Thursday, September 06, 2007

Ugliness at Baylor

A blog entry entitled Academic Freedom Expelled from Baylor University at Evolution News and Views contains this paragraph:

"What a difference a year or two makes. Or not. The ugly specter of academic suppression seems incapable of being dispelled at Baylor University. It first ghosted across the campus a number of years ago when leading ID theorist William Dembksi undertook the task of heading up an intelligent design research program at the Michael Polanyi Research Center. Anti-ID bigots amongst Baylor’s faculty and staff moved quickly and decisively to stifle any such research on their campus, claiming that they were concerned that “people will make us guilty by association and assume that we are associated with or linked to this organization that is very well established as a pseudo-science.” It was clear then that intelligent design was not a subject that could be freely researched, studied, or discussed at Baylor University. Academic freedom be damned."

Of course it is annoying to IDists and secretly gratifying to the anti-ID movement to observe Baylor's harassment of Robert Marks at the behest of anonymous complaints but there are broader issues that illustrate how destructive anti-IDism can be. Marks is engaged in research at this time and the research encompasses computational intelligence, fuzzy systems and neural networks. But it is his project known as the Evolutionary Informatics Group, which has the potential to produce data favorable to intelligent design, that has motivated Baylor to take the most unusual step of returning a grant received from an outside organization which had been previously approved by the President of Baylor University.

This incident exposes the anti-ID movement as the anti-science, anti-academic freedom, anti-intellectual movement that it is. Anti-IDists like to finger the Wedge document as symbolizing an ID movement. Yet what harmful effects can be attributed to this so called ID movement? On the other hand the list of incidents linked to anti-IDism is unfortunately growing. More ammo for Ben Stein. Good luck with your up coming movie Ben.

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