Why It’s Important to Keep Combating Creationism

I showed you a few things yesterday that make a case for fighting creationism. But it’s more than just shoddy science education we’ve got to worry about: creationism is far more than just the idea that god-did-it and Jesus rode a velociraptor. I don’t need to babble at you, though. ACE school survivor Jonny Scaramanga is here to tell you what other odious ideas creationism supports, and why it’s a damned good idea to oppose it. (Feminists take note, please. This stuff has direct relevance to the issues we face.)

Image shows a woman looking omniously at the camera. Caption says, "Be afraid. Be very afraid."

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We’re in Deep, Deep Trouble Indeed

DonDueed left a comment on our latest ACE atrocity post that reflects thoughts I had when I first started our Adventures in Christianist Earth Science Education series:

There’s a question that’s been gnawing at me since you started this series. Just how widespread is this Christian home schooling cult?

If it’s a tiny fraction of the population, I’d say it’s not worthy of all the attention and effort on your (and our) part. But if there are significant numbers of kids being fed this atrocious crap, we’re in deep, deep trouble.

Good points! So let’s talk a bit about homeschooling first, then I’ll hit everyone with the map that will make you choke. [Read more…]

Bodacious Botany: Vaguely Tropical

Back where I grew up, “evergreens” were generally conifers. We didn’t seem to have many plants that would remain alive and vibrant during the winter unless they had needles for leaves. Even nearly a decade later, I’m still occasionally surprised by how much stuff west of the Cascades stays happily green when it’s cold.

I don’t think I’ve seen these bushes at Discovery Park before, but that’s probably because the grass in these meadows gets quite tall and swallows nearly everything. This is not a problem in winter. Wild grass is one of the few things that takes the season off. These plants seem quite happy about it. [Read more…]

Adventures in ACE XII: Wibbly about Water

I know, two ACE posts in a row. And our Adventures in Christianist Earth Science Education installment is a whole day early! Don’t you all feel like lucky duckies?

It’s about time we finish with the risible ACE PACE 1086, and the subject matter segues nicely into the chapters on oceans we have coming up in our other “science” textbooks. Besides, after last week’s installment, I’m sure you’re all on the edge of your seats wondering if the Loyaltons are about to go splat against a mountain. So let us continue our flyover with them, and see where we end up. [Read more…]

Shrooms of the Gods: A Geostory

If I told you the gods were rock gardening in southern Illinois, would you believe me? No, I know, I thought the same: American Midwest. Flat. Full o’ cornfields. Bo-ring. I’m originally from neighboring Indiana. I would’ve sworn there wasn’t a surface rock more exciting than a pebble anywhere within 500 miles.

Wrongo.

Get beyond those areas where vast continental ice sheets planed the land and left everything buried under thick deposits of nothing visually stunning. You won’t have to go far, just fifteen miles (24 km) north of the Shawnee Hills. Things begin to get rather more interesting. There are rocks. Keep going south, into the hills. Then: stunning. [Read more…]

Order This Weekend for Valentine’s Day!

Are you one of those folks who celebrates V-Day? Do you need a punny geological gift for your rock-loving loved one? Of course you do! You’ve still got time to get them some Holy Schist with Guaranteed Garnet. Hooray! And if you use the coupon code VALDAY, you’ll get 15% off your entire purchase! Place that order now.

Image is a macro of a small piece of garnet mica schist with tiny, red-orange garnets speckling it.

Lovely little garnets! In Holy Schist!

Remember, Holy Schist is for a lifetime, unlike flowers, which will rot within the week unless you get a living plant. Unlike living plants, Holy Schist does not need water or sunlight to stay beautiful, though, so it’s still a more thoughtful gift.

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Adventures in ACE XI: Tommyrot About Topography

We are, at last, almost at the end of the breathtaking inanity that is ACE Science* PACE 1086. So far, we’ve seen a really inept drilling project, watched them mutilate Mount St. Helens and other volcanoes, suffered through their igneous ignorance, had to spend two posts on their sedimentary nonsense, and dealt with their metamorphic misconceptions. At times, it’s seemed like we’ll never get through debunking this unfathomable ignorance. But we’ve only eight pages and two topics to go! Racer and his dad are finally flying home! Stick with us and we’ll get there – if the Loyaltons’ plane doesn’t crash. [Read more…]

A Perfect Book for Hooking Kids on Rocks

Do you want to interest young children in geology? Of course you do! Not only is it one of the greatest sciences of all time, and even one that can be done on other worlds, it gets kids out in the fresh air (and possibly sunshine). So let’s do it. Let’s start them on geology right now.

All you need to do is get them Everybody Needs a Rock by Byrd Baylor, illustrated by Peter Parnall.

Image shows the cover of Everybody Needs a Rock. [Read more…]