Why cannot both Design and Descent be taught in science classes

Surely you can see that the fact that it should not be taught is an important part of why it cannot be taught. People will object to teaching it because it should not be taught (and for other reasons). And those objections cannot be answered because it should not be taught.


This is poorly handled theology. The plain reading (which is problematic at best) would suggest that you extrapolating from the text without evidentiary support. A&E being a true/false statement is not even consistent within Christianity. How are ERVs or other strong evidence dealt with under this model except through god did it statements. God then creates in a way that mimics evolution perfectly. He also does this for every other field of science that ID/YEC disagree with. However, for anything that is not contradicting, but uses the same method then it works and is real science.

How would my students know what is discretely created? What happens if we find new evidence, does the theory adjust or simply retreat into God of the gaps.

There are over 20 000 different denominations within Christianity. The type of common design only agrees with a small subset of them. Why are these parent’s views privileged?


I’m late to the thread so I will limit the redundancies in my post—because others have already made some of my points for me. I’ll just add what I’ve often stated: Everything I’ve seen from Intelligent Design over the years appears to be philosophical musings masquerading as science.

It is not that I’m rigidly biased against all talk of ID. I’m a Bible-affirming Christian theist who tries to be logical and honest in weighing evidence and arguments. And after everything I’ve seen from ID advocates over these recent decades, nothing so far qualifies as sound science.

Philosophy and science have overlap in their subject matter but the methodologies are different. Does ID theory ever effectively use the scientific method to makes its case? Not in my experience.

Quit beating around the bush and tell us how you really feel.

[Sarcasm alert.]


If intelligent design made testable predictions, meaning it’s proponents had the guts to stick their necks out and make predictions that could be observationally tested about how the design happens, or when, or where, or what mechanisms were involved in the design - and if those predictions were confirmed and led to new discoveries and better understanding of biology, then even though it might at bottom be religiously motivated there is nothing that prevents it from actually being taught as valid science.

It’s just that pronents of intelligent design aren’t doing any of those things. They’re only and exclusively trying to come up with crappy arguments against evolution, and much worse, science itself. They have a problem with ideas like parsimony and testability.


Has anyone specified such a theory and model with any rigor?


It looks narrower than that to me. The idea of God as a “perfect human” looks like LDS theology to me. I can’t imagine more orthodox Christians being happy with it.


For the record, that’s just a myth, or a pretty egregious misreading of the academic literature. Take your pick.


I’ve told you a million times, do not exaggerate.

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The tragedy is that he thinks he has.

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right, that largely stems from a higher number that includes house churches as denominations. Shame on me for repeating something with that kind of methodology :slight_smile:

That’s false too. The issue is that in this statistic each country’s branch of a denomination is counted as a distinct denomination. For example, there are something like 150 Roman Catholic denominations in this count, one for each country, even though they are all actually just one denomination that spans multiple countries.

@djkriese, please educate yourself. Don’t dig the hole deeper:

Very true. OTOH, if you are currently a practising Roman Catholic in Sydney, Australia, then you might well think that some findings of Vatican II have been renounced. Or on an international scale, consider how claims of abuse by clergy are/have been handled in different cities of the same country. I believe that when we talk about the Church of Rome, then it’s single denomination, sure; but in a geo-political sense, I do believe that there might well be 150 (or more) distinct denominations.

You are definitely correct in that statistic being highly misleading.

I made a sloppy attempt to point to the vast diversity within Christian denominations and without as more independent churches/house groups have become more established and are innumerable.

I’ve taught introductory stats at the college level (my graduate slavery) and substitute taught at middle and high school level. A fair number of those students are still struggling with algebra and just learning basic biology. IOW. I can say with a high degree of confidence these students are not prepared to understand science at the intersection of quantum mechanics and biology.

The best thing I can say about that video is that it is very short. Aside from this being Argumentum Ad YouTubum, Luskin’s claims here are simply not credible. IF there is anything here at all, it is an attempt to claim the work of others as “ID science”, a reprehensible tactic often employed by the Discovery Institute. All this means is that ID has no basic science to demonstrate.

I’d like to note there has been little comment thus far about the thesis itself, with most being matters of very practical concern. The implication is that even if you are right, there are still big problems with teaching this as science.


According to their theory, Yes it does…

“…OR played a key role in life’s evolution.
We conclude that consciousness plays an intrinsic role in the universe”
[just ask for reference]

I feel like you did not bother to read the introduction of this topic. I encourage you to go back and read carefully again.

As I mentioned to someone else, we are not quantum biologists. So I don’t think we can make that determination. Besides, it could be something that is left to the parents or kids to decide on whether they want to take extra classes to learn the details.

Well first off, the intelligent design theory presented in the Dover trial was an alternative to evolution NOT addition to evolutionary theory like this particular construction of it. More importantly, the Dover case does not apply or take precedent anywhere else outside of Pennyslvania at the moment. Either way, you would first need to prove this in court in front of U.S. Supreme Court Judges to have any basis with this objection.

Yes, I agree that I failed in the past to bridge that gap in reasoning between the two arguments. This is why I highlighted the major changes I made at the start of this topic to finally make the connection.

No, I did. I specifically explained how nested hierarchies among closely related organisms are actually described as modules according to Winston’s Dependency graph model instead. Plus, HGT explains the major sequence similarities and common descent patterns in the distant past or among distant relatives.

However, I acknowledged that neither one explains the sequence similarties among closely related organisms and ,thus, the model is lacking in this area. But, this is only because it lacks a scientific model for morphological changes in the fossil record. So it is not an objection that I refused to respond to, but it is a point that I already conceded on multiple times.

That being said, this does not mean the common design model can’t be taught alongside descent because no theory explains everything or is complete.

No, I don’t see your point and here’s why. As someone eloquetly pointed out from another forum I read…

" Schools are primarily funded by local property taxes. The students come from the local community. Local communities have cultures that may differ from their culture. They may seem weird or backwards to people who were not raised in that culture, but that doesn’t make it wrong. It makes it different.

There was a time in American history when Europeans forcibly took Native American children away from their families in order to “civilize” them. They were taught to speak and dress like Europeans. They were indoctrinated into the European culture, because the Europeans considered the Native American cultures so inferior that they were doing the children a favor by forcing their culture on them.

So it is now with outsiders picking on a few isolated instances of schools which wish to teach Intelligent Design.

It’s not an inferior way of thinking. It’s just different than what most people are used to. People who associate “different” with “inferior” are usually called “-ists”. Racist, classist, sexist, etc…

If you look at a culture that is not your own, and think they’re wrong and they should be brought up to your level, then you’re a “culture-ist”. Maybe it’s time for a little introspection about your own prejudices? "

Therefore, unless their child goes there or they are a local taxpayer, it’s none of what the scientific communities’ business what they teach in that school.

Ahhhh… I think I see the issue here now. Correct me if I am wrong, but you guys seem to be presupposing materialism or substance dualism as being the only two possible options for being the true nature of reality.

If so, then I would agree: there is no proof or way to prove that the divine exists at all in the first place if those are the only two options. In fact, the vast majority of theists presume to the same false dictomy and most of them hold to a substance dualistic model. However, most people often forget or don’t realize that there is a third option: Idealism. Let me bring some context before I elaborate on this:

What is Objective Reality?

Realism is the view point that external things are real and exist independently of mind in the form of either materialism or idealism. Materialism is the viewpoint that material things shape our ideas and ideologies. In contrast, idealism states that ideas come first and then changes in material things are pursued in accordance with those ideas.

Substance dualism is the view that material things and ideas are both fundamental substances of existence (I.e. supernatural vs natural). Furthermore, this viewpoint states that the mental can exist outside of the body, and the body cannot. Where the immortal souls occupy an independent realm of existence distinct from that of the physical world.

However, Substance dualism is unparsimonius or untestable and materialism has been disconfirmed so many times by quantum physics experiments that a consensus on the matter has developed [just ask for it].

This leaves us with a form of idealism that places digital information and human consciousness as representing objective reality where space-time is influenced and emerges from…

According to John chapter 1:

"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. “…The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us. We have seen His glory, the glory of the one and only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.”

The Greek meaning for “the Word” mentioned in John 1:1-3 is “something said; by implication, a topic, also reasoning or motive; by extension, a COMPUTATION; specially, the Divine Expression.” [emphasis added]

Thus, the natural vs. supernatural dichotomy is a hallmark of substance dualism, but I hold to idealism where classical space time emerges from Digital information and only exists as a mental construct. In other words, the brain/materialism is the mind/God rather than the mind/God is the brain/materialism.

The same way we go about it in archaeology, SETI, and forensic science.

I am not quite sure where you were going with this. Can you please elaborate?

I actually agree with both of you here, which is why I went out my way to fill in the gaps of what they were lacking in their approach. Just go back and read the last topic I made to see it again.

Yes, that’s me. Just read the last topic I created to get the details.

The problem with this is you are referring to a very sample size of kids and schools. You can’t say that your experiences applies to every highschool in America. More importantly, you are assuming that it is your kids inability to understand that topic rather than the school’s inability to teach that topic. It could be that the highschools are failing at teaching it or the failure of middle and elementrary schools to prepare them beforehand,

Like I suggested, you have a high degree of confidence that your students were not prepared to understand those science topics.

Well first off, this cannot be said for the Orc-Theory of consciousness, which is a fundamental part of the Universal Common Designer theory.

Secondly, how do you know it is not credible? Do you have some sort of source that suggests this is the case?

Well, this certainly does not stop public schools from teaching string theory in colleges. So I fail to see how your point carries any weight here.

I think that as a high schooler I’d definitely have been able to fully understand that quantum mechanics could give me no useful insight into biology whatsoever. In fact, I would probably trust the average third grader to be able to grasp that almost immediately.


There are immense issues with the states/local areas determining everything that is to be taught and how. The local property tax approach leads to a huge disparity in funding and sequesters resources for the already affluent areas further compounding advantages and preventing equal access to quality education.

There are more stakeholders in education than local parents and political groups. Pulling the “local supremacy” and pure relativistic take is problematic.

The horrors and inhumanity of the residential schools are not comparable to this conflict.

Well that is rather telling. Either you think that nobody will notice that your nonsense doesn’t belong in science classes or you think that nobody will object, or you assume that the objections will fail.

Which really isn’t that relevant. There isn’t even a culture that wants your ideas taught in school. Just you. And even if there was, there are further issues. Should the government damage the education of all the children at the school just because the majority culture in the region wants it?

This really isn’t the same thing, though, is it? No children are being taken away from their parents for a start. The parents you refer to are no less likely to want dress codes at schools. There’s no concerted attack on their culture. Just science education.

And in fact you are the one wanting to force your “culture” on others. Your ideas haven’t earned their place in the schoolroom. Nobody - other than you - wants them there.

So this just seems hypocritical and dishonest.

I disagree. But by that standard it’s none of your business either.

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The biggest, most obvious, get-in-your-face problem with that idea is that Intelligent Design advocates claim to be part of our culture. They claim to be doing science. So there’s no forcing of culture going on here, just recognition that ID is a scam.

Now if IDers would admit that ID is creationism, then that criticism might apply. But that would blow the IDers gaff, and remove the need for ID to exist at all.

Whoever wrote that text is simply engaged in the IDers common tactic of trying to smear ID critics.

Children sometimes need protecting from predatory ‘teachers’ who attempt to fill their heads with propaganda and lies.