Intelligent Design Creationism

Anti-Evolution and Anti-Climate Science Legislation Scorecard: 2014

Like the swallows returning to Capistrano, science deniers flocked to familiar ground in 2014. Three bills attacking evolution and three bills hammering on "scientific controversies" were trotted out in Missouri, Oklahoma, South Dakota, and Virginia. All went down to defeat. Bills targeting climate change specifically were nowhere to be found. (More on that below.) But the trend is clear—expect future anti-science bills to be vague, focusing on "scientific controversies" instead of specific domains.

Discovery Institute's “Model Academic Freedom Statute on Evolution"

On February 7, 2008, the Discovery Institute launched in cooperation with Motive Marketing, one of the companies in charge of promoting Expelled. Among other things, this site contains the following model "academic freedom" bill:

[version: 9/7/2007]



President Bush Addresses "Intelligent Design"

During a press conference with a group of Texas reporters on August 1, 2005, President George W Bush responded to a question about teaching "intelligent design" in the public schools.

New Mexico's Science Standards Do not Support the Concept of "Teach the Controversy"

On August 21, 2005, The New York Times published an article entitled "Politicized scholars put evolution on the defensive." This otherwise excellent article unfortunately contained several errors that resulted from treating some false information from the Discovery Institute as accurate. One major error was accepting the claim that New Mexico has "embraced the institute's 'teach the controversy' approach." This is absolutely false, as the following evidence will show.

Devolution and Dinosaurs

In January 2006, BBC News published an article entitled "Britons unconvinced on evolution", reporting that only 48% of those questioned accept the theory of evolution. About 17% chose "intelligent design" (ID), 22% opted for creationism, and the rest did not know. Several months later, an anti-evolution seminar was scheduled for members of the European Parliament (EP) in Brussels. The meeting took place on October 11, 2006, and was announced under the following title: "Teaching evolutionary theory in Europe. Is your child being indoctrinated in the classroom?"

"Critical Analysis" in Ohio

Like a zombie in a horror film, the "Critical Analysis of Evolution" effort returned to haunt the Buckeye State, despite a series of stakes through its heart. In 2002, Ohio adopted a set of science standards including a requirement that students be able to "describe how scientists continue to investigate and critically analyze aspects of evolutionary theory" (see RNCSE 2002 Sep/Oct; 22 [5]: 4–6). When the indicator was introduced, it was widely feared that it would provide a pretext for the introduction of creationist misrepresentations of evolution.

The "Grill the ID Guys" Event at Biola

On the way to the "Intelligent Design Under Fire" event (also referred to as "Grill the ID Guys") at Biola University, my wife asked me what she should expect.

The Dover Victory

On the morning of December 20, 2005, we were sitting in the law offices of Pepper Hamilton in Harrisburg, waiting for the judge to deliver his verdict in the Dover trial. It was expected to come sometime that day, or maybe the next day; no one could be completely sure. We had heard that the decision was a long one. An office pool had been started, and the bets were in on what time the verdict would be announced. The waiting was getting unbearable. Finally, at about 10:30, the e-mailed attachment began showing up on the office computers.

My Role in Kitzmiller v Dover

Philosophers expect to be in classrooms, not courtrooms. Yet in October 2005 I found myself in federal court as an expert witness for the plaintiffs in Kitzmiller et al v Dover Area School District. As the co-author of Creationism’s Trojan Horse, which documents that "intelligent design" (ID) is both a religious belief and an extension of traditional creationism, I was called to demonstrate this to Judge John E Jones III, who presided over this first ID legal case.