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12/19/2012 6:01:00 AM
Intelligent Design revisited by Mohave County GOP group
SUZANNE ADAMS-OCKRASSA/MinerRuss Miller, who promotes Intelligent Design as an alternative to biological evolution, speaks to the Mohave County Republican Men’s Club Tuesday.

Russ Miller, who promotes Intelligent Design as an alternative to biological evolution, speaks to the Mohave County Republican Men’s Club Tuesday.

Suzanne Adams-Ockrassa
Miner Staff Reporter

KINGMAN - Given the debate within the Republican Party about its future in a rapidly changing nation, is a session on Intelligent Design the best use of time for a group like the Mohave County Republican Men's Club?

Club president Laurence Schiff and several members of the organization say yes.

The club invited Russ Miller from Creation Ministries to give a presentation on Intelligent Design at Monday's meeting.

District 4 County Supervisor Joy Brotherton said she was a little surprised at the focus of Miller's speech, but wasn't offended by it.

"I'm not so sure that is the direction the party needs to go at this point in time," she said.

The party really needs to shift gears and focus on its principles in order to have a viable candidate for national or local offices in the future, Brotherton said.

Kingman Mayor John Salem said he was impressed with Miller's speech.

"I think the goal of the party as well as our society as a whole is to let God back into our schools and into classrooms," he wrote in an email. "It sure did help and not hurt when I was growing up."

"I thought it was very interesting to see a different opinion," said Cerbat Constable Jean Bishop.

She didn't think the purpose of having Miller speak was to present a belief of the Mohave County Republican Party or the national Republican Party. It was more of a break from the politics of the long election season, she said.

Club president Dr. Laurence Schiff said he invited Miller to speak because he had been banned from some Arizona schools and he thought his opinion should be heard.

"I don't agree with everyone I bring into these meetings," he said. "I don't think Intelligent Design and evolution are as mutually exclusive as (Miller) presented. But there are a lot of people here who believe in that."

Intelligent Design is a theory which states that the universe and the world is so complex that it couldn't have evolved by chance and that a greater power had a hand in its making.

Miller also derided evolution, the widely accepted scientific view of biological life that grew out of Charles Darwin's work in the 1800s. Miller claimed that evolution has no scientific basis and said that without God's hand in the mix, all living beings on the planet would now be extinct.

Intelligent Design was the subject of intense debate for several years, but it was dealt a severe blow in 2005 in the case of Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School Board. The board had passed a policy requiring the teaching of Intelligent Design in science classes.

The judge in the case, a conservative appointee of then-president George W. Bush, criticized the "breathtaking inanity" of the policy and used his ruling to pick apart the movement's supposedly scientific underpinnings.

There are people who don't necessarily believe in Intelligent Design, Schiff said. But many do believe that the removal of God from schools has led to a loss of morals and more violence in today's society.

"Do I believe Intelligent Design should be taught in schools? Yes, but not as gospel," Schiff said. "I don't believe in imposing views on people. I have no problem with kids who don't want to stand for the Pledge of Allegiance and I don't think they should be punished for doing so."

Schiff does have a problem with people who are not willing to stand up for their convictions and that is where he thinks that is where some members of the Republican Party are going wrong.

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Reader Comments

Posted: Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Article comment by: Edward Tomchin

@ Athens

Christ's last words as he hung on the cross dying were "Father, forgive them for they know not what they do."

He also went to his death at the hands of the Jews and Pharisees peacefully and did not fight against them. He was a man of peace and even loved those who condemned him to a horrible death.

Posted: Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Article comment by: Dr. GS Hurd

@pl, "strange that Mexico retains the Napoleonic code"

Yep, but they did. Also, in the countryside the law was always negotiable, as were the fines. A huge problem for recent immigrants from Mexico to the US is the idea the immigrant has that they should argue their "case" with the police. This is how a Napoleonic Code world works. If you are arrested, you are guilty. You then wait to appeal your arrest/conviction to a judge. Consequently, you argue with the arresting officer all that you can. Here, that is "resisting arrest."

Posted: Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Article comment by: pl .....

@Dr. Hurd....strange that Mexico retains the Napoleonic code. France has abolished it, and Mexico anyway would have little cause to emulate their former enemy.

Posted: Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Article comment by: Dr. GS Hurd

Nothing in my last comment alters the facts of the case as they are available: There was no legal entry permit for bringing a gun into Mexico, the defendant brought an illegal gun into Mexico, the defendant was legally arrested, and incarcerated. The gun was apparently a short barrel shot gun that would be illegal to possess in the US as well as Mexico. While being stupid is not a crime, this was apparently a case of stupidity.

Posted: Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Article comment by: Dr. GS Hurd

I lived in Mexico off and on for many years. I did not have a problem obeying the law there. Because I didn't have a car in Mexico, it was easier to obey the law than here at home. (I tend to drive over the speed limit, esp on the freeway).

Mexico has a Napoleonic legal code- you are literally guilty unless you prove you are innocent. That is something few Americans seem to realize.

And, the legal system in Mexico has for the +40 years I have known it, always been corrupt in the sense of "informally paying negotiable fines," AKA bribes. I am even more distressed that the US is headed in the same direction.

Posted: Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Article comment by: Linda Athens


You act as if Christ was someone who just rolled over and let everyone take advantage of Him. Wrong!

You also seem unaware that Christ is God in human form so whatever God says throughout both the OT and NT applies to us. The Savior was predicted in the OT and fulfilled in the NT - however He came to fulfill the OT Law so we now live in His grace - not under the OT Laws.

We in the U. S. live under our own federal and state laws but even so, the Founders made it very clear if they coincide with the laws of the Bible, we have every right to civil disobedience, etc. - such as aborting the unborn. .

And the usual response so NO, we don't believe in stoning people as the muslims do and was done in the OT, etc. Those were local laws but we are set free from OT Laws period.

Posted: Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Article comment by: Linda Athens


I watched the parents on numerous Fox shows say with their own mouths, the government did NOTHING to help them all these months in spite of them being repeatedly contacted so you are just wrong there.

The man's old gun which he intended to use for a bird hunt with his friend in what was supposed to be a fun trip after his bout with war and stress had been oked. The Mexicans weren't after his gun, they used it for extortion purposes as they always do in Mexico.

Don't tell me I am wrong. I lived next to Juarez for 35 years - know all about their extortions. My own daughter and son in law whose family is from Mexico went there on their honeymoon.

Their luggage and visas were stolen and money extorted from them to even continue their honeymoon which was to a very beautiful place on the western coast. They made it but with a lot less money than they arrived with. Live and learn. Canadian coasts are beautiful too! Extortion at the border is a way of life. Thinking he was Mexican, they would be left alone. They were not.

Posted: Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Article comment by: Anson's Nephew

“And Mexico had oked his gun.”

Mexico did what?

From the Associated Press, "Mexico frees ex-Marine." The diplomatic effort was led by DEMOCRATIC Senator Bill Nelson. The importation of any short barrel "sawed-off" shotgun is illegal in Mexico. They are also illegal in the United States.

Posted: Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Article comment by: Edward Tomchin

I find it very interesting and revealing that none of the right-wing enthusiasts posting here (including the members of the Mohave County Republican Men's Club) talk a great deal about God and religion, yet none of them seem to have read or grasped the words of Christ, who spoke of peace, love, brotherhood, forgiveness, charity and tolerance. They would all do well to read the New Testament, which has to do with love, rather than the Old Testament, which has to do with retribution.

Strange that it takes an atheist to point out this discrepancy.

Posted: Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Article comment by: Linda Athens

Mr . Hurd:

I will undoubtedly correct many of your many errors over time - very busy right now but will start with the Mexico Marine release error.

Lt. Hammar had been there since August. It was Republican Rep Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (FL)who tirelessly fought to get his release aided by Marco Rubio and then Nelson and Mike Thompson.

About a week ago, when questioned, obama's press secretary said he was not even aware of the man. ??? That would be FIVE MONTHS after the man's incarceration. Obama and Hillary did NOTHING all these months, about the same response to four dead Americans in Benghazi.

Fox News has run the story repeatedly, especially Greta Van Susteren including having the soldier's parents on many times. But obama knew NOTHING about it?? The parents themselves as late as TWO WEEKS AGO stated noone higher up in the gov't had done anything or appeared aware of the man's plight.

Fox and Republicans had a big push for a release by Christmas.

The Christian parents just released Psalm 118:5-6 and yes, many of us evil Christians have been in deep prayer over this.

The parents thanked everyone starting with Ros-Lehtinen and ending with soldiers and Marines who volunteered to go into Mexico after him as time dragged on.

Ros-Lehtinen said: “This is a great day for the Hammar family. I have spoken with the family, and can confirm that Jon has been released from Matamoros prison and is back safely in the United States. These past few months have been an absolute nightmare for Jon and his family, and I am so relieved that this whole ordeal will soon be over. I am overcome with joy knowing that Jon will be spending Christmas with his parents, family and friends".

And Mexico had oked his gun.

Posted: Tuesday, December 25, 2012
Article comment by: Frank Harris

Since the conversation turned to the Mexico imprisonment case, I find it interesting that the Law & Order crowd like LA thinks it is terrible Mexico jailed a law breaker.

Posted: Sunday, December 23, 2012
Article comment by: J J

And to add to the fine Dr.'s comment, the family themselves say they only recently contacted our govt because they were afraid it would make things worse. They literally waited months. As soon as our govt was made aware, they started taking the necessary steps to get this guy back to the states. But again, he broke the law in Mexico. And LA, aren't you one of the same people that says "illegal is illegal" when it comes to Mexicans breaking the law by being in our country illegally? Well he took a gun to Mexico. Mexico is not ok with that. He broke the law. Period.

Posted: Sunday, December 23, 2012
Article comment by: Origional Kingman Resident

@John Reid

I'm with you. There is an important place for religion in society, but, at the same time, there is scientific proof that evolution occurs in plants and animals, including humans.

It doesn't have to be either spiritual or scientific. There is a perspective that can accommodate both.

Humans have a far greater level of intelligence and curiosity than other animals, along with the physical ability to use tools.
If it could be said the God intended for humans to have these advantages, then it would make sense that humans would investigate the natural world and be able to understand the evolutions of living things and the geology of the planet Earth.

But, if people didn't have religion vs. science to argue about, what else would they do with their time?

Posted: Saturday, December 22, 2012
Article comment by: Jerry Jones

Wow...everyone is tripping over themselves her. And Linda Athens, VERY well spoken ma'am. I'll sum up everything for the atheist, Christian and science person (I SUPPOSE). Evolution has proved squat, but it's certainly "muddied" the water. God doesn't exist you say? Prove it or better yet, where is your starting point. In a universe THIS BIG science and evolution has it figured out? REALLY? Better think about that...lastly, in the end, we are all men. There have been thousands that have represented Jesus over the centuries well and others...not so well. The bottom line is, what can you accuse or charge to the account of Jesus Christ? Anyone? HE is our example and what you choose to do with HIM has everything to do with the matter of all that is to know in the universe and our place here on earth. It's not about what we will doubtlessly do with some charlatin or someone who claims christianity and is nothing of the sorts.

Posted: Friday, December 21, 2012
Article comment by: Dr. GS Hurd

Ms. Athens promotes a paranoia hard if not actually impossible to medicate. She wrote, " a retired Lt, two Iraq stints and bout of PTSD, has languished in a Mexico prison since Aug, chained to a filthy cot and obama and Hillary do NOTHING. Libs don't report it, obama doesn't care. The Lt got permission to take an antique gun w/him - showed it to Mexican authorities after clearing it and he was imprisoned, money extorted from his family."

I'll cite the Associated Press, "Mexico frees ex-Marine." The diplomatic effort was lead by the Democratic U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson. The importation of any short barrel "sawed-off" shotgun is illegal in Mexico. They are illegal in the United States. Only in the minds of Tehadists are the laws of our nation, and others "violations," and legally imposed fines "extortion."

PS: Todays fishing was great! Best I have had in over a month.

Posted: Friday, December 21, 2012
Article comment by: Three Cheers For Intelligence

Liberal Lion, you prove how often fewer words are best.

Posted: Friday, December 21, 2012
Article comment by: Three Cheers For Intelligence

Dr Hurd, you're quickly gaining a fan. Please continue to comment. I'm just flat out tired of trying to talk sense to the LA's of this area. So nice to know there are more and more intelligent folks stepping forward.

Posted: Friday, December 21, 2012
Article comment by: It's A Degree I Need to Pursue

Thank you, Dr Hurd.

Hey Linda, what degrees are yours? Just like to know what degree allows you to speak as an authority on everything always.

Posted: Friday, December 21, 2012
Article comment by: Dr. GS Hurd

What is interesting is how people like Ms. Athens compound their errors rather than try to contain them. As I mentioned the other day, I am going fishing.

Posted: Thursday, December 20, 2012
Article comment by: Linda Athens

Well, Mr. Hurd:

I see you have not read the book nor do you know anything about that which you speak.

Christian slave holders? The entire world had slaves. You weren't aware of that? Christians were the FIRST and ONLY people on the face of the earth to actually fight and die to free the slaves. Most particularly, the REPUBLICAN PARTY OF LINCOLN - the same Republican Party that had to fight the Democrats for Civil Rights for the blacks later on.

Christians in the north inherited their slaves and of course, slaves were free in the north by 1790, 60 plus years before the Civil War was fought. George Washington inherited his slaves, hated slavery but by law was unable to free them. He did so at the first opportunity, that being upon his death. He left provision for their care upon his death so they would not have to worry.

The Adams family detested slavery and wrote constantly against it as did most Christians in the north.

Mexico took many more slaves than the United States but I never hear a liberal rail against them for it like they do us. No credit at all for fighting and dying to free them.

Incidentally, do you any idea why the entire world always turns against the Jews?

Posted: Thursday, December 20, 2012
Article comment by: mikel weisser

To clarify: the founders of our Constitutional, and even Articles of Confederation governments, may have lived in a Christian dominated milieu, but their work in shaping the values of our government was specifically to blunt the toxic effects of that theocratic control over society. Of course, our political leaders of the time, as is plainly and widely documented, were deists: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Ben Franklin, James Madison, Thomas Jefferson, and Thomas Paine.
Remember 6 of the 13 colonies had been created based at least in part on religious values, which Balkanized the newly formed states under the weak willed Articles of Confederation government into squabbling sectionalized sects as demonstrated by the decidedly unambiguous prohibition of religious oaths in the original Constitution’s Article VI. This is an explicit freedom FROM religion. The Constitution protects Americans from the oppression of Christianity in a time of the Spanish Inquisition and American witch trials. I sure wish the folks who act like they had sole proprietorship of the Constitution would then also actually respect it.
I further wish folks like Athens would stop trivializing Christianity into an excuse for their dictatorial impulses. Anyone who has a conception of deity or even of the divinity, of the universe, accepts some version of some idea of intelligent, or at least intentional, design. But could we do equal justice to all the potential versions of that design? When instead, we could pay attention to science, which all those different versions of god are based upon anyway.

Posted: Thursday, December 20, 2012
Article comment by: mikel weisser

All spiritual people, all religious beliefs, are premised on some version of intelligent design. But as Christians, we have no more right to enforce our value system on other beliefs. There is no disputing the society of the time for the creation of our country was far more Christian dominated, but to suggest that is a reason to privilege their group over others is neither very American, not very Christian.

Posted: Thursday, December 20, 2012
Article comment by: Trained Observer

Science is something that shows repeatable results. Over and over. Mythology is something that cannot be substantiated but is repeated over and over until it becomes culturally acceptable. A few posters here should learn the difference between the two.

Posted: Thursday, December 20, 2012
Article comment by: We The People{me} Thinking

This should be fun:
The Founding of Christianity by Roman Counterintelligence--by Eric Laupot- and as always please feel free to factcheck it's 235 page's long and i know just how much you all love to read-hehhehehehe!
I double dare you to open that narrow minded view you have of the world.

Posted: Thursday, December 20, 2012
Article comment by: John Reid

So I am confused... Why can't humans consider that evolution might be God's method / process.

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