WE ARE DAZZLED by the 21st-Century Science Coalition. Why? Because we’ve been writing about the evolution-creationism conflict for quite some time now, and we like to think that we sometimes express things reasonably well. But in one article — one! — that 21st Century outfit has outdone everything we’ve ever written.
The same issue of the Waco Tribune-Herald which carried a column about which we wrote here: Texas Science Education: Don McLeroy Again, also published an article by that 21st Century group. We thank our reader, James F, for bringing it to our attention.
The article is a guest column, as was Don McLeroy’s creationist piece. It was written by Daniel Bolnick, R.E. Duhrkopf, Ben Pierece, Sahotra Sarkar and David Hillis: Texans, demand 21st Century science standards. We’d like to copy it all, but that’s against the rules, so (with bold added for emphasis) we’ll give you a few excerpts:
The last science standards revision was a decade ago. Since then, biologists have published more than 30,000 research articles demonstrating that evolution has occurred and how it works.
Unfortunately, evolution opponents are uninterested in updating the standards to reflect this expanded knowledge. They instead want standards that divert class time from this well-established scientific discipline to cover thoroughly discredited arguments about “weaknesses” of evolution.
Excellent! The continuing avalanche of evidence that supports evolution is seldom mentioned, but it’s a powerful point. Then they really pile it on:
Many experimental studies demonstrate that natural selection and related processes can produce observed evolutionary changes.
In contrast, no scientific evidence exists showing that species were created separately or that natural processes can’t account for observed evolution.
As we said, those 21st Century boys are good. Continuing:
Regardless, evolution opponents continue to promote worn-out arguments based on demonstrably false information.
For instance, they claim that an incomplete fossil record disproves evolution. Yet they ignore the millions of fossils (yes, millions) that clearly illustrate a history of evolution.
Evolution opponents who promote such phony “weaknesses” claim we are trying to censor them, suppressing free speech. But the entire point of education is to provide students with the best information available, without wasting time on bogus arguments.
We don’t teach alchemy alongside chemistry, for example, or astrology alongside physics. We don’t ask students to decide for themselves whether Earth revolves around the Sun or vice versa. Is that “censorship”?
No, it is good science.
Okay, we’ve excerpted more than enough. Now click over there and read the whole column. Then bookmark it and use it as a reference whenever the topic of “academic freedom” comes up in this context.
We salute the 21st Century Science Coalition, which, as is mentioned at the end of the column, represents more than 1,000 Texas scientists.