Saturday, August 06, 2005

Theory vs. Faith

From a scientific standpoint many theories have been presented in how the universe began, how life began, and how man evolved. A scientific theory is a hypothesis based on scientific reasoning which is based on some fact, weighted with more faith that a theory has a basis. Not all in the scientific arena subscribe to the same theory. Yet the hardcore scientific realm has no use for the theory of intelligent design, which is based on faith and is for many an explanation for the unexplainable or unproven.

President Bush has (innocently enough) touched off another firestorm of controversy by stating that he did not see anything wrong with the THEORY of intelligent design being taught along with the theory of evolution in our schools. Critics of the President, who support the Establishment Clause believe that bringing this theory into the classroom would violate the 1st Amendment, because intelligent design is supported largely by the religious.

President Bush was asked,
“Both sides ought to be properly taught?”
Bush said: "Then, I said that, first of all, that decision should be made to local school districts, but I felt like both sides ought to be properly taught...”

When asked,
"So the answer accepts the validity of ‘intelligent design' as an alternative to evolution?"

President Bush replied,
"I think that part of education is to expose people to different schools of thought, and I'm not suggesting — you're asking me whether or not people ought to be exposed to different ideas, and the answer is yes."

Why the controversy in such a simple statement? Because it gives the supporter's of intelligent design a plug by the President, who in his statements merely pointed out that our children should be exposed to "different schools of thought".

President Bush's calling either side of the controversy "schools of thought" points out the obvious. The "big bang theory" and "theory of evolution" are merely that - theories which in large are based on faith that the theory is correct. So teaching one school of thought and stifling the teaching of another could in effect be a violation of the 1st Amendment freedom of speech because both are based in a belief system with no absolute conclusive evidence to support it. Freedom of speech is based on the right to freely speak of ones beliefs regardless of the validity of those beliefs. Teaching intelligent design should not then be restricted from schools who believe that it is a valid theory - they are only exercising their 1st Amendment rights to speak freely of their beliefs.