Thursday, May 12, 2005

On Teaching the "Debate" about Evolution

Today's Houston Chronicle has published an outstanding essay by Ellen Goodman about the Religious Right's new found desire to "teach the debate" about evolution. Goodman writes, "My, how the opponents of evolution have evolved." and adds, "It's the height of irony to hear the same partisans who intimidate science teachers positioning themselves as the defenders of fair and open debate."

If anyone wants evidence some evidence of the irony Goodman identifies, they need look no further than the story in today's Minneapolis Star Tribune about a children's book on evolution that is being censored and its author blackballed from speaking appearances.

The truth is, the controversy over "Intelligent Design" is a wedge strategy devised by a lawyer to encourage the Religious Right to keep public schools in turmoil over the teaching of evolution. It is a statement of faith designed to end debate about origins. The easiest way to discover this is to ask the proponents of "Intelligent Design" to explain how their "theory" can be tested to prove its veracity or falsity and how the theory expands our understanding of nature. If you get an answer, be sure to let me know. I am still waiting to hear one.

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