Contributed by
Dec 20, 2005
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It's official: Intelligent Design should not be taught in school.


The trial in Dover Pennsylvania was essentially over whether ID can be taught along with evolutionary theory. The judge ruled it cannot. Here's the money quote from the judge:

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.

This has been closely watched by both sides of the issue (and by both sides, I mean the correct side, science, and the wrong side, ID) but it was clear from early on that the proponents of ID were behaving foolishly and badly. The judge concurred:

The citizens of the Dover area were poorly served by the members of the Board who voted for the ID Policy. It is ironic that several of these individuals, who so staunchly and proudly touted their religious convictions in public, would time and again lie to cover their tracks and disguise the real purpose behind the ID Policy.

Hear that? The judge said the IDers lied, something we scientists have been saying for months. Years. It's truly remarkable that the judge was so candid about this; certainly reporters who have been discussing this in newspapers and on TV have bent over backwards to sound "fair", giving equal time to ID nonsense when it is not deserved. You can't be fair to both sides of an argument when one is wrong.

There will be many other blogs discussing this today, by people who have followed this more closely (after all, I'm an astronomer and not a biologist). Check my blogroll for some of them.

This is a major victory for science, both because of the obvious win over antiscientific nonsense, but also because the judge called it like he saw it. If only we could have more like that.