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Thread: Bush backs Intelligent Design

  1. #16
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    Re: Bush backs Intelligent Design

    Quote Originally Posted by Ravenlord
    yet i see the exact opposite of that.
    Could you be more specific?

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  3. #17
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    Re: Bush backs Intelligent Design

    Quote Originally Posted by traderumor
    Speaking of irresponsible...that's Mr. Lynn's opinion, and yes, I said OPINION. Does he mean micro evolution or macro evolution? Does he have any scientific evidence that is occurring as we speak? Oh, that's right, we need millions of years, you can't actually see anything happening, but then I forgot the fossil record and the various missing link frauds that have been trotted out, but I digress.
    You act like there isn't this massive fossil record tracking every species on the planet. There is. Scientists can explain to you how rock hyraxes (which look like amped up guinea pigs) are really cousins of the elephant. Selective breeding of animals has caused evolution in those species. Selective breeding of Chinese people produced Yao Ming.

    At the cellular level, they can absolutely show you where humanity has evolved over time. The classic example is the adaptation that allows your average caucasian to digest large quantities of dairy products. I can do it. The Indian (from India) guy I work with can't.

    And there's a school of thought that humanity is going through a period of rapid evolution. Thanks to plentiful food and advanced medicine, we're growing by leaps and bounds (generation to generation). Ethnicity's also breaking down on the breeding front. We're all mutts, but that's combining the stronger traits of different ethnicities and winnowing many of the recessive boogeymen (e.g. Tay Sachs). On top of that, there's a theory that we're getting smarter. The sum total of human knowledge has been growing exponentially for a century and some think it's because we're able to keep pace with it in a way our ancestors couldn't.

    What they've learned about evolution in recent decades is that species can undergo radical changes in thousands of years rather than millions if the conditions are right (or wrong). One which would seem like a big deal to us but isn't much of a big deal at the genetic level is skin color. It only takes a few thousand years to go from black to white. That's one they can track using DNA. Though, like I mentioned, bigger changes quite possibly could be afoot. In 5,000 years or so, it might be fairly commonplace to be a 10-foot-tall, supergenius human. If you were graphing it that's the direction the data points of that last 100 years would point you.
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    Re: Bush backs Intelligent Design

    Interesting Op-ed in the Boston Globe from earlier this year.

    KENNETH R. MILLER
    Remove stickers, open minds

    By Kenneth R. Miller | January 22, 2005

    ISN'T EVOLUTION a theory? Of course it is. So why did a federal district court judge last week order a board of education in Georgia to remove stickers from biology textbooks that seemed to tell students that evolution was just a theory? Is this a case of censorship? Is a closed-minded scientific establishment trying to keep evidence against evolution out of the classroom? Is a federal court telling educators that evolution is now federally protected dogma?

    The answer is far simpler. The judge simply read the sticker and saw that it served no scientific or educational purpose. Once that was clear, he looked to the reasons for slapping it in the textbooks of thousands of students, and here the record was equally clear. The sticker was inserted to advance a particular set of religious beliefs -- exactly the argument advanced by the parents of six students in the district who sued the Cobb County Board of Education to get the stickers removed.

    So what's wrong with telling students that evolution is a theory? Nothing. But the textbook they were using already described evolution as a theory, and I ought to know. Joseph Levine and I wrote the biology book Cobb County's high school students are using. Chapter 15 is titled "Darwin's Theory of Evolution." Hard to be clearer than that. So why did the Cobb County Board of Education slap a warning label inside a book that already refers to evolution as a theory? Cooper hit correctly he wrote that "by denigrating evolution, the school board appears to be endorsing the well-known prevailing alternative theory, creationism or variations thereof, even though the sticker does not specifically reference any alternative theories."

    Exactly. What the sticker said was that "Evolution is a theory, not a fact, regarding the origin of living things." The problem with that wording is that evolution is both a theory and a fact. It is a fact that living things in the past were different from living things today and that the life of the past changed, or evolved, to produce the life of the present. Recent news reports the discovery of a new mammalian fossil in China that has a small dinosaur in its stomach. This fossil is a fact -- clear evidence that some early mammals were able to prey upon dinosaurs, at least little ones. And it is just one of millions of fossils that support the fact that life has changed over time, the fact of evolution.

    How did that change take place? That's exactly the question that evolutionary theory attempts to answer. Theories in science don't become facts -- rather, theories explain facts. Evolutionary theory is a comprehensive explanation of change supported by the facts of natural history, genetics, and molecular biology.

    Is evolution beyond dispute? Of course not. In fact, the most misleading part of the sticker was its concluding sentence: "This material should be approached with an open mind, studied carefully, and critically considered." Think about that. The sticker told students that there was just one subject in their textbooks that had to be approached with an open mind and critically considered. Apparently, we are certain of everything in biology except evolution. That is nonsense. What that sticker should have told students is what our textbook makes clear: Everything in science should be approached with critical thinking and an open mind.

    The forces of anti-evolution will pretend that the sticker case is an example of censorship and that the sinister forces of science have converged on classrooms to prevent honest and open examination of a controversial idea.

    There is great irony in such charges. As conservative icon Alan Bloom pointed out in his landmark book "The Closing of the American Mind," one of the worst forms of intellectual intolerance is to promote a false equivalence between competing ideas. Acting as though all ideas (or all theories) have equal standing actually deprives students of a realistic view of how critical analysis is done. That's as true in science as it is in the cultural conflicts.

    Judge Cooper saw this point clearly: "While evolution is subject to criticism, particularly with respect to the mechanism by which it occurred, the sticker misleads students regarding the significance and value of evolution in the scientific community." Does it ever. In reality, evolution is a powerful and hard-working theory used at the cutting edge of scientific inquiry in developmental biology, genome analysis, drug discovery, and scientific medicine. To pretend otherwise is to shield students from the reality of how science is done.

    What the removal of the sticker will do is not to close a window but to open one that will let students see a science of biology in which all theories, not just one, are the result of constant, vigorous, critical analysis. A science in which evolution is at the centerpiece of a 21st-century revolution in our understanding of the grandeur and majesty of life.

    So, what should be done with those stickers, now pasted into thousands of textbooks? I'd pass along a suggestion I received from a science teacher in Cobb County itself: Glue an American flag on top of each and every one of them.

    Kenneth R. Miller is a professor of biology at Brown University and coauthor of "Biology."

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    Re: Bush backs Intelligent Design

    Quote Originally Posted by Falls City Beer
    Could you be more specific?
    for starters fossilization requires a quick and sudden pressure. otherwise, i wouldn't have grasshopper, oak leaf, and chicken bone fossils that i made when i was 10 years old. there also wouldn't be fossilized sea shells on Mount Everest.

    the Earth is more than 6,000 years old, humanity is not, but the Earth is.

    the Bible is very specific about how things come into being, and this is where it gets really fascinating to me.

    In the beginning God created teh heavens and the earth.-Genesis 1:1.
    note the word 'created'.

    Then God said, "Let the land produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds" And it was so.-Genesis 1:11
    note that it does not say 'God created vegetation." it says 'let the land produce vegetation.' evolving from the land comes the first plants.

    And God said, "Let the water teem with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the expanse of the sky."-Genesis 1:20
    again there is a lack of the word 'create' (though it does appear in the next verse if you have an NIV translation). and note the first animilian life appears in the water.

    And God said, "Let the land prodcue lving creatures according to their kinds: livestock, creatures that move along the ground, and wild animals, each according to its kind." And it was so.-Genesis 1:24
    yet again, the word 'create' is absent.

    Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that moving along the ground."
    So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.
    -Genesis 1:26-27.
    now we have the word 'create' once again (and not just in the NIV this time 'round).

    when i hear creation (which means evolution and intelligent design in my usage of it) theory being discussed, it usually involves just glossing over and saying "God created everything." when the Bible is very specific, God had things brought forth, except for the earth and mankind (water and sky, as well as night and day are ommitted because they're pretty static in their existance, however the former was 'made' and latter was 'spoke and it was so').

    micro evolution is very real. there used to be just one species of coyote in North America. they were 20-30 pound dogs. now, coyotes east of the Missippi river are now becoming/have become two new sub-species. they are both larger than their western cousins. the first being called "Eastern Coyotes" for the time being. they are bigger and stronger, averaging 40 pounds. and the other subspecies has yet to be given a scientific name, but for the time being have been called "Primitive Wolves." they are graying in fur, are bigger then western coyotes, but have developed hunting pack instinct.

    clear micro links of evolution are easy to find. in the coyote example above, it took less than 250 years, not thousands to go from one species to three species. just like those light colored English moths that turned dark as the trees darkened over a perido of 20 years.

    there's lots of direct effect evolution, it just doesn't involve something rising up into being humanity.

    i'd write more, but i'm really bloody tired (stupid 13 hour work day).
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    Re: Bush backs Intelligent Design

    Quote Originally Posted by Ravenlord
    for starters fossilization requires a quick and sudden pressure. otherwise, i wouldn't have grasshopper, oak leaf, and chicken bone fossils that i made when i was 10 years old. there also wouldn't be fossilized sea shells on Mount Everest.

    the Earth is more than 6,000 years old, humanity is not, but the Earth is.

    the Bible is very specific about how things come into being, and this is where it gets really fascinating to me.

    In the beginning God created teh heavens and the earth.-Genesis 1:1.
    note the word 'created'.

    Then God said, "Let the land produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds" And it was so.-Genesis 1:11
    note that it does not say 'God created vegetation." it says 'let the land produce vegetation.' evolving from the land comes the first plants.

    And God said, "Let the water teem with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the expanse of the sky."-Genesis 1:20
    again there is a lack of the word 'create' (though it does appear in the next verse if you have an NIV translation). and note the first animilian life appears in the water.

    And God said, "Let the land prodcue lving creatures according to their kinds: livestock, creatures that move along the ground, and wild animals, each according to its kind." And it was so.-Genesis 1:24
    yet again, the word 'create' is absent.

    Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that moving along the ground."
    So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.
    -Genesis 1:26-27.
    now we have the word 'create' once again (and not just in the NIV this time 'round).

    when i hear creation (which means evolution and intelligent design in my usage of it) theory being discussed, it usually involves just glossing over and saying "God created everything." when the Bible is very specific, God had things brought forth, except for the earth and mankind (water and sky, as well as night and day are ommitted because they're pretty static in their existance, however the former was 'made' and latter was 'spoke and it was so').

    micro evolution is very real. there used to be just one species of coyote in North America. they were 20-30 pound dogs. now, coyotes east of the Missippi river are now becoming/have become two new sub-species. they are both larger than their western cousins. the first being called "Eastern Coyotes" for the time being. they are bigger and stronger, averaging 40 pounds. and the other subspecies has yet to be given a scientific name, but for the time being have been called "Primitive Wolves." they are graying in fur, are bigger then western coyotes, but have developed hunting pack instinct.

    clear micro links of evolution are easy to find. in the coyote example above, it took less than 250 years, not thousands to go from one species to three species. just like those light colored English moths that turned dark as the trees darkened over a perido of 20 years.

    there's lots of direct effect evolution, it just doesn't involve something rising up into being humanity.

    i'd write more, but i'm really bloody tired (stupid 13 hour work day).
    Okay. Even *if* I were to grant the Bible as a source of history/biological evidence, how does that show that the scientific method used by evolutionary biologists is less rigorous and thoroughly investigated than relying upon the authority of a single text? That's what I'm a little bleary on. Particularly in light of your contention that other life forms (non-human) HAVE evolved. Why the human exceptionalism? After all, we share 98% of our genetic material with chimps; is it absurd to suggest that there may be a connection?

  7. #21
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    Re: Bush backs Intelligent Design

    Quote Originally Posted by Ravenlord
    the Earth is more than 6,000 years old, humanity is not, but the Earth is.
    I'm sure the people lived on the Earth for tens of thousands of years before that would beg to differ.

    One cincher is we know when the Bering crossing was open for business and it hasn't been in the past 10,000 years. Yet when the Euros arrived they found two continents with people on them.

    You can tell me all the artifacts, fossils and mitochondrial DNA evidence supporting the Bering crossing are bunk, but I'd like a viable alternative with some supporting evidence if you're going to do it.

    And let's not be using the Bible on this one because last I checked neither the Old Testament or New Testament makes any mention of the Americas ... which, if we're being pure literalists, theoretically means they don't exist.
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    Re: Bush backs Intelligent Design

    the Earth is more than 6,000 years old, humanity is not, but the Earth is.
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    Re: Bush backs Intelligent Design

    I was taught both the theory of evolution and the theory of creationism in public school. I find that the two theories can co-exist, and that anyone who disregards either of them without strong consideration of both lacks vision.
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    Re: Bush backs Intelligent Design

    Quote Originally Posted by Ravenlord

    when i hear creation (which means evolution and intelligent design in my usage of it) theory being discussed, it usually involves just glossing over and saying "God created everything." when the Bible is very specific, God had things brought forth, except for the earth and mankind (water and sky, as well as night and day are ommitted because they're pretty static in their existance, however the former was 'made' and latter was 'spoke and it was so').
    GEN 2:18 And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper suitable for him.
    GEN 2:19 And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.

    Formed reads as created to me. In this passage it would seem that god created beasts after man? Seems a little inconsistent to me.
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    Re: Bush backs Intelligent Design

    I will never, ever understand why being spiritual depends on believing stories about a snake and an apple in a garden or an ark and a flood.

    Insisting that stuff like that is literal brings into question all the beautiful things that the Bible contains. The essence of spirituality that flows through many, many religions and belief systems.

    But nope, woman made from a rib. Animals from the dirt. That's what's important.
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    Re: Bush backs Intelligent Design

    Insisting that stuff like that is literal brings into question all the beautiful things that the Bible contains. The essence of spirituality that flows through many, many religions and belief systems.
    I agree.

    That said, I have no problem with schools teaching Creationism -- in a Social Studies class. It's not a science, and it shouldn't be taught in science class.
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    Re: Bush backs Intelligent Design

    Quote Originally Posted by RFS62
    I will never, ever understand why being spiritual depends on believing stories about a snake and an apple in a garden or an ark and a flood.

    Insisting that stuff like that is literal brings into question all the beautiful things that the Bible contains. The essence of spirituality that flows through many, many religions and belief systems.

    But nope, woman made from a rib. Animals from the dirt. That's what's important.
    Selective reading of the bible isn't new. I always find it terribly amusing how people who stomp on and on about their faith and the need for more faith never seem to quote the passages about Jesus ridiculing the Pharisees for their grand pronouncements of devotion to god, and telling his own followers to pray where nobody can see them...

    ...or the outright ignoring of the fact that Jesus professed a message of peace and non-violence (think he'd make an exception for suspicions of WMDs?)

    ...or the fact that it's quoted several times in the bible that to be a true follower of Christ, you are supposed to give up all your possessions to those who have none and follow him (think Jerry Falwell looks like he's missed many meals?)

    I sometimes think people "Of Faith" find a need to latch onto the most ridiculous portions of the bible (the burning of sodom and gammorah as an indictment of homosexuality, the seven-day creation myth, the rapture and revelation) because if you talk loudly enough about that, it drowns out the deep fundamental discussion that could be had about all the OTHER parts they're ignoring.
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    Re: Bush backs Intelligent Design

    Quote Originally Posted by Caveat Emperor
    I tend to quote a bumper sticker I saw once:

    "You promise not to pray in my schools
    I promise not to think your church"


    I LOVE that one.

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    Re: Bush backs Intelligent Design

    Quote Originally Posted by KronoRed
    right after "Why Skunks?!?"
    What about the platypus? What the heck was He smoking when he came up with that one?
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    Re: Bush backs Intelligent Design

    Quote Originally Posted by Johnny Footstool
    I agree.

    That said, I have no problem with schools teaching Creationism -- in a Social Studies class. It's not a science, and it shouldn't be taught in science class.
    And there's the rub.

    What people neglect to point out is that science makes no declaration or supposition as to the concept of "design" in the universe. There are a number of scientists who point to the intricate calibration of certain cosmological constants to show that, if this universe DID occur purely by chance, then that is a rather remarkable chance. There are others who argue that since we inhabit this universe, it stands to reason that this is the best universe that we could inhabit, and as such, it is the ONLY universe that could exist.

    But, anyhow, my point is that science does not claim authority on the origins of the various cosmological principles and laws that exist in our universe, its purpose is merely to explain how they work. Religion takes over from there.

    Intelligent Design is not without merit--in fact, I believe you could make a rather convincing case for it. I tend to believe in a creationism-evolutionary hybrid...only I leave the 'evolution" part to science and the 'creation" part to God, and make every effort not to mix the two.


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