Saudi Clerics: Evolution Is Alien Ideology

REJOICE, creationists! You have powerful intellectual allies among the clerics of Saudi Arabia. Reuters reports Saudi cleric to king’s university: don’t teach evolution, mix sexes. Here are some excerpts, with bold added by us:

A senior Saudi cleric said religious scholars should vet the curriculum at the kingdom’s only co-educational university, meant to be a beacon of science, to prevent “alien ideologies” such as evolution.

Great idea! We can hear the cheers of approval in Louisiana. Let’s read on:

King Abdullah’s University of Science and Technology (KAUST), designed to produce Saudi scientists, is the only educational institution in the kingdom where men and women can mix. It is located near a Red Sea village away from the clutches of religious police and opened on September 23.

That sounds fine, but can such an institution exist in Saudi Arabia? We continue:

The recommendation is to set up sharia committees at this university to oversee these studies and look into what violates the sharia (Islamic law),” Sheikh Saad al-Shithri, a member of a panel of top scholars, was quoted by al-Watan newspaper.

Except for the use of Islamic law instead of Genesis, we see no difference between the Saudi proposal and the position of American educational officials — like the Texas Board of Education. It’s also similar to the no sex, no evolution agenda of our “family values” advocates. Here’s the rest of it:

“We are looking at some of the sciences that have included some irregular and alien ideologies, like evolution and such other ideologies,” said Shithri, who is one of several clerics who objected to co-education at the university.

Yes, it’s good for a university to be on guard against “irregular and alien ideologies, like evolution.” Hey, did you notice that they don’t even want to waste time teaching the controversy? The Truth is all the students need.

There are some lively comments after the Reuters article. Click on over and take a look.

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5 responses to “Saudi Clerics: Evolution Is Alien Ideology

  1. Man, it took me a minute or two to unpick the article’s headline.

    At first, I thought it was an injunction to abjure the teaching of evolution in favour of ‘mixing sexes’ instead…

  2. comradebillyboy

    Both American creationists and Saudis embrace a medieval world view of faith over fact.

  3. Gabriel Hanna

    Both American creationists and Saudis embrace a medieval world view of faith over fact.

    Some of the differences include stonings and beheadings. Other Americans are not your enemy.

  4. Gabriel Hanna

    Other clerics have posted opinions and edicts on Islamic web sites demanding that KAUST apply the ban on mixing of unrelated men and women as in the rest of the country.

    ‘The rule is to prohibit mixed education, at all levels… regardless of the motives or reasons. The legal duty is to separate the sexes,’ wrote cleric Abdullah Alhaidan on the Islamic web site (Shabakat Noor al-Islam). Such comments have sparked angry reaction from liberals and columnists in Saudi newspapers.

    Another difference between American and Saudi creationists to keep in mind. The “no sex, no evolution” agenda the Curmudgeon says they have in common, isn’t.

    “No sex”, to Saudis, means “no women educated along with men”.

  5. comradebillyboy

    OK, I agree that Wahhabi Islam is even more dreadful than fundamentalist Christianity. But I don’t think any sort of religious or political absolutism is beneficial to society. Both are terribly unenlightened, but only one want to turn the US into a Christian theocracy. I am more than content to let the Saudis live in the past, I just don’t want us to join them in the 11th century.