Earlier this week (or was it late last week?) I stumbled upon this blog entryKey breakthrough in evolutionary science at Samizdata.net, wherein I had brief discourse with one Nick M. regarding the original post's statement that the discovery of the odd fish with legs (discovered up in Canada) would play havoc with creationists and the "Intelligent Design crowd". I failed to see how a piece of evidence supporting the theory of evolution could possibly throw a monkey wrench into the ID beliefs, since they seem to accept science as compatible with faith.
I do not think I got the answer I was seeking.
Nick M did engage me well in conversation, and he was clearly well-versed on a number of related subjects, but he kept telling me how ID followers were wrong, rather than why this particular discovery would destroy their faith. How can I diplomatically continue to repeat the same question, when another person continues to answer me with an answer to a question I have not asked?
It is my understanding that the people who accept Intelligent Design are those who believe that there very well may exist a supreme power in the universe, establishing all the known laws of said universe. It is also my understanding that ID does not require that one accept the literal word of creation. "Omnipotent", "omniscient" and "omnipresent" do not necessarily mean "constantly interfering and tweaking", to the ID people with whom I have conversed. For several, it is simply a case of having an intellect behind the initial creation of the universe (and perhaps also the development of the human mind), not necessarily that God hath made all things in seven days, exactly as we see them.
I'm not saying I follow the notion that God is there, either. But being an agnostic, I tend to want to understand what it is that others see in their worldviews. I want to know why could somebody believe that a person who accepts both science and God would have a problem dealing with a new scientific discovery? Yes, it could do damage to the hardcore creationist's beliefs, if he accepted the evidence instead of what the Good Book tells him. But, it can not undercut ID any more than the tightrope-walk between faith and science already has done, can it?
And, I want to know what, in their compromise, could so enrage or frustrate another individual that he sees only the wrongness (in his eyes) of their beliefs, and not hear the question of how a plain fact might undermine that compromise?