Excerpt from Current biology
Volume 16, Issue 16, 22 August 2006, Pages R619-R620
Copyright Ã‚Â© 2006 Published by Elsevier Ltd.
Q & A: Roger Hendrix
Pittsburgh Bacteriophage Institute and Department of Biological Sciences,
University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15260, USA
Available online 21 August 2006.
Q: Given the prominence of the evolutionary perspective in your work, can
you comment on the current efforts to present Ã¢â‚¬ËœIntelligent DesignÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ as an
alternative to biological evolution in public schools in America?
A: It is a sorry commentary on the state of public understanding of
science that a large fraction of the US population is willing to accept
that Intelligent Design (ID), essentially a tarted-up version of
creationism, and evolution are in some sense parallel or comparable. The
ID argument, as near as I can tell is Ã¢â‚¬Å“These biological organisms are so
complex that I cannot imagine how they got to be like they are. If I
cannot understand that, nobody can understand it. Better call in GodÃ¢â‚¬Â. To
think that ID in any way provides evidence against biological evolution
shows a lack of even a rudimentary understanding of the nature of
scientific evidence and scientific argument. At the risk of sounding
cynical, though, I would venture that most of the people pushing ID do not
give a rat’s patootie about having a scientific discussion over evolution
or considering what the data might tell us; they’re simply looking for a
way to insert their own peculiar religious beliefs into public education.