Evolution News and Views (ENV) provides original reporting and analysis about the debate over intelligent design and evolution, including breaking news about scientific research.

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Barb's at it Again!

Barbara Forrest is at it again. In her latest review of Meyer & Campbell's Darwinism, Design & Public Education Forrest substitutes strident affirmation for science and scorn for reasoned argumentation. Forrest never chooses to engage the arguments of design theorists but rather questions their qualifications: "John Angus Campbell, who also serves on the journal's editorial board, is a rhetorician. Stephen C. Meyer is a philosopher." What pray tell was your Ph.D. in Barbara? And why is it you don't apply that same standard to Robert Pennock when he deigns himself fit to comment on evolution?

What Forrest more often than not fails to comprehend is that merely asserting that "there is no argument" and "ID is not science" doesn't settle the issue when the nature of science itself is under question. Like a species of medieval inquisitor, Forrest will brook no debate on this issue. Instead of appeals to evidence or logic, she appeals, ad naseum, to authority. Could it perhaps be because where logic and evidence come into play, and where the game is not rigged, Forrest will lose?

And the wedge again Barbara? (Yawn) That is such old news that has already been dealt with here. For the record I don't know of a single ID theorist who refers to himself as "the Wedge" nor do we do so collectively. And your sad tactic of calling us "Intelligent Design Creationists" is just a ploy to hang the albatross of creationism around our necks when there are appreciable differences that any historian of science would recognize.

First and foremost is that many ID theorists have no problem with the "Big Bang." In fact, we often point to it and the accompanying "fine tuning" of the laws of physics and chemistry as evidence of design. Meanwhile, the sort of creationist that Forrest wants to equate us with bristles at the notion of a Big Bang.

Next is the fact that creationists by definition start with a prior commitment to defend holy writ and yet there are several fellows of the Institute that are agnostic and have no religious commitment whatsoever.

Such distinctions cannot be easily glossed over and won't be intellectually settled by appending the label "creationist" to the end of ID. At best it is intellectually dishonest. At the very least it's misleading. Is it a fair representation to append "atheist" to the end of "evolutionist" Barbara? No doubt some evolutionists like you and Richard Dawkins are atheists, but others like Ken Miller are not. So let's go beyond the name calling and have an honest intellectual debate over the evidence.