YES: Dr Richard Buggs is on the Scientific Panel of Truth in Science
A logical inference, firmly in world of science
BOTH intelligent design and Darwinian evolution should be taught in school science lessons. This is an important debate, and children need to learn about it.
Intelligent design says that we can identify things that needed to have an intelligent mind involved in their origin. For example, it is obvious to all of us that someone designed Stonehenge. The arrangement of the stones is complicated enough and organised enough for us to logically infer this.
The same logic holds for the living world. When we look inside a cell, we find a microscopic factory: tiny machines and production lines, DNA holding gigabytes of coded information, gateways with mechanisms to regulate what can pass in and out. Every cell shows a complexity that is so highly organised that it is logical to infer design.
Because intelligent design is a logical inference, based on data gathered from the natural world, it is firmly in the realm of science. That's where it should be taught.
Many evolutionists, such as Richard Dawkins, say that although the living world appears to be designed, this can be explained away by Darwin's theory. He claims that purposeless natural processes have brought about all the organised complexity of the living world.
The term evolution refers to a great number of processes in the natural world, many of which are well proven. For example, there is strong evidence that our own ancestors had a much better sense of smell than we have, and in our DNA we carry the mutated "fossils" of the genes that allowed this.
But when we are contrasting evolution with intelligent design, the crucial question is about the origin of new information - new organised complexity. There is actually very little direct evidence that evolution can produce new information.
This is a growing problem for evolutionary biologists. Every time we decode the DNA of a species, we find new genes that are very different to any genes in any other species. Where did these come from? It's difficult to explain in evolutionary terms.
It is a great pity when educators try to exclude criticism of evolution, and discussion of intelligent design from the science classroom. This is often done under the pretext that intelligent design is Creationism. But, unlike Creationism, intelligent design is not based on the Bible or any other religious text. It is based only on science.
We do our children a profound disservice if we shut down a fair discussion of the evidence.