You remember our post from last week, Ten Years After the Kitzmiller Case, about several articles in the York Daily Record, located in York, Pennsylvania, which were written for the coming ten-year anniversary of Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District.
Today’s letter-to-the-editor appears in the same newspaper. It’s titled Dover ID stories ‘puff pieces’. The newspaper has a comments feature, but so far there’s only one comment.
Because the writer isn’t a politician, preacher, or other public figure, we won’t embarrass or promote him by using his full name. He writes a lot of letters-to-the-editor, but that doesn’t qualify for full-name treatment. His first name is Larry. Excerpts from his letter will be enhanced with our Curmudgeonly commentary and some bold font for emphasis. Here we go!
The recent series of puff-pieces celebrating the famous Dover Intelligent Design trial of 2005 consisted largely of a lot of mutual back-patting and self-congratulations on the part of the plaintiffs and the judge for their landmark defense of the secular-fundamentalist dogma of Darwinian evolution.
Secular-fundamentalist dogma — BWAHAHAHAHAHA! We should have foreseen that such a letter would show up. Then Larry says:
Now, it was clearly an error in judgment for some of the 2004 Dover school board to have publicly claimed religious motivation for their true and factual statement of 11-19-04, regarding the scientific problems confronting Darwinian theory.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Yes, an “error in judgment.” Or was it a rare moment of truth from the creationists? Let’s read on:
The missing element in the newspaper’s fluff about the case, is the actual status of the empirical fossil evidence.
Can you guess what’s coming next? Sure you can. Here it is:
Everyone admits the kind of evolution that produces variations within the species — the kind Darwin observed in his famous travels, and the kind microbiologists face when viruses and bacteria mutate into new strains. But even in the latter case, despite intensive laboratory efforts, no set of mutations has been observed to produce a new species. Nor is there any record in the rocks, of the multitude of mutated intermediate forms which Darwin’s evolution must’ve traversed, in crossing the vast spans of time between supposedly related fossil species.
It’s the micro-macro mambo and the claim that there are no transitional fossils — both in one paragraph! Those clunkers are discussed in Common Creationist Claims Confuted. Larry continues:
What we do find in the geological record is the sudden appearance of major types of plants and animals, with new and complex organs: right from the initial Cambrian explosion, and repeatedly thereafter, whole new ecosystems of species arising with a great variety of taxonomic classes and orders — right from their beginnings. Moreover, the very earliest fossils represent all of the great groups of animals except the vertebrates (rather than just a few, which would then evolve greater diversity); and the earliest fossil trees were already large, with no smaller ancestors preceding.
This could have been written by the Discoveroids. Maybe it was. Here’s more:
Finally, to the point that design can’t be science because it implies a creator, it turns out that various philosophical efforts to define science so as to rule out design also rule out Darwin’s theory.
What? Hey, this is a new argument. Observe carefully, as Larry explains what he just said:
Modern natural science routinely posits invisible causes.
Like gravity and electromagnetism? Well, yes, but they can be tested and measured, and their effects can be predicted. What’s Larry’s point? Here it comes:
Design simply posits a formative power of intellectual nature as being causative of forms within physical and biological nature — a conception well-known to Western science prior to the arrival of the celebrated geniuses of modernity.
Ah yes, Yahweh. Well done, Larry! This is the rest of his letter:
The Dover trial was a travesty of both justice and intellectual integrity, as well as a disaster for intellectual freedom in these states, where it is now, so the newspaper informs us, virtually impossible to admit in public schools the actual status of the facts regarding terrestrial biogenesis, as revealed not in the Bible, but in the fossil record. And the taxpaying citizens of Dover Township both paid the bill and suffered the price ($1 million) of daring to question a secular dogma on the basis of scientific facts.
Larry isn’t happy. Creationists never are. But his letter was delightful. Thanks, Larry!
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