Media Perspectives on Intelligent Design and Evolution

Media Perspectives on Intelligent Design and Evolution

Media Perspectives on Intelligent Design and Evolution

Media Perspectives on Intelligent Design and Evolution

Synopsis

This nonideological analysis of the debate regarding intelligent design and evolution reveals the intentional distortions and unseen influences of modern media that skew the public's view of world events and controversial issues.

Excerpt

When Charles Darwin took his voyage on the HMS Beagle from 1831 to 1836 and visited the Galapagos Islands off the coast of Chile, no one could have envisioned what would transpire after his return. It is not news that Darwin observed wildlife on each of the islands with physical attributes that, he said, could not be explained except through evolution. It also is not news that Darwin’s theory of evolution, which he developed based on his visit to Galapagos, has prompted opposition dating all the way back to the publication of his Origin of Species in 1859. Darwin’s theory reshaped the way people look at the natural world, and it has never ceased to generate controversy.

Much of the opposition to the theory of evolution has been from religion leaders, who contend that the theory that species, including humans, evolved from lower forms is a concept that devalues human life and disregards the Biblical depiction of God creating mankind. But new criticism has emerged since about 1990, when the intelligent design movement was jump-started by publication of two books. One was a science textbook, Of Pandas and People, first published in 1989, which was based on the idea that evolution alone cannot explain many aspects of life. Second was the publication of law professor Phillip Johnson’s criticism of Darwin’s theory in the 1991 book Darwin on Trial.

Supporters of this intelligent design movement generally have failed to gain acceptance in the public schools, the result of several high . . .

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