A student emails me to ask how long it will be before the “tide turns from Darwinism to ID.” He follows the debate over intelligent design and is aware that the Darwin lobby’s rhetoric typically fails to address ID’s actual arguments (which are scientific in nature), instead focusing on personal attacks or trying to claim ID is religion. This student feels it is obvious that ID has the upper hand in the argument, but wonders when the majority opinion will also recognize this.
I agree that in the long-term, the position of the anti-ID lobby is simply not sustainable. You can’t keep claiming forever that ID is just “religion” or “politics” when the ID camp is producing legitimate science, and even non-ID scientists keep making discoveries that confirm the predictions of ID. Or I suppose you can keep claiming whatever you want, but it will become increasingly difficult to get people to believe you.
What are my reasons for optimism? One of the strongest signs is that in head-to-head debates over ID and Darwinism, the ID proponent generally wins hands down. In that respect, we’ve had many key intellectual victories in recent years, including: More.
I figured ID might have a chance in the argument when Darwin’s followers said things like:
1) You believe that ID stuff because you are a Mic, a paddy, a Catholic
2) Catholics don’t believe that! The Pope has said …. (Note to self: Order universal swivel joint for head)
3) There is a dark conspiracy to subject Americans to (whatever), led by the heirs of Jerry Falwell. [a conspiracy so dark that, where I live, it whistled right past, hey no blip.]
4) Innovation in science will decline if we don’t believe some Darwinian theory about evolution. [What was innovation doing before we had ever heard of Darwinian theory?]
5) “Well, there IS a law on the books, you know, that forbids you to … “ [forbids what, where, under what circumstances? Is it even operative in my jurisdiction?]
This is why we usually get lots of sleep at night, and come back refreshed.