Intelligent design does not necessarily mean perfect design - after all, humans design things intelligently every day, but none of it is perfect.

However, you have to take into account the designer. If the designer is said to be perfect, for example, God, then the creation itself would have to be perfect. A design that was less than perfect would imply that the creator was also less than perfect.

Of course, perfect means perfectly designed for the desired task/goal, so some things that may be considered flaws may be due to using the item designed for a different purpose than intended.

But given that this was written in relation to the creationist theory of intelligent design, the lack of perfection in the human body, as seen in little things that appear purposeless and jury-rigged, go a long way toward refuting such a "theory".

Now, it's fine and dandy to discuss whether or not the appendix has a purpose, and that maybe it's not useless. However, there are plenty of other parts of the human body that can't seem to be anything BUT flaws. For example, the urethra in a male goes right through the prostate - a gland that is very susceptable to swelling, and thus blocks the urethra. Or the "funny bone" - a nerve that, for no reason, runs on the OUTSIDE of the elbow, making it very easy to hit it on something.

There are plenty of other examples in other species that have no purpose and no explanation other than jury-rigged design due to evolution.

But, on the other hand, this all depends on your definition of perfection. God, by definition, is perfect.

Some thoughts:

Just a few thoughts as to why the lack of "perfection" isn't necessary evidence towards a lack of intelligent design.

S_alanet, I think you're missing the point. As far as I know, pointing out evidence for lack of intelligent design in humans, is never meant as disproof of any deity's existance, or anything nuts like that. Rather, it is a refutation of an argument sometimes made by creationists to try to show that evolution is an impossible explanation for the diversity of life on Earth. The argument, briefly, runs as: "Natural objects, particularly the human body appear complex and well-designed. Other things which appear complex and well designed, such as pocket watches, have intelligent designers. Therefore, humans must be the product of an intelligent designer, rather than random chance." There are a lot of things wrong with this argument, but the one at issue is that the human body, as well as lots of other natural objects, don't display the kind of good design you would expect from an intelligent designer; they display the kind of kludgey, crufty, ill-thought-out design you would expect from evolution. So the first part of the above argument falls apart. Is this proof that evolution is correct? Nope. Is it proof that the Christian Bible is wrong? Hell no. It's just one way to point out that the above argument is flawed.

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