Intelligent Design in Australia

John Stear, 7 November 2005

It has often been said of Young Earth creationism that it is bad science and even worse theology. The same criticism applies to "intelligent design" (ID), which is the latest attempt by those who oppose science, to infiltrate science classrooms in Australia, the US and around the world with religion masquerading as science.  ID has become an issue in Australia particularly following Education Minister Brendan Nelson's unfortunate decision to give it his qualified approval rather than his condemnation.

The first school in Australia to announce that it will introduce ID into its science classrooms is Pacific Hills Christian School in New South Wales. Ted Boyce, the principle, stated on the ABC's "Catalyst" program -

We believe that our students need to know what different theories there are available for them to understand so that they can then make up their own minds what they believe and why they believe it. [my emphasis]

Students don't decide to "believe" in a scientific theory.  They might believe or disbelieve in the existence of a supernatural being but they study and evaluate the science they are presented in school.  Well, in most schools that would be the method, apparently in Pacific Hills Christian School they are taught differently.

In response to Ted Boyce's statement Professor Mike Archer, Dean of Science at the University of New South Wales, said -

If you open up the door to that [ID] then why not open up the science class door to creation science, to fork bending, to flat earth. Why just teach astronomy? Let's teach astrology. All of these things would have equal right to claim time in the science classroom.

Professor Paul Davies of the Australian Centre for Astrobiology had this to say -

We may never have all the details but I'm sure that there is a physical pathway leading from a mixture of mindless molecules to something as wonderful as a simple living cell. I don't know what that pathway is. I don't believe anyone else does at this stage but that doesn't mean it was a miracle just because this is a big gap in our understanding.

Truly, ID is religion pure and simple.  It's not science.

Below is a selection of letters written by concerned Australians and published in the Australian media.

Intelligent Design in Australia: It's NOT Science
Professor Mike Archer et al.

Few better ways of promoting atheism than teaching ID
Dr Ken Smith

Intelligent Design in Australia: Science and Uncertainty
Dr Ken Smith

How Intelligent is Intelligent Design?
Brother William Johns SSF

Am I Intelligently Designed?
Brother William Johns SSF

Lying for political purposes
Dr Ken Smith