The classic example is intelligent design. Intelligent design has 2 main arguments. The first one is that the likelihood that human beings evolved and Earth was created has a probability of about 13 billion to 1 and thus could not happen. Now if you don’t see the obvious problem with that. It is this. If you play a game of cards and hold about 13 cards in your hand the likelihood of you holding those exact 13 cards in the order in your hand is about the same as the probability of evolution yet you do hold those cards in your hands. Saying something is improbable does nothing to prove it is impossible. The other big argument is that something are some complex that they must have a designer. Now the main definition of science is that a theory must be provable simply saying is too complex to be. But to use that as an argument it has to be proved that it is to complex and it has been shown that it is possible for complex systems to develop. To complex is a nice sounds bite put it is just that a sound bite. The argument for intelligent design is not about science it is about perceived morals
But the ignoring of science is not just a past time of conservatives. Liberals do the same thing. The big question about abortion is when does life begin. Liberals will debate the issue not on science but on perceived morals abandoning the science they use to debate the intelligent design debate on. It is about the woman’s right to choose not on whether science says that a embryo or a foetus is a life. They refuse to answer the question of where life begins. To answer the question of where life begins or not you have to provide a specific point that can be said that here life begins before there is not life. Many of the liberals would support abortion up to something like 20 weeks. But that is a truly arbitrary point derived from an unscientific definition of a week as 7 rotations of the earth. If you are going to limit the time in which an abortion can take place. Means you believe at a point that a life is a life. Thus you have to define that point in absolute terms. Whether that is conception, implantation or when certain feature is created. This is what should be the point chosen not something arbitrary based on society not science.
So that brings us to the latest controversy stem cells. So firstly I will talk about my own views of stem cell research. Much of the debate in relation to embryos in Abortion is that at that point life is inevitable presuming nothing bad happens (miscarriage etc) . Yet with stem cells they are coming from unused embryos and thus unless they are going to be put into a womb they are not going to be life no matter what happens. It is potential life not inevitable life. A slim difference possibly but still a difference. The debate of the
Now Auds makes a very strong argument against stem cells on the grounds that adult stem cells are better and she being a doctor I will take her word on that matter. However the banning of stem cells research funding in America was not based on that fact that one avenue of research is better then another. Would a government ban research into 3 colour white Light Emitting Diodes as blue and yellow phospours ones or at the moment better. Of course not the government know little about science. Bush himself is a business grad. The ban is based on the ethical side of the debate. When scientist are free from government interference they are going to focus investigation on the best avenue and until they investigate all avenues will they know which is better. Would Auds favour a ban on research into GM-crops (as many people who favour stem cell research would) Somehow I doubt it.
Science doesn’t lend itself to morals. Morals can be contradictor science cannot. Science is based on truth, ideology and morals are based on faith.