Monthly Archives: September 2008

Creationist Wisdom — Example Seven

TODAY’S EXAMPLE of creationist wisdom is from North Carolina’s Wilmington Star-News, which carries this in its Letters to the Editor section: Micro Not Macro.

[We’d like to give you some excerpts from the news story, but that paper is being acquired by Stephens Media, and they’re suing bloggers who excerpt their content without permission. So you’ll have to click over there to read it for yourself.]

Have we seen this micro-macro argument before? Yes, thousands of times, and it never fails to amuse us. More:

[Deleted.]

Jeepers, he’s right! There’s no half-bird, half-virus fossil. How could we have missed that?

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Sarah Palin Discusses Creationism with Katie Couric

THERE ARE are endless news reports about Sarah Palin’s creationism. Virtually everything is based on a remark she made while running for Governor of Alaska, from which she receded the next day. That hasn’t stopped the world of journalism and punditry from publishing the most outrageous claims. We’ve tried to keep up with what the press has to say, while ignoring blogs and columns that are only reporting third-hand hearsay.

This is from the CBS News website, at a page called Katie Couric Reports, where we read Palin Opens Up On Controversial Issues. It appears to be a transcript of Couric’s interview. The article’s subtitle says: “VP Candidate Speaks Frankly With Katie Couric About Feminism, Homosexuality, Abortion And The Environment.”

We’re copying only the part that pertains to the creationism issue:

Couric: Do you believe evolution should be taught as an accepted scientific principle or as one of several theories?

Palin: Oh, I think it should be taught as an accepted principle. And, as you know, I say that also as the daughter of a school teacher, a science teacher, who has really instilled in me a respect for science. It should be taught in our schools. And I won’t deny that I see the hand of God in this beautiful creation that is Earth. But that is not part of the state policy or a local curriculum in a school district. Science should be taught it science class.

So there you are.

[Our related articles are here: Sarah Palin & Creationism.]

Copyright © 2009. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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Texas Evolution Battle Heating Up

THE RECENTLY drafted Texas state science standards remove language that says students should understand the “strengths and weaknesses” of scientific theories such as the theory of evolution. The Texas state Board of Education, dominated by creationist dentist Don McLeroy, is expected to discuss the draft in November, and we’ve read that a final vote on the proposed document could occur in March. But things are already heating up.

In the Houston Chronicle we read Scientists unite for science curriculum. Here are some excerpts, with bold added for emphasis:

Scientists from Texas universities on Tuesday denounced what they called supernatural and religious teaching in public school science classrooms and voiced opposition to attempts to water down evolution instruction.

The newly formed 21st Century Science Coalition said so far it has 800 members who have signed up online.

“Texas public schools should be preparing our kids to succeed in the 21st century, not promoting political and ideological agendas that are hostile to a sound science education,” said David Hillis, a professor of integrative biology at the University of Texas at Austin.

It would appear that the rational citizens of Texas aren’t going to let Don McLeroy have his way, at least not without a fight. More from the article:

The science coalition supports that language change [of the new draft standards] because it says talking of “weaknesses” of evolution allows for religion-based concepts like creationism and intelligent design to enter the instruction …

But they say they fear State Board of Education members, led by chairman and creationist Don McLeroy, will switch the language back before the final vote.

Here’s more. This is interesting:

Even at Baylor University in Waco, the world’s largest Baptist university, professors don’t teach creationism because it’s not based on science, said Richard Duhrkopf, an associate professor of biology.

That makes sense. However, this is what McLeroy, the creationist dentist who heads the Board of Education, says:

McLeroy denies he is trying to force religion and the supernatural into Texas schools.

“I’m getting sick and tired or people saying we’re interjecting religion,” he said. “We’re certainly not interjecting religion. Not at all.”

We’ve reported about several of these educational disputes with creationists, and we’ve never yet seen one creationist who would honestly admit that he wants to slip Noah’s Ark into science class. But they’re all trying to do it. One more excerpt:

“Texas students need to understand what science is and what its limitation are,” McLeroy said Tuesday, repeating part of an opinion piece he wrote in August. “I look at evolution as still a hypothesis with weaknesses.”

What a guy!

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Evolution & Creationism: Multi-State Update (30 Sept)

OUR LAST news roundup was ten days ago: Evolution &.Creationism: Multi-State Update (20 Sept). A few items have come to our attention since then which merit mention.

Louisiana: Dr. Barbara Forrest’s website, Louisiana Coalition for Science, has a good article on Explore Evolution, a new creationist text which is likely to be adopted by some misguided Louisiana school district. The book has been the subject of a review which is extensive, knowledgeable, and scathing, which Dr. Forrest discusses in this article: Explore Evolution: A Stealth Creationist Textbook to Accompany the Stealth Creationist “LA Science Education Act”.

Texas: Dr. Steven Schafersman’s excellent site, Texas Citizens for Science, has two new articles. First there’s a report on the Draft Science Standards, which will be opposed by Don McLeroy, the creationist dentist who heads the Texas Board of Education. Then there’s a fine article reviewing a talk given by creationist, William Dembski: What Every Rational Person Should Know About ID, by Paul E. Murray.

Discovery Institute: Casey Luskin, the omniscient genius who has deconstructed and discredited all of science, now questions the judgment of the Church of England. There seems no limit to Casey’s intellectual reach: Anglican Spokesman Recommends Church Apology to Darwin Over Legendary Affairs.

All of our articles about the Discovery Institute can be found here: Discoveroids.

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