Monday, September 26, 2005

Semi-intelligent design

I have a lot of frustration with the "intelligent design" crowd. I'm not a scientist (political or biological) and I don't play one on TV, but it seems more than coincidental to me that this renewed debate comes in an era of religious revival, political conservatism (survival of the fittest, anyone?) and stupidity at the highest political levels. But I digress. To spare you the ensuring rant, you can read what's inspired my current train of thought -- a Washington Post article that offers the best explanation I've ever read about evolution and the whole debate.

So here's my two cents to the ID crowd. Folks, just because something is too complicated and beautiful for YOU to understand, or even for any of the people you know who are smarter than you, this doesn't mean GOD did it. Number two, just because things seem perfectly designed and adapted at this point doesn't mean there weren't a whole lot of screwups along the way, which is how it works with random mutation or trial and error. And "along the way" means over time periods so immense that none of us can get our heads around them, so there have been a LOT of trials and errors -- and a few successes ("happy accidents") that resulted in the world we know today. Number three, we tend to think of the here-and-now as the endpoint. When I took history in school, we learned about all sorts of stuff that happened in the preceding centuries and ended up at the present day right about the time school let out for the summer. Of course, it's not possible to study the future, so it's hard to grasp the idea that this is just another insignificant point on an endless ribbon of time, so a lot MORE changes are on the way, including some that might even improve us humans a little more. The world is already complex as hell, and it isn't even DONE yet!

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