Frist Backs 'Intelligent Design' Teaching
Bill Frist Says 'Intelligent Design' Should Be Taught in Schools Alongside Evolution
By ROSE FRENCH
The Associated Press
Aug. 19, 2005 - Echoing similar comments from President Bush, Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist
said "intelligent design" should be taught in public schools alongside evolution.
Frist, R-Tenn., spoke to a Rotary Club meeting Friday and told reporters afterward that students
need to be exposed to different ideas, including intelligent design.
"I think today a pluralistic society should have access to a broad range of fact, of science,
including faith," Frist said.
Frist, a doctor who graduated from Harvard Medical School, said exposing children to both
evolution and intelligent design "doesn't force any particular theory on anyone. I think in a
pluralistic society that is the fairest way to go about education and training people for the
The theory of intelligent design says life on earth is too complex to have developed through
evolution, implying that a higher power must have had a hand in creation. Nearly all scientists
dismiss it as a scientific theory, and critics say it's nothing more than religion masquerading as
Bush recently told a group of Texas reporters that intelligent design and evolution should both be
taught in schools "so people can understand what the debate is about."
That comment sparked criticism from opponents, including Democratic Party Chairman Howard Dean,
who called Bush "anti-science."
Frist, who is considering a presidential campaign in 2008, recently angered some conservatives by
bucking Bush policy on embryonic stem cell research, voicing his support for expanded research on
Frist said his decision to endorse stem cell research was "a matter of science," but he said there
was no conflict between his position on stem cell research and his position on intelligent design.
"To me, I see no disconnect between that and stem cell research," Frist said. "I base my beliefs
on stem cell research both on science and my faith."
Christopher W. Ashcraft
Northwest Creation Network