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Thread: Religious retards once again trying to shove creationist shit into Texas schools

  1. #16
    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    Ugh.

    People like that should be rounded up and stuffed in a camp somewhere, far away from the sane, literate and responsible.
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  2. #17
    Elite Member Fluffy's Avatar
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    Texas on evolution: Needs further study

    Although the state ruled that schools must support Darwin's theory, creationists are singing the praises of Friday's decision.
    By Gordy Slack
    Mar. 28, 2009 |

    Language matters. And we are lucky that some people will go to the mat over a few words. In Austin, Texas, this week, scientists and creationists battled over whether to include the words "strengths and weaknesses" in the state's official statement about evolution. The words would influence how evolution is taught in Texas classrooms and would be immortalized in Lone Star textbooks. As the largest textbook market in the country, the decision could pressure other high school textbook publishers to conform to Texas standards.

    Dan McLeroy, the Texas State Board of Education chairman, a dentist and self-described creationist, led the charge to mandate teaching the "strengths and weaknesses" of the theory of evolution. After three days of high-pitched argument on both sides, the 15-member board, by a vote of 8-7, rejected the language, relieving textbook authors and publishers of the pressure to insert what opponents called "junk science" into their pages. But in a compromise that alarms and dismays many science education advocates, the board did adopt language that attempts to cast a shadow of doubt over the validity of the central evolutionary concepts of natural selection and common ancestry.

    Proponents of the theory of intelligent design, and other brands of neo-creationism, argue that evolution is inadequate to the job of explaining the diversity and history of life on earth. If they can cast doubts about evolution's validity, they have a chance to fill the authority vacuum with the tenets of creationism. But since late 2005, when a federal judge in Dover, Pa., ruled that intelligent design was a form of creationism, and that its introduction into public high school curricula was unconstitutional, advocates of teaching neo-creationism have been forced to seek other ways into public science classrooms. Enter the "strengths and weaknesses" strategy, crafted by the Seattle-based, pro-intelligent-design think thank, Discovery Institute.

    Eugenie Scott, director of the National Center for Science Education, an Oakland, Calif.-based organization dedicated to protecting the integrity of science education in the public schools, says that once McLeroy and his allies failed to pass the "strengths and weakness" language, "they had a fallback position, which was to continue amending the standards to achieve through the back door what they couldn't achieve upfront."

    And they succeeded. Casey Luskin, a Discovery Institute lawyer, and its guy on the Austin scene, was psyched by the outcome. "These are the strongest standards in the country now," he says. "The language adapted requires students to have critical thinking about all of science, including evolution, and it urges them to look at all sides of the issue."

    One amendment calls for students to "analyze and evaluate scientific explanations concerning any data on sudden appearance and stasis and the sequential groups in the fossil record." The key words are "sudden appearance" and "stasis." McLeroy argues that "the sudden appearance" of forms in the Cambrian period, when there was a rapid multiplication and diversification of species, and the persistence of forms over long periods of time (stasis) are evidence against evolution. And thus for creationism.

    In 2012, when the board next selects textbooks, anti-evolution members will be able to argue against books that don't sufficiently "evaluate scientific explanations" concerning stasis or so-called sudden appearance. Another amendment requires that teachers and textbooks include language to "analyze and evaluate scientific explanation concerning the complexity of the cell." Arguing for the "irreducible complexity" of cells is another key creationist theme.

    Each of the amendments singles out an old creationist argument, strips it of its overtly ideological language, and requires teachers and textbook publishers to adopt it. In other words, says Joshua Rosenau of NCSE, if the books don't at least pay lip service to criticizing natural selection, they risk not being adopted.

    However, the overwhelming scientific consensus is that neither periods of rapid evolution, nor the persistence of forms that have adapted successful ways of surviving for long periods of time, poses any threat to the theory of evolution. Yes, cells are complex, but so are the explanatory tools of modern evolutionary theory. Over the history of the debate, critics of evolution have invariably said something or other was too complex for Darwin's theory to explain. Yet scientists have consistently pointed out that two of the critics' favorite examples, the human eye and the bacterial flagellum, have been illuminated by and explained in terms of natural selection.

    "The theory of evolution has no weaknesses," says Kenneth Miller, a biology professor at Brown University. There are many unanswered questions about how organisms evolve and diversify, and what drives them to do so, but Charles Darwin's 150-year-old insights that all life on earth descended from one or a few simple common ancestors, and that natural selection explains how they did, remain solid foundations of modern biology. As the late, great biologist Theodosius Dobzhansky is famous for saying, "Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution."

    Not that science makes sense to a creationist like McLeroy. "Scientific consensus means nothing," he tells Salon. "All it takes is one fact to overthrow consensus. Evolution has a status that it simply doesn't deserve. People say it's vital to understanding biology. But it's genetics that's the foundation for biology. A biologist once said that nothing in biology makes sense without evolution. Well, that's not true. You go into the top biology labs, and it makes no difference if evolution is true or false to what they're doing and studying. It makes no difference."

    It makes all the difference in the world, says Miller, who notes the irony of McLeroy quoting Dobzhansky, one of the fathers of the modern evolutionary synthesis. Adds Miller: McLeroy's "fundamental misunderstanding of the way genetics and evolution have produced a unified science of biology is nothing short of breathtaking."
    -- By Gordy Slack
    Texas on evolution: Needs further study | Salon

  3. #18
    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    yeah. trying to shove unscientific religion into science class is a clear example of critical thinking

    why is texas so fucking retarded?
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    Elite Member bychance's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Penny Lane View Post
    FFS. Only in Texas.
    FFS?

  5. #20
    Elite Member Fluffy's Avatar
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    for fuck's sake

  6. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Just Kill Me View Post
    I'm forgetting our age difference right now. I recall learning decent sexual education and science in Texas schools. Have you noticed many changes in Texas education since you graduated? I have. I took for granted the things we learned. Wow.

    I learned the creationism from bible study and science that never really claimed sides either way from school. I can't believe this shit is even an issue. Shouldn't we all have some basic understanding of what other people believe in? Ugh. I'm so going to home school my kid with tutors from around the globe...
    I graduated from high school in 2003. They didn't say that either creationism or evolution were right.... we learned about them both, and they were both presented as theories. There was no talk from the teachers or in the textbooks about creationism being a "myth" or anything else of the sort. We obviously focused more heavily on evolution, but creationism was definitely acknowledged, and not in a mocking or disrespectful way.

    I do think that just in the years since I've been out of school, it has changed. A lot of people will disagree with me here, but in observing my younger siblings' experiences with public education in Texas, it seems that it's gone from just respectfully but non-committally acknowledging Christianity and Christian viewpoints (in classes pertaining to science and history or literature) to flat out ridiculing and shunning them.

    If anything, I think children are much less likely to learn about evolution in school today, unless it's to hear that it's an impossible and unrealistic myth, and that's why you hear MORE about it in the news- parents and Christians within the school systems are much more vocal on this issue now that they feel they have to defend their beliefs.

  7. #22
    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    creationism isn't a scientific theory.

    Creationism is a myth. It is not backed up by anything but religious prattle and is not based in reality or science.

    If christian parents want to simply wish away science, then they should do so and go without any , and i mean ANY scientific discovery. That includes the wheel.

    You can't pick and choose what is real and what isn't, and frankly i'm tired of delusionals attempting to do so for everybody else.

    If you don't want your kid to learn about SCIENCE, then pull him out of public school and let him live in a church.

    Ugh! anti-intellectualism and selective acceptance of reality is just so fucking offputting.
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  8. #23
    Elite Member WhoAmI's Avatar
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    I think a lot of people don't understand what a "scientific theory" is as opposed to a regular theory. It's not a guess. It's based on testable, empirical data, and is the best logical explanation for the outcome of a series of experiments. It makes me crazy when people say "Well, evolution is just a theory." Yeah, well so is gravity. So is germ theory. You can choose not to believe in either, but that doesn't mean you're going to fly off the earth or not get colds.

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    Thank you, WhoAmI, that's exactly right.

    A scientific theory is a very specific concept. Basically, it's what the empirical evidence shows, and what should be accepted unless evidence to the contrary comes along.

    To put creationism and evolution on a par as theories is misleading.

    I live in Massachusetts and my 14 year old is writing her research paper on the controversy over evolution vs. creationism. I know they teach evolution in our schools, but I have no objection to teachers mentioning what different religions teach in this regard. But...that's a different topic.

    I wish schools taught anthropology at the secondary school level. I think it would help.

  10. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by WhoAmI View Post
    I think a lot of people don't understand what a "scientific theory" is as opposed to a regular theory. It's not a guess. It's based on testable, empirical data, and is the best logical explanation for the outcome of a series of experiments. It makes me crazy when people say "Well, evolution is just a theory." Yeah, well so is gravity. So is germ theory. You can choose not to believe in either, but that doesn't mean you're going to fly off the earth or not get colds.
    Exactly. ITA. I think that's part of the problem. Of course, this stems from the fact that they aren't getting enough of a good science education to learn this basic fact about science.
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  11. #26
    Elite Member Fluffy's Avatar
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    Please, stop with the facts!

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    Quote Originally Posted by WhoAmI View Post
    I think a lot of people don't understand what a "scientific theory" is as opposed to a regular theory. It's not a guess. It's based on testable, empirical data, and is the best logical explanation for the outcome of a series of experiments. It makes me crazy when people say "Well, evolution is just a theory." Yeah, well so is gravity. So is germ theory. You can choose not to believe in either, but that doesn't mean you're going to fly off the earth or not get colds.
    You're absolutely right. The creationists and their ilk have been playing on the public not knowing what a theory is for nearly a century.

  13. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by WhoAmI View Post
    I think a lot of people don't understand what a "scientific theory" is as opposed to a regular theory. It's not a guess. It's based on testable, empirical data, and is the best logical explanation for the outcome of a series of experiments. It makes me crazy when people say "Well, evolution is just a theory." Yeah, well so is gravity. So is germ theory. You can choose not to believe in either, but that doesn't mean you're going to fly off the earth or not get colds.
    Love it!
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  14. #29
    Elite Member Quazar's Avatar
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    Evolution is a scientific theory and should be taught in science class.
    Creationism is a type of Christian religious theory and should be taught in a religion class.

    I know several religious Christians who believe in the evolutionary process, which was set in motion by a creator. In their minds, the world is billions of years old, but was originally created by a higher being. The two are not mutually exclusive.

    If you don't like what is taught in public schools - send your kids to a private school or homeschool them. Tax dollars should not be used to support teaching of one specific religious point of view.

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    Elite Member nana55's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by southernbelle View Post
    I graduated from high school in 2003. They didn't say that either creationism or evolution were right.... we learned about them both, and they were both presented as theories. There was no talk from the teachers or in the textbooks about creationism being a "myth" or anything else of the sort. We obviously focused more heavily on evolution, but creationism was definitely acknowledged, and not in a mocking or disrespectful way.

    I do think that just in the years since I've been out of school, it has changed. A lot of people will disagree with me here, but in observing my younger siblings' experiences with public education in Texas, it seems that it's gone from just respectfully but non-committally acknowledging Christianity and Christian viewpoints (in classes pertaining to science and history or literature) to flat out ridiculing and shunning them.

    If anything, I think children are much less likely to learn about evolution in school today, unless it's to hear that it's an impossible and unrealistic myth, and that's why you hear MORE about it in the news- parents and Christians within the school systems are much more vocal on this issue now that they feel they have to defend their beliefs.
    If you want creationism taught as an actual idea(scoff, scoff) go to a church school. It is a myth that comes from a big fairytale written by men who had no other way to explain science to people thousands of years ago. No other civilized country even would think of teaching this crap. Sorry, but it is crap. Ban me if you want.
    If I can't be a good example, then let me be a horrible warning.

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