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Show ALL Forums  > Science/philosophy  > Creationism in schools [CLOSED]      Home login  
 AUTHOR
 Verzen
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 1
Creationism in schools [CLOSED]Page 1 of 61    (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41)
Should schools respect the supposed "controversial view" of creationism vs evolution in science class? Should they be on equal ground as far as theories go? Should creationism be banned in a school setting? Do you think that people who don't believe in evolution should be taught creationism instead? Why or why not?
 Verzen
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 2
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/15/2009 6:43:08 PM
I think you have the wrong idea of what adaptation and evolution really is. If something doesn't work, then it dies off. It's more so based on the survival of the fittest. That is what evolution truly is about and that is why it appears to be intelligently designed. If you create a bunch of random processes and only 1/10th of them survive to generate off spring, then those create a bunch of random processes and only 1/10th of THOSE survive to generate off spring, that is when you get evolution and adaptation. Just because something has a chance of surviving a mutation process doesn't mean that God was involved when millions of others that tried mutating eventually died off. It's a numbers game. Whatever can happen will happen.
 Ahoytheredave
Joined: 8/29/2006
Msg: 3
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History
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/15/2009 7:19:25 PM
Creationism is dogma based in religious belief while evolution is theory based in observation. Science theory welcomes change and refinement. Dogma does not.


A billion generations of random mutations would not come close to even building the arterial system of humans, much less the much more complex aspects of the body and nervous system and mind. Cellular placement, billions of relatively precise placements, in a bevelled arterial system with it's millions of branches and re-attachment to the veins - impossible without guidance.


It would appear you see evolution as linear in time. It's not that simple. The mutations occur in parallel among many individuals over millions of generations. We are talking trillions of trials and errors over the hundreds of millions of years of planet Earth. Add to that selection of mutation combinations through breeding and the carrying of recessive genes and even the possible transfer of genes between species through several mechanisms. As for the circulatory system, I would suggest you look at sponges and other primitive forms of life to see how it developed over time. The billions of electrical and magnetic connections in your computer evolved in under 20 generations and that was done by relatively few men building on each previous generation.
 Verzen
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 4
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/15/2009 7:49:39 PM
mpaul - last I checked, science was not a democracy.
If Joe Blow came up with a "theory" that gravity is a myth and sin holds everything down, would you allow that in public schools as well? It has just about as much merit.
 stargazer1000
Joined: 1/16/2008
Msg: 5
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/15/2009 8:23:38 PM
Oh Verzen, I can't help but think you might be getting a perverse pleasure from stirring up this hornet's nest. ;-)

That said, I would say the only "controversy" between evolution and creationism is created by the religious right. Those who have a modicum of understanding of the science realize that the truth of evolution - the handing down of traits through generations within a species that benefit the ongoing development and adaptation of that species and which leads to new species - has no controversy at all. It is observable and proveable.

Should it be taught in school? Perhaps as part of a social studies class, but certainly not as an "alternative" to evolution. Simply because it's not. Most often, the "arguments" against evolution have more to do with perceived - and I emphasize "perceived" - faults in evolution rather than any solid proof or predictions made by creationists. In short, their "proof" is simply to pick apart evolution. Not a single rock with a label "Made by God."

In fact, in this very discussion we have a classic example of the end-point argument creationists rely on. "It's too complicated, therefore God did it." Okay, so where do you go from there? At least science has the intellectual bravery to go "We don't know how this got here; let's find out."

I think if creationists want to believe in creation, that's their choice. However, the current level of scientific understanding by people who actually go about digging in the rocks, working at the microscopes and doing the radiological testing is that evolution is real, it's a theory well supported by observational evidence and lacks anything resembling a worthy contender. That's what belongs in science class.
 Gwendolyn2010
Joined: 1/22/2006
Msg: 6
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/15/2009 8:50:59 PM

I have no problems with schools mentioning religion in an academic sense, it's an interesting topic.


This is the only way that religion should be "taught" in school--in an academic/historical context.


The bottom line is this: each school should be able to set up it's own guidelines.


No, they shouldn't. I can't speak about other states, but in CA, the state has a scope and sequence for each grade in order to standardize what schools teach. This means that if a student is in one school and moves to another, he/she will not be taught something different in a particular grade. This eliminates being repeatedly taught the same skills or topics in different grade levels.

By allowing schools to decide what they want to teach, pity the poor student who moves--but beyond that, there are problems with allowing each school to decide what will be taught in the way of creation/evolution or any religious topics. Who decides? The faculty? The school board? The parents? If 90% of the student body is Hindu, then do Christian children HAVE to study what Hindus believe? (This is a hypothetical question, of course, because when people talk about teaching religion, invariably, it is Christians.)


But for that to work ideally, we need choice in schools. That way, water could seek it's own level.


What does this mean? That if the majority rules, screw the minority? Does this mean that if a school "votes" to teach creationism over evolution, leaving the door open to other religious tenets being taught, that if the minority students do not agree, they can bus themselves to a school that does?

Isn't that what they did to blacks? Bus them to schools so that they would be among their own kind? What if parents can't afford to send their children to another school district? Tell the kid to suck it up?

Unrealistic.
 EvilLolli
Joined: 12/7/2008
Msg: 7
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History
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/15/2009 10:45:42 PM
Funny when I was in school they taught both. Christian creationism and science side by side. World religions and creationism theories were taught in world history. Why not teach both sides in an unbiased manner and let the kids learn, then decide for themselves?

Making people choose one or the other is just a way to create useless fighting over topics that in the end are personal choices. Shouldn't education be about educating the youth of today about what is out there and giving them the tools to think on their own? Instead of closing them off from ideas, theories, and beliefs that may be different from your own? As long as the education isn't also indoctrination, give the children all the facts they can handle at their learning level and help them to develop the ability to think on their own.
 EvilLolli
Joined: 12/7/2008
Msg: 8
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History
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/16/2009 6:43:58 AM
Hmm when my school taught it as part of the science class it was for comparison and contrast. I.E. Sciences shows man evolved thru these stages whereas creationism states God just made Adam out of clay and Eve from his rib. Just an example. It wasn't pushed as one is better than the other or used to indoctrine the students into a set of religious beliefs. It was done so we would understand others beliefs.
 Gwendolyn2010
Joined: 1/22/2006
Msg: 9
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/16/2009 7:46:19 AM

I took World Religions in high school, and we were taught several religions' creation views.


This is from an academic point--it is not presenting alternative belief systems from which to choose.


Funny when I was in school they taught both. Christian creationism and science side by side.



Sciences shows man evolved thru these stages whereas creationism states God just made Adam out of clay and Eve from his rib.


The example that you give is one of the inherent problems in teaching creationism along with evolution. Teaching about Adam and Eve is great for mainstream Xtian students, but what about the pagan kid sitting over in the corner? The atheist student? And any other student that might not buy into Xtian theology?

In a world religion's class, religion is studied, not presented alongside science. And even then, instructors often have a hard time keeping their personal ideology out of the material. One of my myth students told me that in her college WR class, the instructor was Xtian and spent much longer covering that religion than any others--making comments about its veracity. I knew the instructor; he has a PhD from a Christian university and was a preacher; obviously, he cannot keep his biases out of his supposedly non-biased presentation of material!

When my youngest son went to high school, I went to the back to school night and listened to the science teacher explain that one of the seven strands of science taught is evolution. A parent raised her hand and asked if he taught creationism--she was a Christian and wanted it taught. He said that he had asked Christian preachers in to give their point of view several times and wouldn't be opposed to doing so again.

After class, I told him that I was pagan and that when the Christian preacher came in, I wanted to be invited, as well, so I could present a pagan viewpoint about creation myths. I also added it would also be good to have an atheist represented.

No religious leader lectured in that class that year.

Parents and children who want to learn about creation can go to church--it's just that simple.
 Verzen
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 10
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/16/2009 1:41:30 PM
Gwen -
If I was that science teacher, I would explain that, "Science is based off of observation and evidence. There is no evidence for the existence of any God or that a man named Adam was formed from Clay. Since there is no evidence for any of that, then I will not and I refuse to even consider teaching something that deserves to be in a religious studies class in my science class. Every one of our theories is derived from the majority of scientists and we are ONLY going to be teaching science in our class. Since we have many students who are of different faith, we can't possibly teach creationism and teaching creationism is illegal and should remain being illegal."
 Ahoytheredave
Joined: 8/29/2006
Msg: 11
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History
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/16/2009 3:20:21 PM
If one is to equate science to religion, then religion must to open its dogma to revision based on observation and experimentation just like any other field of science. So where is the proof of an afterlife or that God even exists? Are the same religious organizations pushing creationism by whatever name willing to say the theory of an afterlife or the theoritical existance of God or the theory of the virgin birth? Where is the peer review of the Bible?

Keep them seperate as each serves its purpose.
 FrogO_Oeyes
Joined: 8/21/2005
Msg: 12
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History
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/16/2009 6:18:28 PM

just so you know neandertal and cro-magnon are the same. We are homo-sapians and so was she

Not so. H.neanderthalensis and H.sapiens were sister species descended from H.heidelbergensis. H.heidelbergensis descended from H.antecessor, which derived possibly from H.ergaster.

The questional H.floresiensis derived from H.erectus, which was the sister species of H.ergaster. H.ergaster and H.erectus derived from H.habilis, which itself was a derivative of Australopithecus.

Until about 20000 years ago, H.neanderthalensis, H.erectus, H.sapiens, and H.floresiensis coexisted as separate species.

These conclusions are fairly robust and are derived from consistant similarities and differences of skeletal structure, geographic locality, and age of fossils.

Please return to your regularly scheduled topic...as I recall, the only rational answer is: No. Creationism in any guise is not science, period. It has no place being taught, although there is certainly value in discussing it as an anti-science religious philosophy.
 Twill348
Joined: 12/20/2008
Msg: 13
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History
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/16/2009 6:19:57 PM
"Evolution has been sort of kidnapped by those that would assert that evolution is proof that random mutations, in conjunction with selective breeding, is solely responsible for the array of species."

No, it's not RANDOM mutation. It's SELECTED mutations. BIG difference.

Those who claim God created Man insult God.

"A billion generations of random mutations would not come close to even building the arterial system of humans, much less the much more complex aspects of the body and nervous system and mind. "

True! But you have slain a straw man!

I agree with your almost statement about choice, we need to get the government out of education.
 FrogO_Oeyes
Joined: 8/21/2005
Msg: 15
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History
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/16/2009 6:54:40 PM
Cro-magnon are H.sapiens. Neanderthals are H.neanderthalensis. They existed in the same times and regions, and differ both anatomically and genetically. Cro-magnon is modern man, not neanderthal man. It's off topic, but no sense giving pseudoscientists more ammunition via false information.
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 16
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/17/2009 3:07:02 AM
Creationism cannot qualify as a scientific theory. A scientific theory must contain the means to test and falsify itself. To the best of my knowledge, no creation advocate has offered a theory which contains within it the means to disprove the existence of a creator. Without that, creationism cannot be subjected to the scientific method and does not qualify as science. Since it does not qualify as science, it should not be taught as science.
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 17
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/17/2009 3:15:38 AM
I teach an epistemology course to 11th & 12th grade students. We discuss creationisn and intelligent design as part of the course content and compare them, as knowledge issues, to the theory of evolution.


Do you also point out what kinds of ``theories'' qualify as scientific theories? That should be right in line with your course, since the person most responsible for pinning down what constitutes a scientific theory and separates it from faith was Karl Popper.
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 18
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/17/2009 7:12:44 AM

If the USA really cared about students , ALL students in all 50 states would get the same education,
with the same books and resources under citizenship in the USA.

That would be a terrible way to educate students. Instructors ought to be able to evaluate textbooks and pick the textbooks they consider most suitable rather than leave the selection to administrative people with no specific knowledge of the subject. A diversity of textbooks is much better.
 Ahoytheredave
Joined: 8/29/2006
Msg: 19
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History
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/17/2009 8:19:04 AM
It is an American issue because of the separation of church and state so important in the country's founding. Almost all monarchies have some religious basis that grants political power and/or dominion over others at the expense of the individual and that is counter to democratic ideals.

When some religious movement perverts science to put their religious philosophy in state functions such as schools, then they are attacking democracy itself.

At the same time, science is often perverted from the inside when theory is taught as fact. I would much prefer students be taught to think, not memorize because "that is the way it is". Teaching evolution as a theory to be developed gives students a purpose to question and inquire. That does not happen with dogma of any kind. National education standards are fine as long as done in very limited moderation as such standardization risks becoming dogma. Its much harder to argue for the teaching of the dogma of evolution verses the dogma of creationism in whatever wrapping.

I find it interesting that those to the North who's pledge is:
"I, ...................., do swear that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Second, Queen of Canada, Her Heirs and Successors. So help me God."
would be critical of the religious beliefs of those to their south with no inbred monarch.
 Verzen
Joined: 12/9/2007
Msg: 20
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/17/2009 8:26:58 AM
Abelian - Like that science teacher that taught evolution wasn't real and burnt crosses into his students arms, right? If we leave it up to individuals to decide what to teach, some people wont get a proper education.
 Ahoytheredave
Joined: 8/29/2006
Msg: 21
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History
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/17/2009 9:15:25 AM

I don't think it has to do with monarchies or separation of church and state.

The US emphasis on separation of church and state is pretty much all about totalitarianism in any form and freedom of the individual even in religious matters. In the time of the US founding, totalitarian government came from monarchs that were often tied to their country’s religion and sometimes considered head of the church. Had the founding fathers of the US been able to foresee Marxist based liberal ideals, I don't doubt they would have addressed this form of totalitarianism as well. They saw government as having a tendency toward totalitarian suppression of individual freedoms and created the US constitution to limit government. This lack of foresight has allowed the US government to grow along liberal lines almost unchecked with a conservative, often religious, backlash in response. Thus we have the evolution in schools debate with the fundamantalists claiming to be the oppressed.


...there is no question that creationism or intelligent design would be taught in schools as a discipline, thought or theory comparable to evolution.

That would seem to imply ALL the teachers are identical. In reality, all are individuals with biases as are those who dictate curriculum by the state.
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 22
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/17/2009 10:34:39 AM

Abelian - Like that science teacher that taught evolution wasn't real and burnt crosses into his students arms, right? If we leave it up to individuals to decide what to teach, some people wont get a proper education.

That is a strawman. Hire instructors that are competent to teach the subjects for which they are hired. Any instructor who is competent to teach a subject is competent to choose a textbook which contains the subject matter.
 compleat_man
Joined: 10/3/2008
Msg: 23
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/17/2009 11:36:55 AM



.Austria is very religious. Every Catholic holiday is celebrated with stores closed and schools off, etc


huh..were they very religious when they supported the nazis and persecution of Jews and other minorities, as well?

well, perhaps, since some Roman Catholic priests, bishops, cardinals and the pope felt that Jews needed to be 'punished' for their 'role in Christ's death'..also they always align with the power, they felt the nazis had the power, therefore follow them

and please, don't lie and/or try to insult my intelligence and say that many/most Austrians never did that..even the infamous Kurt Waldheim was a 'good nazi'..

you can keep that kind of 'religion'..
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 24
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/17/2009 1:21:12 PM

Far tooo many schools have teachers teaching outside their core competencies

Well gee, then I suppose buying a textbook solves that problem, NOT. Hire competent teachers and let them use their education to teach. Fix the problem, don't try patching it with another problem.
 abelian
Joined: 1/12/2008
Msg: 25
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/17/2009 1:26:23 PM

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion,
or prohibiting the free exercise thereof"
That represents the Seperation of Church and State JUST, by not establishing an official religion.
That line does NOT state that the government can not use religion.


Using religion is the same as establishing an official religion. Religious nuts try the most tortured arguments to try and evade what's staring them in the face.
 scorpiomover
Joined: 4/19/2007
Msg: 26
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History
Creationism in schools
Posted: 2/17/2009 3:51:16 PM

Should schools respect the supposed "controversial view" of creationism vs evolution in science class?
No.

Should they be on equal ground as far as theories go?
No.

Should creationism be banned in a school setting?
Not in faith schools.

Do you think that people who don't believe in evolution should be taught creationism instead?
No.

Why or why not?
Over 10 years ago, I told people about caloric restriction that was written by a Jewish Rabbi who was a doctor, and they said I was crazy, because religion has no place in science. Now, scientists are going crazy about how wonderful caloric restriction is. I'm fed up with the number of times I've been told that religious people were crazy, or ignorant, or someone else was crazy, or ignorant, and then scientists came along and said the very same thing, and claimed that they'd discovered it. I'd rather be able to tell my kids about all these examples, show them the articles, let them talk to these scientists, and then let them realise just how fubar and anally-retentive the scientific community is, so they can develop a healthy scepticism of anything in science, and then whenever they read a science article, they don't accept it like it is out of a gospel, but actually analyse what's written and check it out for themselves, with experiments if possible.

At least that way, they stand a good chance of realising that 90% of what is taught in our school curriculum and portrayed by our media, is controlled to make us into nice, comsumer-driven drones, and that since science is funded mostly by the government anyway, the government tells scientists what to say, and can be trusted about as far as anyone can, whose family is being fed on the say-so of politicians.
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