Judgment Day: Intelligent Design on Trial

Judgment Day: Intelligent Design on Trial

2007, Society  -   205 Comments
Ratings: 8.11/10 from 55 users.

Judgment Day - Intelligent Design on TrialJudgment Day: Intelligent Design on Trial is an award winning NOVA documentary on the case of Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, which concentrated on the question of whether or not intelligent design could be viewed as science and taught in school science class. It aired in on PBS in November 2007 and features interviews with the judge, witnesses, and lawyers as well as re-enacted scenes (no cameras were allowed in court).

The documentary was praised by Nature, and described as accurate by the National Center for Science Education. Variety magazine also gave the documentary a positive review, and said it was one of the year’s most important television projects, that "should be shown not just in every U.S. high school but in houses of worship as well."

In contrast to the positive reception the film has been given, creationist and intelligent design supporters have criticized the documentary. The Discovery Institute produced a website critical of the broadcast. Answers in Genesis claimed the evidence for evolution presented by scientists in Judgment Day was fallacious. The Institute for Creation Research (ICR) also claimed the film was not balanced. WKNO-TV, the local PBS affiliate in Memphis decided not to air the documentary because of the "controversial nature" of the subject, but has since promised to broadcast it in 2008.

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Bruce Muirhead
6 years ago

Infromnature said: . Hitler was a big believer in God and creationism. That is BS! Do some research- He was definitely a fan of Darwinism. That is why he wanted to rid the world of 1) persons with disabilities (so they could not multiply) 2) Jews and others not up to the Aryan standard (blue eyes, blond, etc.)

He was a National Socialist (Nazi) and in the beginning teamed up with Stalin, head of the U.S.S.R. (United Soviet SOCIALIST Republics) Both of them were "left wingers" - NOT right wingers. That's what Darwinism has produced ... Clinton and the Democrats - left wingers & Justin Trudeau of the Liberals in Canada- our version of the left, strongly supported by the NDP- also lefties. Worse than this, like his father Pierre Elliot Trudeau, he worships left wing dictators ( Castro, China, Russia) He seeks to quell free speech, promotes abortion, the LGBT community, Muslims - pretty much all that opposes our Judaeo-Christian heritage.

Yes Judgement Day is coming; better watch out!

6 years ago

I just watched this documentory and found that it ridiculed my religious belief that God created the world and shon a very negative light on Christianity. I felt that almost all the scientists had a totally negative view on religion. One said in a mocking tone, "God just went 'poof' and created life, ya right haha"

Obviously the people who made the documentory do not believe the Bible and even tried to show that several of the biggest haters of the creationist belief were good Christians because they were active in Church. I've got news for you, Satan uses people like them in his fight against God. Those "Christians" that were actively involved in the documentary bad mouthing the idea that God created the world and everything in it, were as far from true Christians as Satan is from God.

This is the most disgusting and anti Christian documentory out there today.

7 years ago

Apparently, Sky Daddy's unerring guidance only extends to the multitude or authors and editors who compiled his/her/its fairy tales, not so much to their self-professed servants. It's a damn scary thing the religious have any influence on society as a whole, let alone the education of kids.

However, that's okay. Someday soon the world will be delivered when the Flying Spaghetti Monster returns to earth and his army of macaroni mujahideen will show the world the truth and the way is airborne pasta!

7 years ago

Capitative viewing. Good old Judge Jones III came through spectacularly at the end.

9 years ago

It´s funny how religious people who are supposed to be all about love and forgivness etc. turns to violence as soon as they don´t get what they want...

9 years ago

“The fundamental problem with intelligent design is that you can’t use it to explain the natural world. It is essentially a negative argument. Followers of ID state evolution doesn’t work therefore the designer did it. Evolution doesn’t work therefore ID wins by default. But when you ask them: What does ID tell you about nature? Does it tell you what the designer did? Does it tell you what the designer used to design something with? Does it tell you what purpose the designer had for designing something? Does it tell you when the designer did it? Why the designer did it?
ID doesn’t tell you anything, hence a negative argument. You can’t build a science on a negative argument”.
Eugenie C. Scott, National Center for Science Education

chip griffin
9 years ago

no, the truth is i'm tired of wasting my time. thiis place is about something. it is not enemty as you wished it to be. everything was prefectly laid out, put into place only those not suppose to see it could ever miss it. the facts simply overwhem us.
take a look at a duck. stop and look at it. only the best artist could pull it off if it was dead, but then add all it has to it and WOW.
can't wait for the reward. wish you could have made it. mashing and griding of teeth...

chip griffin
9 years ago

creationist are a must on the front lines right? well i will just sit this one out and wait for the answers to male and female. i believe someone thought about that one for just a min. or can air think?
two to make one? couldn't happen on it's own. not the shortest path in anyone's book...

10 years ago

Judge Jones was nominated by Santorum and appointed by Bush 43, so the defendants should have respected his ruling and not deemed it judicial activism. it appears that "judicial activism" means not agreeing with the judge, whether he's "your boy" or not.

10 years ago

Zecharia Sitchin anyone? There are many books the great Sitchin made reference to that indicates the first great civilization on on our planet, the Sumerians, were given the knowledge by "the people of fiery rockets". Aliens came to Earth in search of gold for their breached ozone layer, and after 144,000 years created humans from hominids to help with the workload. As wild as that sounds, it is totally logical, as the evidence suggests: The oldest "manmade" things on Earth are the gold mines in Africa; pyramids are found in almost every country and have been determined to be "networked". The Sumerians knew of all the planets in our solar system and knew they revolved around the Sun, their weights, distances, and sizes of each relative to one another. By the time the Greeks handed us Astronomical info, most of the info was lost and the Greeks believed our world was flat.
Previous to our "creation" from hominids, our entire planet was originally biologically seeded by the same planet these aliens came from when their "Lord of Hosts" entered our solar system, which btw, still does every 3,600 years, according to Sitchin. So we have Evolution and alien intervention which worked very well together.
I know one thing for certain: The universe was well established before our solar system took root, and the Alpha God of the Bible, Jehovah/Yahweh, was not the creator of the universe but in fact was one of a pantheon of gods who landed on Earth for their self interests.
As it turned out, it was the second in command, Ea, who became Our "universal god" Jehovah (which is a corruption of the name Ea), because he was the most cunning, and most compassionate toward humans. It was he who upgraded hominids to humans.
Of course this does not answer whether the universe was created by Design or Chance, so I'll state my simple opinion: I've always felt it was Nature, Mother Nature, that causes all to occur seemingly by chance, but in fact, there are universal laws involved in everything that happens, like good and evil, yin and yang, karma, with the general direction favoring growth, harmony, love. But if you read the above, from written works on clay tablets and evidence left on earth like pyramids, and advanced cereal grains, we know that Humans were created from hominids by Design.

11 years ago

Let me see if I have this correct a man marries and doesn't have sex with his wife and she gets pregnant first time in history and has not happened since.
JC was born.
All animals have the same bone structure all from nature working out the best design and Humans are not descendants from Ape but another species closely related.

The Doco is in here some where worth finding all about how Genes are switched on or off at birth , even Chickens have teeth but the gene/s is switched off at birth.
Next time you eat chicken wings count the bones the "fingers " have been programmed to join together.
All this is another form of religion all will never agree and it will be argued until the end of the World.

11 years ago

When I first heard about intelligent design, just the name, I thought: "Well, yeah, whoever designed the universe - with all the laws that hold it together in existance- must have been very intelligent."
Then I fully read the article.
And I thought: "If their faith doesn't withstand science, It's not much of a faith at all." Faith means believing in something not-yet or never-will-be proven.
Why not believe in God and science? Can't you take science as proof of God? It's not as if science ever proved God does not exist...

Brendo Dawson
11 years ago

Get this, what make us so special to have a soul that moves onto heaven? NOTHING. All Living organisms must have a soul if we have one, so there is a lot of dinosaurs and animals in heaven if it exists, id rather take my chances on earth than in heaven with the raptors and T-Rex's lol

11 years ago

I`ve just revisited this after two years

I`m curious Charles B.... Have you evolved yet?

12 years ago

Im the type of person that believes a higher being or intelligence had some sort of intervention in our evolution or even creation possible , what if god created use by use of darwinism? What if the aliens came and took the apes and modified their dna to make us and added the 12th dormant straind of DNA.

12 years ago

Both theories should be taught so that people can make their own informed decision , this is just like the christian religion. Saying there is only one way and if you don't thing that then your a religious quack. That is a one track and closed minded way of thinking.

12 years ago

Darwin proved himself wrong on his deathbed. and what a dull meaningless life if we are just another branch on the tree,. were not unique or anything just a random occurrence. I just cant believe that , and everyone who does looks like a lifeless drone with no happiness and never smiles.

Virus Tera
12 years ago

Congratulation Darwinian Evolutionist :-)
It was a fantastic trial. This case was won because your lawyers did a hell of job to expose the sinful purpose of pushing a religion (that holds to some hocus pocus) beliefs with the help of science.
The case was ruled in the favor of the parents against the school because the school was working against the constitution of USA, which was actually the basis of the case(not Evolution vs Creationism) & Not because Evolution held an upper hand...
On a whole It was a victory of wit or a victory of arguments...Not of Evolution yet...

12 years ago

If we were designed, then where is the source code in DNA that says we were made by someone or some team of beings? When I write computer programs I always write my name in the comments and describe the purpose of every function so I can go back and remember why something was done the way it was or improve upon it. If we were designed we could locate such comments as proof of a creator. So far, DNA only includes code of the animals we once were related to and nothing more… these old body parts are commented out as it no longer has a function.
If I was to design a living thing, I would give it zero point energy, which lets say harnesses the atom instead of killing other animals. I would have it boot up and have an owner’s manual on how to fix its self and to not kill as an embedded command that could not be overridden. Everything would be designed with a purpose, some machines would be creative but have no arms or legs so it could not have free will to destroy, other machines would have a body to move to break down proteins and create things, etc… They would be able to wirelessly communicate, so there would be a limit to the number of each species of machines and to receive new instructions for updates and to obey.
Freewill only makes sense to me if you thought your universe was about to be destroyed an d a new one created from this one.

12 years ago

Invisible Pink Unicorns are beings of great spiritual power. We know this because they are capable of being invisible and pink at the same time. Like all religions, the Faith of the Invisible Pink Unicorns is based upon both logic and faith. We have faith that they are pink; we logically know that they are invisible because we can't see them. [Steve Eley]

12 years ago

Creationsim: "I dun undastood it so god lord jezus musta done did it"

12 years ago

"God created everything" is all I need to drive a car... but it is not a problem in having a driver license... it is all about my knowledge in running the car properly in the street.

12 years ago

bring them both together, both right, both saying the troth but saying it in different level of evolution. i wander such a smart scientist cant figure easy issue like this. they talk about two different time of evolution.

12 years ago

Matthew 6:32
For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them.

Matthew 5:48
Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

12 years ago

Creationists are kinda like apes with human bodies... Creationists are the missing link!!!

12 years ago


A monument to ignorance.

12 years ago

Well, after reading the entire page of comments, I feel the subject is very well handled by the humble minds of jock and achems (only to name those who have argued in fervent complexity, and above all, truth.)

I would just reiterate some of their opinions i find to be important in us all.

We do not fully, as of this very moment, know the nature of the infinite cosmos that is now laid before us. We can simply ask questions as to the origins of the unique that is abundant on this our mother Earth. If we might only look inside ourselves, unblinded by religious bias and, i say this bluntly, the ignorance of such teachings as Creationism, i.e. Intelligent Design, i.e. god. The only such known religion that I can sanely harmonize with is that of Buddhist origin, which implies that we are all gods waiting to spring forth into the light of existence in the heavenly realm of spiritual causality.

As of now, we do not fully comprehend, but why should we? Our purpose is to question everything, albeit that include our very existence. Do not grasp to these explanations, for they may sadly disappoint you, but in the name of science, humanity, and for **** sakes our mental/ spiritual well being, please take common sense as your companion, and furthermore, critical & analytical thinking as your guide.

Decide in your heart, and truth will echo throughout eternity.


12 years ago

@achems razor;
great all around discussion people, glad to see many ideas being expressed. Only want to add one correction to achem. The word religion comes from a sanscrit (mother of all tongues) word religo meaning "myth". Check out Joseph Campbell's 'the power of the myth'; he was considered the most pre-eminent scholar on comparative mythology. For an interesting twist, watch the documentary "expelled; no inteligence allowed". Spirituality and religion are not the same thing, and Ben Stein proves that Richard Dawkins is not an athiest, but more correctly an agnostic. No one can say where life began, not science or religion. Dawkins just doesn't believe in man made explanations (religion) but isn't against the idea that the creation of the universe or life that exists in it could be the result of intelligent design.
I really enjoyed both of these documentaries and I leave the readers with one question. how do we know that evolution is not an aspect of intelligent design itself? Perhaps we haven't been around long enough to see everything for what it really is. Either way, most of the documentaries on this websites are pretty good. keep up the good work (with the exception of the doc. about how man didn't walk on the moon!(terrible, misleading, creationism on steroids!)

12 years ago

I do have a bit of jealousy for those who truly believe in creationism despite the overwhelming evidence, I just don't have it in me. The fact is humans have been around what, a couple thousand years where the earth has been around for a couple BILLION. Our earth has survived and inhabited many creatures before us which our now extinct and will do so after humans have become extinct. If you really study the science and see how absolutely amazing it is that a clump of cells over millions of years can adapt and evolve to become us, then you become not a creation of God, but a miracle of nature!

Ryan Dorin
12 years ago

@Epucurus, So we agree on the basic point. The biggest (and most compelling) argument against Darwinism is the lack of data BETWEEN the emergence of new species. All of a sudden, one thing BECOMES something else. I'm not a creationist, but I also wonder if this great environment called "Earth" isn't driven by forces we have not discovered yet - that push our "mutations" and "variations" in ways that lead us ever onwards towards an increasing survival "development".

12 years ago

@Ryan, Darwins theory HAS been refined since it was introduced 150 years ago. Darwin had no knowledge of genetics. but with modern genetics they have confirmed his theory that through natural selection the more advantageous genes are chosen to survive and reproduce. over time this produces such variance that the genetic difference between the initial organism and teh later one are so diverse they couldnt breed with one another given the chance thus giving rise to a new species.

Ryan Dorin
12 years ago

Darwin's theory still leaves room for investigation. That's good science! Good Christians should not be sending death threats to judges, or lying under depositions. The scariest message I got from this doc is that ignorance is a new Gospel for many goodhearted people of the U.S.

12 years ago

The fact that Darwin's theory has been challenged by academics for 150years and is still being taught validates the beauty of it. I agree it is just a theory but it is the best theory we have with the most sound evidence. I do not believe that teaching evolution is an attack on god, rather I believe the two can coexist but intelligent design is not a science.

By teaching intelligent design as a 'science' we are not giving our children a choice but rather dumbing them down.

I feel really saddened for researchers and academics when I hear of people trying to push creationism into science classrooms because I feel like it disrespects and de validates the importance of what they do.

12 years ago

Intelligent Design is a stupid design.

Kimberly Currah
12 years ago

Throughout history one thing is an absolute certainty...when religion attempts to challenge science it ends up losing every time.

It seems to take the general public between 500-2000 years to accept scientific facts. It's truly quite amazing. I am reading several books on the history of science and even things like believing the planet wasnt flat or that we are not at the center of the universe took 500 years to overcome.

So remember that the scientific fact of Evolution has only been around for 150 years. It will take another 1500 years before the less informed will learn to accept in large enough quantities. But in the end science has never lost to religion...ever...religion just ends up readjusting and accepting the fact.

12 years ago

@Charles B.

My name is God and I'm an atheist. You were not created equal to everyone else. You are better at some things and worse at others and this is due to the unique genes that have been passed on to you from your ancestors. I didn't make genes, they evolved themselves. However, you deserve to be treated with respect and dignity like everyone and everything else. My existence is not required for you to realize this. Objective thinking just doesn't happen to be one of your strengths, religious devotion is.

Bless you

12 years ago

Actually, the whole "controversy" between Evolution and Creationism is a bit silly. Instead of legally forbidding to teach creationism (or intelligent design) why not allow it but also make it mandatory for all religious institutions to preach evolution, pay taxes and allow non and other believers to become a member? Creationists always claim that they are being discriminated against by the "Darwinist elite" so why not give them a seat at the table but also demand to have a say in their own closed little groups? For that matter, atheism should be protected as a belief too and atheist institutions should be made tax exempt.

Viktor T
12 years ago

Love read comments, I learn much more of all opinions.. its very good understand people opinions before you judge anything..
"Science will leave Religion alone, when Religion don´t mess with Science" :P

12 years ago

Thank you for such an inspirational post. It left me with a couple of lasting thoughts. Shanti!

12 years ago

With regards to the doc it makes me sick that some Christians are the most morally inept aholes on earth. For instance : TV evangelist Pat Robertson basically states that if there is a disaster in the town of Dover god will ignore them. 2 of the creationists lie under oath and the judge receives death threats from the creationists. If lying, threatening and hoping someone will die is religious then I am glad to be an atheist.

12 years ago

@angel r
I didnt understand anything of what you just said! Is it a riddle? Do I have to unscramble the words?
Anywho, I am against religion particularly Christian as that is what I deem Evil (torturing and killing people who dont agree with your view). But I do agree it is possible there is a being that has transcended the material universe, our science fiction hints that we can do it in the future. So what though? If a omnipotent being created everything we see does he put food on your table? Does he turn the electrons into text so you can read what im saying? Does he operate the MRI scanner so your daughter can carry on living? No, science does all that. And I for one am glad the future of the human race is not left in the hands of religious zombies and if I had my way religion would be banned from schools. Maybe in 2000 years people will read Lord of the Rings and place Gandalf as their god and Sauron as satan.

Angel R.
12 years ago

how effed up to BURN! the painting which was put a lot of effort into instead of giving it back to the painter. mean spirited actions driven by blind idealism.

eric in ga
12 years ago

@ Erik's many posts

the 'god' you have in your mind is exactly that. In your mind and yours alone. No other member of whatever congregation you relate with understands that belief exactly as you do. Please spend a few moments to place a 'relevance value' on your belief, that truly is only yours. No one else has lived your exact life nor experienced your exact experiences. Trying to formulate that belief in a theology merely is an admission that you like to conform. I have my own belief of 'whatsup' in heaven. I fully comprehend that no other living human understands it exactly as I do. i chose to relate to other Humans on a basis of actual similarities rather than invented, conformist similarities.

eric in ga
12 years ago

I will be here to discuss any further distorting beliefs imposed onto research that are not derived at through the scientific method of research. I await patiently the next 'moving goalpost' set by theists when they attempt to include non-science in the science classroom.

eric in ga
12 years ago

morals have been found to have evolutionary significance for any of you who read these posts and question your position as holding evolution as "the most correct theory we have , to date"
morals are altruistic, and altruism has many observable, repeatable examples all throughout the animal kingdom, and yes including us human-ish ones. Call ID what it is. An attempt to twist a theory to fit it to a preconception, without proof or intent to provide proof.
This was a very informative documentary, and very descriptive of how far belief can distort a humans perception of his/her surroundings.

Eric T
13 years ago

Awesome, objective doc. Nova scores big again.

fred Zeppelin
13 years ago

I think this is the third or fourth time I have watch this doc, personally I find it is excellent and informative. I personally do not believe in god in any form or fashion, it just does not make any sense to me. What I get out of this doc is the complete and total lack of objective thinking these Christians have, And their blind obedience to a book written by MEN about a god they believed in at the time. They (religious people I mean) then take these believes and try to ram it down everyone eases throats, as though it is an undisputed fact. Well guess what not everyone thinks there is a god. I do believe in evolution, to me it makes the most sense of everything I have heard, seen or read.

I don't believe we have morals and laws because of some fear of gods displeasure I believe we have morals and laws because we could not have evolved to the level of society we have today with out them. if we did not co-operate and help each other we would I believe still be at ape level of societies.
Like if one person in a village or tribe way back when kept stealing from the other members of the tribe, or beating/killing them or what ever. Sooner or later everyone in that tribe would band together and get rid of that person. not because they thought he was evil or mean but because they knew one day or another they would be the victim of this persons abusiveness. So as a result we came to a consensus of what is right and what is wrong in our societies/tribes, and by default our morals and values. I don't need god to tell me it is wrong to steal, rape murder or lie to my neighbors, I had a mother and father and the rest of the community around me to teach me these things.

Now that is not to say there is not people in the world that have anything other then their own interests at heart and are indeed truly evil people But to say that the only reason we have morals and values is because some god gave us them, well no sorry I don't buy that. When I see all the evil that is perpetrated on this earth by people in the name of their god. what kind of sick inhuman bastards stand in front of a bunch of people preaching love honesty and upstanding moral values. Then turns around and rapes a little boy in the back room 20 minutes later. Oh ya that's right catholic priests. Who in their right minds can justify flying jumbo jets into building killing thousands of people just because they do not believe in god the same way they do?? oh ya right Muselum extremists. And who would walk into a mosque during Friday prayers with a bag full of automatic weapons and open fire killing everyone he could till eventually he is overpowered beaten to death?? oh ya right a Jewish extremist who believes god gave them a spacial chunk of dirt.

no the moral argument does not work either. There has been more people killed in the name of some god or another over the centuries then Hitler or Stalin can even come close to.

Finally it just scares the hell out of me to think that some of the most powerful people in the united states either truly do believe the earth is not more then 6-10,000 years old, or are force to state as much or they will loose the all important bible belt vote.

@ Charles B.
"Darwin’s theory of evolution isn’t even a good theory; it shouldn’t be taught as “Gospel truth”! It has some many holes, and whole swarm of mutating mud-skippers could walk right rough it!"

They are not teaching it as gospel truth, they are teaching it as a a theory supported by mountains of evidence, that you refuse to be true.

"This is extremely one-sided against creationism. God forgive us."

that's because the bible does not support any scientific fact or theory other then, "God said it so it must be true."

"And yes, creationism is a very valid theory based on the facts and complexity of life itself. Even with all our scientific abilities, we can’t even make a virus let alone a whole world of infinite variety, fully formed and perfect." umm ok I may be going out on a limb here.maybe we can't create a fully functional virus but we certainly know how to manipulate the genes in a virus, so I think it is true we can't make a virus "YET". (although I can't really see the need to make a virus, manipulate the genes in order to make a benificial virus ya I can see that. As for a perfect world with everything in it of infinite variety and fully formed. Why should we, we already have one and if we play our cards right as a species then we can go to the stars and find more. no need to make one ourselves there's lots of them out there we just have to develop the technology to go to them.

I realize this is a bit of rant. However it is something I needed to say, and this is one of the best forums to do so.


13 years ago

@ Gunnar Reiersen

Thank you for the compliment, Gunnar. A few more words ...

When they lose their sense of awe,
people turn to religion.
When they no longer trust themselves,
they begin to trust in authority.

Lao-Tzu, circa 500 B.C.E. (trans. S. Mitchell).

In my opinion, we should be grateful to be privileged to be present to witness the continuing miracle of this wonderful, terrifying and constantly evolving universe, and be content with that.

What need do we have for supernatural "miracles"?

Gunnar Reiersen
13 years ago

I have seen this documentary several times on PBS as well as on this site, and admire it more each time I see it. It so clearly exposes the dishonesty of the Creationist ID proponents, not to mention their scientific incompetence. Several of them clearly committed perjury in their testimonies! They should consider themselves lucky to have not been hit with stiff penalties and/or serious jailtime for that!

I have enjoyed many of the comments here about the documentary. I found Jock's and Vlatco's comments to be particularly astute and well-informed. I am tremendously grateful to Vlatco for providing access to all these documentaries and amazed at his managing to not only manage this site but also find the time to submit as many comments of his own as he does!

13 years ago

Wow, a lot being written here on this.

Just would like to say to Charles B: Morality and Evolution don't go hand in hand because evolution is a completely different topic. One can, however, be both moral and believe in evolution. These people, myself included, are "humanists".

Secondly, are you really turning to the Bible to find out what's right and wrong? People have waged wars on what's written in the Bible. Ever heard of the Crusades? Or was that not allowed to be taught?

Intelligent design is basically a cop-out. It's like people who have no ability to question what's before them (this very inability being contrary to the spirit of science) are willing to accept everything they read, which itself is contradictory! ID should not have equal weight with evolution because it is utterly unprovable, and mere speculation on the matter can only go so far as "the Bible says it's right so it must be!"