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Index to Creationist Claims,  edited by Mark Isaak,    Copyright © 2006
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Claim CI001.2:

Intelligent design (ID) is quite different from creationism, because
  1. "Intelligent design creationism" is a pejorative term, not a term used by members of the ID movement.
  2. Creationists and fair-minded critics recognize a difference between ID and creationism.
  3. ID is scientific.
  4. ID's religious implications are distinct from its science program.


West, John G. Jr., 2003. Intelligent design and creationism just aren't the same.


  1. The reasons given for ID not being creationism fail:
    1. The term "Intelligent design creationism" is used because it is descriptive. The fact that the ID movement does not use it themselves means nothing, because the movement is based on propaganda and image manipulation (Branch 2002; CRSC 1998; Forrest 2002).

      Claiming this reason is also blatant hypocrisy. ID members are relentless in referring to evolution as Darwinism and evolutionary scientists as Darwinists, despite the fact that evolutionary scientists do not use those labels in such a way.

    2. There are differences between ID creationism, young-earth creationism, old-earth creationism, gap creationism, Vedic creationism, and other forms of creationism. Still, they are all creationism.

    3. ID is anything but scientific.

    4. Since ID has no science program at all, their last point is meaningless.

  2. Intelligent design is defined and treated as a form of creationism by its supporters. (The ideas listed here are prevalent in the ID movement, but there may be individual members who disagree with some of them.) Intelligent design's main characteristics -- rejection of naturalism, denial of evolution, belief in abrupt appearance and supernatural design, emphasis on gaps in the fossil record, claims of scientific support, claims that evolution is a threat to society, and support for "teaching the controversy" -- are essentially unchanged from young-earth creationism of the 1970s (Forrest 2005).

    The ID movement rejects naturalistic explanations for origins and seeks to replace them with one or a few sudden creations by a supernatural agent whom almost everyone in the movement identifies as the Christian God. That is creationism, plainly.

  3. The "intelligent design" strategy evolved from creationism. A main textbook for intelligent design, Of Pandas and People, was in draft stage in 1987 when the Edwards v. Aguillard decision made teach "creation science" unconstitutional. Early drafts of the book show that it was a creationism book, using the word "creation" and cognates throughout. Drafts made after the Edwards decision show that the authors simply substituted the term "intelligent design" for "creation" (Kitzmiller v. Dover, 2005).


Forrest, Barbara. 2005. From "Creation Science" to "Intelligent Design": Tracing ID's Creationist ancestry.

Thomas, Dave. 2003. The C-Files: The smoking gun - "intelligent design" IS creationism!


  1. CRSC. 1998. The wedge strategy. or
  2. Branch, Glenn. 2002. Evolving banners at the Discovery Institute. Reports of the National Center for Science Education 22(5): 12.
  3. Davis, Percival and Dean H. Kenyon. 1989. Of Pandas and People: The Central Question of Biological Origins (2nd ed.). Dallas, TX: Haughton.
  4. Forrest, Barbara. 2002. The wedge at work: How intelligent design creationism is wedging its way into the cultural and academic mainstream. In Pennock, Robert T. (ed.), Intelligent Design Creationism and Its Critics, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, pp. 5-53.
  5. Forrest, Barbara. 2005. From "Creation Science" to "Intelligent Design": Tracing ID's Creationist ancestry.
  6. Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, 2005. Trial transcript: Day 6 (October 5), AM Session, Part 2,

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created 2003-5-30, modified 2005-12-7