January 14, 2008

Academic Freedom and Intelligent Design

Faculty member at Iowa State University denied tenure for supporting intelligent design.
by Jocelyn Green
posted 1/10/2008 08:55AM
Christianity Today


"Some scientists translate ID [Intelligent Design] into a disbelief in mechanisms of science that are pretty well supported," said [Dorothy Boorse, associate professor of biology at Gordon College, a Christian liberal arts school]. "I'm to teach the best available biology, and the best evidence is that God has used extensive evolution. I think most scientists in biology would agree with that, including Christians."

John West of the Discovery Institute, an ID think tank, seeks to counter such marginalization of ID. "[Pushing evidence for design into a philosophy class] would be like saying you can't teach any other view than capitalism in economics class, but you can talk about Marxism in a propaganda class," he said. "That's preposterous."

In August 2007, Baylor University took offline the Evolutionary Informatics Lab website of Robert Marks, who is tenured. He said it was because the lab's research implied there might be a Creator. "What's at issue here is the ability to bring the idea of the possibility of design into science," said Marks.

The difference...is that private Christian colleges are expected to require adherence to religious doctrines. "[But] public universities claim to protect their faculty's academic freedom, no matter how unpopular their ideas might be among their colleagues," said [Guillermo Gonzalez, assistant professor of physics and astronomy at Iowa State University (ISU)].

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