Luke at Common Sense Atheism gives a good and fair review of the recent debate between William Lane Craig and renowned biologist Francisco Ayala on the viability of Intelligent Design theory. Luke previously provided a humorous but incisive review of the Craig-Hitchens debate earlier this spring.
Despite his indisputable debate skills, Craig has never debated or published on biological arguments about intelligent design. So with Ayala’s 930 papers and 30 books – mostly on biology and philosophy of biology, with several specifically about intelligent design – this debate was a sweeping victory for Ayala, right?
Ayala may have all the right information in his head somewhere, but once again he did not bother to properly prepare for a debate with Craig. How many more opponents of Craig must embarrass themselves before they take my advice?
Ayala knows how to lecture. He does not know how to debate.
Ayala’s presentations were meandering musings on evolutionary theory, the history of science, and anecdotes about Darwin. Ayala also discussed the evidence for common descent, apparently unaware that intelligent design theory is compatible with the existing evidence for common descent. In his opening speech, during which he was supposed to present the case against intelligent design, Ayala did not even mention intelligent design.
Craig, as usual, cut very clearly to the heart of the disagreement between Ayala and Intelligent Design theory. He then showed how Ayala’s objections to intelligent design were invalid. (Continue)