Category: PBS

PBS scores with ‘Judgment Day: Intelligent Design on Trial’

This evening PBS aired “Judgment Day: Intelligent Design on Trial.” I sat riveted for the entire two hours. Fascinating looks at the people and testimony in the Kitzmiller vs. Dover case in Pennsylvania a few years ago, where the judge had to decide whether an effort to inject Intelligent Design (ID) into the school’s science curriculum was a violation of the U.S. Constitution. Key to the decision was whether ID is simply another name for Creationism, and hence a religious view, not science. has a big section devoted to the program, and also a rapidly growing forum. It’s sad to see how much of the forum immediately fell into the eternal debate of which side is right and what idiots or heathens the other guys are.

Actually I felt the network did an outstanding job presenting the testimony of both sides, taken directly from court records, media accounts, and other sources of the time. It made a compelling story for those of us who’d picked up only bits and pieces before.

In my mind, it was a balanced presentation, but that may be because I’m a secularist and the Darwinists won, quite handily I thought. I understood what the ID supporters were getting at and appreciated it. But the fact remains that they changed their terminology from “creationism” to “Intelligent Design” in an effort to conceal its religious roots and get it into the public schools when they knew religion would not be allowed in the school. What intrigued me about the whole thing was that the judge in the case was a Bush appointee and a believer in ID. Still he adhered to the Constitution rather than his personal beliefs. That’s a tribute to the strength of the Darwinist case and to the courage of a judge who believed in upholding the law.

Nice job, PBS.

Run, Barack, run

Charlie Rose interviewed Barack Obama (D-IL) last night on PBS. I caught the last half of the show, and once again was spellbound by the Senator.

Articulate, thoughtful, low-key but confident. It wasn’t so much Obama’s position on issues as his thought process that impressed me. He’s analytical, open-minded, seems to consider broad options and consequences.

He’s going to be everywhere for a while, having just released his new book, The Audacity of Hope. Time magazine has a cover story on him this week that I need to read, and I may order his book.

I want to know a lot more about Barack Obama. I can easily see him as president of the United States, and right now I’m just looking for reasons why he shouldn’t be. So far, only his youth weighs against him, but looking at all the Good Ol’ Boys in Washington these days, that might not be a bad thing.