December 27, 2005


Is Creationism Destructible?: Where to go from Dover. (William Saletan, Dec. 21, 2005, Slate)

In his 139-page ruling on the Dover, Pa., "intelligent design" case, federal district Judge John E. Jones sets out to kill ID's scientific pretensions once and for all. [...]

Scientifically, Jones settles the issue. Culturally, he fails. And until we learn the difference, the fight over creationism in schools and courts will go on.

The decisive assumption in Jones' opinion is the definitions of science proposed by the National Academy of Sciences and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. First, scientific explanations must be natural, not supernatural. Second, they must be testable. These criteria instantly kill ID as science. Its explicit aspiration was to defeat "methodological naturalism." Once you accept naturalism, as Jones does, you guarantee his conclusion that supernatural theories are a "science stopper."

The most helpful thing the judge did in this case was to demonstrate the tautologous nature of Darwinism.

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 27, 2005 8:16 PM
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