We know how dependent you are on this blog for the very latest information about the creationist crisis at Indiana’s Ball State University. To serve your needs, we’ve reorganized our page on The Controversy to add a section on this subect. All our posts on this topic can be found here: Ball State Imbroglio.
We have a bit of news today, but it’s not much, so we’ll take a few minutes to provide some background as to how this situation developed. If you feel that you already know what’s been going on, you can skip the next few indented paragraphs:
We originally ignored the controversy that began when Jerry Coyne, an evolutionary biologist at the University of Chicago, started a fuss about Ball State University’s physics professor, Eric Hedin, who was allegedly teaching intelligent design in his course on the “Boundaries of Science.” We paid no attention because Hedin’s course is an elective, and wasn’t being imposed on anyone. We didn’t see it as a serious issue.
We changed our attitude when we learned that Ball State University Hires Guillermo Gonzalez. Who’s he? Guillermo Gonzalez is the Discoveroid “senior fellow” who failed to get tenure at Iowa State University and who (until now) had been teaching at some bible college. He’s a co-author of the classic creationist book, The Privileged Planet, a “fine tuning” argument applied to Earth. Not only that, he’s one of the creationist martyrs featured in Expelled, the Ben Stein creationist “documentary.” Therefore, we started to wonder if Ball State was going full-bore for creationism.
Then there was a strong, pro-science Statement from Ball State University’s President, Jo Ann Gora. She wrote: “Teaching intelligent design as a scientific theory is not a matter of academic freedom – it is an issue of academic integrity. … Said simply, to allow intelligent design to be presented to science students as a valid scientific theory would violate the academic integrity of the course as it would fail to accurately represent the consensus of science scholars.”
That’s when the Discovery Institute stopped lurking in the background and got openly and aggressively involved. We posted Discoveroids Issue Ultimatum to Ball State. When the ultimatum’s deadline passed, we posted about the university’s response: Ball State to Discoveroids: “Bugger Off!”
Okay, everyone’s up to date. You’re ready for today’s news. At the website of the Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN), founded by televangelist Pat Robertson, we read Ball State Students Say Course Promotes Atheism.
Whoa! It sounds like Ball State students are in agreement with the Discoveroids. This could be serious! Let’s see what CBN says. Hmmmm … the article is very short, and most of it describes the existing controversy. All the news of interest to us is in the first paragraph. We’ll break that into two parts. The bold font was added by us:
Ball State University in Indiana says it will review a class curriculum some students say promotes atheism.
“Some students”? The class they’re referring to, of course, is the one the Discoveroids are complaining about. It’s an honors elective on “Dangerous Ideas.” Who are these students who claim it promotes atheism? That’s coming next. Get ready:
The students are in a club that calls for teaching intelligent design.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! That sounds like one of those “IDEA Clubs” that were once a hot Discoveroid project. Wikipedia describes them here: Intelligent Design and Evolution Awareness Center. We thought the whole thing had faded away, but the Discoveroids still have this website: Welcome to the IDEA Center. They have a page showing the location of their chapters, but we don’t see anything at Ball State.
Anyway, that’s the news — there’s unrest among what is probably a handful of creationist students. Well, it’s also news that Robertson’s network is following the story. The rest of what CBN says is just a rehash of what we already know. Now you’re completely up to date.
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