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Tuesday, November 08, 2005 

For those of you following the Dover trial...

...The closing arguments are available. (Hat tip to PZ at Pharyngula). And man, are they good. Some highlights:

What I am about to say is not easy to say, and there is no way to say it subtly. Many of the witnesses for the defense did not tell the truth. They did not tell the truth at their depositions, and they have not told the truth in this courtroom. They are not telling the truth when they assert that only Intelligent Design, and not creationism were discussed at the June 2004 board meetings. They did not tell the truth when they place the "2000 years ago" statement [board member Bill Buckingham has been quoted as saying "2000 years ago, a man died on a cross; can't we take a stand for him now?"] at the meeting discussing the pledge [of allegiance] rather than at the June 14, 2004 meeting discussing the biology textbook. They did not tell the truth in their depositions, for for that matter to the citizens of Dover, about how the donations of Pandas books came about.
This board's behavior mimics the Intelligent Design movement at large. The Dover board discussed teaching "creationism," then switched over to "Intelligent Design" to carry out the same objective and then pretended they were never talking about creationism. As we learned from Dr. Forrest's testimony, the Intelligent Design movement used the same sleight of hand in creating the Pandas textbook. They wrote it as a creationist book, then, after the Edwards decision outlawing the teaching of creationism, simply inserted the term "intelligent design" where "creationism" had been before. Dean Kenyon wrote the book at the same time he was advocating "creation science" as the sole scientific theory to evolution. But now, like the Dover board, the Intelligent Design movement pretends it was never talking about creationism.

and don't miss,
Professor Behe's testimony and his book Darwin's Black Box is really one extended insult to hard working scientists, and the scientific enterprise. For example, Professor Behe asserts in Darwin's Black Box that "the scientific literature has no answers to the question of the origin of the immune system" and "the complexity of the system dooms all Darwinian explanations to frustration." I showed Professor Behe more than 50 articles, as well as books on the evolution of the immune system. He had not read most of them, but he confidently, contemptuously dismissed them as inadequate. He testified that it is a waste of time to look for answers about how the immune system developed.


About me

  • I'm Tara C. Smith
  • From Iowa, United States
  • I'm a mom and a scientist, your basic stressed-out, wanna-have-it-all-and-do-it-all Gen Xer. Recently transplanted from Ohio to Iowa, I've spent most of my life in the midwest (with 4 years of college spent out east in "soda" territory). My main interest, and the subject of my research, is infectious disease: how does the microbe cause illness? What makes one strain nasty, and another "avirulent?" Are the latter really not causing any disease, or could some of those be possible for the development of chronic disease years down the road? Additionally, I've spent a lot of time discussing the value of teaching evolution, and educating others about "intelligent design" and other forms of creationism. My interest in history of science and medicine is also useful as a way to tie all of the above interests together. [Disclaimer: the views here are solely my own, and do not represent my employer, my spouse, that guy who's always sitting by the fountain when I come into work, or anyone else with whom I may be remotely affiliated.]
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