Mr. Dembski just doesn't get it. Or perhaps refuses to get it. Or gets it, but will never admit it. Or gets it in a parallel universe. One can hope.
Josh Rosenau claimed that evolutionary theory has been useful even to the point of helping save lives. Overblown rhetoric, right?
NewScientist this week, discussing controversial new medications targeted to specific ethnicities, points to several maladies that are thought to have genetic links. Now, unlike Mr. Dembski, I respect NewScientist's subscriber-only policy, so I won't reproduce the article in its entirety. But I'll summarize a key chart below.
Sickle cell anemia is common everywhere except in northern Europe and North America because those continents are largely malaria-free. "The sickle-cell gene has been positively selected because people who inherit just one copy do not have sickle-cell anemia, but they are more resistant to malaria, a disease in which a parasite infects red blood cells."
Caucasians suffer more from cystic fibrosis, for yet-unknown reasons. Puerto Rican children are twice as likely to develop asthma; incidence is as high as 30%, compared to 5-16% in other populations.
Type 2 diabetes is common in the Indian subcontinent, likely because of mixed genetic and dietary factors. A similar mix of environment and genetic effects causes African Americans to suffer from a more aggressive form of prostate cancer.
Alcohol intolerance affects up to half the people of China, Japan, and Korea, due to a mutation in the gene for aldehyde dehydrogenase.
Breast, ovarian and prostate tumors arising from BRCA mutations are more common in Ashkenazi Jews; 1 in 40 carry these mutations, compared with 1 in 500 in the general population. A "founder effect" is the likely cause.
Multiple sclerosis is twice as common among European Americans than among African Americans, and quite rare in Africa. Genes and environmental factors are both implicated.
(Schizophrenia's ethnic connection is a matter of great dispute.)
These are just a few conditions from a gigantic list that are or may be genetic in origin, proximate cause, or effect. I'm sure a more savvy researcher could find far more.
Note that sickle-cell anemia, for example, demonstrates the interplay of mutation and selection. Carry the mutant gene? Fantastic. Now you're at less risk from one ailment, but at greater risk of passing another on to your children. (Or is that the forward-thinking of a beneficient designer?)
I could say more, but why re-evolve the flagellum? Evolutionary theory is useful.