Joined: Nov. 2005
|By: William Mulgrew|
Issue date: 3/2/07 Section: Ed-Op
Originally published: 3/2/07 at 10:25 AM EST
Last update: 3/2/07 at 10:25 AM EST
Intelligent design opponents chalk it up to what's commonly called the god of the gaps fallacy. In the past, when humans observed natural phenomena they couldn't explain, they attributed it to a supernatural cause or an unseen force. For instance, we once didn't understand what thunder was or where it came from, so some attributed it to the deities Zeus or Thor and the like.
Besides the fact that science deals with unseen forces, like gravity, but nonetheless infers its existence through evidence, there's a huge problem for Darwinists. ID doesn't fall under the god of the gaps fallacy, but Darwinism does.
ID doesn't invoke a supernatural cause. It invokes an intelligent cause. What's the difference, you wonder? Everything. Science is the search for causes, and causes can be intelligent or natural.
Excluding intelligent causes from the realm of science throws out more than just ID. It gets rid of archaeology, cryptology, criminal and accident forensics, biotechnology and genetic engineering from the category of science - all are scientific disciplines that deal with intelligent causes or both intelligent and natural.
ID relies on observation and repetition. It is falsifiable - the discovery of a new natural law might prove a naturalistic life origin. That's more than what Darwinism can boast. By ruling out intelligent agency in advance, natural agency is the only game in town with nothing to falsify it.
Natural science devotes itself solely to natural causes, but is not the only form of science. It is empirical. Empirical sciences study present regularities in order to understand how they work. Forensic science studies singularities of the past for uniformity in order to understand whether agency is intelligent or natural.
When Darwinists rule out ID as science, they rule themselves out as well. Scientific theories rely on observation, replication and experimentation. Francisco Ayala said no one observed the origin of life or the evolution of species, "nor have these events been replicated in the laboratory or by experiment." No naturalistic life origin theory exists, only unproved conjectures. Life origins are forensic, not empirical. At worst, they shouldn't be exclusively empirical, but interdisciplinary, like environmental science.
Read it here.