I haven't written much here about the whole "Intelligent Design" movement, in part because the thing itself is a bit too fuzzy to get a handle on.
Part of the problem I have with it is that it is a movement — and much more of a political movement than a scientific one. That political movement got a big boost last week when President Bush responded to a question by saying that Intelligent Design should be taught "alongside" evolution in public classrooms. (I'm too late to this party to make the obvious jokes about seeing the words "President Bush" and "Intelligent Design" in the same sentence.)
I'll have more to say on "ID" down the line, but for now let me just refer you to Roger Ebert's review of the movie "Skeleton Key," which opens today.
The scary stuff in this horror/thriller comes from "Hoodoo" which, Ebert explains, is:
… not to be confused with voodoo. Hoodoo, we learn is American folk magic incorporating incantations, conjurations, herbal remedies and suchlike; voodoo is a religion, Caroline is told, but "God don't have much to do with Hoodoo."
The movie's Hoodoo doesn't cast much of a spell on Ebert, and his response sums up my reaction to "Intelligent Design":
What's the deal with Hoodoo? It doesn't work unless you really believe in it, we're told, but if you really do, it really does. Considering what happens when you do, I think it's better if you don't. Besides, I believe things either work or don't work whether or not you think they can. Especially things that God don't have much to do with.