It’s a wonder that these people know how to tie their own shoes. I was sent a link to Perry Marshall’s Intelligent Evolution Quick Guide, and it is certainly a fine example of the kind of reasoning that allows creationism to thrive. It’s a short guide, but it goes on for over a page, when the essential syllogism that defines ID is actually presented in three all-encompassing lines.
DNA is not just a molecule – it is a coding system with a language & alphabet, and contains a message
All languages, codes and messages come from a mind
Therefore DNA was designed by a Mind
As I’m sure all of you sensible readers can immediately detect, his first premise is a deeply flawed analogy and his second is simply undemonstrated and entirely false, so his “therefore” is unwarranted. Three lines, three errors: a perfect representation of creationist thought.
I give to you the cockroach. It contains DNA, and it copies it and propagates it to the next generation of cockroaches, yet is it even aware of its DNA? Does it use its tiny little cockroach mind to construct a complex molecule? No. Mindless chemistry does it. There is no thought behind the synthesis and modification of the DNA molecule at all, yet it is true that it carries out complex activities with the aid of other molecules in the cytoplasm…but without the assistance of any intelligent beings at all.
Similarly, I give you the creationist. They contain DNA, and a large brain as well, but they don’t use that brain at all in producing progeny. After a little embarrassed tickle and grunt, mindless chemistry takes over in fertilization and development, and 9 months later, another mind emerges from one of their unencephalized wombs. We can trace the origins of that DNA back and back and back, and at no point in its history does it seem to be produced by conscious design, and the farther back we look, the less available potential there was for intelligent intervention. Bacteria are even less clever than cockroaches, you know.
If you want to understand our history and our evolution, the first concept you have to be able to grasp is that natural processes produce all the complexity and diversity of extant life without the guiding hand of any external agents. Once you’ve realized that, it becomes apparent that we can work backwards through our ancestry without invoking magic or cosmic helpers — that Intelligent Design creationism is a superfluous hypothesis that can be dismissed in the absence of any corroborating evidence.