"Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored." -Aldous Huxley

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wFriday, August 26, 2005

UNINTELLIGENT DISCUSSION: After reading posts by Will Wilkinson, Terry Mattingly, Brooke Oberwetter, and Amy Phillips, I am fairly certain that I will be sucked -- in the very near future -- into a conversation that I had wanted to put off. The controversy goes under the title of Intelligent Design. I wanted to avoid talk of this thing for four reasons:

1) For most of the issues in dispute, I am an agnostic.

2) There is so much bound up in the issues in question that many people care about them passionately.

3) Because of this passion, people rarely try to understand the controversy. They would rather pronounce than learn.

4) Part of these pronouncements are constant accusations of bad faith. IDers charge the scientific establishment with creating and enforcing an orthodoxy and the establishment responds by threatening excommunications to anybody who won't stop up their ears with wax when the IDers come to be heard. Then people take to their own hobbyhorses to write about it.

As I said, not a conversation I wanted to have. I'll hold out for as long as possible, then follow the advice from an old joke:

A couple of old pious Irishmen are walking down the street. They see two young toughs in a knock-down drag-out and the following exchange occurs:

"O'Sullivan, these two young lads, they're really goin about it."


"And in broad daylight, in the town square."

"'s bad."

"What're we gonna do?"

O'Sullivan thinks about this for a minute, finally picks up his walking stick, selects one of the boys at random and says, "Lord, lead me to the right side!"

posted by Jeremy at 8:19 PM