Dr. Barbara Forrest in Dallas

Dr. Barbara Forrest (author of Creationism’s Trojan Horse: The Wedge of Intelligent Design) is coming to Dallas.  Yes, this is the same woman mentioned in the email that got Chris Comer in trouble. 

On Tuesday, November 11, Forrest will be speaking at SMU (Southern Methodist University).  The event starts at 6 and admission is free.  However, you do need to RSVP.  Her presentation will focus on the following:

“Why Texans Shouldn’t Let Creationists Mess with Science Education.”

To RSVP, click here.


2 Responses to “Dr. Barbara Forrest in Dallas”

  1. A Critique of Barbara Forrest Speaking at Southern Methodist
    Video found at Littlegreenfootballs.com

    7:33 – 7:37

    Here is the set-up by Ms. Forrest. Her claim is that the proponents of I.D. are trying to –

    “…wedge into the public mind that science requires a supernatural designer, that it requires God.”

    She has skewed the argument from the very outset. It is not “science” but life that requires a supernatural designer. That she would say this makes sense as the notion that “evolution is science” is often expressed by adherents to Darwinism – and it is simply wrong. This tactic, equating evolution with science, is understandable – if one dares to dissent from Darwin, then it follows: he is antiscience and his arguments can be dismissed as religious zealotry. This tactic provides for the end of all dialogue and any further serious consideration of your opponent’s position.

    Ms. Forrest makes it clear: those questioning and critiquing the claims of Naturalism are engaged in “Stealth Creationism.” Ms. Forrest, however, then goes on a lengthy critique of the ideas she opposes and the message is clear: Critique of Darwin is inherently sinister, based on “stealth” (secret and subversive) motives. Extensive critiquing (her words) of Intelligent Design Theory is fair play. Questions can be asked in one direction but not the other.

    Is this how science works? Sadly, yes – this is a common attitude and approach among Naturalists.

    In her critique of Behe’s irreducible complexity, Ms. Forrest says dismissively that he presents in “stylized fashion” the flagellum as a little outboard motor, but then goes on to concede that he draws the information from a “legitimate science textbook.” She then condescendingly remarks “he just kind of adopted it” and “the bacterial flagellum is not really a motor.” No kidding? It’s not really a motor, Ms. Forrest? To quote someone famous, it is obvious she is “…straining at a gnat…”

    She shows a clip “from a legitimate scientific organization.” One has to ask – What legitimizes a scientific organization, their adherence to accepted conclusions? Recall that she admitted Behe used illustrations from a legitimate science textbook – though he just “adopted them.” While the video from the “legitimate” Protonic Nanomachine Project shows a flagellum, that, good golly gosh, they have illustrated to look like a motor, with gears and such, Ms. Forrest then says –

    “I’m just showing it to you because I think it’s just really pretty.”

    She is showing it to us because she thinks it’s pretty? This is a woman who authored a book on a subject about which she testified in a court of law, a woman from the scientific community who is attempting to persuade her audience to her position, and she is showing us this video clip because she thinks it’s pretty?

    After stating Behe’s position on irreducible complexity using the mousetrap metaphor, she then draws from Kenneth Miller’s material to refute Behe.

    Miller’s “research” consisted of him asking his students to come up with all the things they could do with a mousetrap if they began removing parts, and they arrived at the following: – nose ring, fish hook, toothpick, tie-clip, refrigerator clip, clipboard holder, doorknocker, paperweight, kindling block, catapult, and nutcracker.

    Noticeably missing from this list is MOUSETRAP. How does this fact escape an educated person involved in a scientific critique of an idea? The argument from Behe was if you take away the parts, you do not have a functioning whole…which is what Miller’s “research” proves. This is a perfect example of dogma getting in the way of common sense and clear thinking. The statement on the slide says:

    “Individual parts of a supposedly irreducible (sic) complex machine are fully functional for different purposes.”

    Who would begin to argue that a functioning, purposeful object would still serve as a functioning, purposeful object after it has been stripped of its parts? Ms. Forrest does! –

    17:43 – 17:53
    What Miller’s “research” shows is that – “Even Dr. Behe’s analogy doesn’t work.”

    “I mean, you know, you can take parts off a mousetrap and it still works. Some (stammering speech) you (stammering speech) could work as a mousetrap, or it could work as something else, like a tie-clip.”

    As at the outset, a false argument is being attacked. The argument is not that individual parts can’t be used for something else, but that the whole has a specific purpose and does not work without the parts. Let’s be clear, this is no refutation of Behe. To simply state that parts of a mousetrap can be fashioned for some other purpose is no refutation of irreducible complexity, and it certainly is no proof of Naturalism! Intelligence (the students) were sought to determine FUNCTION and PURPOSE for the parts, just as intelligence and design was needed for the mousetrap itself. There was nothing “random” about it!

    To finish the quote from someone famous, Ms. Forrest has “…swallowed a camel.”

    Moving on to her critique of Dembski, Ms. Forrest is even less persuasive. She states her opponent’s position, remarks that the position has been critiqued by so and so, and then shows pictures of some plants.

    21:31- “…but, this (Dembski’s argument) has been scrutinized by many, many capable people…”

    How do we know that the people are capable? What are the criteria? It is important to ask these things!

    As the slides of flora are shown, the only thing offered is the names of the people who looked at it, found it in a grocery store, and the names of the plants. No evidence or explanation is offered of how Natural processes alone brought these organisms about; just the statement from Ms. Forrest that it happened! The only thing proven is that Ms. Forrest believes that Naturalism can explain what only has “appearance of design.” 22:28

    “…so, Dembski, of course, has been shown to be wrong…”

    If he was, it was not in her presentation.

    After dismissing Dembski for the same (21:42), Ms. Forrest simply applied her own preferred “conceptual framework” to get the result she wanted. Without any evidence or explanation to the contrary, just on her word alone and those of other “capable people,” we are to believe her.

    Folks, this is not science.

    I watched this video until the 35 minute mark and had to leave it alone due to time constraints. It became clear to me what Ms. Forrest’s real argument is, and it is not science. This debate is about the influence of Religion in our educational system with the “foothold” being the open critique of the Naturalist/Materialist view of life.

    Many, like Ms. Forrest, have accepted a view of science which has left them incapable of free inquiry. A Naturalistic/Materialistic view of life does not open people to new avenues to discovery – to the degree that these views are held dogmatically – it limits them.

    The powers that be have declared the acceptable view of Reality. All who dare to question or interpret differently are branded “heretic,” or worse.

    Galileo, anyone?

  2. Jeff–

    How many other sites have you posted this on? Are you interested in actual conversation, or are you just spamming?

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