To the editor:
In my Jan. 27 letter, I discussed the scientific content of William Dembski's speech. Science was his focus. In a letter on Jan. 30, Richard Smith rightly pointed out that Dembski also expressed religious beliefs, asserting that a Godlike intelligence was applied repeatedly in the history of life and that God uses materialistic natural laws to supplement his work. Some Christians, myself included, find such an image - a God who plays hide-and-seek; now you see him, now you don't - to be almost silly when God's awesome presence is evident everywhere always.
But we're talking religion. Dembski's speech was on the science of intelligent design. He did start out with scientific observations of complex natural phenomena, such as bacterial flagella, but he drew religious conclusions from that data, didn't he, simply saying that such phenomena are "best explained as a result of intelligence." OK, but exactly which phenomena? What intelligence? What is that "best explanation"? And how are intelligent designs built? (I thought evolution was God's method, but Dembski finds evolution unintelligent.)
So, apparently these questions cross over into religion. God, who can cause the sea to part and the sun to stand still, can certainly make anything happen in the biological sphere. Intelligent design, then, involves unexplained miracles like we read about in the Bible! That's OK with me; I'm a believer, too. But where's the science?