Reggie to Petrus << You express concern that the film wasn’t more balanced with a variety of views. But that assumes that the purpose of the film was to show the diversity of opinion that people in the world can have. The purpose was to show how these influential and dominant voices in the evolutionist community really harbor an animosity towards God and religion (Meyers envisions a utopian world where religion has disappeared from the earth). >>
I will answer. The (false) “two sides” presented primarily in “Expelled” are:
Side (1) those nasty atheists who accept evolution as fact
Side (2) those persecuted theists who (for the most part) reject evolution, and accept God and some form of “intelligent design”
Whereas, the true real two sides (in the real world of practicing scientists) are:
Side (A) those nice atheists who accept evolution as fact
Side (B) those equally nice theists who accept evolution as fact
And these two sides (A) and (B) get along for the most part, the reason being there is really nothing to debate as far as the overall science of evolution is concerned. Evolution happened, the evidence is overwhelming. What scientists debate are the details, how it happened, by what natural mechanisms, etc. They don’t debate “God did it” since that isn’t a scientific question. Origin of life (abiogenesis) is also another area scientists research and debate, but that is to be distinguished from the evolution of life, as the movie somewhat brought out.
Time to quote (evangelical geologist) Keith Miller again as I have a dozen times in past threads:
“The doctrine of creation really says nothing about ‘How’ God creates. It does not provide a basis for a testable theory of the mechanism of change. If it does not address this issue, then it does not contribute anything to a specifically scientific description of the history of life. I believe that all of creation is designed by God and has its being in God, but that does not give me any insights into the processes by which God brought that creation into existence. That is the role of scientific investigation, a vocation in which I find great excitement and fulfillment…It is the continuing success of scientific research to resolve previous questions about the nature and history of the physical universe, and to raise new and more penetrating ones, that drives the work of individual scientists. For the theist this simply affirms that, in creating and preserving the universe, God has endowed it with contingent order and intelligibility, and given us as bearers of the divine image the capability to perceive that order.” (Keith Miller, Perspectives on an Evolving Creation [Eerdmans, 2003], pages 13,14)
I could also quote several things from Ken Miller’s Finding Darwin’s God but the above quote is what I have handy. The “debate” isn’t over the factual evidence for evolution. Furthermore, there is no “scientific content” to “Intelligent Design” (here I am talking about biological ID, which I would distinguish from Cosmological ID or the “Anthropic Principle”). Since there is no content, there’s nothing to teach in science class. So-called “problems” with evolution is not scientific evidence for ID. Most of the so-called “problems” are simply wrong, or have been answered for decades when the original creationists brought them up (in the 1970s and 80s).
Further, the philosophical “debate on God” (between general atheists and theists, not just scientists) is separate from the scientific evidence for evolution. Macroevlution or Common Descent is a fact. There is no debate on that in the biological and other scientific communities. That did not come out clearly enough in the documentary, aside from Dawkins saying “evolution is a fact.” More of the evidence could have been presented. I assume it was, but it was probably cut.
What was missing from the film were the actual two sides fully represented. Better interviewees would have been
Side (A) Dawkins, PZ Myers, Michael Ruse, Dan Dennett, Will Provine on the one side.
Side (B) Ken Miller, Keith Miller, Denis Lamoureux, Darrel Falk, Francis Collins on the other side.
But it wouldn’t be a “debate” on the science, since they fully agree on the science. It would be a philosophical / metaphysical / theological debate and disagreement which as I’ve mentioned is a totally separate issue from the science.
At least they did bring in Alister McGrath, who fully accepts evolution and I believe he rejects (uppercase) “Intelligent Design” as well, also the same with John Polkinhorne (he only had a few seconds clip I think).
As for the ID people supposedly being persecuted, get the full story from www.ExpelledExposed.com
The stuff on Darwin to Hitler was also nonsense, though I mentioned I haven’t read Weikert’s book yet.