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UA Library Board member sponsoring creationist talk at UAHS

A "young earth" creationist, intelligent design (ID) advocate and philosophy professor Paul Nelson, will be speaking at Upper Arlington High School on Feb 11th.

A UA Library Board of Trustees member, Bryce Kurfees, is listed as the contact on the event's invitiation. Mr. Kurfees owns an investment business in Dublin. Interestingly, there is a link to "Biblical Money Management" on his website (

Many ID advocates are classic creationists, arguing that the geologic ages are an illusion, and the world is less than 10,000 years old. Dr. Nelson is no exception:

"It's no secret that I hold a young earth view."
---- Dr. Paul Nelson at the Skeptics Society Annual Meeting, Los Angeles (June 22, 2002)

For anyone planning to attend the event, here are some links to help you brush up on the both sides of the argument:


In surveys conducted in 2005, people in the United States and 32 European countries were asked whether to respond “true,” “false” or “not sure” to this statement: “Human beings, as we know them, developed from earlier species of animals.” Click the graph for a larger version.

UAPA is concerned about this presentation because:


  • Nelson and the ID advocates explicitly aim to change school science curriculum to include the pseudo-science of intelligent design. Ohio religious fundamentalist groups have a history of trying to inject creationism into the science classroom, using high-ranking elected Republicans to support them.
  • the Discovery Institute to which Nelson belongs, is primarily a political lobbying organization, not scientific research organization
  • intelligent design is a disguised form of creationism and legislating it into the science classroom is a direct attack on the scientific method. If ID wants to be in the science classroom, it should follow the path of any scientifically verifiable, testable theory by engaging in the scientific peer journal review process. Non-scientific theories about our origins belong in philosophy or comparative religion classes, not the science classroom.
  • pitting evolution vs. intelligent design implicitly tells students wishing to accept the overwhelming evidence for evolution, they must abandon God. This sets up the false dichotomy that undermines both science and religion.
  • the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the largest association of scientists is clear:
    • "... that the lack of scientific warrant for so-called 'intelligent design theory' makes it improper to include as a part of science education;"
    • "... AAAS urges citizens across the nation to oppose the establishment of policies that would permit the teaching of "intelligent design theory" as a part of the science curricula of the public schools;"

Our impatience is with those like Dr. Nelson who know better but lie anyway, telling high-school students that evolution is controversial among scientists.

UAPA'ers, if you're interested, go to see what the advocates of intelligent design are up to and to send the message that there is a substantial majority of educated Upper Arlingtonians, including those with deep religious faith, who respect the scientific method and scientific laws and accept the overwhelming scientific evidence in favor of common evolutionary ancestry of life on earth.

To maintain a belief in a 6,000-year-old earth requires a denial of essentially all the results of modern physics, chemistry, astronomy, biology and geology.


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