Best Op-Ed Ever!

From the Louisville Courier-Journal:

There is a great educational injustice being inflicted upon thousands of children in this country, a large percentage of whom come from the Kentucky, Ohio and, Indiana areas. The source of this injustice is a sophisticated Christian ministry that uses the hook of dinosaurs, the guarantee of an afterlife, and the horrors of hell to convince children and their families to believe in a literal interpretation of the Bible. The tax-exempt ministry, Answers in Genesis, and its new $28 million creation museum in Boone County has become the de facto source of science information to thousands of Christians who are throwing away reason and 500 years of scientific inquiry and replacing it with ignorant dogma.


And later:

These kids are learning that despite a fossil record that clearly shows a progression of simple life forms becoming more complex life forms over billions of years (the first bacteria are believed to have established themselves approximately 3.8 billion years ago), they are taught that the first man was made from clay and that the first woman was made from the man’s rib. Instead of learning that the process of natural selection, over 3,800 millions of years, has changed populations of organisms into the approximately 10 million species (conservative estimate) that inhabit the Earth today, they are taught the “poof” theory of creationism.

What is particularly sad about this ministry is that because they are so fervent in their mission to get people to believe (or rather make believe) in their simplistic world view, many Christian scientists and secular scientists are playing catch-up to counter the damage they are doing.

The obstruction of scientific information is nothing new in the history of fundamentalist theology. What is new is the way this organization is using the power of radio (AIG is broadcast over 850 radio stations), the Internet and, now, a pseudo-natural history museum to convince well-meaning, hard-working people that science is not to be trusted, that the theory of evolution is evil and that belief in scientific theories of our creation leads to barbaric behaviors. As Mark Twain once said, “A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes.”

Great stuff! And it just keeps getting better from here. Go read the whole thing.

Comments

  1. #1 Tony P
    December 2, 2007

    I guess the Roman Catholic church is too busy what with pedophile and paedophile priests and their marriage sanctity so we haven’t hear much from them.

    As an atheist product of Catholic schools I can tell you that when I was there from 1970 to 1982 creationism was only taught in religion classes, and even then it never tried to displace science.

    It annoys me that organizations like Answers in Genesis are trying to poison the minds of young people with their drivel.

    I remember watching Jesus Camp and the kids were just so brainwashed and as an avid follower of many things science it saddens me greatly.

    What can we do to counter the creationists? Because this is a battle we’ve been fighting now for hundreds of years.

  2. #2 Ex-drone
    December 2, 2007

    From the sublime (the article) to the ridiculous (the creationist comments). It’s interesting that, in the comments, the the fundie critics characterize the article supporters as “Christian haters” instead of “Science defenders”.

  3. #3 Martin Cothran
    December 2, 2007

    It is interesting that someone who was presumably against the Dover School Board policy of mandating mention of ID would be so enthusiastic about an article that calls for mandating what parents should teach their children in their own home.

    Who should we be more fearful of: some guy who wants to run a creation museum that no one has to go to–or someone who wants a law dictating what you do in your own home?

  4. #4 Tyler DiPietro
    December 3, 2007

    “It is interesting that someone who was presumably against the Dover School Board policy of mandating mention of ID would be so enthusiastic about an article that calls for mandating what parents should teach their children in their own home.”

    …as part of a formal education, which is required by law as far as I know. If the state has an interest in mandating standards for education I don’t see why certain parents should be exempt.

    In any case, regardless of the law, lying to children is unethical.

  5. #5 Jim Ramsey
    December 3, 2007

    To phrases like “literal interpretation of the Bible” we really ought to add “in English” or perhaps “in the King James version”.

    I note that actual Bible scholarship, knowledge of ancient Hebrew and Aramaic, understanding of the rhetorical style of the time, understanding of the cultural subtext that is the background of the language of the Bible, is pretty much missing from the Ken Hamm’s of this world.

  6. #6 foreign observer
    December 3, 2007

    I had never heard of modern home shooling. What a crazy idea,presumptous(how could possibly parents substitute for trained teachers),byased (children will learn only their parents truth)and socially disruptive. There are allready one million children(google) beeing deformed by this approach. If it keeps going it will only be one more nail in the coffin of the demise of the USA as moral, scientific and economic leader of the world

  7. #7 chavette
    December 4, 2007

    I think its ridiculous that they ousted her for believing in evolution, but on the other hand, maybe teachers should be “neutral” on thorny subjects like evolution vs creationism. I mean, I wouldn’t be thrilled if she had being promoting creationism over evolution. Bias is always dangerous. But what do you think? I created a poll on the subject, vote on it here: http://www.pollsb.com/polls/poll/4270/56-year-old-texas-science-educator-fired-because-she-refused-to-be-neutral-in-debate-about-evolution

  8. #8 Reynold
    December 4, 2007

    Well, I’ve posted there…for all the good it’ll do:

  9. #9 gazete
    April 14, 2008

    a good science article thanks for share to we

  10. #10 Sinema
    April 27, 2008

    güzel bir payla??m sa?ol

The site is undergoing maintenance presently. Commenting has been disabled. Please check back later!