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News Evolution Vs. Intelligent Design in Florida

  1. Dec 6, 2007 #1
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 6, 2007 #2


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    Because they think they're right?
  4. Dec 6, 2007 #3
    The intelligent design creationists persists just because nothing will change their skewed lens of bias. Their views are immutable, just like they think biological species are, to change. The creationists have been on it for almost a century, morphing into different shapes. But it about much more than mere words in a holy scripture or science. It is a cultural war.

    According to lawyer Philip Johnson, one the father and icon of the intelligent design creationist movement (himself a young earth creationist), evolution is the major source of many of the "evils" of todays society, including homosexuality, abortion, pornography, divorce and genocide (Darwin on Trial, -91). According to Johnson, the attack on evolution is the first step in attempting to replace the so called "scientific materialism" with "theistic realism".

    Dover, PA may have seemed like a big victory (and it was), but it is only valid within the district, since the intelligent design creationists did not appeal the verdict (something they also did not do in the Mclean vs. Arkansas case either; they are afraid afraid that it would have a too large effect on their future attempts to inject IDC into the education system).

    Creationists are stuck in their tiny world, whereas others, both devoutly religious and not so religious, moves on.

    "Scientific Creationism" was settled to be unconstitutional in the 70s in a supreme court decision. Instead of actually doing original research, the intelligent design creationists are trying to take a shortcut, appealing to the law to force their way into the US educational system.
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2007
  5. Dec 6, 2007 #4
    Ah, the good old pre-Darwin days when none of that existed! :rolleyes:
  6. Dec 6, 2007 #5
    Barbra Forrest (philosopher of science; a key witness in the pro-science side in Dover) has addressed the politicization of the Texas Education Agency in http://www.ncseweb.org/resources/news/2007/TX/270_barbara_forrest_on_chris_comer_12_5_2007.asp [Broken], which is available at the website of the National Center for Science Education.

    "The incident now involving Ms. Comer exemplifies perfectly the reason my co-author Paul R. Gross and I felt that our book, Creationism's Trojan Horse: The Wedge of Intelligent Design, had to be written. [...] By forcing Ms. Comer to resign, the TEA seems to have confirmed our contention that the ID creationist movement — a religious movement with absolutely no standing in the scientific world — is being advanced by means of power politics."
    Last edited by a moderator: May 3, 2017
  7. Dec 6, 2007 #6
    In Florida evolution is considered on equal grounds with intelligent design. This is completely wrong and misguided. It is Intelligent Design vs. Pastafarianism.
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  8. Dec 6, 2007 #7
    Even though I am a Christian, I know that ID is not science. Religious faith has nothing to do with science. It is, in essence, anti-science. Any Christian that believes evolution threatens his/her faith, needs to take a look at whether they had a faith in the first place.
  9. Dec 6, 2007 #8


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    In looking through the proposed curriculum and benchmarks in life sciences and scientific method, it's clear that the ID proponents are threatened because it's a solid science curriculum that distinguishes between what IS science, what is NOT science (i.e., religion, art), and what is not science but appears to be! It's that last category that I'm sure they're quaking in their boots about...if the kids all learn to tell the difference between science and pseudoscience, they'll lose all their followers.
  10. Dec 6, 2007 #9
    As a side note, there have been plenty of harsh attacks against intelligent design creationism by devout theists, such as Kenneth Miller (Finding Darwin's God), Francis Collins (The Language of God), Joan Roughgarden (Evolution and Christian Faith), Michael Dowd (Thank God For Evolution), Fransisco Ayala (Darwin's Gift to Science and Religion), Keith B. Miller (Perspectives on an Evolving Creation), Gordon Glover (Beyond the Firmament: Understanding Science and the Theology of Creation) etc. etc.

    Indeed, that is the very essence. I rated those 'Strongly Agree' =)
  11. Dec 6, 2007 #10


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    What religion are these nutcases anyway? I went to catholic schools from grades 1-12 and they (catholics) never once tried to push young earth creationism. When they said "created" it was generally in the context of creating individual life. Sort of like "I was created by god" which is a vague and acceptable philosophical idea. Ages and dates were sometimes thrown in, but they were explained so they made sense. For example, saying that moses died at the age of 120 is a way of stating that he was a wise person, because age and wisdom are/were closely related. It's like when a book says James is burning with passion it doesn't mean that he's literally on fire, but it could easily be translated into another language to read like that.
  12. Dec 6, 2007 #11
    Let's see..

    Michael Behe is a Roman Catholic
    Philip E. Johnson is a Presbyterian
    William Dembski is a Southern Baptist

    Johnson is a young earth creationist; Behe apparently accepts natural selection and common descent (sort of). Anyways, creationist extremism comes in all flavors not necessarily tied to any particular version.
  13. Dec 6, 2007 #12
    It doesn't matter what religion you are, faith is a belief in things not seen. Either you have it or you don't. If your religious beliefs are determined by science then your faith is based on things seen.
  14. Dec 6, 2007 #13
    Another reason I am in favor of school vouchers and large increases in the number of private schools. If parents really want to send their children to a school that teaches ID instead of Evolution, who am I to stop them?
  15. Dec 7, 2007 #14
    It will degenerate education, just like teaching children that the earth is flat.
  16. Dec 7, 2007 #15

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    The voucher system that some elements of the right are clamoring for may well turn out to be a double-edged sword. If the government is to provide vouchers (something I don't quite agree with), some standards must apply to those schools that receive the vouchers. In Sweden, private schools do receive vouchers from the government. The government of Sweden in turn expects those schools to meet a minimum of standards, including not teaching creationism (see https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=191466").
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 23, 2017
  17. Dec 7, 2007 #16


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    Religious fanatics currently make up a large percentage of children who are home schooled. With vouchers they would have their own madrassa :wink:

    edit: It doesn't seem like a fair argument against vouchers. My point is that they'll be super-religious no matter what, so the vouchers wouldn't really do anything to change that.
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2007
  18. Dec 7, 2007 #17


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    Well, murder will stay no matter what, so state funded murder wouldn't really do anything to change that.

    Keep the science to science.

    It's where ideals and reality collides -

    Ideal: Everyone should have full freedom.

    Reality: Mass teaching of creationism/creationismII has a rather high chance of making society progress backwards.
  19. Dec 7, 2007 #18
    That's a bold statement IMO. Do you have any information to support that conclusion?
  20. Dec 7, 2007 #19
    I'm strongly against IDC being taught in a science class. Actually, I don't even think I'd want it in a relgion class, beyond saying Christians/Mulsims/Jews believe they were created by God. It really has little to do with religious history or philosophy, and makes followers look inherently ignorant. After all, it is pretty obvious IDC was just desperately thatched together by radicals who are insecure about their own faith.

    Just my two cents.

    Also, do you guys believe it is worth fighting tooth and nail for evolution to be taught in public schools? I can understand fighting against IDC being taught because it is un-scientific, but evolution doesn't seem like it would be very useful knowledge. I'm sure it will be useful to a tiny percentage of students that will go on to major in biology or something in college, but they're going to relearn evolutionary theory anyway. So what's the point point beyond 'spreding the truth'? Is it really that important that people accept being evolved apes?
  21. Dec 7, 2007 #20


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    On the other hand, if they go off and make their own madrassa, they'll leave your real school alone to teach real science. :tongue:

    True, but that could be said about everything. Most people don't care about WW2, most people don't add fraction, most people don't use algebra, most people don't care what gravity is, and most people don't care how electricity works.

    Did you ever see that movie Idiocracy? As long as the stupdiest person is relatively aware of reality, that will never happen. If we stop teaching almost-useless physics, math, biology, chemistry, and history, then that future almost seems possible. Not likely, but possible.
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2007
  22. Dec 7, 2007 #21
    Actually, now that I think about it, I don't think it would matter if we did try to teach them. I went to Florida public school for 6 years and the average kid basically learns nothing from middle school to high school graduation. :rolleyes: Such a waste...
  23. Dec 7, 2007 #22
    That the theory of evolution provokes such controversy is reason enough to teach it, in case the fact that it is very basic science is not a sufficient reason. Not teaching it is a bit like not teaching about Irak in geography. It makes no sense to omit it.
  24. Dec 7, 2007 #23


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    Except one of the main reasons religious fanatics don't want their children to attend school is that they are afraid their children will find out that what their parents are telling them isn't supported by the outside world. By the time they are adults they are so brainwashed it will be very difficult, if not impossible to undo the damage.

    That is why I am against paying them to brainwash their children. I can't stop them from doing it, but I sure don't feel I should pay them to do it.
  25. Dec 7, 2007 #24


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    But who is to say you pay more taxes than they do? If you make 40k and the fanatic makes 50k, then he could technically argue that since he pays more taxes he doesn't want his chillins to learn devil knowledge, or whatever.

    If you were to assume that fundamentalists pay taxes in proportion to their numbers in the population (such as they're 10% of people and contribute 10% of tax money), it would make a lot of sense that they could have a school paid for with government vouchers. Your only real argument would be separation of church and state, and that's a hard one to get around. The constitution would either need to be changed, or the law would force voucher schools to not teach creation, but that leads back to the problem you have now because then they would want intelligent design to be taught as science :tongue:

    edit: notice that I said the voucher school would try to teach creation, then the law would force it to be intelligent design again.
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2007
  26. Dec 7, 2007 #25
    Why should I be allowed to tell someone else what they can and cannot study, read, teach, etc? I also think you overestimate the number of people who would teach ID and no Evolution. Essentially, people would be hurt by sending their children to schools which taught nonsense, and therefore, most people would choose a school which teaches Evolution. Even if this wasn't the case though, who am I to stop them.

    I highly doubt that it's only the "right" who are in favor of vouchers. I saw a public opinion poll once that said something like 75% of African Americans would be in favor of school vouchers (in case you don't know, something like 90% of African Americans are self described democrats). I can't blame them either considering that African Americans make up a disproportionate number of people living in the inner city, and kids who live in the inner city are usually forced to go to bad inner city public schools.

    Again, why should we tell people what to spend their vouchers on? In general, people will choose schools that help their children get ahead in life. You don't need some nanny-state government official telling these people what to do. The school should be allowed to choose whatever curriculum it wants, and people can choose which one works for their children. It'd be more flexible than the current system and would allow more choices, which surely can't be worse than the current "one-size fits all" mentality.

    So you think that if we allowed a voucher system, many schools would pop up preaching that the earth is flat? And you also think that many parents will take their voucher money and send their children to these schools? And you also think that you should be allowed to stop the few that would?

    Your claim makes about as much sense to me as saying, "We'll have many schools running around teaching children that 2 + 2 = 5."
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 23, 2017
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