We present to you, dear reader, a letter-to-the-editor titled Atheists deny intelligent design of our universe, which appears in the Hunterdon County Democrat, a weekly newspaper in Hunterdon County, New Jersey. We’ll give you a few choice excerpts from this letter, and we’ll omit the writer’s name and city. Here we go, with a bit of bold font added for emphasis:
It is painful to witness the lengths to which many atheists go in their attempts to deny intelligent design in both creation and perpetuation. Every time Hawking’s [sic] or others add a new layer of speculation concerning the origin of the universe, their information leaves another void that only God can fill. Even if their guesses were true, they would only add to God’s creation resume.
You can see that the letter-writer isn’t fooled by the constant propaganda that intelligent design (ID) isn’t religion. He knows that it is — and so does everyone else. Alas, his powers of perception are otherwise limited. He’s apparently unaware of the many denominations that have made their peace with science. (See the National Center for Science Education’s list of Statements from Religious Organizations supporting evolution.) Okay, let’s get back to today’s letter:
I resent the implication that those who believe in God stand in opposition to science. Many renowned scientists are creationists. True scientific method can only reveal the creator and should certainly be pursued.
The letter-writer is unaware that science and theology are completely different activities with different methods and purposes. Back to the letter:
The U.S. Supreme Court, influenced by a prevailing liberalism, prejudice and misinterpretation, has unjustly ruled that creationism is unscientific. The court was wrong — just as it had been wrong before, like in the Dred Scott decision and in sanctioning the taking of 40 million innocent lives.
The letter-writer is presumably referring to either Epperson v. Arkansas (decided in 1968) or Edwards v. Aguillard (decided in 1987) regarding creationism. He says ruling that creationism is unscientific (i.e., it’s religion) is just as wrong as the Dred Scott decision — Wow! — and (presumably) Roe v. Wade. He also claims that these terrible decisions are because of liberalism — even Dred Scott! Let’s see what else the letter says:
A question one must ask is that of motive.
Right! Don’t ask about the evidence that supports evolution, and that doesn’t exist regarding ID. No, just ask about motive. What does the letter-writer tell us about that?
A Christian will proselytize as required by God’s commission. To love your neighbor necessitates informing him of the way to eternal life.
Yes, that’s why it’s always a joy to hang around with such people — especially when you can’t avoid it on the job. Okay, those are the letter-writer’s motives. Let’s keep going:
Why do many atheists seek so vehemently to erase god from the minds of men? … Could the hard-line atheist stand be one of simple hubris? This may especially be a factor for those credited with extreme intellect. Perhaps the prospect of a personal power great enough to create the universe is too intimidating.
Hubris — a fancy word for pride — is a horrible motive indeed, especially when contrasted with the “love your neighbor” proselytizing of the creationist. It’s all so clear — at least in the letter-writer’s mind.
As we’ve often said before, we’re not interested in promoting or defending atheism, but the letter-writer is equating atheism with science (especially evolution), and he’s also equating ID with his own religious sect. This is a terribly misguided dichotomy, but it’s all too common. Let’s read on:
An intelligent designer of all creation might easily be a moral and spiritual authority holding us accountable for our lives and the truth we refuse to acknowledge.
Yes, that’s possible, but it’s not a scientific issue. Let’s skip to the end:
An awesome respect for God is the beginning of wisdom.
That says it all. Well, apparently not. There are a few comments that were posted at the letter’s end. If you click over there you’ll see that so far they’re not favorable to the letter-writer’s position. There must be a lot of hubris in New Jersey.
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