Of course evolution is not a religion.
Caleb Hendrich is completely correct in stating that evolution is based on mountains of evidence dating back thousands of years. However, evolution is not mutually exclusive from Intelligent Design. It is completely possible that evolution exists within an intelligent design.
Maybe, just maybe, an intelligent designer designed the universe to evolve in certain ways. In many ways, this is easier to accept than Hendrich would lead you to believe. The physical constants that make up our universe such as gravitational constants, the weak force constant, nuclear force constants and many more, require unimaginable precision to sustain any life at all that it demands little faith to believe they are an accident.
For example, Dr. Robert Spitzer states in his book New Proofs for the Existence of God, that if just the weak force constant or the gravitational force constant changed by one part in 1050 the universe could not sustain any life. Sure, you could believe in billions of different universes and contend that our life-giving one was just a matter of chance, but to me (and many other PhD’s, scientists, and philosophers) this requires even more faith than believing in Intelligent Design. Intelligent Design theorists are not the “biggest comedy act in the nation.”
We’re people, grounded in science, who find it easier to believe that this amazingly complex universe is no accident. Is that so hard to believe?