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12/19/2012 6:01:00 AM
Intelligent Design revisited by Mohave County GOP group
SUZANNE ADAMS-OCKRASSA/MinerRuss Miller, who promotes Intelligent Design as an alternative to biological evolution, speaks to the Mohave County Republican Men’s Club Tuesday.

Russ Miller, who promotes Intelligent Design as an alternative to biological evolution, speaks to the Mohave County Republican Men’s Club Tuesday.

Suzanne Adams-Ockrassa
Miner Staff Reporter

KINGMAN - Given the debate within the Republican Party about its future in a rapidly changing nation, is a session on Intelligent Design the best use of time for a group like the Mohave County Republican Men's Club?

Club president Laurence Schiff and several members of the organization say yes.

The club invited Russ Miller from Creation Ministries to give a presentation on Intelligent Design at Monday's meeting.

District 4 County Supervisor Joy Brotherton said she was a little surprised at the focus of Miller's speech, but wasn't offended by it.

"I'm not so sure that is the direction the party needs to go at this point in time," she said.

The party really needs to shift gears and focus on its principles in order to have a viable candidate for national or local offices in the future, Brotherton said.

Kingman Mayor John Salem said he was impressed with Miller's speech.

"I think the goal of the party as well as our society as a whole is to let God back into our schools and into classrooms," he wrote in an email. "It sure did help and not hurt when I was growing up."

"I thought it was very interesting to see a different opinion," said Cerbat Constable Jean Bishop.

She didn't think the purpose of having Miller speak was to present a belief of the Mohave County Republican Party or the national Republican Party. It was more of a break from the politics of the long election season, she said.

Club president Dr. Laurence Schiff said he invited Miller to speak because he had been banned from some Arizona schools and he thought his opinion should be heard.

"I don't agree with everyone I bring into these meetings," he said. "I don't think Intelligent Design and evolution are as mutually exclusive as (Miller) presented. But there are a lot of people here who believe in that."

Intelligent Design is a theory which states that the universe and the world is so complex that it couldn't have evolved by chance and that a greater power had a hand in its making.

Miller also derided evolution, the widely accepted scientific view of biological life that grew out of Charles Darwin's work in the 1800s. Miller claimed that evolution has no scientific basis and said that without God's hand in the mix, all living beings on the planet would now be extinct.

Intelligent Design was the subject of intense debate for several years, but it was dealt a severe blow in 2005 in the case of Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School Board. The board had passed a policy requiring the teaching of Intelligent Design in science classes.

The judge in the case, a conservative appointee of then-president George W. Bush, criticized the "breathtaking inanity" of the policy and used his ruling to pick apart the movement's supposedly scientific underpinnings.

There are people who don't necessarily believe in Intelligent Design, Schiff said. But many do believe that the removal of God from schools has led to a loss of morals and more violence in today's society.

"Do I believe Intelligent Design should be taught in schools? Yes, but not as gospel," Schiff said. "I don't believe in imposing views on people. I have no problem with kids who don't want to stand for the Pledge of Allegiance and I don't think they should be punished for doing so."

Schiff does have a problem with people who are not willing to stand up for their convictions and that is where he thinks that is where some members of the Republican Party are going wrong.

KRMC (Journal)-46742

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Reader Comments

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: Dr. GS Hurd

[Comment deleted for excessive length]

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: concerned citizen

The farther some people and organizations go down, the more fanatical and frantic they become. I guess God can't go into our school system, and society, w/o some conservatives giving him the key to the door. Same as in our lives we cannot have God in our lives unless we get their permission. They are the only ones that know what's best for everyone except for themselves, that is.

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: what next!

What next? This whole republican article is just nuts! If you want religion taught - go door to door and encourage people to teach it at home -in their home! I for one do not want the school taking on my kids religious training! Some responsibility has to be left to parents!

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: Melissa T.

Thanks Dr. Schiff ! Even if I don't agree 100 %, I appreciate your time and effort to bring GOOD speakers.
- The forum should copy you and learn how to have good meetings. Their meetings ARE BORED AS HELL !!.They are fighting as beavers and forum board should be ashamed.
- Thanks once again.

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: Rick Sherwood

"I'm not so sure that is the direction the party needs to go at this point in time," Brotherton said.

Yet she says" The party really needs to shift gears and focus on its principles "

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't that what is being done? Joy, seems to be confused.

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: Doing Research

Back up the science train!

OK, so really, Evolution is a theory based on assumptions made from observed artifacts (fossils) - the same way how gravity works is a theory we assume is correct

Scientific hypotheses are never, EVER 100% facts. The closest you can ever get is an assumption, which is to say that a theory has been observed, described and reproducible in experiments so many times that you can assume that every time you'll get the same results.

That is how the scientific process work.

That being said, Intelligent Design has no place being taught in a school because there is no evidence pointing to divine intervention guiding evolution. That's a hypothesis - but you have to have evidence confirming your hypothesis before you can move it from crazy-talk theory to even possibly acceptable fact.

Otherwise the following theories need to be taught as well:
-Islamic/Christian Creationism
-Hindu's story that Lord Brahma created the universe from a lotus flower
-Buddhist thoughts that creation never happened, technically
-Pastafarianism's creation myth that a Flying Spaghetti Monster created the Earth and a midget in 3 days
-Scientology's story about Lord Xenu
-Babylonian cretion story that we are all decended from space aliens
-...and so on

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: nephew .....

Even when I'm tired and distracted by other more immediately pressing matters, there's usually a moment or two to reflect upon a salient principle - our complex life form and all its creativity could not have arisen from lightning bolts striking gases eons ago. If you really need that one explained to you, find someone with a little more energy than myself.

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: Linda Athens

Trained Observer:

There is no such thing as man made global warming. NONE!! Another hoax by the left. Study the facts and you will soon find out.

There is NO such thing as separation of church and state. Matter of fact, schools of long ago used the Bible and Bible verses to teach children their ABC's.

Their goal was two fold. For them to learn to read and for them to learn the Bible so they would be able to function properly in our Bible based Republic, complete with the morality it teaches us to live by.

The first thing the Bible teaches is "individual responsibility". That is in opposition to big government. In other words, self reliance was the word of the day, thus their long ocean journey to the New World in the first place.

I would recommend a little book called "Revolution's Fatal Fruit - How Darwin's Tree of Life Brought Death to Millions" by Tom DeRosa. It can be obtained through Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church.

DeRosa is a former atheist and evolutionst who now serves as Director of the Creation Studies Institute. Other books by him are Evidence for Creation, Intelligent Answers for Open Minds and he hosts The Genesis Connection, an hour long weekly radio show.

Any evolutionist who wants proof of a God can find it in this little book. But you have to have the guts to look. For instance, God speaks of the earth being round in the Bible long before we ever knew it was round, one of hundreds of startling facts.

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: Donna Wickerd

Mayor Salem, as a member of the majority religion, it probably didn't bother you to have your teacher quoting the bible, but as a member of another religion, I am not so blase, and I imagine other parents who are either not Christian or not religious would think that teaching unscientific creation mythology in science class CAN hurt, in the sense that our children are already behind in science and shouldn't be wasting their time learning something that is not scientific and has been debunked by a conservative federal judge, among many others!

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: anonymous anonymous

Some folks are going to be so disappointed when they meet Jesus and he does not ask them were they are republican, democrat, independent, communist, socialist or what ever political persuasion one can be, but did you ignore the poor, the hungry, naked those sick and in prison? If you do not have the right answer all your money, wealth, social status, political connections will mean nothing to him he simply will not know you!

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: Linda Athens

Good for the Republicans and God bless Mayor Salem for the truth he spoke. And yes, we threw God out and our morality went with Him.

It is NOT a fact 99.9% of scientists believe in evolution. In fact, most good scientists believe in God. That is FACT.

There are HUGE holes in the theory of evolution as anyone with the brain of a piece of sludge can tell you. I did not evolve from an ape.

And as far as Joy Brotherton who I supported, I would remind her, our Founding Fathers based the Constitution on the Bible which obviously is our playbook for Intelligent Design.

So everything in our government comes from the belief in God or Intelligent Design.

As far as the party and this belief going hand in hand. Again, we held four church services in the Capitol rotunda every Sunday for 100 years, the Congress printed the first American printed Bibles, made a special edition to hand out to the Indians to Christianize them.

Most of those in Congress were pastors first, elected officials second. Every great University in this country was founded on Christianity - now run by atheists and communists.

The American Revolution was started from the pulpit (See Adam's book Yankee Doodle Went to Church).

And you might try reading Dembsi's book Intelligent Design where he puts forth the scientific evidence of it. There is NO evidence whatsoever we descended from animals. NONE but the atheists have had a field day convincing the duped there is.

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: Joe Schmo

"Intelligent Design" is simply religion stripped down and dressed up as science. There is no scientific proof of Intelligent Design whatsoever, but there is plenty of evidence regarding evolution.

If the local GOP club members want to listen to fairy tales--so be it. Their entire trickle down economic philosophy is a fairy tale. But no one should think for a moment that Intelligent Design is a viable alternative scientific idea to explain the existence of life or biological change. And it should definitely not be taught in our schools as part of any science or biology cirriculum. Maybe it would be appropriate as part of a study on world religions--but not as science.

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: Painfull truths

Its painful but true.

GOP..your old, your white, your history.

This is far to little way to late. The party has all but ruined itself during this last 4 years. All the venom has been spewed and here is the result.

A party that lost again while screaming the whole way "we're going to take back OUR country".

This country belongs to everyone. Thats something forgotten by those who think the people are powerless.

Trying to propose the GOP to intelligent design.

Bring to mind. "You cant teach an old dog new tricks." Unless the GOP radically changes Everything they offer the People. Its going to be a long long time before we see a GOP President.

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: Mending Fences

Has America gotten better or worse since our founding fathers? Ponder that Hound and Nephew...if you think so keep up your preaching against God..if you think we are going down hill you might want to rethink your stance on God and start preaching Him yourself. Many of us want God back in society because there must be law greater than mans to offer any sense of hope!

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: Jack Black

It’s as comedian Lewis Black once said. “Anyone who doesn’t believe in Evolution or at least in the ballpark. I have news for you. FOSSIL.”

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: harris stein

Please tell me Mr. Russ Miller, who designed the intelligent designer? I hope it wasn't Mitch McConnell and John Boehner.

Scientific conclusions point to the fact that our universe and everything in it, including you and me, came about as the result of random quantum fluctuations and events that neither you nor me can even begin to comprehend.

It is a fact that the universe is approximately 14 billion Earth years in age. It is a fact that the Earth itself is approxamately 4.5 billion years in age. A lot can happen in 14 billion years. Did an intelligent designer set everything in motion as Isaac Newton described or is it completely random? Judging from how closed minded people like you describe things, I'll go with the randomness.

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: Warren AO

Evolution is a fact. It is not disputed by anyone with any actual credentials, anyone who understands the mechanism behind it, or anyone with functioning intelligence.

Reality is not a matter of opinion, and is not subject to referendum. There is no 'controversy' to 'teach'. All proponents of 'Intelligent Design' are either deluded or liars.

End of discussion.

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: Jim Beekman

The belief in God (or not) withstanding, "Intelligent Design" is crap. It is not science, it is nonsense. The Theory of Evolution is held as FACT by 99.9% of all Earth Scientists, and it is THEY, not preachers who should dictate what is being taught in science classrooms.

The Theory of Evolution does not make a claim FOR or AGAINST the notion of a deity. But if there is a God, He/She/It left us evidence that the forces we know from science -- INCLUDING the Theory of evolution -- were used to do His bidding.

Please read "The Clergy Letter Project", Signed by 12828 Christian Clergy about the teaching of the Theory of Evolution in public schools.

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: Trained Observer

The Republicans wonder why they lost the election. Here is a clue. Making outrageous statements about science (there is no global warming, some unseen force made the universe, a woman's body won't let her get pregnant when raped, etc etc etc) are just the start. The US is behind quite a few countries in the world in terms of science and mathematics education. Do the Republicans know this or even care? If you want your god in schools, I recommend you open your own schools. It is illegal to combine church and state in this country. So please uphold the Constitution will ya?

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: The Fox Hound

I'm amazed that the Republican mens club thinks that a talk from a minister is the change the party needs to change its image with the general public. Religion is one of the problems with the Republican party. Too many are willing to tell others how to live instead of addressing the problems that face America. There is a reason the framers kept religion out of politics or at least tried to. All you have to do is look at the facts and you will see that church attendance is way down. People are changing the way they view religion and for the most part they think it should be between them and their God and not a political party. Unless the party believes what the main stream believe how can they ever represent them.

Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012
Article comment by: Anson's Nephew

You have to give Republicans at every level from being the most out of touch people in the history of our nation. With the nation facing some of the most alarming situations in decades the Mohave County group decides to address hokum instead of concentrating on jobs and issues that drastically effect every person in the county.

Oh well, Republicans are dinosaurs, so this is just another step in our being rid of them forever.

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