Creationism Progresses in Turkey

The Voice of America reports Creationists Making Inroads at Turkish Universities.

From time to time we’ve reported on Turkish creationism. Everyone has heard of Adnan Oktar (a/k/a Harun Yahya), about whom we once wrote Harun Yahya Offers Eight Trillion Dollar Prize. And as we mentioned here, the Institute for Creation Research has been active in Turkey for years. The Discoveroids also send speakers to Turkey (see Creationism, Intelligent Design, and Islam), and other creationist groups probably do too.

Okay, let’s see what Voice of America has to tell us. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us:

ISTAMBUL – The battle between science and its enemies is heating up in Turkey as the fight over the teaching of evolution at Turkish universities increases. Academics are voicing alarm that creationist ideas are replacing those of evolution.

Hundreds of academics and students protest outside Istanbul’s Marmara University recently at what was described by its organizers as the first scientific symposium on creationist ideas.

This is great! Why should the US have all the fun? The VOA story continues:

Retired Professor Alaeddin Senel addressed protestors, condemning the meeting. “Bringing the scientific theory of evolution together with creationism undermines the foundations of science,” Senel said. “Creationism is not supported by scientific data and doesn’t have any place in education at any level.”

It may not be long before that guy gets Expelled! Well, he’s already retired, so maybe they’ll just behead him. Let’s read on:

The two-day symposium brought together more than a dozen academics to attack one of the fundamental tenants of evolution: the theory of natural selection, which explains how apes developed into humans. One of the key note speakers was genetics Professor Ibrahim Pirim of Izmir’s Katip Celebi University. He claims deficiencies in the evolution theory leaves the door open for religious beliefs in science.

The Turks must be proud to have such a scholar among them. We continue, and in this next excerpt and the one after it, the bracketed expressions are in the original:

The molecules and everything, cannot randomly come together – let’s call it evolution – this theory makes me so disturbed,” said Pirim. “These are not random things, a creator had to put all these things [in order].”

The man is a genius! Here’s more:

Creationism was first introduced into school text books during military rule of the 1980’s as part of a policy to encourage Islamic beliefs and counter left wing ideas that were prominent in Turkey at the time.

Smart move! There’s nothing like Noah’s Ark to counter all that left-wing stuff. Moving along:

Assistant Professor Kerem Cankocak of Istanbul’s Technical University explains its roots with Turkey’s military rulers. “It has been pushed for 32 years after the coup d’etat it started in 1980,” said Cankocak. “The military supported these Islamic people and this is the result. My students did not learn evolution in high schools, so, therefore, in my university 90 out of 100 [students] don’t believe or don’t know about evolution. You cannot teach genetics; you cannot teach biology without evolution because there are no other laws.”

There’s much more to the article, but we’ll give you only this last excerpt:

Cankocak believes rather than being a question of academic freedom, it is more of a case of taking the country back centuries. “It’s the same problem if we teach that the world is not turning, but the sun is turning around the earth. You cannot run a country without science. This is the Middle Ages, and it’s getting worse and worse,” said Cankocak.

There’s another guy who’s likely to be Expelled! It’s good to see that old-time religion making progress around the world.

Copyright © 2012. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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6 responses to “Creationism Progresses in Turkey

  1. Let’s celebrate with a song:

    This ID was Creationism
    Now it’s Just ID, not Creationism
    Been a long time gone, Creationism
    Why did Creationism get the works?
    That’s nobody’s business but the Turks 😉

  2. retiredsciguy

    Shouldn’t that be “Istanbul”?

  3. retiredsciguy

    SC: “Well, he’s already retired, so maybe they’ll just behead him.”

    Hmm. Maybe I should be careful with my comments…

  4. retiredsciguy says:

    Shouldn’t that be “Istanbul”?

    Who knows? I cut & pasted from Voice of America. Besides, it really ought to be Constantinople.

  5. Curmudgeon: “Besides, it really ought to be Constantinople.”

    “Even old New York was once New Amsterdam
    Why they changed it I can’t say
    People just liked it better that way.”

    Sinatra would just not sound right singing “New Amsterdam, New Amsterdam.”

  6. Frank J is way ahead of me on this, but here is the TMBG version, for your listening enjoyment. 🙂