Roger L. Simon blogged Go ahead and believe the "intelligent design" theory if you want to - I think it's claptrap and an insult to theists - but please keep it out of the science classroom. Our social studies and humanities classes are already polluted by enough asinine nonsense from the fuddy-duddy left. We don't need to have science turned into Bible class (covert or otherwise) from the other side.
If you will get all of the asinine nonsense from the fuddy-duddy left out of school, and will teach just the parts of evolution (adaptation of a species to its environment) that can be proven scientifically, and leave out the assumption, but unproved part, that the same technique must have caused new species to be created, then you may leave ID out as well.I don't blame the biology teachers in Dover, PA for keeping this pseudo-science out of their classrooms. They've got plenty to do getting their high school students prepared for the serious (and worsening) competition of the global economy. (You can bet their peers in Tokyo, Seoul and Shanghai aren't wasting a helluva lot of time on "intelligent design.")
They are not wasting a lot of time on the unproven parts of Evolution. They are teaching the basics: Reading, Writing, and Arithmetic.To be clear. I have no objection to crèches at the mall, the Ten Commandments in court rooms, "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance, etc., etc. Although I support separation of church and state, I'm happy to respect everyone's beliefs and I'm not particularly scared of this country turning into a theocracy.
We agree on all of that.But the science classroom is for science.
Then just teach science. Leave out the Secular Humanist interpretation of evolution, and you can leave out ID as well. But if you insist on including the secular humanist claptrap, then include ID as well.Students in Dover, Pennsylvania and other rural areas are just as entitled to a real education as those in Los Angeles and New York. In fact the country needs them to have it, especially in science and math. And in the case of public education, it is not in our interest to waste precious taxpayer dollars teaching mythology in biology.
mikem commented Well, in the other classes it is 'unAmerican' to even discuss the fact that most Americans see God's place in the world. Just where in the already "claptrap" free classrooms would you allow children to be told that most Americans, most humans, see God's hand in our origins.
AMENYou make it sound as if our children are free to discuss their belief in God in schools if they wish, just keep it out of the science room. That is a public school that the ACLU hasn't gotten around to suing. ID adherents have simply tailored their belief in God's role in their lives to try to pass muster with those who want to marginalize people of faith out of public view and life. But nothing gets by the eagle eye of our secular priests. Don't forgot to mention the deepest respect you hold for other's "claptrap" beliefs, of course.
Robert Munn commented ID does fall more under philosophy than science, yes. But so does much of what's currently taught in science classes under the mantle of teaching evolution! If you're teaching, "Natural selection causes the gene pool to tilt towards the more favorable adaptations and away from the less favorable ones," that's testable. It's repeatable. It's science. But the minute you switch over to "... and thus the origin of the species came about through random mutations, guided by nothing but pure chance," you're not engaged in science anymore, but philosophy. Just as are those who would say "... and thus the origin of the species came about through carefully planned mutations, guided by a designer." Both of these statements are in the realm of philosophy.
Precisely my point. Teach neither, and I am happy, but if you are going to teach the Secular Humanist interpretation, then also teach IDSo since you're already doing philosophy in the science classroom when you teach about how species came about, why not at least acknowledge the fact that there's a philosophical debate on the point you're about to teach? You don't have to cover it in detail, just say, "Now, how exactly this came about is debated. Some people claim it was guided by nothing but random chance, others talk about the evidence of design. But that's a point for philosophical debate. In this class, we're going to focus on the question of how rather than why."
M. Simon commented Intelligent Design is dependent on ignorance - "we don't yet undersand how xxx happened so we will posit an intelligent designer".
While the Secular Humanists would say, we proved part of it (adaptation of a species), so random chance must have created new species.The march of science is reducing the islands of ignorance. There is less and less for the Intelligent Designer to do. In fact I would limit the Intelligent Designer to the first sigularity - the big bang.
He was certainly involved there. If the Big Bang was the result of the explosion of a Cosmic Egg, who created the egg? That explosion generated a lot of light energy. And what is the first step in Creation, as told in Genesis? And God said, "Let there be light," and there was light.After that the universe runs on its own. Of course my God is smart enough to get it right at the beginning. Intelligent Design posits God too stupid to get it right the first time.
Rob commented An intelligent designer, for example, wouldn't run the male urethra right through the middle of a gland prone to swelling.
It is a dual purpose organ, and the urethra is not used while the organ is swollen.Our backs are clearly designed for walking on all fours: standing upright causes no end of problems.
Walk on all fours if you wish, maybe you have "DeEvolved"Our immune systems are sadly prone to mistaking parts of ourselves for invaders.
Not often, and evolution was one of the tools used by the Designer