To grasp the reality of life as it has been revealed by molecular biology, we must magnify a cell a thousand million times until it is twenty kilometers in diameter and resembles a giant airship large enough to cover a great city like London or New York. What we would then see would be an object of unparalleled complexity and adaptive design. On the surface of the cell we would see millions of openings, like the port holes of a vast space ship, opening and closing to allow a continual stream of materials to flow in and out. If we were to enter one of these openings we would find ourselves in a world of supreme technology and bewildering complexity.
Teachers seeking to 'teach the controversy' over Darwinian evolution in today's climate will likely be met with false warnings that it is unconstitutional to say anything negative about Darwinian evolution. Students who attempt to raise questions about Darwinism, or who try to elicit from the teacher an honest answer about the status of intelligent design theory will trigger administrators' concerns about whether they stand in Constitutional jeopardy. A chilling effect on open inquiry is being felt in several states already, including Ohio. South Carolina, and Pennsylvania. [District Court] Judge Jones's message is clear: give Darwin only praise, or else face the wrath of the judiciary.
In thinking about these questions I have been stimulated by criticisms of the prevailing scientific world picture... by the defenders of intelligent design. Even though writers like and are motivated at least in part by their religious beliefs, the empirical arguments they offer against the likelihood that the origin of life and its evolutionary history can be fully explained by physics and chemistry are of great interest in themselves. Another skeptic, , has brought out these problems vividly without reference to the design inference. Even if one is not drawn to the alternative of an explanation by the actions of a designer, the problems that these iconoclasts pose for the orthodox scientific consensus should be taken seriously. They do not deserve the scorn with which they are commonly met. It is manifestly unfair.