Is intelligent design creationism?
Is intelligent design creationism?
The proper application of both the endorsement and Lemon tests to the facts of this case makes it abundantly clear that the Board’s ID Policy violates the Establishment Clause. In making this determination, we have addressed the seminal question of whether ID is science. We have concluded that it is not, and moreover that ID cannot uncouple itself from its creationist, and thus religious, antecedents.

Judge John E. Jones III, Dover decision
Intelligent design has received much press in the last decade. It is a creation and promotion of the Center for Science and Culture, a branch of the Seattle based Discovery Institute. It is a critical element of the Institute's "wedge strategy" designed to insert supernaturalism into science. The CSC is funded by large donations from prominent religious conservatives. Its major activities are lobbying government at national, state and local levels for education standards that cast doubt on evolution and/or which permit teachers to incorporate nonscientific information into public school science classes.

The Discovery Institute insists that intelligent design is not creationism. This is essential to CSC strategy since the supreme court has ruled that creationism is religious in nature and cannot be incorporated into public school curricula. Later drafts of Foundation for Thought and Ethics' book Of Pandas and People replaced creationism word for word with intelligent design. Obviously there are striking similarities between the two. These similarities include the hypothesis of a creator on the one hand and the absence of peer reviewed scientific research on the other.

Intelligent design, in contrast to classical Christian creationism, avoids mention of the Bible and of biblical references such as Noah's Ark and recent creation. Spokespersons for the Discovery Institute readily admit that the intelligent design "creator" could be the Christian God. When questioned on the age of the Earth they generally waffle on whether it's billions of years or only 10,000.

The wedge strategy assumed that scientific evidence would accummulate to support intelligent design. This is precisely opposite of the scientific method where evidence always precedes conclusions. Not surprisingly the anticipated evidence has not materialized.

In the early 21st century The Discovery Institute encouraged conservative state board of education members in Ohio to include anti-evolution measures in state science standards. Ultimately ID supporters were voted out of office. In 2005 the Board of Education in Dover Pennsylvania tried to introduce first creationism and then intelligent design. The Discovery Institute counseled them to be more subtle, but they persisted. Ultimately the Dover board's standards were challenged in court and were defeated decisively. Since then the CSC continues to encourage more subtle criticism of evolution in state and local science standards.

Dissent from Darwin
Does the Discovery Institute promote critical thinking?