Kurt Zimmerman is pissed off. He’s not a very bright guy, and he doesn’t know much about biology or history, and he’s extremely annoyed that not only is the local school teaching his kids stuff he didn’t know, but they’re actually telling them that his sources of information are wrong. You see, the only level of education we’re allowed to raise children to is the Kurt Zimmerman level…which is a little scary. I was kind of hoping that sending my kids off to school would produce progeny who are smarter than me, and now I learn that they’re only supposed to produce kids who are dumber than Kurt Zimmerman? How dismaying.
Anyway, Zimmerman is upset because he found a biology textbook that defines creationism as “the biblical myth that the universe was created by the Judeo-Christian god in 7 days”. This is mostly factually correct (one might quibble that the bible actually says their god created the earth in six days, and doesn’t really say much about the universe as a whole…but really, when you’re dealing with that degree of lunacy, 7 is the same as 6 is the same as canned beans), but seeing “myth” in the same sentence as “bible” has made Mr Zimmerman quite unhinged.
Zimmerman asked in December that the school immediately quit using the book “Asking About Life” in his son’s class and all classes.
He said it could “mislead, belittle and discourage students in believing in creationism and pointedly calls the Bible a myth.”
It’s not misleading at all, it doesn’t belittle students except in the sense that students who believe something that is wrong will be faced with a direct statement that they are wrong, and I should hope schools would discourage people from believing in stupid and fallacious mush! It also doesn’t go as far as I’d like or that Zimmerman thinks it does: it does not call the bible a myth. It says that it contains a myth, which it does. It would be nice if we did have a high school biology book that called all of Christianity and Judaism a collection of myths, but we don’t. Yet.
But Zimmerman has accomplished one triumph: he has won himself a brief spot on Fox News. The really astonishing thing about this clip is that the two Fox interviewers, Barbie and Dullard, actually come off as dumber than he is.
The good news, though, is that the local school board has decided not to decide anything about the book for 30 days. That’s committee-speak for “let’s wait for the noise and notoriety of Mr Zipperhead to die down a bit, so we can ignore the whole stupid proposal”.
Oh, this is interesting: a commenter looked up the book on Google Books and got the actual, full quote from the book.
In the 1970s and 1980s, antievolutionists in Arkansas, Tennessee and
Louisiana passed identical bills calling for “equal time” for teaching
evolution and creationism, the biblical myth that the universe was
created by the Judeo-Christian god in six days. But a court ruled that
the “equal-time” bill was unconstitutional on the grounds that it
violated the separation of church and state.
That’s even biblically accurate. And it’s a very reasonable context in which to mention the topic of creationism.