I don't have anything that intelligent to say about intelligent design. What I can say intelligently, I'll say here. For greater intelligence on the issue, click on "intelligent design" above and be linked to Paul Davies Templeton Address of 1995. He concludes with this call to conversation:
"The position I have presented to you today is radically different. It is one that regards the universe, not as the plaything of a capricious Deity, but as a coherent, rational, elegant, and harmonious expression of a deep and purposeful meaning. I believe the time has now come for those theologians who share this vision to join me and my scientific colleagues to take the message to the people."
One theologian who has taken up Davies call to take the message to the people is John Polkinghorne. The book he edited together with Michael Welker, The End of the Universe and the Ends of God is without a doubt the best science-theology co-authored piece I've read, not that I've read as thoroughly as some others in this field.
I find arguments from physicists on this issue more compelling than biologists. Stephen Hawkings, maybe the most famous of astrophysicists, uses the term "mind of God" at the end of his popular book. Freeman Dyson, another astrophysicist, famously declared that it is almost as if "the universe knew we were coming." Their arguments for a "designer" rest on complex mathematical systems that I am not qualified to evaluate. What I do know is that they have a basis for their conjecture.
Intelligent design taught in a biology curriculum seems to make less sense. Evolution is a helpful scientific theory that guides and directs progress in the field of biology. The argument for intelligent design, though natural (I mean, who isn't so amazed at things in the natural world enough to think it couldn't have been all by so-called chance, that is, natural selection), cannot really be taught as an alternative scientific theory because, as I understand it, it doesn't stand up as a theory. This is not to say that it has been disproved, just that it makes less sense of the available evidence.
I mean, I guess you could teach in geography classes that there is a debate about whether the earth is flat or not, since there are still flat-earthers around, but... see how silly that sounds.
As a Christian, I don't have any problem with teaching evolution in the schools, nor do I see evolutionary theory (and by theory, I mean the scientific, not popular, definition of theory) as undermining the foundations of the Christian faith. God works within and through creation, all things came into being through Him, so it is not surprising that God may have created mechanisms that function in one we can call scientifically observable ways.
In fact, I find it to be much more like the Christian God to create in such a way that our existence and life as humans came about through an intimate process that involves all of creation, beginning with the interaction of giant stars to create the needed elements for life, continuing with chemical interactions on a watery planet formed from the detritus of countless stars, continuing with slow processes of development and evolution, and culminating(?) in the creation of "praying animals", that is, us, creatures part and parcel of the created order, but created in the image of God, and renewed by the coming into our midst of very God of very God, Jesus Christ, God's new image for us.
We are a part of this thing called the universe, the created order God has called good. Why must we fight so hard to convince ourselves we transcend it, or God took some kind of special, separate track to create humans apart from all the things God is about the business of creating and sustaining by God's Spirit?
Sam, was that intelligent enough for now? :)