I knew nothing about Ben Stein’s documentary "Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed" except that it was about intelligent design and he related Darwinism to Nazism...not the best combo, but it’s an instant view on Netflix and I was hopeful that somewhere in the film he would say "Buller" in a way that made laugh (he didn’t).
I won’t say I was disappointed in the film. It was sloppy and biased, but I expected that. What troubled me about the film (aside from the Nazi stuff, which I will address later) was the fact that he didn’t really explain the theory of intelligent design--aside from saying it is not creationism.
If intelligent design should be taught in schools, as Stein believes, then it needs to have an actual theory, but no such theory is explained. I don’t really get the debate--God is faith, not a theory. Evolution doesn’t teach that there is not an intelligent designer; it merely shows a scientific theory used to show how species evolve over time to meet the conditions of their environment needed for survival. You don’t need to talk about how the cell began to teach it.
I happen to believe there is an intelligent designer, but I’m not sure how this fits into science, and Stein doesn’t help me out at all. I believe faith and science can coexist, but not in the world Stein sets up. I don’t see anything wrong with studying the theory of intelligent design if you are a scientist, but until there’s more of a hypothesis behind it, I’m confused about why it should be taught to mere students.
My belief is religious ideas, such as creationism or intelligent design, should be taught at all schools--but not in science class. There should be a religious history (covering all religions) in every school in the country so we have a better idea about why people feel so strongly about things and why wearing something around your head doesn’t make you a terrorist. But maybe that’s just me.
There’s a reason this film got a 10 Rotten on Rotten Tomatoes; it’s not because all critics are liberal and bias--it’s because the film went about things all wrong.
Instead of looking into the matter of design objectively, it said with bias that intelligent design theorist are victims being denied freedom (this from a guy who is pro-life (so am (though my feelings on the issue are probably much different from his own) I but I’m not the one preaching freedom)). Further, he concludes that there is a secret plot to get Protestants to believe in evolution just so they don’t sound like fundamentalist. That’s really where the film turns from bias to sloppy and in bad taste because this is where the Nazi stuff comes into play.
Stein is quick to point out that Darwinism didn’t lead to Nazism--it just was a key component. Because Darwin said survival of the fittest, many scientists believed we should kill off the weak. It was a bad idea and was even practiced to a lesser extent in America. Was it right? Of course not! Was Darwinism to blame? Let’s look at that question in another way...was the Bible to blame for the Salem Witch Trials? I suppose if Hitler is the product of Darwin then ex-President Bush is the product of intelligent design; I would prefer to believe science doesn’t lead, or even inspire, evil—only man can lead to evil.
The film further says that evolution can only lead to atheism, and evolutionists are all hopeless about life’s outlook. The movie could have been good if it explained the theory of intelligent design and used facts. Instead it was just a broad generalization that ultimately fell flat. Watch if you must, but don’t expect to learn anything.