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Old 12-20-2005, 01:01 PM
maurile maurile is offline
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Default Dover Intelligent Design case -- judge rules for plaintiffs

The opinion is available here.

Some of the good parts:

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A final indicator of how ID has failed to demonstrate scientific warrant is the complete absence of peer-reviewed publications supporting the theory. Expert testimony revealed that the peer review process is “exquisitely important” in the scientific process. It is a way for scientists to write up their empirical research and to share the work with fellow experts in the field, opening up the hypotheses to study, testing, and criticism. (1:66-69 (Miller)). In fact, defense expert Professor Behe recognizes the importance of the peer review process and has written that science must “publish or perish.” (22:19-25 (Behe)). Peer review helps to ensure that research papers are scientifically accurately, meet the standards of the scientific method, and are relevant to other scientists in the field. (1:39-40 (Miller)). Moreover, peer review involves scientists submitting a manuscript to a scientific journal in the field, journal editors soliciting critical reviews from other experts in the field and deciding whether the scientist has followed proper research procedures, employed up-to-date methods, considered and cited relevant literature and generally, whether the researcher has employed sound science.
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The evidence presented in this case demonstrates that ID is not supported by any peer-reviewed research, data or publications. Both Drs. Padian and Forrest testified that recent literature reviews of scientific and medical-electronic databases disclosed no studies supporting a biological concept of ID. (17:42-43 (Padian); 11:32-33 (Forrest)). On cross-examination, Professor Behe admitted that: “There are no peer reviewed articles by anyone advocating for intelligent design supported by pertinent experiments or calculations which provide detailed rigorous accounts of how intelligent design of any biological system occurred.” (22:22-23 (Behe)).
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Additionally, Professor Behe conceded that there are no peer-reviewed papers supporting his claims that complex molecular systems, like the bacterial flagellum, the blood-clotting cascade, and the immune system, were intelligently designed. (21:61-62 (complex molecular systems), 23:4-5 (immune system), and 22:124-25 (blood-clotting cascade) (Behe)). In that regard, there are no peer-reviewed articles supporting Professor Behe’s argument that certain complex molecular structures are “irreducibly complex.”17 (21:62, 22:124-25 (Behe)). In addition to failing to produce papers in peer-reviewed journals, ID also features no scientific research or testing. (28:114-15 (Fuller); 18:22-23, 105-06 (Behe)).

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The proper application of both the endorsement and Lemon tests to the facts of this case makes it abundantly clear that the Board’s ID Policy violates the Establishment Clause. In making this determination, we have addressed the seminal question of whether ID is science. We have concluded that it is not, and moreover that ID cannot uncouple itself from its creationist, and thus religious, antecedents.
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Both Defendants and many of the leading proponents of ID make a bedrock assumption which is utterly false. Their presupposition is that evolutionary theory is antithetical to a belief in the existence of a supreme being and to religion in general. Repeatedly in this trial, Plaintiffs’ scientific experts testified that the theory of evolution represents good science, is overwhelmingly accepted by the scientific community, and that it in no way conflicts with, nor does it deny, the existence of a divine creator.
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To be sure, Darwin’s theory of evolution is imperfect. However, the fact that a scientific theory cannot yet render an explanation on every point should not be used as a pretext to thrust an untestable alternative hypothesis grounded in religion into the science classroom or to misrepresent well-established scientific propositions. The citizens of the Dover area were poorly served by the members of the Board who voted for the ID Policy. It is ironic that several of these individuals, who so staunchly and proudly touted their religious convictions in public, would time and again lie to cover their tracks and disguise the real purpose behind the ID Policy.
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With that said, we do not question that many of the leading advocates of ID have bona fide and deeply held beliefs which drive their scholarly endeavors. Nor do we controvert that ID should continue to be studied, debated, and discussed. As stated, our conclusion today is that it is unconstitutional to teach ID as an alternative to evolution in a public school science classroom.
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Those who disagree with our holding will likely mark it as the product of an activist judge. If so, they will have erred as this is manifestly not an activist Court. Rather, this case came to us as the result of the activism of an ill-informed faction on a school board, aided by a national public interest law firm eager to find a constitutional test case on ID, who in combination drove the Board to adopt an imprudent and ultimately unconstitutional policy. The breathtaking inanity of the Board’s decision is evident when considered against the factual backdrop which has now been fully revealed through this trial. The students, parents, and teachers of the Dover Area School District deserved better than to be dragged into this legal maelstrom, with its resulting utter waste of monetary and personal resources.

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  #2  
Old 12-20-2005, 01:07 PM
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Default Re: Dover Intelligent Design case -- judge rules for plaintiffs

Very well written judgement. It's great to see sanity prevail in spite of the kooks.
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  #3  
Old 12-20-2005, 02:12 PM
Bataglin Bataglin is offline
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Default Re: Dover Intelligent Design case -- judge rules for plaintiffs

How about this excerpt:

"The concept of intelligent design (hereinafter “ID”), in its current form, came into existence after the Edwards case was decided in 1987. For the reasons that follow, we conclude that the religious nature of ID would be readily apparent to an objective observer, adult or child... "
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  #4  
Old 12-21-2005, 10:40 AM
imported_luckyme imported_luckyme is offline
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Default Re: Dover Intelligent Design case -- judge rules for plaintiffs

Some interesting aspects-

"It is ironic that several of these individuals, who so staunchly and proudly touted their religious convictions in public, would time and again lie to cover their tracks and disguise the real purpose behind the ID policy."

That wouldn't surprise anyone who participates in forums like this. Religiousity, by it's nature, impairs a persons moral judgement.

"To be sure, Darwin’s theory of evolution is imperfect. However, the fact that a scientific theory cannot yet render an explanation on every point should not be used as a pretext to thrust an untestable alternative hypothesis grounded in
religion into the science classroom or to misrepresent well-established scientific
propositions."
"....we have addressed the
seminal question of whether ID is science. We have concluded that it is not, and..."

Encouraging to see that the 'prove me wrong' thinking that is required as a basis for a rational approach to aspects of religion was easily spotted by a non-scientific judge to be a non-scientific way of approaching a topic. Also, he noted the 'process' that differentiates science from pseudo science.

maybe there is hope that the usa can be brought into the 21th century....
the overly optimistic, luckyme
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  #5  
Old 12-21-2005, 10:49 AM
chezlaw chezlaw is offline
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Default Re: Dover Intelligent Design case -- judge rules for plaintiffs

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That wouldn't surprise anyone who participates in forums like this. Religiousity, by it's nature, impairs a persons moral judgement.

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That's a bit harsh. I nominated you for an award when you said that people brought their morality to their religon which contradicts this I think.

Dishonest religous people remain dishonest but honest religous people remain honest. Of course the honest ones, who have seriously considered the issue, don't use the ID tactic.

chez
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  #6  
Old 12-21-2005, 10:52 AM
chezlaw chezlaw is offline
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Default Re: Dover Intelligent Design case -- judge rules for plaintiffs

Interesting stuff. I am the only one who expects the IDers to produce more and more 'scientific' journals of their own so that they can peer review each others 'science'

chez
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  #7  
Old 12-21-2005, 11:21 AM
imported_luckyme imported_luckyme is offline
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Default Re: Dover Intelligent Design case -- judge rules for plaintiffs

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you said that people brought their morality to their religon

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Dishonest religous people remain dishonest but honest religous people remain honest.

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My first comment was regarding how people choose a religion and/or which wing/aspect of a specific religion they identify with. They're attracted to the interpretations that support their 'innate' psychological/moral viewpoint.

My last comment refers to "having choosen a religion" you have, by the nature of holding a religous 'leap of faith', impaired your ability to consider all aspects involved in the morality of certain situations. In fact, it's specifically this impairment that attracts a certain type of person to religion ( those who desparately need an 'outside authority' to give them a rigid set of rules to apply).

The fact that a rigid set of rules will not be applicable to certain situations is an obvious illustration of how 'religousity..impairs moral judgement'. I don't think my two comments are contradictory or that the second one is harsh. I maybe overread your comment - it sounds like you're taking my statement to be more along these lines "..religion will cause you to lie" or some such. I'd be very interested in any expansion on this area you care to delve into.

I agree with your statement about honest/dishonest people, but I think we're focusing on different aspects of how religion affects those who imbibe.

luckyme
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  #8  
Old 12-21-2005, 11:30 AM
imported_luckyme imported_luckyme is offline
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Default Re: Dover Intelligent Design case -- judge rules for plaintiffs

[ QUOTE ]
Interesting stuff. I am the only one who expects the IDers to produce more and more 'scientific' journals of their own so that they can peer review each others 'science'

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We'll see more, and much better disguised, institutions with a scientific facade. These will include journals, associations, and teaching facilities.

They'll keep up the ID attempt, but the next fraudulent approach will likely incorporate aspects of the evolution process itself rather than claiming the initial creation and the denial of evolution.

luckyme
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  #9  
Old 12-21-2005, 12:01 PM
siegfriedandroy siegfriedandroy is offline
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Default Re: Dover Intelligent Design case -- judge rules for plaintiffs

What are your thoughts on how the founding fathers of the US intended the 1st amendment to apply to 'religion' in the late 18th century. I am by no means a constitutional law scholar (although I have taken two law classes on con law, including one specifically on the first amendment). In general, it's my opinion that the Constitution (much like various religious texts) is often abused and wrenched severely out of context to support whatever modern agenda a certain group intends to advance. Maybe I will post a thread to this effect in the politics section, but surely it is relevant here as well:

What was the purpose/intent of the 'establishment clause' in the context of when and by whom it was written?

Did it really mean that no mention (or endorsement) of God may be made in the schools? Was this the father's intent?

Based on the limited knowledge I have of them, I would wager that the answer is surely 'no', but please correct me if im wrong. I am curious. If I am correct, then I am rightly frustrated that the true original intent/meaning of the document has been tortured. It seems disingenous to me for any modern political group to abuse this original intent simply to support their agenda 200 hundred years later.
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  #10  
Old 12-21-2005, 12:07 PM
jthegreat jthegreat is offline
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Default Re: Dover Intelligent Design case -- judge rules for plaintiffs

[ QUOTE ]
Did it really mean that no mention (or endorsement) of God may be made in the schools? Was this the father's intent?

Based on the limited knowledge I have of them, I would wager that the answer is surely 'no'

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Even if they didn't, it's clear, at the very least, that they were against outright government *support* for any one religion. Given that the issue is such a big controversy these days and given what we do know of their view, it's easy to argue that they'd support total government neutrality towards religion. It's hard to argue at all reasonably *against* government neutrality.
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