A federal judge said Nope to another attempt to get evolution banned in Kansas public schools.
Citizens for Objective Public Education (COPE) actually had the nerve to argue that teaching evolution amounts to teaching atheism, and therefore should be banned as a religious point of view in the classroom.
Learning about evolution could, following a train of thought, lead to atheism, but I can think of other things that could also do that – like reading the bible for instance; like going to church, like listening to sermons, like thinking about the idea of “god.” Pretty much anything could lead to a train of thought that ends up at atheism – or theism.
Americans United put it this way:
Everything about that argument is flawed. Contemplating the origin of life on this planet is not an inherently religious question that is unfit for children to ponder. And science has done a fine job of unlocking the mysteries of the universe – despite COPE’s claim to the contrary. Evolution may be a theory, but no legitimate scientists question its validity. Thus learning the facts of that theory is not “indoctrination.” It’s called education.
US District Judge Daniel Crabtree apparently agreed, because he threw out the case.
Learning can take you places. Deal with it.
Being pedantic, but evolution is a Theory, not a theory.
Al Dente says
The problem with teaching creation myths is what myths should be taught? The Genesis myth is completely different from the Hindu myth and the Australian Aborigine myth. Rather than teaching comparative religion, we should have biology teachers teach biology.
“The” Genesis myth? There are two “accounts” in Genesis and they conflict in many particulars.
Al Dente says
Actually there are several Aborigine creation myths as well.
“Evolution may be a theory, but no legitimate scientists question its validity”
“may be” seems inappropriate terminology, theories are predictive, explanatory and testable, any experiment or observation can prove a theory invalid.
What is most disturbing is that very many religiots actually think that atheism, or evolution are beliefs, amazing.
I’m blanking on the name at the moment, but one of the big-name Faitheists has been pounding this drum for years, insisting that if those bad Gnu Atheists don’t shut up and leave atheism to folks like him, the teaching of evolution will be banned on the grounds that it’s religious instruction. The fact that this argument has been made and rejected long before this case has not seemed to matter much.
Ophelia Benson says
Yup, Michael Ruse.
Ophelia Benson says
I thought of that as soon as I read the piece. And while I wrote the bit about all the possible ways one can get to atheism, or not.
Evolution is a fact, the rock record proves it beyond any doubt. Even Ken Ham admits dinosaurs existed.
The Theory of Natural Selection is what these religionists object to, because it describes how the complexity of life occurs without their beloved divine intervention.
The “teaching evolution” complaint is no more than an admission of willful ignorance of the truths of evolution and the theory of natural selection.
Athywren; Kitty Wrangler says
They do like to imply that nature points to atheism, don’t they? :3
Like when they tried to argue that a space without a religious symbol would be an atheist symbol. So, basically, most of the universe is covered in atheist symbols by default, and that wouldn’t suggest anything in particular about gods or their existence?
Arghh! Yet another group that is unaware that ‘theory’ in a science context has a very different meaning from ‘guess’ or ‘hypothesis’.