Re: ASA News Releases

Terry M. Gray (
Thu, 4 Sep 1997 16:53:23 -0600

Pattle Pun wrote:

>May I suggest that a survey is made amongst the ASA membership as to their
>support for or opposition to the Intelligent Design Movement before any
>news release on behalf of ASA on this issue. I think there is a
>substantial support around that may not be as outspoken as those that are
>against it.

While I'm not so sure that the poll would come out the way Pattle thinks, I
think that the poll is irrelevant unless we want to re-define who the ASA
is--i.e. make the Statement of Faith more narrow.

It seems to me that ASA went through a similar experience in its earlier
years when some advocates of young-earth creationism wanted ASA to limit
its membership to those who advocated that particular point of view.
Thankfully, ASA refused. Perhaps we're on the verge of a similar attempt.

I'm more than happy to keep all parties involved in this discussion, but
I'm not so sure that the other parties are equally committed. The YEC's,
Phil Johnson crowd, Hugh Ross crowd all have much narrower agendas than
ASA's historically has been. To adopt one or more of those agendas would
be to exclude some of us. Obviously, some of us would be opposed to that,
hopefully, even those who disagree with us are liberally minded enough to
welcome our point of view.


>On Thu, 4 Sep 1997, Keith B Miller wrote:
>> Denis:
>> I know you have good intentions, but in my opinion your proposed news
>> release would be a disaster for the ASA. 1) It lends support to a
>> anti-evolutionary movement at the school board level which is profoundly
>> misguided. Such a news release will cause us to lose any influence with
>> the NABT or the National Center for Science Education (to which I belong).
>> 2) It gives the impression that the ASA's primary concern is the
>> creation/evolution issue - a view which the ASA has been recently trying to
>> overcome. 3) It acts to place the ASA firmly in the ID camp, which a few
>> days on this listserve shows to be decidedly false. Many within the ASA
>> have significant disagreements with the proponents of ID on both scientific
>> and theological grounds.
>> Newsreleases would be best used to promote ASA annual meetings, the
>> ASA/Templeton lecture series, and similar projects.
>> Keith
>> Keith B. Miller
>> Department of Geology
>> Kansas State University
>> Manhattan, KS 66506
>Dr. Pattle Pun
>Professor of Biology
>Wheaton College, Wheaton, IL 60187
>Phone: (630)752-5303
>FAX: (630)752-5996

Terry M. Gray, Computer Support Scientist
Chemistry Department, Colorado State University
Fort Collins, Colorado 80523
phone: 970-491-7003 fax: 970-491-1801