Tech Central Station has an interesting article on Intelligent Design by Douglas Kern. Mr. Kern argues that Intelligent Design will supplant Darwinism in our lifetime. I’m not sure he is correct, but he does make some interesting points.
The first reason he gives is:
“ID will win because it’s a religion-friendly, conservative-friendly, red-state kind of theory, and no one will lose money betting on the success of red-state theories in the next fifty to one hundred years.”
This is the most persuasive of his points. Given a choice between a religion-friendly and a religion-hostile theory, most people will choose the religion-friendly one since most people are religion-friendly themselves. Now one could argue (and many do) that Darwinism isn’t religion-hostile. However, many of the most vocal proponents of Darwinism are quite hostile to religion.
Which brings us to Mr. Kern’s second argument, which is “ID will win because the pro-Darwin crowd is acting like a bunch of losers.” He summarizes most responses to ID theory as follows:
“Ewww…intelligent design people! They’re just buck-toothed Bible-pushing nincompoops with community-college degrees who’re trying to sell a gussied-up creationism to a cretinous public! No need to address their concerns or respond to their arguments. They are Not Science. They are poopy-heads.”
Sadly, this characterization isn’t all that far from the truth. Arrogance and condescension are not reliable methods for winning friends and influencing others. Plus there are some very intelligent people in the ID camp. And, as Mr. Kern points out, some of their criticisms have been echoed by pro-Darwinian scientists. So simple dismissals of ID proponents makes the Darwinian side seem far too defensive, not the position one would expect from a group confident in their theory. And the attacks seem to be coming more frequently these days. I take this to be a sign that the Darwinists are bothered by the progress the ID camp has made in acceptance of their views.
While I’m sympathetic to the argument, I’m not convinced that ID will win out. There are an awful lot of politics involved in the scientific community. And ID theory doesn’t have a great deal of political clout at the moment. But they do have the advantage of opponents who seem to have a tin ear when it comes to selling their view to the public.
(Article via email from my brother)