First, I actually agree with Egnor that “Creationism” and “Intelligent design” are ostensibly different things; however, the history behind the Intelligent Design movement puts the lie to the prima facie difference between the two.
So for Egnor to claim that “Intelligent design isn’t a religious belief” is the height of disingenuousness; an accusation he himself levels at Pigliucci.
Egnor made much of the fact that Pigliucci cited a survey result that showed that people with more education were less likely to agree with the statement that “heaven is a physical place”. While Egnor may still believe that Heaven is hiding above the firmament and that Hell is in the depths of the earth, it seems rather ignorant to claim that Heaven is a physical place rather than a spiritual place. In response Egnor exclaimed “Why is Dr. Pigliucci surprised that most people, even well-educated people, believe in Heaven?”, it is clear that the question was about Heaven as a real (physical) place. But Pigliucci’s argument was simply that “In fact, the connection between education (science education in particular) and belief in paranormal phenomena or explanations is an empirical matter”.
Now I understand that not too many people take the musings of Egnor too seriously but I do enjoy a good fisking. Saves me a lot of hard work. For those interested in the excellent and thought provoking essay by Pigliucci, it can be found here. Critical thinking can prevent scientifically vacuous concepts like Intelligent Design and other forms of Creationism from violating St Augustine’s position on science, a position I believe us Christians should take seriously.