Entomological Society of America *

WHEREAS, entomology, the scientific study of insects and their relatives, aims to increase knowledge of the biology of this largest group of animals on Earth and apply that knowledge toward improving human health and well-being. Advances in entomology depend upon rigorous and widely accepted scientific methods that include the development of hypotheses based on observations that are tested and either falsified or incorporated into the body of knowledge that constitutes the discipline. Any hypothesis that cannot be rejected based on evidence is inherently unscientific.

AND WHEREAS, in all other sciences, the knowledge that accumulates from the testing of various hypotheses can lead to the development of scientific theories, which offer the most comprehensive explanations of natural phenomena and predict the characteristics of as yet unobserved phenomena. Evolution is one of the most robust theories in the biological sciences and has been integral to the conduct of entomological science since it was first articulated some 150 years ago. Indeed, entomologists were among the first North American scientists to incorporate evolutionary theory into their work and have successfully used its explanatory and predictive power to elucidate aspects of the systematics, ecology, physiology, and genetics of insects and their relatives.

AND WHEREAS, no meaningful or significant controversy exists within the biological sciences — entomology included — about the centrality and legitimacy of evolutionary theory. Ongoing study and refinement of evolutionary theory are reflections of the manner in which all areas of science advance.

AND WHEREAS, in contrast, intelligent design — with its central tenet of irreducible complexity (i.e., aspects of living systems are too complex to ascribe to biological processes and therefore must have been designed by some intelligent force) — is neither predictive nor falsifiable and therefore does not meet the standards of science. Accordingly, intelligent design has no utility in entomology and — for the same reason — has no legitimate place in science classrooms at any level of instruction.

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that for the United States to remain intellectually and economically competitive in the 21st century, its science must be conducted according to time-tested and globally acceptable standards. Evolutionary theory meets those standards and provides the foundation on which the biological sciences can most productively continue to advance. We should expect no less in the quality of science education in this country.

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