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Kansas votes to endorse ignorance

  1. Nov 8, 2005 #1
    The state's school board voted 6-4 today for new teaching standards promoting Intelligent Design language.

    Kansas School Board Casts Doubts on Evolution

    :yuck:
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 8, 2005 #2

    Pengwuino

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    *stumbles backwards and falls over*
     
  4. Nov 8, 2005 #3

    russ_watters

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    Yeah, that sentence is the most distressing. My eyes really did boggle when I read it! Could they possibly be that stupid? Unbelievable.

    This won't stand up to a court challenge, but it really boggles the mind as to what these guys are thinking.
     
  5. Nov 8, 2005 #4

    Tom Mattson

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    I would bet my bottom dollar that they are thinking about nothing other than being reelected by their religious constituents, to whom scientific and academic integrity mean very little. :frown:
     
  6. Nov 8, 2005 #5

    Pengwuino

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    Unless.... they redefine what "challenge" means!
     
  7. Nov 8, 2005 #6

    Les Sleeth

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    I quote myself predicting what is going to happen from the science side exaggerating how much evidence they have that natural selection-genetic variation has evolved all life forms . . .

     
  8. Nov 8, 2005 #7
    Here, I'll quote myself as a retor:

    Quoting yourself does not make your belief more right. You made some claims---well, prove them.
     
  9. Nov 8, 2005 #8
    technically this thread's very existance is proof of one of the aspects of her claim.
     
  10. Nov 8, 2005 #9
    Ignorace does not constitute scientific exaggerations. Science has been able to postulate and prove many aspects of evolutionary theory. We---humans---can now trace specific genes from the most advanced creatures all the way back to bacteria. We have traced the progress of fishes to amphibians with only a few holes---fossiles of sea creatures are found when the seas recede.

    The Kansas ruling has nothing to do with the failts of science. It has everything to do with the promotion of religious dogma.
     
  11. Nov 8, 2005 #10

    Les Sleeth

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    Nope. It has to do with the promotion of religious dogma, and the promotion of science dogma. You might be right that we can "trace specific genes from the most advanced creatures all the way back to bacteria," but how do you know what caused genetics to change as they did? You assume that natural selection and genetic variation did it, but you can't come up with observations today that prove natural selection-genetic variation function with that level of design quality. This is the "gap" science believers are exaggerating. It might be true, but why not wait until you can prove it? As long as exaggeration of the evidence we have is going on, the creationist side is going to keep making advances. (You might mistakenly believe I am on the creationist's side, but I am not.)
     
  12. Nov 9, 2005 #11

    Ivan Seeking

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    Poll: Majority Reject Evolution

    http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2005/10/22/opinion/polls/main965223.shtml

    So in this day and age, how can this be true? I think part of the blame lies with scientists and educators. I would bet that I'm not the only here who has been accused of arrogance when confronting non-scientific points of view. It took me years to learn that even when there is no doubt, being right often, no, usually doesn't matter. You can't [in effect] tell people that they are ignorant or irrational and then expect them to change their minds. And many people need beliefs that go beyond logic - some might even argue that there are good reasons why this is true.

    I will never forget a lecture that I had in a sociology class. The prof showed videos of many of the popular religious shows on TV at the time, and he then mocked each and every one of them and anyone who could believe such nonsense. Now, when someone has what they believe to be sacred beliefs, actions and methods like those of this "teacher" only serves to discredit the academic community and alienate anyone with any faith based beliefs for that matter. Why would any Christian, Muslim, Jew, or otherwise want their kids taught by this guy?
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2005
  13. Nov 9, 2005 #12

    Moonbear

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    I agree with the perspective that just telling someone they're ignorant or stupid or whatever isn't going to get them to listen or change their mind, and is far more likely to get them to dig in their heels and resist changing their mind. On the other hand, it gets very tiresome very quickly to have to keep reiterating the same explanations over and over again. While it's new to the person you're speaking with, it's not new to the scientist doing the explaining. And when they are already predisposed to believe the misinformation spread all over the place, it makes it very difficult to gain their trust when you try to explain what evolutionary theory really says and doesn't say and which questions are still open for debate.
     
  14. Nov 9, 2005 #13

    Ivan Seeking

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    Even in effect doing so results in the same.

    Another part of the problem as I see it: Only the experts have the time or ability to understand the complexities of any scietific issue like this.

    And then we have the fact that science is often wrong; or if not wrong, wrong in the way that it is presented. For example, I was taught that the expansion of the universe is slowing down. There were no qualifiers. It was never imagined or suggested that the margin of error in our measurements was large enough to suggest that the universe could be accelerating. And anyone who suggested such a thing would have surely been mocked. But then, like magic, the whole story is turned upside down - the expansion IS accelerating. Is it any wonder that people lose faith?
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2005
  15. Nov 9, 2005 #14

    Ivan Seeking

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    I think in part what people want is for science to as a policy admit that it could be wrong. Scientific theores are presented as flawless compared to faith based beliefs, and science [the consensus opinion, whatever that means] is not flawless.
     
  16. Nov 9, 2005 #15
    That was a big shocker too when that was discovered. Right up there with the CMB.
     
  17. Nov 9, 2005 #16

    Bystander

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    Bringing us to a rant of mine from some time ago: "The scientific community has GOT to become involved in the educational 'process' at the public school and community level." School districts advertise requests for book reviewers in the classified ads --- take the time --- yes, your input will be ignored --- it's part of the public record, and parents will notice. Attend board meetings --- you'll see one parent per thousand students --- the board will ignore you --- the parents won't --- it's a couple hours every other week, and gives the scientific community a presence, and perceived interest in the community and kids' educations. Don't talk down to parents --- know what you know well enough to "explain it to your mother," and present it, if/when asked, not as if you're training parents to do your job, but to enlighten them.
    Petitioning state school boards, filing amicus briefs in PA, lining up to testify in Topeka, and taking other Quixotic actions goes nowhere --- be part of the community in which you live.
     
  18. Nov 9, 2005 #17

    adrenaline

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    But this is the very essence of why science is so amazing! It constantly looks at itself and asks itself is this right? Are there other explanations? Are we content with staying where we are at and not pursueing alternate experimental data etc.


    Thus, when science turns around and changes its mind, to the non scientist, it is a sign of fallacy, to a scientist it is the very essence of why the scientific method is still amazing and very open minded and "non dogmatic" about itself!


    This happens right in front of the layman's face when they hear the newest medical breakthrough that overturns previous misonceptions about a disease process. They look at this as a sign of the fallacy of medicine but to me, it is a healthy sign that researchers are not content with accepting previously established dogma.

    Thus, there is no scientific "dogma" because science is not dogmatic about itself! It's always willing to look inwards and overturn previous scientific doctrines if the experimental observations hold up!

    So has anyone seen the equivalent religious doctrine making a 180 degree switch like what we see in theoretical physics, clinical medicine, etc? Do we see scientists and medical researchers going to war over discordant theories and beliefs about scientific data? This is what we need to be teaching to the public! (Unfortunately, there will always be a scientist who is "dogmatic" because, afterall, scientists are human too and as such, their respective pupils may percieve science to be dogmatic.)

    Another tangential note, if I was an evolutionary biologist I would be insulted if someone equated evolutionary biology with Darwinism only. Evolutionary biology is so much more than Darwinism in much the same way a physicist is not a Newtonist .But they are not teaching this to the public! Like Newtonian physics , Darwin's theory could not explain a lot of things (Cambrian explosion etc.) in much the same way Newtonian physics could not explain stable orbital bodies and ( of course the subatomic world etc.) but Newton does not get the same flak as Darwin. Poor Darwin.
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2005
  19. Nov 9, 2005 #18

    russ_watters

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    Can you place a timeframe on this prediction? Evolution has been around for 150 years, an has gotten stronger with time, not weaker.
     
  20. Nov 9, 2005 #19

    russ_watters

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    Something else that people who don't understand the concept of "science" miss about this issue is the very concept of "proof". A great many ID'ers argue that we should hold off on teaching evolution until the "holes" are filled - despite the fact that in it's 150 year history, not a single hole was filled with directly contradictory evidence. Biologists acknowledge that the theory isn't finished yet, but so far, nothing has come along to challenge the underlying idea - so at the very least, new theories will incorporate parts of the old theory.

    Parallel that with other fields, like physics: Newtonian physics has proven itself to be incomplete, at the very least - even flat-out wrong if you want to be harsh. Yet it is still taught in high school and Relativity isn't even mentioned. Why? It is still scientifically valid because it still has use in certain cases. With evolution, these "holes" are so smal that though we don't yet know how they will be filled (otherwise they wouldn't be holes), they are so small compared with the body of knowledge supporting evolution that they won't even be mentioned in high school science class. And rightly so - as with the "holes" in Newtonian gravity, they won't cause the whole theory to be tossed in the trash and they are too deep into the theory to be necessary to discuss in high school.

    The quote about redefining physics to allow ID is telling - the board members may as well stand up at the microphone and say "Vote for me, I'm an ignorant fool."
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2005
  21. Nov 9, 2005 #20
    Bless you, honeybun:tongue2: .

    *************

    I have to apologise in advance if I should offend anybody when I say the following, not being a native speaker, there is only this much diplomatic delivery I can muster.

    1. As a lay person, I came to PF hoping to find the meeting point between quantum physics and buddhism. I was most dismayed to find out later that scientists (not you guys) act and talk as if they have got everything figured out when there are gaps and gaps and gaps, some as big as the black hole, in their understanding, yet they talk on with such certainty and superiority, that I was almost tempted to think either they do not want to enlighten us so as to perpetuate their superiority, or they are plainly stupid. Honestly they remind me of the professors I had had who could have made the syllabus so much more understandable, if they could only utter one lousy sentence to set us right in our perspective, but they did not. I would say if only for the sake of intellectual honesty, if nonlocality, superimposition, inter-changability of information, matter and energy are the things that nobody has a grasp of yet, then for crying out loud, tell us, so that at least we know where we stand and can start "thinking" for ourselves.

    [QUOTE(CBS)] Most Americans do not accept the theory of evolution. Instead, 51 percent of Americans say God created humans in their present form, and another three in 10 say that while humans evolved, God guided the process. Just 15 percent say humans evolved, and that God was not involved.[continued] [/QUOTE]

    2. Honestly the IQ of the Americans public are too important for the safety and peace of the world, and for the continuation of mankind. We need to get down to the bottom of why that many people can believe in creationism, we need to get down to the bottom of what effects IQ. We need to get down to the bottom of how it can be improved. Moonbear has a long while ago mentioned that a research on how fatty cells can stunt the development of intelligence has been shelved (because of PC I believe), we need to drag that report out and take a long hard look at it before it is too late.

    Thank you for reading.:smile:
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2005
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