Uncommon Descent Serving The Intelligent Design Community

ID in the Universities: COMM 4381 University of Memphis


Comm 4381

This special section will address the above goals by examining four controversies connected with Charles Darwin’s Origin of Species

Arguments for and against Darwin’s theory
Arguments for and against intelligent design (id).
Can a Christian (or Jew, or Moslem, or any monotheist) be a Darwinian?
Does id have a proper place in the biology classroom?

The Teacher, John Angus Campbell will be visiting James Madison University as a judge in a $10,000 debate over ID


hi morpheusfaith my dear friend,

Well actually, the prize is for debate skills so awards may actually go to the debate team that does a good job arguing a defenseless position. :-)

I recall one high school biology teacher that said he often set up debates between students. He said he deliberately placed the brightest students to defend the Darwinian position because it was the most indefensible.

If the debate judges give points to students for using unethical but clever debate tactics, I'd actually be kind of excited. Afterall, if a team is capable of fabricating a case, then it is also capable of recognizing fabrications and fallacies, and will be therefore more capable of engaging in the public arena.

I notice that my ID brethren on the internet are not quick enough to recognize when their opponents are using unethical debate tactics. They tend to be too trusting that the opponent is trying to be reasonable and ethical. They get caught in hoping the other side is trying to play fair.

Let's say I, an IDist were assigned by the debate instructor the task of defending a pro-Darwin position. In real life, I would only argue positions that are true or defensible, and thus in real life I wouldn't even join the wrong side of the debate (the Darwhinists).

Now, since this is a debate exercise, realizing I had an indefensible position to defend, well, by golly, I'd grab and use every slimy argument in Manual of Slimy Darwinist Debate Tactics.

Not that I would use such tactics in honest debate, but IDists wishing to clarify the issues, wishing counter the opponents criticism in the public eye would do well to recognize Manual of Slimy Darwinist Debate Tactics. One way to do that, is, as an exercise, try arguing their indefensible position.

Some oldies, but goodies I'd use to defend the pro-Darwin position
Non-sequiter, Circulus in demonstrando (heck, practically all of the Darwinists us this one),
Argumentum ad Hominem (do we even need to say who),
Argumentum ad verecundiam(overwhelming number of Darwinist scientists reject ID), Strawman(heck all the PTers use this one at one time or another),Fallacy of Interrogation, etc.

Already I'm suspicious of the outcome of this $10,000 debate. I am sure that virtually every one of the judges will be predisposed one way or another. Does anyone actually think that this debate will be judged on the merits of the arguments (instead of the presuppositions of the judges)? morpheusfaith
Sweeeet!!! I have a cousin who's a freshman at UM. I think he might find this interesting. crandaddy
Man, just as I am leaving Memphis. But, I suppose I really don't need the course. HEY DR. DEMBSKI: If you were to suggest a curriculum for a wanna-be design theorist entering a PhD program in mathematics, and you were limited to the offerings at George Mason University, what would the curriculum consist of? Thanks! jaredl

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