Wednesday, October 18, 2006

The work of science

I just say a review of a new book called The Ghost Map by Steven Johnson. It reminded me once again of what the work of science is about. The roots of cholera were discovered by someone who had a brainstorm, was derided by the scientific community and then worked to show that his supposition fit the evidence. That is so unlike the proponents of Intelligent Design. While they claim there is a controversy that isn't backed up by their work. There are many presentations to lay audiences, but few to their scientific peers. There are many questions of evolutionary theory, but little evidence produced to back up their own so-called theory. A theory in the scientific world can never become fact. A theory explains the facts. But twisting a theory around or redefining what a theory mean (both were done in the Dover, MA trial) just isn't science. And that's o.k. Science doesn't answer a lot of questions. But there are many things that science can do and does within the self-proclaimed limits of science. Figuring out the cause of cholera in the midst of other faulty assumptions is what science is about. Attacking a theory because one doesn't believe their religious views can be accommodated by that theory just isn't science.

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