seattle, 2014-02-28, yes,weblink" title="">weblink August 4, 2007, The July 1, 2007, version of page is . but critics, largely members of the scientific community, reject this claim and state intelligent design proponents have set up their own journals with peer review that lack impartiality and rigor,JOURNAL, Brauer, Matthew J., Forrest, Barbara, Barbara Forrest, Gey, Steven G., Steven Gey, 2005, Is It Science Yet?: Intelligent Design Creationism and the Constitution,weblink PDF, Washington University Law Review, 83, 1, 79–80, 2166-7993, 2014-02-28, ID leaders know the benefits of submitting their work to independent review and have established at least two purportedly 'peer-reviewed' journals for ID articles. However, one has languished for want of material and quietly ceased publication, while the other has a more overtly philosophical orientation. Both journals employ a weak standard of 'peer review' that amounts to no more than vetting by the editorial board or society fellows., yes,weblink" title="">weblink December 20, 2013, consisting entirely of intelligent design supporters.WEB,weblink CI001.4: Intelligent Design and peer review, Isaak, Mark, TalkOrigins Archive, The TalkOrigins Foundation, Inc., Houston, 2014-02-28, With some of the claims for peer review, notably Campbell and Meyer (2003) and the e-journal PCID, the reviewers are themselves ardent supporters of intelligent design. The purpose of peer review is to expose errors, weaknesses, and significant omissions in fact and argument. That purpose is not served if the reviewers are uncritical., Further criticism stems from the fact that the phrase intelligent design makes use of an assumption of the quality of an observable intelligence, a concept that has no scientific consensus definition. The characteristics of intelligence are assumed by intelligent design proponents to be observable without specifying what the criteria for the measurement of intelligence should be. Critics say that the design detection methods proposed by intelligent design proponents are radically different from conventional design detection, undermining the key elements that make it possible as legitimate science. Intelligent design proponents, they say, are proposing both searching for a designer without knowing anything about that designer's abilities, parameters, or intentions (which scientists do know when searching for the results of human intelligence), as well as denying the very distinction between natural/artificial design that allows scientists to compare complex designed artifacts against the background of the sorts of complexity found in nature.COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/4:Whether ID Is Science#Page 81 of 139|Whether ID Is Science, p. 81]]. "For human artifacts, we know the designer's identity, human, and the mechanism of design, as we have experience based upon empirical evidence that humans can make such things, as well as many other attributes including the designer's abilities, needs, and desires. With ID, proponents assert that they refuse to propose hypotheses on the designer's identity, do not propose a mechanism, and the designer, he/she/it/they, has never been seen. In that vein, defense expert Professor Minnich agreed that in the case of human artifacts and objects, we know the identity and capacities of the human designer, but we do not know any of those attributes for the designer of biological life. In addition, Professor Behe agreed that for the design of human artifacts, we know the designer and its attributes and we have a baseline for human design that does not exist for design of biological systems. Professor Behe's only response to these seemingly insurmountable points of disanalogy was that the inference still works in science fiction movies."Among a significant proportion of the general public in the United States, the major concern is whether conventional evolutionary biology is compatible with belief in God and in the Bible, and how this issue is taught in schools. The Discovery Institute's "Teach the Controversy" campaign promotes intelligent design while attempting to discredit evolution in United States public high school science courses.NEWS, Shaw, Linda, March 31, 2005, Does Seattle group 'teach controversy' or contribute to it?,weblink The Seattle Times, The Seattle Times Company, 2014-02-28, yes,weblink" title="">weblink December 24, 2013, NEWS, November 9, 2005, Small Group Wields Major Influence in Intelligent Design Debate,weblink ABC World News, World News Tonight, New York, American Broadcasting Company, 2014-02-28, NEWS, Mooney, Chris, December 2002, Survival of the Slickest,weblink The American Prospect, Washington, D.C., 13, 22, 2014-02-28, ID's home base is the Center for Science and Culture at Seattle's conservative Discovery Institute. Meyer directs the center; former Reagan adviser Bruce Chapman heads the larger institute, with input from the Christian supply-sider and former American Spectator owner George Gilder (also a Discovery senior fellow). From this perch, the ID crowd has pushed a 'teach the controversy' approach to evolution that closely influenced the Ohio State Board of Education's recently proposed science standards, which would require students to learn how scientists 'continue to investigate and critically analyze' aspects of Darwin's theory., WEB,weblink Teaching Intelligent Design -- What Happened When? A Response to Eugenie Scott, Dembski, William A., February 27, 2001, Metanexus, Metanexus Institute, New York, The clarion call of the intelligent design movement is to 'teach the controversy.' There is a very real controversy centering on how properly to account for biological complexity (cf. the ongoing events in Kansas), and it is a scientific controversy., 2014-02-28, Dembski's response to Eugenie Scott's February 12, 2001, essay published by Metanexus, "The Big Tent and the Camel's Nose."WEB,weblink No one here but us Critical Analysis-ists…, Matzke, Nick, July 11, 2006, The Panda's Thumb, The TalkOrigins Foundation, Inc., Houston, Blog, 2014-02-28, yes,weblink" title="">weblink September 6, 2015, Nick Matzke's analysis shows how teaching the controversy using the Critical Analysis of Evolution model lesson plan is a means of teaching all the intelligent design arguments without using the intelligent design label. The scientific community and science education organizations have replied that there is no scientific controversy regarding the validity of evolution and that the controversy exists solely in terms of religion and politics.Annas 2006, "That this controversy is one largely manufactured by the proponents of creationism and intelligent design may not matter, and as long as the controversy is taught in classes on current affairs, politics, or religion, and not in science classes, neither scientists nor citizens should be concerned."WEB,weblink Statement on the Teaching of Evolution, February 16, 2006, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Washington, D.C., Some bills seek to discredit evolution by emphasizing so-called 'flaws' in the theory of evolution or 'disagreements' within the scientific community. Others insist that teachers have absolute freedom within their classrooms and cannot be disciplined for teaching non-scientific 'alternatives' to evolution. A number of bills require that students be taught to 'critically analyze' evolution or to understand 'the controversy.' But there is no significant controversy within the scientific community about the validity of the theory of evolution. The current controversy surrounding the teaching of evolution is not a scientific one.,weblink" title="">weblink February 21, 2006, 2014-02-28,

Arguments from ignorance

Eugenie C. Scott, along with Glenn Branch and other critics, has argued that many points raised by intelligent design proponents are arguments from ignorance.In the argument from ignorance, a lack of evidence for one view is erroneously argued to constitute proof of the correctness of another view. Scott and Branch say that intelligent design is an argument from ignorance because it relies on a lack of knowledge for its conclusion: lacking a natural explanation for certain specific aspects of evolution, we assume intelligent cause. They contend most scientists would reply that the unexplained is not unexplainable, and that "we don't know yet" is a more appropriate response than invoking a cause outside science. Particularly, Michael Behe's demands for ever more detailed explanations of the historical evolution of molecular systems seem to assume a false dichotomy, where either evolution or design is the proper explanation, and any perceived failure of evolution becomes a victory for design. Scott and Branch also contend that the supposedly novel contributions proposed by intelligent design proponents have not served as the basis for any productive scientific research.HTTP://NCSE.COM/CREATIONISM/GENERAL/INTELLIGENT-DESIGN-NOT-ACCEPTED-BY-MOST-SCIENTISTS >TITLE='INTELLIGENT DESIGN' NOT ACCEPTED BY MOST SCIENTISTS
FIRST1=EUGENIE C. LAST2=BRANCH AUTHORLINK2=GLENN BRANCH, August 12, 2002School Board News, August 13, 2002 >website=National Center for Science Education location=Berkeley, Calif. accessdate=2009-11-18, In his conclusion to the Kitzmiller trial, Judge John E. Jones III wrote that "ID is at bottom premised upon a false dichotomy, namely, that to the extent evolutionary theory is discredited, ID is confirmed." This same argument had been put forward to support creation science at the McLean v. Arkansas (1982) trial, which found it was "contrived dualism", the false premise of a "two model approach". Behe's argument of irreducible complexity puts forward negative arguments against evolution but does not make any positive scientific case for intelligent design. It fails to allow for scientific explanations continuing to be found, as has been the case with several examples previously put forward as supposed cases of irreducible complexity.COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/4:Whether ID Is Science#Page 71 of 139|Whether ID Is Science, pp. 71–74]].

Possible theological implications

Intelligent design proponents often insist that their claims do not require a religious component.Merriman 2007, p. 26 However, various philosophical and theological issues are naturally raised by the claims of intelligent design.JOURNAL, Murphy, George L., 2002, Intelligent Design as a Theological Problem,weblink Covalence: The Bulletin of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Alliance for Faith, Science and Technology, IV, 2, 52753579, 2014-02-28, Reprinted with permission.Intelligent design proponents attempt to demonstrate scientifically that features such as irreducible complexity and specified complexity could not arise through natural processes, and therefore required repeated direct miraculous interventions by a Designer (often a Christian concept of God). They reject the possibility of a Designer who works merely through setting natural laws in motion at the outset,JOURNAL, Padian, Kevin, Kevin Padian, Matzke, Nicholas J., January 1, 2009, Darwin, Dover, 'Intelligent Design' and textbooks,weblink Biochemical Journal, 417, 1, 29–42, 10.1042/bj20081534, 0264-6021, 19061485, 2015-11-10, in contrast to theistic evolution (to which even Charles Darwin was openDarwin 1860, p. 484, "... probably all the organic beings which have ever lived on this earth have descended from some one primordial form, into which life was first breathed by the Creator."). Intelligent design is distinct because it asserts repeated miraculous interventions in addition to designed laws. This contrasts with other major religious traditions of a created world in which God's interactions and influences do not work in the same way as physical causes. The Roman Catholic tradition makes a careful distinction between ultimate metaphysical explanations and secondary, natural causes.The concept of direct miraculous intervention raises other potential theological implications. If such a Designer does not intervene to alleviate suffering even though capable of intervening for other reasons, some imply the designer is not omnibenevolent (see problem of evil and related theodicy).WEB,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink yes, 2007-06-14, Making the Task of Theodicy Impossible? Intelligent Design and the Problem of Evil, Dembski, William A., Spring 2003,, William Dembski, Pella, Iowa, 2014-02-28, Further, repeated interventions imply that the original design was not perfect and final, and thus pose a problem for any who believe that the Creator's work had been both perfect and final. Intelligent design proponents seek to explain the problem of poor design in nature by insisting that we have simply failed to understand the perfection of the design (for example, proposing that vestigial organs have unknown purposes), or by proposing that designers do not necessarily produce the best design they can, and may have unknowable motives for their actions.In 2005 the director of the Vatican Observatory, the Jesuit astronomer George Coyne, set out theological reasons for accepting evolution in an August 2005 article in The Tablet, and said that "Intelligent design isn't science even though it pretends to be". It should not be included in the science curriculum for public schools. "If you want to teach it in schools, intelligent design should be taught when religion or cultural history is taught, not science."NEWS,weblink God's chance creation, Coyne, George, 2005-08-06, The Tablet, 2008-10-16, yes,weblink" title="">weblink February 20, 2006, NEWS,weblink Vatican official: 'Intelligent design' isn't science, USA Today, 2008-10-16, 2005-11-18, In 2006, he "condemned ID as a kind of ‘crude creationism’ which reduced God to a mere engineer."BOOK, Thomas, Dixon, Science and Religion: A Very Short Introduction,weblink 24 July 2008, OUP Oxford, 978-0-19-929551-7, 82,

God of the gaps

Intelligent design has also been characterized as a God-of-the-gaps argument,ENCYCLOPEDIA, Ratzsch, Del, Edward N, Zalta, Edward N. Zalta, Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Teleological Arguments for God's Existence,weblink 2014-02-28, October 3, 2010, The Metaphysics Research Lab, Stanford, Calif., 1095-5054, Section 4.3, The "Intelligent Design" (ID) Movement, which has the following form:
  • There is a gap in scientific knowledge.
  • The gap is filled with acts of God (or intelligent designer) and therefore proves the existence of God (or intelligent designer).
A God-of-the-gaps argument is the theological version of an argument from ignorance. A key feature of this type of argument is that it merely answers outstanding questions with explanations (often supernatural) that are unverifiable and ultimately themselves subject to unanswerable questions.See, for instance: JOURNAL, Bube, Richard H., Richard H. Bube, Fall 1971, Man Come Of Age: Bonhoeffer's Response To The God-Of-The-Gaps,weblink Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society, 14, 4, 203–220, 0360-8808, 2014-02-28, Historians of science observe that the astronomy of the earliest civilizations, although astonishing and incorporating mathematical constructions far in excess of any practical value, proved to be misdirected and of little importance to the development of science because they failed to inquire more carefully into the mechanisms that drove the heavenly bodies across the sky.Ronan, p. 61 It was the Greek civilization that first practiced science, although not yet as a formally defined experimental science, but nevertheless an attempt to rationalize the world of natural experience without recourse to divine intervention.Ronan, p. 123 In this historically motivated definition of science any appeal to an intelligent creator is explicitly excluded for the paralysing effect it may have on scientific progress.

Legal challenges in the United States

Kitzmiller trial

Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District was the first direct challenge brought in the United States federal courts against a public school district that required the presentation of intelligent design as an alternative to evolution. The plaintiffs successfully argued that intelligent design is a form of creationism, and that the school board policy thus violated the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.WEB,weblink Intelligent Design on Trial: Kitzmiller v. Dover National Center for Science Education, October 17, 2008, National Center for Science Education, National Center for Science Education, Berkeley, Calif., 2014-02-28, Eleven parents of students in Dover, Pennsylvania, sued the Dover Area School District over a statement that the school board required be read aloud in ninth-grade science classes when evolution was taught. The plaintiffs were represented by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), Americans United for Separation of Church and State (AU) and Pepper Hamilton LLP. The National Center for Science Education acted as consultants for the plaintiffs. The defendants were represented by the Thomas More Law Center.COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005, United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania,weblink Memorandum and Order, July 27, 2005. The suit was tried in a bench trial from September 26 to November 4, 2005, before Judge John E. Jones III. Kenneth R. Miller, Kevin Padian, Brian Alters, Robert T. Pennock, Barbara Forrest and John F. Haught served as expert witnesses for the plaintiffs. Michael Behe, Steve Fuller and Scott Minnich served as expert witnesses for the defense.On December 20, 2005, Judge Jones issued his 139-page findings of fact and decision, ruling that the Dover mandate was unconstitutional, and barring intelligent design from being taught in Pennsylvania's Middle District public school science classrooms. On November 8, 2005, there had been an election in which the eight Dover school board members who voted for the intelligent design requirement were all defeated by challengers who opposed the teaching of intelligent design in a science class, and the current school board president stated that the board did not intend to appeal the ruling.NEWS, Powell, Michael, December 21, 2005, Judge Rules Against 'Intelligent Design',weblink The Washington Post,weblink" title="">weblink September 28, 2007, 2007-09-03, In his finding of facts, Judge Jones made the following condemnation of the "Teach the Controversy" strategy:{{quotation|Moreover, ID's backers have sought to avoid the scientific scrutiny which we have now determined that it cannot withstand by advocating that the controversy, but not ID itself, should be taught in science class. This tactic is at best disingenuous, and at worst a (Wikt:canard#Noun|canard). The goal of the IDM is not to encourage critical thought, but to foment a revolution which would supplant evolutionary theory with ID.COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/4:Whether ID Is Science#Page 89 of 139|Whether ID Is Science, p. 89]]}}

Reaction to Kitzmiller ruling

Judge Jones himself anticipated that his ruling would be criticized, saying in his decision that:{{quotation|Those who disagree with our holding will likely mark it as the product of an activist judge. If so, they will have erred as this is manifestly not an activist Court.Rather, this case came to us as the result of the activism of an ill-informed faction on a school board, aided by a national public interest law firm eager to find a constitutional test case on ID, who in combination drove the Board to adopt an imprudent and ultimately unconstitutional policy. The breathtaking inanity of the Board's decision is evident when considered against the factual backdrop which has now been fully revealed through this trial. The students, parents, and teachers of the Dover Area School District deserved better than to be dragged into this legal maelstrom, with its resulting utter waste of monetary and personal resources.COURT, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 04, cv, 2688, December 20, 2005, s:Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District/6:Curriculum, Conclusion#Page 137 of 139|Curriculum, Conclusion, pp. 137–138]]}}As Jones had predicted, John G. West, Associate Director of the Center for Science and Culture, said:{{quotation|The Dover decision is an attempt by an activist federal judge to stop the spread of a scientific idea and even to prevent criticism of Darwinian evolution through government-imposed censorship rather than open debate, and it won't work. He has conflated Discovery Institute's position with that of the Dover school board, and he totally misrepresents intelligent design and the motivations of the scientists who research it.WEB,weblink Dover Intelligent Design Decision Criticized as a Futile Attempt to Censor Science Education, Crowther, Robert, December 20, 2005, Evolution News & Views, Discovery Institute, Seattle, 2007-09-03, }}Newspapers have noted with interest that the judge is "a Republican and a churchgoer".NEWS, Raffaele, Martha, December 20, 2005, Intelligent design policy struck down,weblink Dallas Morning News, Associated Press,weblink" title="">weblink September 30, 2007, 2014-02-28,
  • NEWS, December 20, 2005, Judge rules against 'intelligent design',weblink, Associated Press, Contributions by Alan Boyle, 2014-02-28, MAGAZINE, Provonsha, Matthew, September 21, 2006, Godless: The Church of Liberalism,weblink Skeptic (U.S. magazine), eSkeptic, Book review, 1556-5696, 2007-09-03, WEB,weblink Discovery Institute tries to "swift-boat" Judge Jones, Padian, Kevin, Matzke, Nick, January 4, 2006, National Center for Science Education, National Center for Science Education, Berkeley, Calif., Blog, 2009-11-18,
Subsequently, the decision has been examined in a search for flaws and conclusions, partly by intelligent design supporters aiming to avoid future defeats in court. In its Winter issue of 2007, the Montana Law Review published three articles.JOURNAL, Winter 2007, Editor's Note: Intelligent Design Articles,weblink PDF, Montana Law Review, 68, 1, 1–5, 0026-9972, 2014-02-28, In the first, David K. DeWolf, John G. West and Casey Luskin, all of the Discovery Institute, argued that intelligent design is a valid scientific theory, the Jones court should not have addressed the question of whether it was a scientific theory, and that the Kitzmiller decision will have no effect at all on the development and adoption of intelligent design as an alternative to standard evolutionary theory.JOURNAL, DeWolf, David K., West, John G., John G. West, Luskin, Casey, Winter 2007, Intelligent Design Will Survive Kitzmiller v. Dover,weblink PDF, Montana Law Review, 68, 1, 7–57, 0026-9972, 2014-02-28, In the second Peter H. Irons responded, arguing that the decision was extremely well reasoned and spells the death knell for the intelligent design efforts to introduce creationism in public schools,JOURNAL, Irons, Peter, Peter H. Irons, Winter 2007, Disaster In Dover: The Trials (And Tribulations) Of Intelligent Design,weblink PDF, Montana Law Review, 68, 1, 59–87, 0026-9972, 2014-02-28, while in the third, DeWolf, et al., answer the points made by Irons.JOURNAL, DeWolf, David K., West, John G., Luskin, Casey, Winter 2007, Rebuttal to Irons,weblink PDF, Montana Law Review, 68, 1, 89–94, 0026-9972, 2014-02-28,
  • WEB,weblink Irons Responds to West, Luskin and DeWolf, Brayton, Ed, June 7, 2007, Dispatches from the Creation Wars, ScienceBlogs, ScienceBlogs LLC, Blog, 2014-02-28,weblink" title="">weblink 2014-03-01, yes, However, fear of a similar lawsuit has resulted in other school boards abandoning intelligent design "teach the controversy" proposals.

Anti-evolution legislation

A number of anti-evolution bills have been introduced in the United States Congress and State legislatures since 2001, based largely upon language drafted by the Discovery Institute for the Santorum Amendment. Their aim has been to expose more students to articles and videos produced by advocates of intelligent design that criticise evolution. They have been presented as supporting "academic freedom", on the supposition that teachers, students, and college professors face intimidation and retaliation when discussing scientific criticisms of evolution, and therefore require protection. Critics of the legislation have pointed out that there are no credible scientific critiques of evolution, and an investigation in Florida of allegations of intimidation and retaliation found no evidence that it had occurred. The vast majority of the bills have been unsuccessful, with the one exception being Louisiana's Louisiana Science Education Act, which was enacted in 2008.In April 2010, the American Academy of Religion issued Guidelines for Teaching About Religion in K‐12 Public Schools in the United States, which included guidance that creation science or intelligent design should not be taught in science classes, as "Creation science and intelligent design represent worldviews that fall outside of the realm of science that is defined as (and limited to) a method of inquiry based on gathering observable and measurable evidence subject to specific principles of reasoning." However, these worldviews as well as others "that focus on speculation regarding the origins of life represent another important and relevant form of human inquiry that is appropriately studied in literature or social sciences courses. Such study, however, must include a diversity of worldviews representing a variety of religious and philosophical perspectives and must avoid privileging one view as more legitimate than others."WEB,weblink American Academy of Religion on teaching creationism, July 23, 2010, National Center for Science Education, National Center for Science Education, Berkeley, Calif., 2010-08-09,

Status outside the United States


In June 2007, the Council of Europe's Committee on Culture, Science and Education issued a report, The dangers of creationism in education, which states "Creationism in any of its forms, such as 'intelligent design', is not based on facts, does not use any scientific reasoning and its contents are pathetically inadequate for science classes."WEB,weblink The dangers of creationism in education, June 8, 2007, Committee on Culture, Science and Education, Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, Report, Doc. 11297, 2014-02-28,weblink" title="">weblink 2013-03-09,
  • WEB,weblink The dangers of creationism in education, September 17, 2007, Committee on Culture, Science and Education, Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, Report, Doc. 11375, 2014-02-28, yes,weblink" title="">weblink March 7, 2013,
  • WEB,weblink The dangers of creationism in education, October 4, 2007, Committee on Culture, Science and Education, Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, Resolution, Resolution 1580, 2014-02-28, yes,weblink" title="">weblink March 7, 2014, In describing the dangers posed to education by teaching creationism, it described intelligent design as "anti-science" and involving "blatant scientific fraud" and "intellectual deception" that "blurs the nature, objectives and limits of science" and links it and other forms of creationism to denialism. On October 4, 2007, the Council of Europe's Parliamentary Assembly approved a resolution stating that schools should "resist presentation of creationist ideas in any discipline other than religion", including "intelligent design", which it described as "the latest, more refined version of creationism", "presented in a more subtle way". The resolution emphasises that the aim of the report is not to question or to fight a belief, but to "warn against certain tendencies to pass off a belief as science".WEB,weblink Council of Europe approves resolution against creationism, National Center for Science Education, National Center for Science Education, Berkeley, Calif., 2009-11-18, 2007-10-05,
  • NEWS, Reilhac, Gilbert, October 4, 2007, Council of Europe firmly opposes creationism in school,weblink Reuters, 2007-10-05,
In the United Kingdom, public education includes religious education as a compulsory subject, and there are many faith schools that teach the ethos of particular denominations. When it was revealed that a group called Truth in Science had distributed DVDs produced by Illustra MediaWEB,weblink WIRED Magazine response, Illustra Media, Illustra Media, La Habra, Calif.,weblink" title="">weblink December 20, 2008, 2007-07-13, It's also important that you read a well developed rebuttal to Wired's misleading accusations. Links to both the article and a response by the Discovery Institute (our partners in the production of Unlocking the Mystery of Life and The Privileged Planet) are available below.,
  • MAGAZINE, Ratliff, Evan, Evan Ratliff, October 2004, The Crusade Against Evolution,weblink Wired (magazine), Wired, New York, Condé Nast, 12.10, 2014-02-28,
  • WEB,weblink Wired magazine reporter criticized for agenda driven reporting, October 13, 2004, Center for Science and Culture, Discovery Institute, Seattle, 2014-02-28, featuring Discovery Institute fellows making the case for design in nature,WEB,weblink Unlocking the Mystery of Life, Meyer, Stephen C., Allen, W. Peter, July 15, 2004, Center for Science and Culture, Discovery Institute, Seattle, Preview, 2007-07-13, and claimed they were being used by 59 schools,NEWS, Randerson, James, November 26, 2006, Revealed: rise of creationism in UK school,weblink The Guardian, London, Guardian Media Group, 2008-10-17, the Department for Education and Skills (DfES) stated that "Neither creationism nor intelligent design are taught as a subject in schools, and are not specified in the science curriculum" (part of the National Curriculum, which does not apply to independent schools or to education in Scotland).NEWS, September 29, 2006, 'Design' attack on school science,weblink BBC News, London, BBC, 2014-02-28,
HANSARD, House of Commons,weblink November 1, 2006, 455W, 456W, Truth in Science, The DfES subsequently stated that "Intelligent design is not a recognised scientific theory; therefore, it is not included in the science curriculum", but left the way open for it to be explored in religious education in relation to different beliefs, as part of a syllabus set by a local Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education.HANSARD, House of Lords,weblink December 18, 2006, WA257, WA258, Schools: Intelligent Design, In 2006, the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority produced a "Religious Education" model unit in which pupils can learn about religious and nonreligiousviews about creationism, intelligent design and evolution by natural selection.WEB,weblink Guidance on creationism for British teachers, February 2, 2007, National Center for Science Education, National Center for Science Education, Berkeley, Calif., 2009-11-18, WEB,weblinkweblink yes, 2015-09-09, How can we answer questions about creation and origins?, 2006, Qualifications and Curriculum Development Agency, Qualifications and Curriculum Authority, 2014-02-28, On June 25, 2007, the UK Government responded to an e-petition by saying that creationism and intelligent design should not be taught as science, though teachers would be expected to answer pupils' questions within the standard framework of established scientific theories.WEB,weblink nocrescied - epetition response, June 21, 2007,, Office of Public Sector Information, Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London,weblink" title="">weblink October 15, 2008, 2014-02-28,
  • WEB,weblink The UK [government's] position on creationism and Intelligent Design in science classes, British Centre for Science Education, British Centre for Science Education, 2014-02-28, Detailed government "Creationism teaching guidance" for schools in England was published on September 18, 2007. It states that "Intelligent design lies wholly outside of science", has no underpinning scientific principles, or explanations, and is not accepted by the science community as a whole. Though it should not be taught as science, "Any questions about creationism and intelligent design which arise in science lessons, for example as a result of media coverage, could provide the opportunity to explain or explore why they are not considered to be scientific theories and, in the right context, why evolution is considered to be a scientific theory." However, "Teachers of subjects such as RE, history or citizenship may deal with creationism and intelligent design in their lessons."
The British Centre for Science Education lobbying group has the goal of "countering creationism within the UK" and has been involved in government lobbying in the UK in this regard. Northern Ireland's Department for Education says that the curriculum provides an opportunity for alternative theories to be taught. The Democratic Unionist Party (DUP)—which has links to fundamentalist Christianity—has been campaigning to have intelligent design taught in science classes. A DUP former Member of Parliament, David Simpson, has sought assurances from the education minister that pupils will not lose marks if they give creationist or intelligent design answers to science questions.NEWS, November 30, 2007, The creation of a new Giant's Causeway row,weblink Belfast Telegraph, Dublin, Independent News & Media, 2014-02-28, NEWS, Henry, Lesley-Anne, September 26, 2007, Tussle of Biblical proportions over creationism in Ulster classrooms,weblink Belfast Telegraph, Dublin, Independent News & Media, 2014-02-28,
  • NEWS, September 27, 2007, Viewpoint: The world, according to Lisburn folk,weblink Belfast Telegraph, Dublin, Independent News & Media, 2014-02-28, In 2007, Lisburn city council voted in favor of a DUP recommendation to write to post-primary schools asking what their plans are to develop teaching material in relation to "creation, intelligent design and other theories of origin".NEWS, September 26, 2007, Dup Call For Schools To Teach Creation Passed By Council,weblink Ulster Star, Edinburgh, Johnston Publishing (NI), Johnston Publishing Ltd., 2014-02-28,
Plans by Dutch Education Minister Maria van der Hoeven to "stimulate an academic debate" on the subject in 2005 caused a severe public backlash.JOURNAL, Enserink, Martin, June 3, 2005, Evolution Politics: Is Holland Becoming the Kansas of Europe?, Science (journal), Science, 308, 5727, 1394, 10.1126/science.308.5727.1394b, 15933170, After the 2006 elections, she was succeeded by Ronald Plasterk, described as a "molecular geneticist, staunch atheist and opponent of intelligent design".NEWS, February 13, 2007, Cabinet ministers announced (update 2),weblink, Amsterdam, Dutch News BV, 2014-02-28, As a reaction on this situation in the Netherlands, the Director General of the Flemish Secretariat of Catholic Education ({{interlanguage link|VSKO|nl|Katholiek Onderwijs Vlaanderen}}) in Belgium, {{Interlanguage link|Mieke Van Hecke|nl}}, declared that: "Catholic scientists already accepted the theory of evolution for a long time and that intelligent design and creationism doesn't belong in Flemish Catholic schools. It's not the tasks of the politics to introduce new ideas, that's task and goal of science."NEWS, Katholieke wetenschappers hebben de evolutietheorie al lang aanvaard, May 23, 2005, De Morgen, Brussels, De Persgroep Nederland,


The status of intelligent design in Australia is somewhat similar to that in the UK (see Education in Australia). In 2005, the Australian Minister for Education, Science and Training, Brendan Nelson, raised the notion of intelligent design being taught in science classes. The public outcry caused the minister to quickly concede that the correct forum for intelligent design, if it were to be taught, is in religion or philosophy classes.NEWS, Wroe, David, August 11, 2005, 'Intelligent design' an option: Nelson,weblink The Age, Sydney, Fairfax Media, 2014-03-02, NEWS, Smith, Deborah, October 21, 2005, Intelligent design not science: experts,weblink The Sydney Morning Herald, Sydney, Fairfax Media, 2007-07-13, The Australian chapter of Campus Crusade for Christ distributed a DVD of the Discovery Institute's documentary Unlocking the Mystery of Life (2002) to Australian secondary schools.NEWS, Kruger, Paula, August 26, 2005, Brendan Nelson suggests 'intelligent design' could be taught in schools,weblink PM (ABC Radio), PM, Transcript, Sydney, Radio National, ABC Radio National, 2011-10-22, Tim Hawkes, the head of The King's School, one of Australia's leading private schools, supported use of the DVD in the classroom at the discretion of teachers and principals.NEWS, Green, Shane, October 28, 2005, School backs intelligent design DVD,weblink The Age, Sydney, Fairfax Media, 2011-10-22,

Relation to Islam

Muzaffar Iqbal, a notable Pakistani-Canadian Muslim, signed "A Scientific Dissent From Darwinism", a petition from the Discovery Institute.JOURNAL, Edis, Taner, Taner Edis, November–December 1999, Cloning Creationism in Turkey,weblink Reports of the National Center for Science Education, 19, 6, 30–35, 2158-818X, 2009-11-18, Ideas similar to intelligent design have been considered respected intellectual options among Muslims, and in Turkey many intelligent design books have been translated. In Istanbul in 2007, public meetings promoting intelligent design were sponsored by the local government,JOURNAL, Edis, Taner, January 2008, Islamic Creationism: A Short History,weblink Newsletter, 37, 1, 2011-04-20, yes,weblink" title="">weblink July 16, 2011, and David Berlinski of the Discovery Institute was the keynote speaker at a meeting in May 2007.WEB,weblink Turkey's survival of the fittest, Jones, Dorian L., March 12, 2008, Security Watch, International Relations and Security Network, Zurich, 2014-02-28,

Relation to ISKCON

In 2011, the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) Bhaktivedanta Book Trust published an intelligent design book titled Rethinking Darwin: A Vedic Study of Darwinism and Intelligent Design. The book included contributions from intelligent design advocates William A. Dembski, Jonathan Wells and Michael Behe as well as from Hindu creationists Leif A. Jensen and Michael Cremo.Jensen 2011

See also

{{Wikipedia books|Creationism and Intelligent Design}}{{div col|colwidth=22em}} {{div col end}}





Further reading

{{Further reading cleanup|date=April 2017}}


  • BOOK, Behe, Michael J., Michael Behe, 1996, Darwin's Black Box: The Biochemical Challenge to Evolution, New York, Free Press (publisher), Free Press, 978-0-684-82754-4, 96000695, 34150540, Behe 1996, Darwin's Black Box,
  • BOOK, Coyne, Jerry A., Jerry Coyne, 2009, Why Evolution is True, Oxford; New York, Oxford University Press, 978-0-19-923084-6, 2008042122, 259716035, Coyne 2009,weblink
  • BOOK, Darwin, Charles, Charles Darwin, 1860, On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life, Fifth Thousand [2nd], London, John Murray (publisher), John Murray, 05016315, 1184673, Darwin 1860, On the Origin of Species, The book is available in the PDF format from The Complete Work of Charles Darwin Online.
  • BOOK, Davis, Percival, Percival Davis, Kenyon, Dean H., Dean H. Kenyon, 1993, Originally published 1989, Thaxton, Charles B., Charles Thaxton, Of Pandas and People: The Central Question of Biological Origins, 2nd, Dallas, Haughton Publishing Co., 978-0-914513-40-7, 00711376, 27973099, Davis & Kenyon 1993,weblink
  • BOOK, Dawkins, Richard, Richard Dawkins, 1986, The Blind Watchmaker: Why the Evidence of Evolution Reveals a Universe without Design, Illustrations by Liz Pyle, 1st American, New York, W. W. Norton & Company, 978-0-393-02216-2, 85004960, 802616493, Dawkins 1986, The Blind Watchmaker,
  • BOOK, Dawkins, Richard, 2006, The God Delusion, Boston, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Houghton Mifflin Company, 978-0-618-68000-9, 2006015506, 68965666, Dawkins 2006, The God Delusion,
  • BOOK, Dembski, William A., William A. Dembski, 1998, The Design Inference: Eliminating Chance through Small Probabilities, Cambridge; New York, Cambridge University Press, 978-0-521-62387-2, 98003020, 38551103, Dembski 1998, The Design Inference,
  • BOOK, Dembski, William A., 1999, Intelligent Design: The Bridge Between Science & Theology, Downers Grove, IL, InterVarsity Press, 978-0-8308-2314-7, 99037141, 41628252, Dembski 1999, Intelligent Design (book),
  • BOOK, Forrest, Barbara, Barbara Forrest, Gross, Paul R., Paul R. Gross, 2004, Creationism's Trojan Horse: The Wedge of Intelligent Design, Oxford; New York, Oxford University Press, 978-0-19-515742-0, 50913078, 2002192677, Forrest & Gross 2004, Creationism's Trojan Horse,
  • BOOK, Frame, Tom, Tom Frame (bishop), 2009, Evolution in the Antipodes: Charles Darwin and Australia, Sydney, UNSW Press, 978-1-921410-76-5, 2009286878, 271821761, Frame 2009,
  • BOOK, Gonzalez, Guillermo, Guillermo Gonzalez (astronomer), Richards, Jay W., Jay Richards, 2004, The Privileged Planet: How Our Place in the Cosmos is Designed for Discovery, Washington, D.C., Regnery Publishing, 978-0-89526-065-9, 2004000421, 54046478, Gonzalez 2004, The Privileged Planet,
  • BOOK, Humes, Edward, Edward Humes, 2007, Monkey Girl: Evolution, Education, Religion, and the Battle for America's Soul, 1st, New York, Ecco Press, Ecco, 978-0-06-088548-9, 2006050263, 71223542, Humes 2007, Monkey Girl: Evolution, Education, Religion, and the Battle for America's Soul,
  • BOOK, Johnson, Phillip E., Phillip E. Johnson, 1991, Darwin on Trial, Washington, D.C., Regnery Publishing, Regnery Gateway, 978-0-8952-6535-7, 90026218, 22906277, Johnson 1991, Darwin on Trial,
  • BOOK, Johnson, Phillip E., 1995, Reason in the Balance: The Case Against Naturalism in Science, Law & Education, Downers Grove, IL, InterVarsity Press, 978-0-830-81610-1, 95012620, 32384818, Johnson 1995,weblink
  • BOOK, Johnson, Phillip E., 1997, Defeating Darwinism by Opening Minds, Downers Grove, Ill., InterVarsity Press, 978-0-8308-1360-5, 97012916, 36621960, Johnson 1997,weblink
  • BOOK, Johnson, Phillip E., 2000, The Wedge of Truth: Splitting the Foundations of Naturalism, Downers Grove, Ill., InterVarsity Press, 978-0-8308-2267-6, 00039586, 43903750, Johnson 2000,
  • BOOK, Meyer, Stephen C., Stephen C. Meyer, 2009, Signature in the Cell, 1st, New York, HarperCollins, HarperOne, 978-0-06-147278-7, 2008051773, 232978147, Meyer 2009, Signature in the Cell,
  • BOOK, Numbers, Ronald L., Ronald L. Numbers, 2006, Originally published 1992 as The Creationists: The Evolution of Scientific Creationism; New York: Alfred A. Knopf, The Creationists: From Scientific Creationism to Intelligent Design, Expanded ed., 1st Harvard University Press pbk., Cambridge, Massachusetts, Harvard University Press, 978-0-674-02339-0, 2006043675, 69734583, Numbers 2006, The Creationists,
  • BOOK, Pearcey, Nancy, Nancy Pearcey, 2004, Total Truth: Liberating Christianity from Its Cultural Captivity, Foreword by Phillip E. Johnson, Wheaton, Ill., Good News Publishers, Crossway Books, 978-1-58134-458-5, 2003019514, 52980609, Pearcey 2004,
  • BOOK, Pennock, Robert T., Robert T. Pennock, 1999, Tower of Babel: The Evidence Against the New Creationism, Cambridge, Massachusetts, MIT Press, 978-0-262-16180-0, 98027286, 44966044, Pennock 1999,weblink
  • BOOK, Pennock, Robert T, Robert T. Pennock, 2001, Intelligent Design Creationism and Its Critics: Philosophical, Theological, and Scientific Perspectives, Cambridge, Massachusetts, MIT Press, 978-0-262-66124-9, 2001031276, 46729201, Pennock 2001,
  • BOOK, Pigliucci, Massimo, Massimo Pigliucci, 2010, Science in the Courtroom: The Case against Intelligent Design,weblink Nonsense on Stilts: How to Tell Science from Bunk, Chicago, University of Chicago Press, 978-0-226-66786-7, 2009049778, 457149439, 160–186, Pigliucci 2010,
  • BOOK, Ronan, Colin A., Colin Ronan, 1983, The Cambridge Illustrated History of the World's Science, Cambridge; New York, Cambridge University Press, 978-0-521-25844-9, 87673896, 10411883, Ronan 1983,
  • BOOK, Ruse, Michael, Michael Ruse, 1992, Of Pandas and People, Hughes, Liz Rank, Reviews of Creationist Books, Book review, 2nd, Berkeley, Calif., National Center for Science Education, 978-0-939873-52-4, 29343847, Hughes 1992,weblink
  • BOOK, Scott, Eugenie C., Eugenie Scott, 2004, Evolution vs. Creationism: An Introduction, Foreword by Niles Eldredge, Westport, Conn., Greenwood Publishing Group, Greenwood Press, 978-0-313-32122-1, 2004044214, 54752786, Scott 2004,
  • BOOK, Shanks, Niall, Niall Shanks, God, the Devil, and Darwin: A Critique of Intelligent Design Theory, 2004, Foreword by Richard Dawkins, Oxford; New York, Oxford University Press, 978-0-19-516199-1, 2003042916, 51769083, Shanks 2004,
  • BOOK, Shermer, Michael, Michael Shermer, 2006, Why Darwin Matters: The Case Against Intelligent Design, 1st, New York, Times Books, 978-0-8050-8121-3, 2006041243, 64511220, Shermer 2007, Why Darwin Matters,
  • BOOK, Stenger, Victor J., Victor J. Stenger, 2011, The Fallacy of Fine-Tuning: Why the Universe Is Not Designed for Us, Amherst, N.Y., Prometheus Books, 978-1-61614-443-2, 2010049901, 679931691, Stenger 2011,
  • BOOK, Susskind, Leonard, Leonard Susskind, 2005, The Cosmic Landscape: String Theory and the Illusion of Intelligent Design, 1st, New York, Little, Brown and Company, 978-0-316-15579-3, 2005018796, 60798474, Susskind 2005, The Cosmic Landscape,
  • BOOK, Matt, Young, Taner, Edis, Why Intelligent Design Fails: A Scientific Critique of the New Creationism,weblink 2004, Rutgers University Press, 978-0-8135-3433-6, Young & Edis 2004,
  • BOOK, Zimmer, Carl, Carl Zimmer, 2001, Evolution: The Triumph of an Idea,weblink Introduction by Stephen Jay Gould; foreword by Richard Hutton, 1st, New York, HarperCollins, 978-0-06-019906-7, 2001024077, 46359440, 2014-02-28, Zimmer 2001,

Non-ID perspectives

Media articles and audio video resources

  • PODCAST,weblink Intelligent Design: Scientific Inquiry or Religious Indoctrination?, Justice Talking, Annenberg Public Policy Center, Adler, Margot (Host), Margot Adler, September 5, 2005, 2014-02-28,
  • JOURNAL, Annas, George J., George Annas, May 25, 2006, Intelligent Judging — Evolution in the Classroom and the Courtroom, The New England Journal of Medicine, 354, 2277–2281, 10.1056/NEJMlim055660, 0028-4793, Annas 2006, 16723620, 21,
  • NEWS, Baynton, Douglas, December 17, 2005, 'Intelligent Design' Deja Vu,weblink The Washington Post, 2014-02-28,
  • NEWS, Debating Evolution in the Classroom,weblink National Public Radio, NPR, Washington, D.C., National Public Radio, Inc., Story archive, 2014-02-28,
  • NEWS, Downey, Roger, February 1, 2006, Discovery's Creation,weblink Seattle Weekly, Phoenix, Ariz., Village Voice Media, 2014-02-28, Downey 2006,weblink" title="">weblink 2014-03-05, yes,
  • NEWS, Grier, Peter, Burek, Josh, December 21, 2005, Banned in biology class: intelligent design,weblink Christian Science Monitor, 2014-02-28,
  • EPISODE, Judgment Day: Intelligent Design on Trial, Judgment Day: Intelligent Design on Trial,weblink 2014-02-28, Nova (American TV series), Nova, Johnstone, Gary (Director), McMaster, Joseph (Director), PBS, November 13, 2007, 35,
  • WEB,weblink Kitzmiller in the York Daily Record, September 11, 2015, National Center for Science Education, National Center for Science Education, Berkeley, Calif., 2015-10-22,
  • NEWS, Lemonick, Michael, Michael Lemonick, December 20, 2005, Darwin Victorious,weblink Time (magazine), Time, 2014-02-28,
  • NEWS, Orr, H. Allen, H. Allen Orr, May 30, 2005, Devolution,weblink The New Yorker, New York, Condé Nast, 2014-02-28, Orr 2005,
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