Profile: Intelligent Design and Academic Freedom (Transcript)

Original at All Things Considered (NPR)

This transcript, published by All Things Considered (NPR), is about Discovery Institute Center for Science & Culture Senior Fellow Richard Sternberg:

MICHELE NORRIS, host: From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED: I'm Michele Norris.

Should intelligent design be mentioned in biology class? In a federal courtroom in Dover, Pennsylvania, this fall, lawyers, scientists and parents debated that question. On Tuesday, voters ejected the school board members who introduced the proposal, but a judge has yet to rule in the case.

Intelligent design is the idea that life is too complex to have evolved through Darwinian evolution. It's stirring up controversy not only in high school classrooms but at universities and scientific research centers as well. As NPR's Barbara Bradley Hagerty reports, it's part of a broader clash between religion and science in popular culture, academia and politics.


Everything about Richard Sternberg is careful: his wrinkle-free, button-down shirt; his spotless apartment; his deliberate, sometimes halting sentences. And so Sternberg, a staff scientist at the National Institutes of Health, is puzzled to find himself smack in the middle of the culture wars. First, he wants to set the record straight.

Dr. RICHARD STERNBERG (Scientist, National Institutes of Health): I'm not an evangelical. I'm not a fundamentalist. I'm not a young Earth creationist. I'm not a theistic evolutionist.

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