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Creationism Divided


 A Decisive Defeat For Intelligent Design:
The Dover Decision  

United States District Court for
the Middle District of Pennsylvania


Date: December 20, 2005
Case name: Tammy Kitzmiller, et al. v. Dover Area School District, et al.
Citations: 400 F.Supp.2d 707 (M.D. Pa. 2005)

Holding: Teaching intelligent design in public school biology classes violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States (and Article I, Section 3 of the Pennsylvania State Constitution) because intelligent design is not science and "cannot uncouple itself from its creationist, and thus religious, antecedents."

Judge: John E. Jones III, appointed in 2002 by George W. Bush
Laws applied: U.S. Const. Amend. 1; Penn. Const. Art. I, § 3

Full Text of the Dover Decision

Wikipedia entry for Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District

Creationism -- How Many Kinds?

    (An essay by Bob Patterson)

      The term Creationism usually means "biblical literalism" to most people, but that is often not the case. Creationist viewpoints run the gamut from a very literal reading of Genesis (or some other scripture) to those that try to avoid the term "God" (Intelligent Design) and including those who manage to reconcile completely ancient religion with modern science.

      I am not a "religious" person in the usual sense. Although I was at one time an ordained member of a Christian church I no longer find any need for a personal faith. I do, however, continue to respect persons of faith who find comfort in their belief system consistent with a rational acceptance of and respect for the findings of modern science. At the same time I find no group more to be pitied among men than those religious fundamentalists who either deny the factual findings of science or lie about what they know to be true.

      The attempt, mainly in the United States, to impose the teaching of "creation science" in the public schools is, to me, a crime of the highest order, for the intent is to corrupt the minds of the nation's youth. The perpetrators of this crime (carried out in private and home schools) follow the leadership of the Institute for Creation Research (see below and others who, with changing tactics, manage to water down the teaching of science throughout this country.

      In the listings below I have attempted to divide "creationist" thinking into several categories. Between the two extremes (fundamentalist/literalist and liberal/rationalist) it would be possible to find many subdivisions not shown here. I might also point out that, while the groups listed are almost entirely Christian, the kind of fundamentalism represented is found also within Judaism, Islam and other religions. It is not religion, but blindness toward the facts, that is the problem.

      Rather than try here to rebut individual creationist claims and falsifications, I have included a section for the websites of organizations that exist solely for that purpose. I might point out that I do not always agree with viewpoints expressed at those websites. I think that we often, when opposing the "enemy," tend to go overboard with rhetoric.

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1.  Genesis Literalism, Flood Geology, Young Earth
Institute for Creation Research : The Genesis of Creationist/Fundamentalism

"We believe God has raised up ICR to spearhead Biblical Christianity's defense against the godless dogma of evolutionary humanism. Only by showing the scientific bankruptcy of evolution....."

[ i.e., even Christians who accept evolution are godless and bankrupt! ]

Creation Scientists Answer their Critics : Review by John W. Burgeson in Perspectives, the journal of the American Scientific Affiliation. Duane Gish of ICR maintains his picture of evolutionists as atheists, agnostics, humanists, and Marxists by ignoring Christian critics of creationism. The reader of Gish's book is left in the dark not only about Christians who advocate some form of theistic evolution, but about old-earth and progressive creationists as well

A Visit to the Institute for Creation Research : From a debunking organization in Lincoln Land. Use their website Search Engine to see other articles about ICR and Creationism from this group's newsletter.

Elsberry on SciCre: In recent years, a group of people has been desperately trying to undermine science education in public schools by the introduction of religiously motivated pseudoscience into the classrooms. I speak here of Scientific Creationism as promulgated by the Institute for Creation Research.

Tenets of Creationism : The ICR brand of creationism proposes competing models between what is acceptable to this fundamentalist sect and their perception of science. The ICR Oath is required to be taken annually by staff members and those wishing to publish in their journal.

Q&A: Arguments Creationists Should NOT Use : The first article sums up what the creationists’ attitude should be. The other articles provide examples of arguments that should no longer be used; some are definitely fallacious, while others are merely doubtful or unsubstantiated. From Answers In Genesis.

Dr. Dino (Kent Hovind) convicted on 58 counts of tax fraud, sentenced to 10 years in prison.

Creation Science Evangelism : Drdino.com, a leading misleading website. This site appears to be inoperative, following the move by the Escambia County, Florida officials to shut down his Dinoland operation.
“Evolutionism is a religious worldview not supported by science, Scripture, popular opinion, or common sense. The exclusive teaching of this dangerous, mind-altering philosophy in tax-supported schools, parks, museums, etc. is a clear violation of the First Amendment.” ~~Dr. Kent Hovind
Dr. Dino Fraud: The $25,000 "Challenge" is a Fraud. But so are his academic credentials.

An Analysis of Kent Hovind, his claims, credentials and activities.

Suspicious Creationist Credentials : Dr. Dino (Kent Hovind) etal claim ?? academic degrees.

The Dissertation Kent Hovind Doesn't Want You to Read : An interesting look into "Dr." Dino's claim to credentials. The referenced page "Where did you get your degree?" has been removed from the Dr. Dino website.

The Wild World of Kent Hovind : Does Mr. Hovind have tax problems?

Hovind Bankruptcy Decision : The debtor having failed to file his federal income tax returns for at least the years 1989 through 1995, having resisted collection efforts by the IRS, and having provided false information in his schedules and statement of affairs in connection with this case, I find that the debtor filed this petition in bad faith and as such the petition is subject to dismissal for cause under the provisions of 11 U.S.C. 1307(c).

On August 17, 2000 the Pensacola News Journal reported the arrest of Kent E. Hovind, 49, 400 block of Schubert Drive, on charges of assault, battery and burglary. A file purporting to show the police report can be seen at Kent Hovind Burglary,

I originally showed at this location a website Torah and Science. This was a Fundamentalist Judaism website that included a lengthy treatise on Evolution, Randomness, and Hashkafa by Dr. Lee Spetner. Since the website disappeared, I have substituted a review of this author's book which shows many of his claims. Whether this item belongs here or is better placed in the next category is uncertain.

Creationism in Turkey: Yes, secular Turkey has its Muslim Creationists also. The Evolution Deceit : shows the kinds of arguments used to support creationism within the Islamic world. See information about this author, and his legal problems in Turkey, in the previous listing.

The Koran and Evolution : This paper does not present in any way the Christian Creationists position on humankind's origin. The Koran does not set a time of 6000 years for the creation of the world neither does it support the unscientific ideas in the Bible. Nevertheless I think it belongs with the most fundamentalistic viewpoints for creationism.

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2.  Less Literalism, Limited Evolution, Old Earth

Age of the Earth : Links to all viewpoints, by the Christian author of a textbook. He lists a number of "Creationist books that refute the young earth hypothesis and explain why I believe in an Old Earth."

Adam, Apes and Anthropology : A Harmonization of Genesis and Science by Glenn R. Morton.

A Progressive Creationist position : I believe the ultimate explanation to Gould's "why" is that God designed the mammalian ear, and brought it into actuality by a process that involved much natural process, but the decisive factor was God's direct and supernatural intervention at strategic points. This of course is as unprovable to the sceptic as the resurrection of Christ. But I believe that it is a sub-theory which fits all the known facts within a wider Progressive Creation model which endeavors to integrate the scientific facts within a fully Biblical model of reality.

Opposition to Creationism : Dr. Lorence G. Collins, Dept. of  Geological  Sciences, Calif. St. Univ. Northridge. Site includes essays such as Christianity and Science – are they contradictory? To claim that God is perfect is acceptable, but to claim that the scientific accuracy of the "word of God" written by inspired biblical authors is inerrant just is not true. Honesty about such facts will attract people to Christianity – not the lack of integrity. Only after creation of the heavens and the earth can the scientist examine how God did this creating process. On that basis, any man or woman of God should accept both biblical scriptures and science and use each source and kind of knowledge so that each person is "complete and equipped for every good work" (2 Tim 3:17).

Answers for Young Earthers : Refutations of Young Earth Arguments. By a geologist who has "published 27 articles and notes in the Creation Research Society Quarterly, presented a paper at the first International Conference on Creationism, and ghost wrote the evolution section in Josh McDowell's book Reasons Skeptics Should Consider Christianity."

Joshua's Long Day and the NASA Computers : Refuting Creationst Myths.

Coral Reefs and Related Carbonate Structures as Indicators of Great Age :
A research report from the Interdisciplinary Biblical Research Institute.

Evolution-Religion and the Genesis Account : by Robert C. Newman, Biblical Theological Seminary
Not so well-known to the average person (religious or not) is the fact that liberal versions of Christianity and Judaism are also strongly tied to evolutionary thinking, so that they too are evolution-religions. Though theological liberalism in Jewish and Christian circles actually predates Darwin's Origin of Species, evolution quickly became an important part of liberal theology in the late 19th century after Darwin's work appeared.

Genesis 11 and Archaeological Evidence for Paleolithic Man
A research report from the Interdisciplinary Biblical Research Institute.

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3.  Intelligent Design  ( Shhh!  Don't Mention "God" )

See Michael Behe's Black Box : Dr. Behe, a professional biochemist, is the current darling of creationism. His books and lectures on "irreducible complexity" have been refuted by scientists from many disciplines. This is a collection of links to their reviews of his claims.

Access Research Network : Essays and other works by individuals who have helped give the "Intelligent Design" movement its form and structure. Currently featured are: Michael Behe, William Dembski, David K. DeWolf, Mark Hartwig, Phillip Johnson, Stephen Meyer, Paul Nelson, Robert C. Newman, Nancy Pearcey, Charles Thaxton, Jonathan Wells

Discovery Institute - CRSC : Center for Science and Culture. Another slick website promoting Michael Behe and Intelligent Design.

Life's Intelligent Design : In Tacoma and Seattle people have flocked to hear Johnson, the father of intelligent design. Johnson said he and most others in the ID movement believe the designer is the God of the Bible.

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4.  Faith Reconciled with Science - Liberalized Religion

Faith and Reason : A PBS TV program that was funded by the John Templeton Foundation, Pew Charitable Trusts and Counterbalance Foundation. Funding for the educator's guide was provided by Lyn and Norman Lear. This web resource was funded and developed by Counterbalance Foundation

Counterbalance Foundation : works with organizations such as CTNS (the Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences), the American Association for the Advancement of Science and others, to provide access to the latest credible information in the emerging science and religion field.

Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences : is a non-profit organization dedicated to research, teaching and public service. It focuses primarily on the relation between contemporary physics, cosmology, technology, environmental studies, evolutionary and molecular biology and Christian theology and ethics.

Science and Spirit Resources : covers the broad field of scientific and spiritual thought to foster awareness and dialogue among an inquiring, expanding interfaith and world wide audience, both general and scholarly. It emphasizes the synthesis and integration of spiritual and scientific theories.

AAAS Dialogue on Science, Ethics, and Religion : has three objectives: (1) to promote knowledge about developments in science and technology within the religious community, (2) to provide opportunities for dialogue between members of the scientific and religious communities on significant topics for the sake of mutual understanding, and (3) to promote collaboration between members of the scientific and religious communities on projects that explore the ethical and religious implications of scientific developments.

Institute on Religion in an Age of Science : promotes the formulation, in the light of contemporary knowledge, of effective doctrines and practices for human welfare, and positive relationships between the concepts developed by science and the goals and hopes of humanity expressed through religion

The American Scientific Affiliation : The American Scientific Affiliation (ASA) is a fellowship of men and women of science and disciplines that relate to science who share a common fidelity to the Word of God and a commitment to integrity in the practice of science. See Discussion Papers for ASA Members which contains articles from the journal Perspectives on Science and Christian Faith.

Science and Religion Forum (U.K.) : is open to all who are concerned to relate scientific knowledge and methodology to religious faith and practice, whether of any religious persuasion and none, although many members stand in the Judeo-Christian tradition.

John Templeton Foundation: believes cooperation between science and religion will lead humanity to a deeper understanding of the universe, the unlimited creative spirit behind it, a nd our place in it.


Is There a Role for Natural Theology Today? : By Dr. Owen Gingerich, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, who proposes to sketch briefly the modern scientific scenario of the creation of the universe and the origin of the elements, pointing out at least two wonderful episodes where it appears, on the face of it, that a designing hand has been at work.

Opposition to Creationism : Biblical vs. Biological Concepts -- by a Christian Geologist/Scientist

The Evolution vs. Creation Issue : A theistic evolutionist surveys the field of creationist beliefs, finding five broad categories to describe.

Arthur Pigdon's Rethinking Evolution : Darwinian Evolution, Theistic Evolution, Instant Creation, Progressive Creation are some of the ideas discussed by this Christian intellectual who manages to bring together elements of science and theology in his walk of faith. Book length webpage.

Origins: Theistic Evolution : An important difference between theistic evolution and creationism is that theistic evolution is not part of our theology. It is informed by our theology and science. We do not try to tell Creationists they are not proper Christians. We might have to point out where they are not good scientists.

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Evolution Education Organizations


Science and Creationism : from the National Academy of Science

Science and Creationism : A View from the National Academy of Sciences, Second Edition

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Responses to Creationism Websites

Complete Responses to Creationism : TalkOrigins.org is simply the best source available.

Creationist Criticisms Rebutted : Detailed refutations of Creationist claims in Science

Creation/Evolution : Don Lindsay defines terms and issues. For Creationists with intellectual integrity.

Creation "Science" Debunked : Comprehensive coverage of issues. A fine website.

The Case Against Creation Science : Scientists have rejected the claims of "creation science" because of a lack of evidence. Furthermore, these claims do not refer to natural causes and cannot be subject to meaningful tests, so they do not qualify as scientific hypotheses.

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Essays

Thermodynamics for Two, Please : So, you think you know about entropy?

Bob Riggins's Page : Down to earth essays about creationist "arguments"

Did Darwin Renounce Evolution on His Deathbed?: Answers in Genesis Originally had an essay that clearly stated that Darwin did NOT recant on his deathbed, and that Creationists should not use that argument. Now, that essay seems to have disappeared, and in its place is a much more vague essay which never really says that it isn't true.

Pope John Paul II's Statementon Evolution: Truth Cannot Contradict Truth. Evolution is factual science. The ensoulment of humankind is considered a special Creative act.

Glenn Morton's Story: A Physicist-Geologist's Crises of Faith Over YEC Beliefs.

Origins: Most of the major denominations accept Theistic Evolution (The Roman Catholics, for starters). Thanks be to God, I heard the gospel in an environment where the discoveries of mainstream science were accepted. It was only later I came across what was for me the strange phenomenon of Creationism.

The Appearance of Age: It's Morning in Creation-Land, by Kenneth R. Miller, Professor of Biology, Brown University. An excerpt from Professor Miller's book "Finding Darwin's God."

Adrian Barnett on Evolution of Eyes : Evolution for Creationists. It is not necessary to abandon your beliefs because of evolution. Many theists find that it actually strengthens their faith as they can see and understand the processes used by their God.

Noah's Bunnies : Population Models, Noah's Ark and Henry Morris. Also see The Bunny Blunder.

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Other Topics



Biographica : Brief descriptions of various and sundry names that one encounters in online discussion of biological topics and abiogenesis where these cross with religiously motivated anti-science partisans.

Paluxy Dinosaur Track Controversy : For many years claims were made by strict creationists that human footprints or giant man tracks occur alongside dinosaur tracks in the limestone beds of the Paluxy River, near Glen Rose Texas. However, the man track claims have not stood up to close scientific scrutiny, and have been abandoned even by most creationists.

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creationism.htm Last Updated April 22, 2011     Links verified April 22, 2011