By JAKE MOKRIS
Teen Takeover staff
Finally, the Dover trial, the climax of a series of events that started more than a year ago, is over. But fortunately, that trial is not the final word on the issue of the origin of life.
I have a problem with the entire concept of a trial on intelligent design. Courts are not qualified to judge scientific matters; that is the scientist’s job. But though scientists are supposed to evaluate intelligent design, many have not, because they automatically dismiss intelligent design as false for its inclusion of a supernatural agent. Such a move comes from bad reasoning.
Science does not automatically preclude past or future action in the physical universe by a supernatural agent. To prove this, I will use Hume’s problem of induction. The philosopher David Hume came up with this problem: How do we know that the sun will rise tomorrow? Well, we don’t. We cannot induce that we know all the processes at work in the universe just because certain processes seem to be the only ones at work. Some unknown cause just might stop the sun from rising tomorrow. In the same way, we do not know all the processes that were at work in the past.
Even though the only processes at work in the present seem to be physical, that does not prove that the only processes that have ever existed are physical. For example, we can never prove that an eternal, omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent God with the power of aseity (self-existence) does not exist and has never acted within the physical universe. We cannot even prove that this God did not create the universe in a single act, without using the Big Bang or evolution.
This does not demolish the workability of science; as I said, we see no supernatural agents defying the laws of physics in the present. Science cannot deal with supernatural agents acting in the present because of the definition of science: science is, at its deepest level, experimentation. We cannot experiment on a supernatural process; neither can we experiment on the past. Only the present and the physical processes currently at work are testable.
Thus, by definition, intelligent design is not science, because the act of design no longer occurs and is not testable. But the theory of evolution is not science either. Scientists have attempted to test natural selection, but the only natural selection that has been observed is that which is grounded in genetics, and not evolution.
As for the supposed “beneficial mutations