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Mota Boy
05-02-2005, 10:58 AM
http://story.news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&cid=1896&ncid=1896&e=2&u=/nm/20050502/us_nm/life_evolution_dc


Evolution on trial as Kansas debates Adam vs Darwin
Eighty years after a famed courtroom battle in Tennessee pitted religious beliefs about the origins of life against the theories of British scientist Charles Darwin, Kansas is holding its own hearings on what school children should be taught about how life on Earth began.

The Kansas Board of Education has scheduled six days of courtroom-style hearings to begin on Thursday in the capitol Topeka. More than two dozen witnesses will give testimony and be subject to cross-examination, with the majority expected to argue against teaching evolution.

Many prominent U.S. scientific groups have denounced the debate as founded on fallacy and have promised to boycott the hearings, which opponents say are part of a larger nationwide effort by religious interests to gain control over government.

"I feel like I'm in a time warp here," said Topeka attorney Pedro Irigonegaray who has agreed to defend evolution as valid science. "To debate evolution is similar to debating whether the Earth is round. It is an absurd proposition."

WIDESPREAD DEBATE

Irigonegaray's opponent will be attorney John Calvert, managing director of the Intelligent Design Network, a Kansas organization that argues the Earth was created through intentional design rather than random organism evolution.

The group is one of many that have been formed over the last several years to challenge the validity of evolutionary concepts and seek to open the schoolroom door to ideas that humans and other living creatures are too intricately designed to have come about randomly.

While many call themselves creationists, who believe that God was the ultimate designer of all life, they are stopping short of saying creationism should be taught in schools.

"We're not against evolution," said Calvert. "But there is a lot of evidence that suggests that life is the product of intelligence. I think it is inappropriate for the state to prejudge the question whether we are the product of design or just an occurrence."

Debates over evolution are currently being waged in more than a dozen states, including Texas where one bill would allowing for creationism to be taught alongside evolution.

Kansas has been grappling with the issue for years, garnering worldwide attention in 1999 when the state school board voted to downplay evolution in science classes.

Subsequent elections altered the membership of the school board and led to renewed backing for evolution instruction in 2001. But elections last year gave religious conservatives a 6-4 majority and the board is now finalizing new science standards, which will guide teachers about how and what to teach students.

The current proposal pushed by conservatives would not eliminate evolution entirely from instruction, nor would it require creationism be taught, but it would encourage teachers to discuss various viewpoints and eliminate core evolution claims as required curriculum.

School board member Sue Gamble, who describes herself as a moderate, said she will not attend the hearings, which she calls "a farce." She said the argument over evolution is part of a larger agenda by Christian conservatives to gradually alter the legal and social landscape in the United States.

"I think it is a desire by a minority... to establish a theocracy, both within Kansas and growing to a national level," Gamble said.

OLD TESTAMENT TEACHINGS

Some evolution detractors say that the belief that humans, animals and organisms evolved over long spans of time is inconsistent with Biblical teachings that life was created by God. The Bible's Old Testament says that God created life on Earth including the first humans, Adam and Eve, in six days.

Detractors also argue that evolution is invalid science because it cannot be tested or verified and say it is inappropriately being indoctrinated into education and discouraging consideration of alternatives.

But defenders say that evolution is not totally inconsistent with Biblical beliefs, and it provides a foundational concept for understanding many areas of science, including genetics and molecular biology.

The theory of evolution came to prominence in 1859 when Darwin published "On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection," and it was the subject of a 1925 trial in Tennessee in which teacher John Thomas Scopes was accused of violating a ban against teaching evolution.

Kansas School Board chairman Steve Abrams said the hearings are less about religion than they are about seeking the best possible education for the state's children.

"If students... do not understand the weaknesses of evolutionary theory as well as the strengths, a grave injustice is being done to them," Abrams said.

Vera
05-02-2005, 11:22 AM
I have nothing against teaching criticism toward the evolution theory. Because overall I think it's extremely important for kids to learn that what science says now and what we consider to be a scientific fact right NOW is probably not what we will think in the future. Science EVOLVES. It's just the nature of it. Science looks at itself with criticism and even within scientists, there are different opinions.

There are all kinds of philosophical theories questioning science and its development but I think the facts right now are that a lot of things, a LOT of things in modern science are based on the evolution theory and also prove the evolution theory to be right. It's highly possible that the evolution theory itself will change slightly in the future or even that a whole new scientific theory will replace it, but right now, what's most beneficial for children is to understand the evolution theory as it relates to almost everything else you learn in Biology class.

I guess what I'm saying is that we shouldn't teach evolution theory dogmatically. But neither should we bring Bible stories to Biology class.

Jesus
05-02-2005, 11:50 AM
but right now, what's most beneficial for children is to understand the evolution theory as it relates to almost everything else you learn in Biology class.

I guess what I'm saying is that we shouldn't teach evolution theory dogmatically. But neither should we bring Bible stories to Biology class.

Agreed, biology is a science and thus the scientific theories should be taught, like evolution is one. And ofcourse critical thinking should be thought too, but that's inherent to science anyway. Without critical thinking, (almost) no science.
I also have no problem with religious theories being explained if they take place in a class about religion.

notoriousdoc
05-02-2005, 12:09 PM
Bloody religous nutters, the people who argue against evolution are the same people who would be in the Ku Klux Klan. Why can't they just accept that the reason the Bible states that "In 6 days god made everything then had a sit down, and it will stay that way" was caused through not knowing about evolution. I also believe criticism should be taught because if we don't future generations will be swept along by dictators and other leaders who control the weak, lazy of mind and ignorant, someone likend to Hitler maybe.

Noodles is gay
05-02-2005, 12:21 PM
methinks this is just another instance of 'kids being to stupid' to learn about evolution and yet still believe in god. Just like video games - kids apparently think they're real!

They should be taught evolution, they should be taught the big bang. Then they should be told that both are merely theories. Then people can make up their own minds.




..."theocracy" damn, i love that word. And oligarchy, democracy, monarchy, mobocracy, autocracy, plutocracy, aristocracy - i like all those words for some curious reason.

wheelchairman
05-02-2005, 02:28 PM
Another depressing step in the United States mode-of-thought regression to the previous centuries.

What we need to support now is the national liberation movement of Cascadia.

TripTwat
05-02-2005, 02:33 PM
I'm a twat

Skate Rat 19
05-02-2005, 06:15 PM
You realize that most wars EVER fought on this planet have been over religion right? Or at least that was the driving force behind the soldiers. its not bad to have faith in something but in todays world its holding us back. Theres SO much evidnce against it and it leads to dumb problems like this terrorism(yes they'd only blow themselves up in the name of fucking Allah)

TheUnholyNightbringer
05-02-2005, 06:41 PM
I once heard that in Alabama, equal weight is given to both the Big Bang and evolution theories, and the 7 days-God-created-the-Earth theories. Teachers were instructed to point out that either could be right and neither were unproven. Essentially, the kids heard both theories and were able to make up their own mind.

I think this is an ideal situation, but of course in real life it's never going to happen. Teachers will believe one thing or another and so have at least a little bit of prejudice towards their chosen theory.

I've never really been a fan of mixing religion and science in the same class, anyway. There are (or IMHO, should be) two different classes for the two different schools of thought. Much like politics and religion - they can both exist, but mixing the two is a recipe for disaster.

Vera
05-03-2005, 07:57 AM
Skater Rat whatever, religion will always exist in the world. And you won't get rid of it by ridding the world of fundamentalists.

wheelchairman
05-03-2005, 10:32 AM
You realize that most wars EVER fought on this planet have been over religion right? Or at least that was the driving force behind the soldiers. its not bad to have faith in something but in todays world its holding us back. Theres SO much evidnce against it and it leads to dumb problems like this terrorism(yes they'd only blow themselves up in the name of fucking Allah)
Dumbass.

Religion is an excuse for wars. It doesn't matter what makes the soldiers fight, because even if they were atheists, they would still be soldiers (everyone needs to make a living, you can't possibly blame this on soldiers.) Besides, soldiers become soldiers for nationalist reasons as well, career opportunities, etc. etc.

What you should think is, what is forcing these people to believe? Where is fidelity most common? Well obviously the most poorer regions. (Hence, why we find suicide bombers in Palestine, and not in Orange County.) What can we possibly do? I don't know, try a mix of an atheist education and raising their living standards?

But nah, let's just tell them they are fools and shoot them. Because I mean, no 14 year old has ever come up with the idea 'omg rel1gion is teh evilz0rz'.

And I mean, fair enough, I was actually the same way from the age of 12-15. It's a really shallow analysis that doesn't quite work. It ignores that religion is multi-shaded. Even Christianity has shining aspects like Liberation Theology, etc.

wheelchairman
05-03-2005, 11:32 AM
Did I say that it did, it would just make sure that the students had a more scientific foundation for their understanding of the world, than an entity that required a lack of evidence as a pre-requisite.

Vera
05-03-2005, 01:03 PM
Mäkin alan puhumaan äidinkieltäni tehdäkseni viestini selväksi.

I too will start speaking my mother tongue to get my point across. So efficient!

Skate Rat 19
05-03-2005, 04:46 PM
Dumbass.

Religion is an excuse for wars. It doesn't matter what makes the soldiers fight, because even if they were atheists, they would still be soldiers (everyone needs to make a living, you can't possibly blame this on soldiers.) Besides, soldiers become soldiers for nationalist reasons as well, career opportunities, etc. etc.

What you should think is, what is forcing these people to believe? Where is fidelity most common? Well obviously the most poorer regions. (Hence, why we find suicide bombers in Palestine, and not in Orange County.) What can we possibly do? I don't know, try a mix of an atheist education and raising their living standards?

But nah, let's just tell them they are fools and shoot them. Because I mean, no 14 year old has ever come up with the idea 'omg rel1gion is teh evilz0rz'.

And I mean, fair enough, I was actually the same way from the age of 12-15. It's a really shallow analysis that doesn't quite work. It ignores that religion is multi-shaded. Even Christianity has shining aspects like Liberation Theology, etc.

I'm just saying it has a good side and a bad side, like everything. Religion gives people hope and something to live for and it also gives them something to blow themselves up for. The automobile has made transportation easier but has killed many people in accendents and drive-bys. Language has been the key to communicating and civilization as we know it but it also has led to lies 'cough' iraq has weapons of mass destruction 'cough' 'cough'. This board allows us to express opinion but it often leads to annoying threads and arguements. the list goes on

wheelchairman
05-04-2005, 09:51 AM
Atheism ensuring anything? Dude do you realize you're frighteningly sectarian?

Firstly, students & ppl need to understand the world they live in, & this world, even aesthetically, is founded on religion in some way or other.

Secondly, atheism just OPPOSES religion, tis the belief in NO GOD, therefore it underlies the underpinning value of something SUPREME.

L'athéisme n'enlève RIEN de la croyance au divin, ce n'est pas un purgatif!!!
Au contraire, et c'est bien là toute l'horreur de cet effroyable piège, il la pose en principe pour mieux l'anéantir, ce faisant ruinant ses propres prémices.

Me suis-je bien fait comprendre? Did I make myself clear?

Maria
Hence why I also said it should be done while one raises the living conditions as well. Religion will fade when a need for it stops existing.

And by atheistic education, I meant non-god based. That doesn't belong in public schools. Religion is a private matter.

wheelchairman
05-04-2005, 10:08 AM
You're delusional. You think because you have three TVs or three limos or three $trillion you don't think about things NOT materialistic?

You're wrong. You do, more than ever, what's more you try to conceal to yourself that you do, you begin to live entirely for pleasure or become a Rockefeller. Or a Bill Gates, for that matter.

Maria
It's an odd pattern though, the better the general standards of living are, the less people seem to attend church. I think the church will pretty much end in the western world relatively soon (as in, a few centuries.)

Mota Boy
05-05-2005, 12:17 PM
It's an odd pattern though, the better the general standards of living are, the less people seem to attend church. I think the church will pretty much end in the western world relatively soon (as in, a few centuries.)
People have been predicting the end of organized religion for well over a century, to no avail.

wheelchairman
05-07-2005, 04:56 AM
In the US, the well-heeled do attend masses.

Anyway, perhaps they feel unworthy of God's love say in Christianity, for tis said in the Gospel that the last shall be the first. Having material wealth & succeeding can hurt their belief say in catholicism... not so in protestantism...

Can't reduce religion to church matters de facto. or 'de jure' either come to think of it.

Maria
In the US, only the incredibly wealthy and the lower middle class (and below) attend church. Odd coincidence?

brothadave79
05-07-2005, 05:02 PM
Seriously, if people want to go to church let them. I don't see what the big deal is with all the blind hatred.

Skate Rat 19
05-08-2005, 04:49 PM
of course, you throw them during mass in the public church, duh

TheUnholyNightbringer
05-08-2005, 07:51 PM
Seriously, if people want to go to church let them. I don't see what the big deal is with all the blind hatred.

Don't even get me started on religious hatred. It works 2 ways.

brothadave79
05-08-2005, 07:53 PM
Don't even get me started on religious hatred. It works 2 ways.

Sometimes it does, sadly, and both ways are pointless.

Lithuanian Offspring
05-16-2005, 01:07 PM
I have nothing against teaching criticism toward the evolution theory. Because overall I think it's extremely important for kids to learn that what science says now and what we consider to be a scientific fact right NOW is probably not what we will think in the future. Science EVOLVES. It's just the nature of it. Science looks at itself with criticism and even within scientists, there are different opinions.

There are all kinds of philosophical theories questioning science and its development but I think the facts right now are that a lot of things, a LOT of things in modern science are based on the evolution theory and also prove the evolution theory to be right. It's highly possible that the evolution theory itself will change slightly in the future or even that a whole new scientific theory will replace it, but right now, what's most beneficial for children is to understand the evolution theory as it relates to almost everything else you learn in Biology class.

I guess what I'm saying is that we shouldn't teach evolution theory dogmatically. But neither should we bring Bible stories to Biology class.
I could not agree with you any more. If the Bible can not be scientifically proven then why has the THEORY of Evolution being taught as a fact. They have never been proven therefore they they should be taught as Theories. But of course your Faith is Faith therefore it does not fall under the catagory of science. But over all Theory is not Fact. And my science textbook contradicts its own teachings by teaching Evolution as a fact.