Today’s letter-to-the-editor appears in the Shreveport Times of Shreveport, Louisiana. It’s titled Evolution-only has no place in schools. We don’t like to embarrass people (unless they’re politicians or otherwise in the public eye), so we’ll omit the writer’s name and city. We’ll give you a few excerpts from today’s letter, enhanced with our Curmudgeonly commentary, and some bold font for emphasis. Okay, here we go:
For thousands of years, the Jewish and Christian religions (and possibly others) have taught that all of the plant and animal life on this planet was created from nothing that previously existed by a supernatural, omnipotent God. This explanation has been a foundational tenet of the predominant religions in this country for several hundred years. Not all of the people in this country believe in the existence of this omnipotent God. They have fashioned an alternative, godless explanation.
Ah, so it was atheists who concocted the theory of evolution. We should have suspected that. The letter-writer doesn’t say so, but he may be writing in response to a recent column in that same paper by Zack Kopplin, which we mentioned in this post: The Climax of Creationism is Approaching. Zack’s column was Creationism vs. evolution: Religious teachings have no place in science classes. Whatever his motivation, today’s letter-writer says:
They opine that an original life form, however it came to be, might have evolved by the accumulation of trillions or gazillions of miniscule, undirected mutations to form not only the human species but every other form of plant and animal life on this planet. … Random, undirected mutations have produced the diversity of life that we see from a single common ancestor. If it weren’t taught in science classes, most of us would say it takes a complete fool to believe that. Many of us say that despite the fact that it’s taught in science classes.
The letter-writer is no fool! Let’s read on:
We have essentially two explanations for man’s origin or existence. One is natural or secular (godless). The other is supernatural (godly). One is atheistic, the other theistic. …. Make no mistake. They cannot be reconciled. The secular or scientific explanation does not permit even the suggestion of any participation by God in their explanation of man’s origin.
Aaaargh!! As we’ve said so often before, science isn’t an atheistic enterprise. Neither is math, plumbing, dentistry, or sail boating, but like science, none of those activities invoke religion. The methods of science are limited to the study of verifiable evidence and testing ideas that can be unambiguously falsified. Theological concepts, by their nature, can’t be explored by the methods science — or plumbing, dentistry, etc. The letter continues:
The proponents of the evolution explanation refute the godly explanation in public school science classes and declare that setting off limits for the opposing view of theists. They claim that teaching creationism is not teaching science. The flip side of that is that teaching evolution is teaching (refuting) religion in science class.
That’s how he sees it. Does he also think plumbers and dentists are hostile to religion because, like scientists, they follow the methodology of their occupations? We’ll never know. What’s his solution to the science problem? That’s coming next:
Neither of these explanations need be taught in our public schools. One is a religious teaching. The Constitution prohibits the government from favoring, sponsoring or promoting any religious belief. The other is an alternative godless explanation. Without question, it refutes creationism. The Constitution also prohibits the government from promoting, sponsoring or favoring non-religion over religion.
Brilliant analysis! The Constitution prohibits teaching evolution! Here’s more:
Whether evolution theory is or is not “science” and whether it is sound or baseless is debatable. [Aaaargh!!] Those questions are irrelevant. The Constitution prohibits the government from taking a position favoring either the religious or the non-religious position.
Yes, it’s so obvious! Moving along:
To its credit, our state legislature passed the Louisiana Science Education Act in an attempt to move toward state neutrality.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! And now we come to the end:
A “creationist” parent could challenge the School Board’s decision to teach only evolution. The basis for the legal challenge would be that our schools are teaching only the godless explanation for man’s existence and that violates the constitutional mandate of governmental neutrality on religion.
So there you are. At last we have the solution. If the public schools can’t teach religion, they can’t teach non-religious subjects either. They should teach nothing!
Copyright © 2014. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.
Unfortunately, your last sentance is uncomfortably close to what a lot of schools do, although that’s probably not what you intended.
The author might also assert, with equal credibility, that teaching the notion that Pi is anything other than 3.00 would be favoring non-religion over religion. Or, perhaps, that the earth orbits the sun, or that germs (not curses or demonic possession) cause disease. Those modern ideas most definitely contradict the author’s likely religion.
In Louisiana specifically, they probably shouldn’t expose the students to the idea that forces other than abortion and gay marriage cause hurricanes.
As this “gentleman” (aka idiot) states: the government cannot sponsor a religion. Atheism is not a religion, therefore government can sponsor it. Of course, this has absolutely nothing to do with religion or faith or any oother such nonsense.
Hey, I’m just using his own logic (aka nonsense).
The good news is that Louisiana creationists are already learning nothing, so teaching them nothing would balance the equation. It would also cut out the risk of them accidentally learning some science and thus alleviating any of their profound ignorance! A worthy creationist solution and a great letter indeed!
When I have a clogged pipe, I pray to one of two gods: Dray-Know or Hlikkwidplummar. Works. Every. Time.
I pray to one of two gods: Dray-Know or Hlikkwidplummar.
Damned Heretic! Burn him!
In this instance, I think drowning is more appropriate. To each his own.
Build a bridge out of him!
A “creationist” parent could challenge the School Board’s decision to teach only evolution.
From his lips to some ignoramus’ ears! That would be the quickest and easiest way to have the LSEA declared unconstitutional.
Let’s see if I weigh more than a duck, first, TA.
SC: “If the public schools can’t teach religion, they can’t teach non-religious subjects either. They should teach nothing!”
Evidently, our genius didn’t think things through.
Another clueless rube who didn’t read the DI’s memo? Or one who did, and just put his own spin on it? You decide.
Either way, since the only thing the Discoveroids have is word games, we can always play along: Technically what the DI demands is “Evolution-only,” so this clown messes it up right from the headline. Now you may object that “evolution plus misrepresentation” is not “evolution-only” (and I fully agree), but it is in the eyes of most people, because evolution is the only explanation they demand be taught, even though in a way specifically designed to promote unreasonable doubt to unwitting and impressionable students. What most people think of as “other theories,” i.e. testable claims of “created kinds,” young or flat earth, etc. are conspicuously absent from the DI’s demands. Should a teacher, for whatever reason, deviate from the DI’s formula, and teach about “kinds,” young or flat earth, or name the designer, the DI will not criticize them, but will not come to their defense either.
That level of asinine stupid should be illegal.
Shouldn’t there be some sort of legal document that prevents the government from sponsoring religion? Oh, wait…shouldn’t documents like that be worth the paper they are printed on then?
Every single ploy these creos use is unconstitutional. Yet we have religion being taught in Texas, Louisiana, and Tennessee overtly, and an unknown number of schools covertly. How is that? I could spit on the sidewalk and get arrested, yet the constitution gets trampled with no consequence.