Lets start as we mean to end shall we? Intelligent design is not science. The difficulty arises because ID does not make testable, falsifiable claims and/or predictions. One of the lynch pins of the ID movement is the concept of “Irreducible Complexity. This is the assertion that there exists in nature structures and systems that are too complex to have evolved, ipso facto they were designed.

The eye was originally pointed to as one of these structures, however sophisticated proponents no-longer do so for two main reasons :

1. There are now very detailed models showing how the eye could have evolved incrementally and examples at almost every stage in nature.

2. The human eye is poorly constructed. The nerves which carry impulses from the light sensitive cells of the eye come out the front of the cell, gather into a bundle and dive back through the retina to the brain. This has the effect of reducing the light gathering efficiency of the eye and giving us a blind spot.

From my perspective it seems a little wasteful of a deity to handicap us in this way simply to provide a semi-useful metaphor.

So, several other examples of such structures and systems have been put forward to attempt to illustrate I.C. a few of these are: the bacterial flagellum, the clotting cascade and the immune system, astoundingly complex products of nature all. However, all of these have plausible evolutionary pathways, refer to the resources below. Basically this boils down to the logical fallacy known as the “argument from personal incredulity”, it can be re-stated thusly:”I can’t figure out how it happened, therefore it could not have”. This is laziness and arrogance taken to the extreme. The rationale in the mind of such a person roughly consists of “I am an intelligent person, if I cannot find the answer then there isn’t one”.

This leads us to the fact that even if the above examples did not have plausible explanations (as at one time they did not) it does not follow that such explanations do not (or cannot) exist. One of the chief criticisms of ID and it’s ilk is that if we follow it’s lead then eventually we are left with the only answer to “How?” being “The creator (god) did it.” This would be the downfall of science and in this heavily scientifically dependent age, the downfall of our way of life.

“The candle flame gutters.
Its little pool of light trembles.
Darkness gathers.
The demons begin to stir.”

Carl Sagan

The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark


Resources:

http://scienceweek.com/2005/sw050805-2.htm

http://www.sciencedirect.com/ ……..Link edited for brevity.

http://www2.ncseweb.org/kvd/exhibits/immune/immune_evo_annotated_bib.html

http://www.talkdesign.org/faqs/flagellum_background.html

http://www.talkdesign.org/faqs/flagellum.html

http://www.millerandlevine.com/km/evol/DI/clot/Clotting.html

http://www.theness.com/articles.asp?id=31

http://www.edge.org/3rd_culture/coyne05/coyne05_index.html

http://www.theskepticsguide.org/logicalfallacies.asp