[asa] ID and EC/TE relationship

From: Dave Wallace <wmdavid.wallace@gmail.com>
Date: Sat May 09 2009 - 14:18:09 EDT

Cameron Wybrow wrote:
> Dear ASA-List Members:
> Several people here have suggested that ID proponents do not
> explicitly or sufficiently distinguish themselves from YEC proponents,
> and that this justifies the rough ride they are often given by ASA
> members and other Christian scientists. But check this out:
>From the article by Bill Dembsky:
> Unlike many Darwinists and theistic evolutionists, young earth
> creationists have been extraordinarily gracious to me, and I've always
> tried to return the favor.
This is a response to Cameron Wybrow but really aimed at the whole list
as I would like to start a discussion about the relationship between ID
and EC/TE.

If one searches for names of people on the ASA list at UcD one can find
exchanges like the following that demonstrate the the ill feeling goes
both ways:

> Ted Davis ó ďThe Theistic Evolutionistsí Theistic EvolutionistĒ ó
> Rising above the fray
> <http://www.uncommondescent.com/evolution/ted-davis-the-theistic-evolutionists-theistic-evolutionist-rising-above-the-fray/>
> William Dembski
> Ted Davis, a historian of science at Messiah College, used to be part
> of a list I moderate. He has some good insights into the history of
> science (especially into the work of Robert Boyle), but he
> consistently misses the mark concerning ID. Here is a nice synopsis of
> his view of ID (also with a jab at UD). It is written to Pim van
> Meurs, as a mentor would write to his disciple. The short of his view
> is that ID is a reaction to the scientific materialism of Richard
> Dawkins, which it tries to displace by setting up a new science, which
> is really just a disguised form of religion. His counsel is to rise
> above the fray and realize that both are ideologically motivated.
> Ideological motivation is all fine and well, but has ID identified
> fundamental conceptual flaws and evidential lacunae in the
> conventional materialistic understanding of biological origins...
Dembski really had not gotten the context of his post at all correct and
was way off base as you can see be reading the series of exchanges.

David O wrote under the same heading:
> It is a shame that we canít say the same for everyone involved in this
> discussion, particularly for those who publicly identify themselves as
> followers of Jesus. Personally, I used to be much more sympathetic to
> ID than I am now. One of the main reasons for my increased skepticism
> about ID is that nasty, strident, politicized tone of many ID leaders
> ó as exemplified by this unfair attack on a fellow Christian scholar.
> You may think you are winning a battle here and there, but you will
> lose the war if you keep going down this track. The shame is that it
> isnít really your war to fight, and the tools youíre using to fight it
> are not those of the Kingdom all of us Christian scholars are supposed
> to represent.
> You would not agree with everything Ted or other TE critics of ID have
> to say, which is fine. But letís carry on that discussion in a
> charitable and civil way. Admittedly I seem to have reacted a bit
> strongly, but Iím sorry, I canít see any way to read Dr. Dembskiís
> original post as anything else than unfair attack on Ted. And Iím
> sorry to have to say this as well, but it seems to me that fellow
> Christian scholars who dare to question ID are often subject to the
> same kind of unfair treatment by the movementís leaders as Sternberg
> was subjected to at the Smithsonian. Goodness, if we canít all unite
> behind criticism of Richard Dawkins, what do we have left?
While we can't easily change ID supporters attitude and language
directed towards us, I think that we need to try to ensure that we do
better, not only on this list but on blogs that we contribute to.
Whenever, I drive through a rock cut especially in limestone I am
reminded of the geologic column and am very tempted to refer to the YEC
folks are less than honest in their treatment of age of the earth,
actually I think liars. Such terminology is not helpful and frankly is
wrong and sinful. I'm not saying that we should not plainly say where we
disagree but that use of language that implies that our opponents are
morally or mentally deficient does not help. Use of straw men or taking
things out of context shows a lack of integrity. In general, I think we
talked with Timaues in a respectful manner and also with Cameron
although I have not read all the most recent posts yet as I am behind.
David O's words above need to be taken seriously. Recently someone
described MN as silly, thus implying that those who hold MN are a bit

      John 13:35 seems appropriate:

^35 ^(A
By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love
for one another."

In many ways we are not all that distant from ID people like Behe and
surely we can find a way to show love for one another while differing in
some matters.

Dave W

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Received on Sat May 9 14:18:44 2009

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