Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly
Dover, PA Intelligent Design Case News Feature, Original Broadcast Date: September 30, 2005 (Show #905):
In a landmark trial, 11 parents challenged the Dover District Board of Education in a Pennsylvania federal court over school policy that requires high school biology teachers to present a one-minute statement promoting the concept of intelligent design as an alternative to Charles Darwin's theory of evolution. The families claim that intelligent design is just another name for biblical creationism and to bring it into the public school classroom is to violate the separation of church and state. But the school board insists it is not endorsing any religious view, only letting students know there's a difference of opinion about how life developed. Currently, 31 states are considering teaching alternatives to evolution. Bob Abernethy provides an update from Dover on the continuing battle over teaching intelligent design alongside evolution in high school science classes. Richard Katskee, assistant legal director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State, says, "You can't require the teaching of creationism alongside evolution because to do so is to advance a particular religious view, and that's exactly what we think is going on here. But Richard Thompson, president and chief counsel for the Thomas More Law Center, notes, "We're going to argue that intelligent design is science. It is not religion. That what we have here is a debate amongst scientists as to which scientific theory best explains these complex biological systems that we have."
Featured (in alphabetical order):
Richard Katskee, Assistant Legal Director, Americans United for Separation of Church and State
Richard Thompson, President and Chief Counsel, Thomas More Law Center, Ann Arbor, Michigan