Indiana Legislative Panel Clears Creation Science Bill

Dennis Kruse, the same Indiana State Senator who wants public school students to recite the Lord’s Prayer at the beginning of every day, is now sponsoring a bill that would promote Creationism in science class… and he’s getting much farther than he should be:

The Senate Education Committee voted 8-2 in favor of the bill despite experts and some senators saying teaching creationism likely would be ruled unconstitutional if challenged in court.

According to an article from the Associated Press, Purdue University science education professor John Staver told the committee that teaching Creationism could lead to a lawsuit since it’s a violation of church-state separation — and federal courts have agreed in the past.

Staver said he believed any school district that started teaching creationism would face lawsuits they would likely lose.

“All that the citizens of Indiana are going to get from this bill are wasted legal efforts, lawyer fees and penalties,” Staver said.

Sen. Scott Schneider (R-Indianapolis) didn’t care for that logic, though:

“What are we afraid of? Allowing an option for students including creation science as opposed to limiting their exposure?”

No, we aren’t afraid to expose children to other ideologies (false as they may be). We are worried — outside of the inherent falsehood — that by teaching a religious ideology as scientific fact, we run the risk of teaching our children that by simply pretending hard enough, any magical apparition can become the truth.

Creation Science is NOT science.

When looking for answers to scientific questions, there are scads of information detailing experiments, observations, conclusions, hypothesis, peer-reviews, successes, and failures. When looking for answers to a religious (read: Christian) based “theory,” you have one collection of books; with spurious authorship; each part written dozens to hundreds of years after any of the supposed characters were supposed to have lived; giving conflicting accounts of events, lineage, history, and people; later edited, redacted, and recompiled by groups of people with several political agendas; has no universally agreed-upon translation; and is not interpreted the same way by any two people.

If Creationism is to be taught as science, then what is preventing these beliefs from also being taught the same way?

  1. Astrology
  2. Pyramid power
  3. Divining rod technology
  4. The toxemia theory and Christian Science “negative thinking” theory of disease
  5. The flat earth theory

If Creationism is to be taught as science, can we allow ALL Creation Stories? For example:

  1. In China, the story of of P’an Ku, hatched from a cosmic egg. Half the shell is above him as the sky, the other half below him as the earth. Growing taller each day for 18,000 years, he gradually pushes them apart until they reach their appointed places. Then P’an Ku falls to pieces. His limbs become mountains, his blood the rivers, his breath the wind and his voice the thunder. His two eyes are the sun and the moon. And the parasites on his body are mankind.
  2. Greece, begins with a gaping emptiness, Chaos. Within this there emerges Gaea, the earth. Gaea gives birth to a son, Uranus, who is the sky. Gaea and Uranus populate the earth with their children.
  3. Japan, the story of creation leads not to the first man but to the first emperor. Beginning with a floating amorphous mass, emerges a reed-like object, which produces eight generations of brother-and-sister gods.
  4. Mesopotamia, the creation story survives on clay tablets found in Ashurbanipal’s library, in the saga known as Enuma elish(named from its first two words, meaning ‘When on high’). It begins with two watery beings, one male, Apsu (sweet water), and one female, Tiamat (salt water). They create a variety of sea monsters and gods. Marduk, the god of Babylon, kills Tiamat and her accomplice, Kingu. Marduk splits the corpse of Tiamat into two parts. He creates the heaven with half of her, and the earth with the other. In heaven he constructs a dwelling place for his colleagues, the gods. Needing a race of servants, he uses the blood of Kingu to create the first man, followed by the creation of rivers, plants and animals.*

If and when Creationism (any creation story) can be tested, verified, put through the rigors of the scientific method, peer-reviewed, and accepted by rational thinking scientists and people everywhere as a legitimate explanation for the creation of the universe — when Creationism can be placed next to Evolution and the Big Bang without looking like a two-year-old’s marker scribbles hanging on the gallery wall next to a Da Vinci masterpiece — then we can start teaching it in schools. When this ancient campfire story becomes more than the sum of its flawed and mutable parts, I will be among the first in line to sign a petition to get it taught as science.

Until that day (and I won’t be holding my breath), in any states that are considering breaking science, I hope that reason — and the future of education in our country — wins out over the teaching of just-so stories.**

*Thank you, interwebs, and apologies to any details that might have been glossed over

**Not that I have any problem with just-so stories. They’re fun… like Dr. Suess books.

About Shannon Burgdorf

A polymath (Greek πολυμαθής, polymathēs, "having learned much")[1] is a person whose expertise spans a significant number of different subject areas.

I fancy myself this type of person - possibly one day I will live up to it.

So many interests so little time....

Actor, Writer, Mother, Wife, Atheist, Home Educator, Secular Humanist

  • gski

    In passed years the world’s brightest students came here to earn science degrees and then stayed to take advantage of the greater opportunities here than at home.  Now as opportunities in their home countries improve they are returning.  In coming years native U.S. scientists will have to be competitive or our economy will decline faster than it is now, in relation to the rest of the world.  It seems to me there are too many people willing to sacrifice their children’s and therefore the country’s future to their god.

    • MissKriss

      We can’t be that competitive. Stem cell research is a dead field here. We can’t create any new stem cells for research. All new research is going to use stem cells as a stepping stone. We’re getting left behind. 

      • Jane

        Did you read the recent article about the macular degeneration research in which stem cells were injected into the patients’ eye(s)…and how it caused improvement?  Exciting stuff!

      • cipher

        You mean Left Behind.

    • Nhills

      It really doesn’t matter whether or not we have good scientists or engineers in the future, it wouldn’t help the economy, since the people in power simply won’t let ANYTHING help the economy.

  • Bubba Tarandfeathered

    I totally support them passing this legislation. then it will be challenged in the supreme court, found unconstitutional causing this Bill to never see the light of day again.

    • Anonymous

      It’s already been heard and ruled upon by the Supreme Court. Edwards vs Aguillard in 1987 found that teaching “creation science” in public schools is unconstitutional. 

      Cat’s Staff up above has this nailed spot on. It’s demagoguery of the highest order by Republicans in an election year to pander to their base. Unfortunately, it’s a waste of legislative time and resources that could be spent solving some of the real problems that Indiana probably has, like poverty, jobs, and the economy.

      • Anonymous

        It’s for precisely that reason that “Intelligent Design” was invented. They just took Creationism and removed all explicit references to the Christian god

  • Ubi Dubium

    You forgot the most important Creation Story: “In the beginning the Flying Spaghetti Monster created a mountain, some trees and a midgit”

    Challenging bills like this one is what Pastafarianism was created for.  Time to start demanding that equal time also be given to Unintelligent Design!

    • Kristen B.

      Yes! I was going to mention the FSM as well. Having just finished reading the glorious Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, I am hopeful that my daughter and her classmates will all learn about Him in their future science classes. 

    • Marco Conti

      I came here to post about FSM too. Why are we not using it more? After all it was “created” exactly for this kind of purpose. Let them introduce creation in the classroom but then let them deal with all creation stories including the FSM.

  • Wintermute

    Stuff like this absolutely boggles my mind. Even if a legislator is ignorant enough to think there’s some merit in teaching this nonsense, how do they not see examples like Kitzmiller v. Dover and realize that the only way it’s going to end is with a lawsuit, national embarrassment, and big legal bills? Even a goddamn pigeon will learn to stop pecking if it gets shocked every time it happens.

    I think more and more we need laws that shift the liability in situations like this to the school board members making the call. Maybe if it was their money on the line they’d be less inclined to tilt at windmills.

    • Anonymous

      But that was a liberal activist judge. They think that they just need to find the right Christian judge and everything will be fine

  • http://twitter.com/TychaBrahe TychaBrahe

    I wrote Senator Kruse an e-mail.  I admit to suggesting I believed in God, for which I’m a tiny bit ashamed.

    ***

    Senator Kruse, I don’t care what you believe in your heart of hearts about how the world was created.  You are a politician, not a scientist.  You can believe that the world is flat and pi = 3 for all I care.  It doesn’t change anything.

    But the children in Indiana schools have the possibility of growing up to be engineers, doctors, scientists.  Somewhere in Indiana may be the next Harold Urey, Nobel Prize in Chemistry winner, from Walkerton.  But how will these students compete against children who go to school in Utah or Montana or Ohio, who are taught the real science of evolution instead of lies and fairy tales?

    Creationism or “Intelligent Design” is not science.  I understand that it’s what’s in the Bible, but don’t you see that this is the way our origins were presented to our distant ancestors, who didn’t have algebra, let alone calculus, or any possibility of understanding modern biology?  When children ask why the sky is blue, we don’t teach them about Rayleigh scattering, because they don’t have the framework to understand it.  When they mature, and we can teach them about optics and refraction, THEN we teach them why the sky is REALLY blue.

    When I began this letter, I went to the Wikipedia page to find out which scientists had come from Indiana, to use them as an example of what the state can achieve.  There’s a nice list of Nobel Prize winners.  However, what I found was that except for Urey, none of them were from Indiana.  Some of them studied there for a few years.  Some of them taught there.  But only Urey received his formative education there, and none of them did their groundbreaking work in Indiana.  Why is that?  The children of Indiana cannot be inherently less intelligent than children from other states.  But no matter how fine the steel, a knife will not cut well unless it is properly honed.

    The children of Indiana deserve a proper education so that they can go out in the world and achieve great things.  Do not deny them their human birthright by teaching them fairy tales.  They’re old enough for the truth.

    • Nhills

      Nice letter. Too bad it was all for nothing.

      • Mark

        Its not for nothing, I read it and forwarded it on to others. A voice is still something even if the dolts pushing these agenda’s could careless. The more of us that speak out against these travesties against the progression of human intellect the better.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_ORRVVC5R2QWLTXEM6SX5L6BORE Jay Arrrr

      Excellent letter, too bad you couldn’t pin a check for $10,000 and a pair of Super Bowl tickets to it, then it would have been read. I’m so frustrated living here. we send these Grocers, Farmers, and Car Dealers to Indianapolis to work for us and all they do is sell us down the river to the US Chamber of Commerce, ALEC, and religious wackos in exchange for Prime Rib at St. Elmo’s.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jason-Jay/500845057 Jason Jay

      I believe your letter has a lot of truth in it, except the next to last paragraph. I would argue that people from a certain area CAN be inherently less intelligent. 

      The saying birds of a feather flock together could apply here. I’m not saying it does, but I’m saying it could. I would think that an entire state would be too big of a sample pool for this to be true, but for a small town it could entirely be true. Especially if something is in the water. I’m not joking either. I’ve lived in a community where the water  and soil was contaminated from a chemical company that was located there. And it really did produce many children who were born with several serious side effects :(

  • http://aboutkitty.blogspot.com/ Cat’s Staff

    I’m conflicted about these things…  The person who put this forward did it mainly so he can go back to his home district and use it as a fund-raising talking point while campaigning.  These things come up all the time and they get shot down, but that’s just what they want.  They can say “This is evidence that I’m a True Christian™” and “If you help us elect more True Christians™ we will be able to pass it next time”.  In the end it never comes close to passing, and most people don’t even know it was brought up.

    On the other hand, if it did pass… it would be tragic for our standing in the world as a leader in science and technology, we would be a laughing stock as a country if even one state passed something like this, institutions of higher learning in other states might opt to not accept applicants from Indiana unless they pay for to take non-credit HS level biology classes, many students who deserve better, and who could go on to do great things, would be denied the opportunity to get a good science education, and there could be many unforeseen consequences.  However, when it goes to the Supreme Court and looses and costs the state or a school district lots of money, it would be something that an opponent could campaign on…”This guys legislation lost the state millions of dollars, now your taxes will go up or your schools will be poorer”.

    I suppose for now we just have to keep stamping out the little fires and not getting much credit for it and also not getting rid of the problem.

  • http://twitter.com/ologies LOLogies

    Oh, Indiana. :( Can I leave this place yet?

  • observer

    Kinda reminds me of the past articles with school officials handing out Bibles to the kids. I’ll bet you when the bill is challenged, and deemed unconstitutional, Kruse will have a hissy fit. And he’ll have “proof” that the Gov’t or Obama or whatever is trying to persecute Christians.

  • http://twitter.com/TheTaoofStevie Stevie P

    Wouldn’t knowingly drafting and passing a bill that will be
    defeated in Federal Court simply based on past rulings, costing taxpayer
    dollars, be a type of fraud? Why aren’t these politicians prosecuted for misappropriations
    and at the very least fired?

    • http://twitter.com/SynergisticPen C S Stone

      because this is Indiana… where the constituency doesn’t fire anyone… unless they are physically caught with their hand in the cookie jar… and then only if they don’t beg loudly with tears in their eyes… after spending the day in church.

  • Rufus

    I’d be all in favour of returning to the Hellenic Physics model for chemistry, after all what’s with all of these elements making things complicated.
    Chemistry would be so much simpler if we just got rid of most of them, and kept the (biblically correct, I’m sure) Earth, Air, Fire and Water.

    [/sarcasm][/idiocy]

  • http://www.patheos.com/community/exploringourmatrix/ James F. McGrath

    There’s a petition voicing opposition to the bill. I’d be grateful if you’d sign it, and spread the word. Thanks!

    http://www.change.org/petitions/say-no-to-indiana-senate-bill-0089

    • http://twitter.com/Shannon10Marie Shannon

      Signed and shared!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_ORRVVC5R2QWLTXEM6SX5L6BORE Jay Arrrr

    Well, Mitch Daniels was wondering what to do with all those millions he “found”… The bill for Kitzmiller v. Dover is at 3 million and still climbing.
    What a backwater, This bill, “Right to Work”, the lard’s prayer bill, the national anthem bill, and the anti-topless bar bill… Some of those new businesses “RtW” is supposed to attract must be all the fundy ministries now located in Colorado Springs…

  • Alexis

    If such an idiotic bill would pass, I would like to see a courageous text book publisher give them the resources to teach creationism properly: as a sociological scam designed to force religion into public school classrooms in violation of the U. S. Constitution, and without a shred of scientific evidence or support.  For that matter, I would like to see all text book publishers agree that this is the only way to teach creationism.

  • Anonymous

    Shannon,

    I love that you brought up both other things that contradict science (such as Astrology), and the other creation myths/stories. (But our version is true!)

    It would be highly controversial to have a Holocaust Denier (even if they had a history degree) come teach what they believed. It doesn’t mean that we need to “teach the controversy” in most cases. Sometimes ideas are just backwards.

  • Stovall

    I live on the edge of downtown, and work a block away from the statehouse, yet it boggles my mind that this ancient sort of legislation is being brought up. Please don’t let it reflect on your overall impression of Indiana residents. There’s a larger group of free-thinkers here than there appears to be from the outside looking in.

    I have no problem with Religion. My wife and kids believe in God and we seem to get along just fine. Why can’t our local government have that same kind of respect for its citizens.

    The Senators you want to get the attention of (via Twitter) @Sen_Schneider & @Jim_Banks. They’re two of the guiltiest parties for pushing Religious policies through our statehouse the past two years (last year: anti-Gay marriage Constitutional amendment and Planned Parenthood funding). I’m quite sure they’ve blocked me by now, so my @’s to them are fairly useless, not matter how much I try.

    • Aleforge

      My Wife is looking at Indiana to pursue her phd and we are a house full of Athiests. Some of these articles against the state have made us question if its worth diving into. However it seems it would be wise to step aboard where its most needed and help strengthen the freethinking community. Its disgusting that in 2012 these types of proposals are being put forth.

  • Tweaver

    Uranus is the roman version the original greek god is ouranos doesn’t really matter though. This bill is just going to be a waste  of time and money

  • T-Rex

    Thank IBM! My family was relocated out of Indiana when I was 11 years old. Best thing that ever happened to me was to get out of that place. Indiana is the belly button of the Bible belt where Kentucky and Tennessee are the buckle. Naivety and superstiion run rampant through this part of the country. Too bad there’s no swamp land or bridges in that area that need sellin’.

  • cipher

    Other people’s creation myths are so much cooler than ours. I’m beginning to think we Jews had no imagination.

    Anyway, having said that –

    Staver said he believed any school district that started teaching creationism would face lawsuits they would likely lose.

    “All that the citizens of Indiana are going to get from this bill are wasted legal efforts, lawyer fees and penalties,” Staver said.

    I know I’ll get slammed, but as I haven’t said it here in a while – this is yet more evidence for my argument that we desperately need mandatory intelligence testing as a prerequisite for voting.

    • http://www.facebook.com/lacey.h.stinson Lacey Stinson

      Or intelligence testing as a prerequisite to all candidacies, but that’s probably a violation of the right to privacy.

      It also wouldn’t tell us who has their shit together, or who has the most reasonable methods for approaching problems. Tests would need to be complete assessments of each person’s complete range of abilities, which is not what IQ tests measure.

      It would be misleading to put too much weight on IQ tests. They’re not the same as DNA tests where we know what we’re looking for. We don’t know what we’re looking for in IQ tests. The common assumption that higher numbers are necessarily better is far too simplistic. Yet, I would have to wonder about someone who couldn’t pull off more than 100; in the least case, they would be unstudied if not uninformed. Both qualities would be useful, but neither is necessarily evidence of innately good problem solving methods overall, which may be the more telling feature of a candidate.

      Presently, we look for bugs in the ointment and vote for the candidate with fewest revealed bugs. Presently, a candidate’s failures are considered bugs when they should be seen as motivating factors. Was the candidate motivated by the failure or not? Is the candidate capable of admitting he was, or is wrong? Why is the public not able to see this as a strength when it is an absolutely necessary personal trait within science?

      One word: science.

      • cipher

        I didn’t say IQ. We need to develop a new protocol. We also need to test for developmental level and the ability to apprehend consensual reality.

    • http://www.facebook.com/lacey.h.stinson Lacey Stinson

      Or intelligence testing as a prerequisite to all candidacies, but that’s probably a violation of the right to privacy.

      It also wouldn’t tell us who has their shit together, or who has the most reasonable methods for approaching problems. Tests would need to be complete assessments of each person’s complete range of abilities, which is not what IQ tests measure.

      It would be misleading to put too much weight on IQ tests. They’re not the same as DNA tests where we know what we’re looking for. We don’t know what we’re looking for in IQ tests. The common assumption that higher numbers are necessarily better is far too simplistic. Yet, I would have to wonder about someone who couldn’t pull off more than 100; in the least case, they would be unstudied if not uninformed. Both qualities would be useful, but neither is necessarily evidence of innately good problem solving methods overall, which may be the more telling feature of a candidate.

      Presently, we look for bugs in the ointment and vote for the candidate with fewest revealed bugs. Presently, a candidate’s failures are considered bugs when they should be seen as motivating factors. Was the candidate motivated by the failure or not? Is the candidate capable of admitting he was, or is wrong? Why is the public not able to see this as a strength when it is an absolutely necessary personal trait within science?

      One word: science.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_RPPWVLMFKJ7QCHLEVQAR5GSL5M momma J

      cipher, that would be unconstitutional seeing how a certain sub-culture of the population would no longer be represented. I would like to think that we are past those days, but maybe we aren’t :/

      Interesting though how most atheists cry that teaching creationism would be unconstitutional and you are wishing for something that is actually unconstitutional to happen. Hmm…..

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_RPPWVLMFKJ7QCHLEVQAR5GSL5M momma J

    As a science teacher and a Christian and will take a weird stance on this one. I agree that the creation story is not science and to teach it as such not accurate at all to science or to the creation story. 

    But I also believe that there are a lot of events that are not explained by science. I’ve studied the big bang and nowhere in it discredits the creation story. At some point in time some particulate matter  came into existence before the big bang event took place had. I’ve yet to see, hear or read anyone that knew where matter got it’s origins. 

    To me that leaves open the possibility of there still being a creator. If God existed, then why couldn’t he perform the big bang and still have us explain it through the study of science. 

    To me, science is a tool or a mechanism that is used to describe the natural world. Some people do science and some people study science. For those who do science, I’m pretty sure that the big bang cannot be tested, verified, and put through the rigors of the scientific method as she suggests is a pre-requisite for something to be taught as science. If I’m wrong on this then someone please design and perform an experiment that tests and verifies that the Big Bang did in fact occur. If you cam do this then you can take the rest of the semester off and I’ll give you an “A”. Same problem with the evolution. How can this be tested? Instead of testing it, the people who study science (sometimes the same people who do science) create a model that tries to explain the process and how/why it happened that way. There were no eye witness accounts to speak of as either the documentation does not really exist (evolution) or there was no one around to witness it (the big band). As humans though, we are extremely curious and want to find out answers. Again, we can make observations now and try to work backwards and try to create models, but unless we or someone was there to witness it we can’t submit it to the battery of tests that the author seems to think the big bang theory has been subject to. 

    Look at the atomic model. It’s gone through several major changes over the past 120 years has it not? So our modeling and assumptions may be correct but they may not be. Hopefully time will tell.

    On to my next point: Being a believer in God. With that door left open of not being able to explain a) where matter originated from and b) how life started or where it come from, (aliens vessels or what not) I believe that opens the possibility of a God existing. It’s no weirder than anyone else’s explanations that I’ve read (parallel universes, etc.) so why not? It makes sense that matter came from some where and it could be that the models are off a touch here or there or someone jumped the gun or even *gasp* some scientist made up his data to gain recognition in the field. It also fits the gap of other remarkable events taking place that have no explanation as well. A blind person regaining their sight after a prayer for example (which I’ve seen!). 

    Some of these things MIGHT be proved through science someday……or maybe they won’t be. 
    I don’t know. I do know that if the window is left open for a possibility of a God to exit then I think I’m going to sit up and take notice because it might be important if the creator of the universe existed. If science somehow proves these things, fine. Until then I’m going to live my life like a God exists. I do NOT degrade or think of anyone differently because they do not agree. Again, they are approaching things through a very naturalist point of view. When we start asking the questions about the big band and the origin of life I believe there is room for a supernatural explanation of the event. THIS is what the first 2 chapter of  the Bible are. 

    What happens is too many Bible believers get insulted as someone has told them that only one can exist and to talk in favor of one is to attack the other. Not many people get past this unfortunately. 

    Again, I think the two questions that humans have 1) Where did the original mass of matter come from? and 2) Where did the origin of life come from? are two wonderful questions that I wish theists and theists could discuss more freely without each other attacking the other, taking their proverbial ball and stomping home back to their community who believes with everything they say. 

    Thoughts?

    • http://www.patheos.com/community/exploringourmatrix/ James F. McGrath

      Let me first express amusement at the typo, which left you saying that a window is left open for God to exit! :-)

      But on your main point, there will always be room for belief in God, as even the existence of laws of physics that spontaneously generate universes leaves us with the question, “But why should that be?” And of course, if one posits a God simply existing, that is no less mysterious.

      I think that ultimately the big disagreements both among and between religious believers and atheists are what to do when our explanations run out, and what sort of language to use to explore the mysteries of existence.

      But some try to insist that human knowledge of the natural world has not progressed, and do so on (admittedly dubious) religious grounds. It is the attempt to oppose genuine progress in our understanding that is a cause against which educated religious and non-religious people ought to be able to unite.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_RPPWVLMFKJ7QCHLEVQAR5GSL5M momma J

        James, over the years I’ve kind of become infamously known for typos. Darn it there are always several and now that I re-read I find several. It’s bees a looooooong week. 

        I so agree with what you are saying. I think people on both sides are guilty of getting upset when they are told that their view is wrong. I know I can get frustrated when told I am wrong on something when I sincerely believe that I am right. The truth is, a must humbly accept that the world is vastly more complicated that I perceive it to be. Even when I think it has an easy solution, it turns out that it does not. 

        I work with a gentleman who has his doctorate’s in physics and tries to challenge me that I am wrong on everything from what makes a proton to how to tie my shoes it would seem. He even seems to think he knows the big bang, and then I ask for him to prove it. Or to point me to the proof. He doesn’t like that. And I simply say to myself (well there ya go!). He’s an extremely smart man, but also can’t relate to high schoolers and so it turns out he’s not that good of a teacher. A great scientist or natural philosopher, but I have a feeling people will forever remain a mystery to him. We are pretty much polar opposites to each other but I digress.

        I 100% agree that attempting to oppose progress in understanding topics is not helpful. I love what Tyche said. We can’t really tell 4 year olds why the sky is blue until they are mature enough to handle it, but don’t shy away from it either. On the other hand, she seems to eluding that religion is ONLY a place holder that people use on children and once they are mature we are to move onto science and never look back. 

        The problem is, science hits roadblocks and can’t explain, the inexplainable. Then what? Does science still hold the answer and society just hasn’t progressed enough to figure it out yet? Maybe. But the 2 questions I’m posing have been around for a long time. Science and math have been around for a long time. Just b/c previous societies didn’t have the study of nano-science or didn’t have cable t.v. does not discredit their intelligence does it? Yet there has been room for God since who knows when. It’s amazing how all of a sudden the natural philosophers all of a sudden are supposed to have figured it all out and are 100% sure there is no God. 

        If they have it all figured out, then show me a test with predictable, reproducible results that prove their view beyond a reason of doubt! I appreciate where they are coming from for the most part. NO ONE should be blindly told to believe anything. I there is far too many people who are doing a lot of damage by saying that creationism is science blah blah blah. But, that does not justify someone telling me I’m dumb, ignorant or backwoods because I can’t explain our origins or miracles without a divine or supernatural intervention. If I am ignorant for coming to this conclusion, then please someone show me the evidence that is against it. There is actually quite a bit of evidence that supports several of the events that the Bible points towards both geologically and historically speaking. The Bible is an interesting read as it does not explain how a lot of events that take place happened (science) but answers most of the time “who?” or “why?”

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_RPPWVLMFKJ7QCHLEVQAR5GSL5M momma J

        James, over the years I’ve kind of become infamously known for typos. Darn it there are always several and now that I re-read I find several. It’s bees a looooooong week. 

        I so agree with what you are saying. I think people on both sides are guilty of getting upset when they are told that their view is wrong. I know I can get frustrated when told I am wrong on something when I sincerely believe that I am right. The truth is, a must humbly accept that the world is vastly more complicated that I perceive it to be. Even when I think it has an easy solution, it turns out that it does not. 

        I work with a gentleman who has his doctorate’s in physics and tries to challenge me that I am wrong on everything from what makes a proton to how to tie my shoes it would seem. He even seems to think he knows the big bang, and then I ask for him to prove it. Or to point me to the proof. He doesn’t like that. And I simply say to myself (well there ya go!). He’s an extremely smart man, but also can’t relate to high schoolers and so it turns out he’s not that good of a teacher. A great scientist or natural philosopher, but I have a feeling people will forever remain a mystery to him. We are pretty much polar opposites to each other but I digress.

        I 100% agree that attempting to oppose progress in understanding topics is not helpful. I love what Tyche said. We can’t really tell 4 year olds why the sky is blue until they are mature enough to handle it, but don’t shy away from it either. On the other hand, she seems to eluding that religion is ONLY a place holder that people use on children and once they are mature we are to move onto science and never look back. 

        The problem is, science hits roadblocks and can’t explain, the inexplainable. Then what? Does science still hold the answer and society just hasn’t progressed enough to figure it out yet? Maybe. But the 2 questions I’m posing have been around for a long time. Science and math have been around for a long time. Just b/c previous societies didn’t have the study of nano-science or didn’t have cable t.v. does not discredit their intelligence does it? Yet there has been room for God since who knows when. It’s amazing how all of a sudden the natural philosophers all of a sudden are supposed to have figured it all out and are 100% sure there is no God. 

        If they have it all figured out, then show me a test with predictable, reproducible results that prove their view beyond a reason of doubt! I appreciate where they are coming from for the most part. NO ONE should be blindly told to believe anything. I there is far too many people who are doing a lot of damage by saying that creationism is science blah blah blah. But, that does not justify someone telling me I’m dumb, ignorant or backwoods because I can’t explain our origins or miracles without a divine or supernatural intervention. If I am ignorant for coming to this conclusion, then please someone show me the evidence that is against it. There is actually quite a bit of evidence that supports several of the events that the Bible points towards both geologically and historically speaking. The Bible is an interesting read as it does not explain how a lot of events that take place happened (science) but answers most of the time “who?” or “why?”

    • kenneth

      Check out a book called “A Universe from Nothing: Why there is something rather than nothing.” by Lawrence Krauss. My thing is biology and a big of chemistry, so I’m not a heavy hitting physicist by any means, but I heard an interview with this guy a week or two ago. Brilliant and interesting stuff. He (and many physicists), lay out the case that the spontaneous creation of matter is a fundamental property of space. There’s an underlying instability to “nothing” that favors the birth of matter and even universes. “Space” itself is not empty, but a roiling chaotic and dynamic mess of particles which pop into and out of existence all the time. 

      Does that prove that a god can’t exist? No, and that’s not science’s goal or purview. But a lot of very smart people with very powerful theoretical and experimental tools are concluding that at every scale of creation we’re able to grasp, it is not necessary for some outside force to have intervened by supernatural intervention to make it happen.  As to the origin of life, I’m quite comfortable in stating that no outside hand was needed. Life is a property of the right conditions for it. Chemistry provides all of the necessary mechanisms for self-organization of reproducible molecules and systems, even if we have not teased out the exact complete sequence of events in biogenesis. 

      None of this in my mind rules out the possibility of supreme beings or intelligences, but it strongly suggests that if they exist, they do so at a scale and depth beyond what we usually attribute to them. 

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_RPPWVLMFKJ7QCHLEVQAR5GSL5M momma J

        I’ll have to check out the book sometime. I’ve got a long list to read. Maybe I’ll catch it and read it before my first kiddo is born this summer!

    • cipher

      How can this be tested? Instead of testing it, the people who study
      science (sometimes the same people who do science) create a model that tries to explain the process and how/why it happened that way.

      It has been tested. Accurate predictions have been made. Speciation has been observed. Fossils appear in the record where we expect to find them. The only way in which one can dismiss these results is to invoke the “macro vs. micro” evolution nonsense, as another commenter does below.

    • cipher

      How can this be tested? Instead of testing it, the people who study
      science (sometimes the same people who do science) create a model that tries to explain the process and how/why it happened that way.

      It has been tested. Accurate predictions have been made. Speciation has been observed. Fossils appear in the record where we expect to find them. The only way in which one can dismiss these results is to invoke the “macro vs. micro” evolution nonsense, as another commenter does below.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_RPPWVLMFKJ7QCHLEVQAR5GSL5M momma J

        A prediction is not a test. Some crazies are predicting the end of the world is 2012 based off some whacky information that the Mayan calendar stopped. Maybe, just maybe they just got tired of writing down years on a calendar that none of them would live to see. Or they got distracted by war. They were a very waring people those ornery Mayans. Or maybe they actually did have information. But prior to the end of 2012 we cannot test it can we? The only test is to wait and see. A model is a prediction. Sometimes it can be tested or proved either correct or incorrect such as the atomic model. I don’t know how anyone can prove origin of life or Big Bang theories. 

        IMO, to prove evolution, one would have to set up mini-universes and have the universe undergo the exact same circumstances and see if life would begin. If one could do that then WOW! That’s awesome!  

        The issue I have with evolution is that if organism “A” must have a certain process in place in order to exist, then how could the organism have survived as it would take several generations for that change to occur. 
          
           e.g. A venus fly trap. It eats flies because it cannot get the nutrients that it needs from the ground due to some odd pH levels and other problems. If the plant can’t get nutrients it dies. It doesn’t reproduce more generations of similar looking objects that are slowly undergoing changes so that 300 years from now it can survive. 

        Drop a naked human into the Arctic completely isolated. Sure if you were to survive I suppose later generations from now your ancestors could be fatter and hairier, but there won’t be any future generations of your kind because you are naked and in the arctic and alone. 

        I know, I can already hear the argument “But those changes in pH occurred slowly over millions of years.” And you know that how? You can predict that sure. I can predict that I am so incredible busy that my body is going to undergo mitosis too so then there will be two of me and therefore survive my schedule, but a prediction is not a test. 

        • cipher

          Wow.

          Perhaps someone with greater patience will be kind enough to explain it to you. I’m afraid it will not be me.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_RPPWVLMFKJ7QCHLEVQAR5GSL5M momma J

            Uhm…thanks I guess?

        • http://www.patheos.com/community/exploringourmatrix/ James F. McGrath

          First, might I encourage you to read something by a professional biologist who also happens to be a Christian, such as Finding Darwin’s God by Kenneth Miller?

          Second, predictions being confirmed does indeed support a case, much as predicting that if a scenario in reconstructing a crime is correct, then we ought to find the murder weapon hidden in location X, and then going and actually finding it. It is not “proof” in a mathematical sense, but it is indeed support. And the discovery of humans having one less chromosome than their closest primate relatives on an evolutionary scenario, and having one larger chromosome which not only matches the sequences of two chromosomes other primates have but also having telomeres in the center indicating chromosomal fusion, is as close to “proof” as one could hope for in deductive research about life in the past. So too the discovery of Tiktaalik, not only because it is a transitional form, but because it was found by searching in rocks of a certain age based on when evolutionary theory predicted that such an organism ought to be found.

          • Anonymous

            Having predictive qualities is also a requisite of a scientific theory

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_RPPWVLMFKJ7QCHLEVQAR5GSL5M momma J

      Fun fact of the day:  This John Staver character that is mentioned was my college advisor during my undergrad years! That’s kind of fun :)

    • https://www.facebook.com/GentleGiantDK GentleGiant

      Thoughts?

      Yes, it would appear that either you’re not a science teacher or you’re a very, very bad one (or just a teacher at a Christian school). It is obvious you don’t know much about science when you don’t even know the difference between evolution and abiogenesis.
      Evolution doesn’t speak to the origin of life.
      Your post here and others in this thread (i.e. the threat of replies to your first post here) are so full of typical creationist speak that it’s a wonder you can call yourself a science teacher with a straight face.
      There are mountains of evidence proving evolution.
      There are no “miracles” – just because YOU don’t know how something happened, doesn’t mean that some supernatural entity caused it.
      Where’s YOUR proof that your blind friend started seeing again because of praying and not something else (if it’s not just one of those, well, I know a guy, who heard about a guy etc. stories)? 
      What is this evidence you talk about, historically and geologically, that supposedly proves the bible true?

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1639901524 Adrienne Kilzer

    After they “teach the controversy” about creationism vs. evolution, will they teach the controversy over the Stork Theory vs. the Cabbage Patch Theory of human reproduction?

  • Timjeffr

    First I think it is necessary to realize that there is
    Macro-evolution and Micro-evolution. Micro refers to variations within a kind
    and the results of natural selection. Macro on the other hand refers to one
    animal evolving into another kind of animal, an alligator becoming a bird for
    example. Creation Science, which follows the same laws of nature as
    Evolutionists, holds that Macro-evolution is not possible but that
    Micro-evolution is completely normal.

    The idea that life evolves on a macro scale doesn’t seem to
    hold up when looked at on a shorter timeline. For example, think about a
    giraffe. Its heart must be strong enough to pump blood all the way up to its
    brain. This is great until it bends over to drink water and the blood is no
    longer being pumped against the force of gravity. The force would be great
    enough that the giraffe would die. The giraffe lives through this because there
    is a sponge that expands behind its brain absorbing the blood. My point here is
    that the animal is irreducibly complex. That is, without all features fully
    formed and properly functioning, it could not survive. The Bible teaches that
    God created this animal as a complete entity, fully formed and functional.

    It seems to me that the evolutionary worldview cannot
    account for laws of logic, uniformity of nature, or morality. Evolution is
    based on chance, but if it is chance that has dictated our outcome, why are we
    all subject to the same natural laws?

     

    • http://www.patheos.com/community/exploringourmatrix/ James F. McGrath

      I think it is even more important to realize that the distinction between microevolution and macroevolution, and the claim that evolution is “based on chance” rather than working through an interplay of law and randomness, are both deceptive creationist ploys that misrepresent what mainstream biologists conclude about these subjects.

      • Timjeffr

        Not to be rude, but you haven’t given any logical reasoning for why my post was wrong. What you say is ‘random’, I said was chance. For the sake of the debate I’m fine with titling it the same as you, but this doesn’t change the fact that you didn’t explain how the laws that you say are necessary for evolution are logical in an evolutionary worldview.

        • http://www.patheos.com/community/exploringourmatrix/ James F. McGrath

          Not to be rude, but you are looking for an account of all the relevant evidence for a major scientific field in a blog comment, whereas a book is a more appropriate place to start. I would recommend reading Ken Miller’s Finding Darwin’s God and/or the recent book by Francis Collins and Karl Giberson, giving the perspectives of biologists who are also Christians not only as to why the evidence for evolution is overwhelming and persuasive, but also how young-earth creationists promulgate falsehoods.

          If having informed yourself from actual biologists about the relevant evidence and arguments you wish to discuss specific details, I would be more than happy to. But asking for something detailed and substantial to be summed up in a short space that will inevitably seem less persuasive is a ploy that no person who understands mainstream science should fall for.

          • Timjeffr

            I have studied the topic a fair amount, which is why I thought it necessary to post. In my first post I gave the example of the giraffe being a creature that evolution cannot explain, but in all your responses you’ve just accused me of using ‘ploys’ and have not refuted anything. So far your responses have just said that ‘main-stream’ scientists and ‘actual’ biologists would disagree with me. I agree there is disagreement, I’d like to move past that. If you are willing to move past that then potentially you could start defending your position with logical reasoning.

            • http://www.patheos.com/community/exploringourmatrix/ James F. McGrath

              If you have in mind the giraffe’s laryngeal nerve, I think you must have misunderstood. It is strong evidence for evolution. http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xdm5he_richard-dawkins-demonstrates-laryng_tech

              I would be interested in your explanation of why moles were directly created with useless skin-covered eyes rather than without eyes, from your young-earth creationist perspective.

              As a Christian, I do wish you would stop making my faith look ridiculous by associating it with the pseudoscientific nonsense you promote.

        • Anonymous

          Natural selection per definition isn’t random and it isn’t chance. Mutations are random, but their usefulness is governed by outside forces. Thus organisms are shaped by their environment, which is deterministic.

          And that’s what the whole thing is really called: “evolution by natural selection”

        • Anonymous

          Natural selection per definition isn’t random and it isn’t chance. Mutations are random, but their usefulness is governed by outside forces. Thus organisms are shaped by their environment, which is deterministic.

          And that’s what the whole thing is really called: “evolution by natural selection”

      • Timjeffr

        Not to be rude, but you haven’t given any logical reasoning for why my post was wrong. What you say is ‘random’, I said was chance. For the sake of the debate I’m fine with titling it the same as you, but this doesn’t change the fact that you didn’t explain how the laws that you say are necessary for evolution are logical in an evolutionary worldview.

      • Timjeffr

        Not to be rude, but you haven’t given any logical reasoning for why my post was wrong. What you say is ‘random’, I said was chance. For the sake of the debate I’m fine with titling it the same as you, but this doesn’t change the fact that you didn’t explain how the laws that you say are necessary for evolution are logical in an evolutionary worldview.

      • Timjeffr

        Not to be rude, but you haven’t given any logical reasoning for why my post was wrong. What you say is ‘random’, I said was chance. For the sake of the debate I’m fine with titling it the same as you, but this doesn’t change the fact that you didn’t explain how the laws that you say are necessary for evolution are logical in an evolutionary worldview.

    • Anonymous

      The giraffe is an awesome example of “Stupid Design”. Look up the recurrent laryngeal nerve. That’s a nerve that goes from the brain, down into the thorax, around the heart and up to the larynx again. Even in humans that’s a silly detour, but it’s also present in giraffes, making the nerve up to 15 feet long.

      Humans have tons of similar flaws that no sane person would ever have engineered

    • http://www.facebook.com/lacey.h.stinson Lacey Stinson

      The example you gave about the giraffe does not represent “irreducible complexity.” Evolutionary science describes the giraffe as having evolved from shorter necked animals. As a short-necked animal, the sponge you describe would not need to be large. As the neck grew longer, the sponge grew larger. There is no mystery here.

      This is exactly why the recurrent laryngeal nerve makes its bizarre round trip around the aorta. As the neck grew longer, the nerve grew longer. If you go all the way back to fish, the nerve makes a straight shot from source to target. It’s not a mystery how this nerve became so warped in the light of evolution. It is only a mystery as to why a hypothetical god would create such a messed up system. Evolution is the better explanation because it is the only explanation that makes sense.

    • http://www.facebook.com/lacey.h.stinson Lacey Stinson

      The example you gave about the giraffe does not represent “irreducible complexity.” Evolutionary science describes the giraffe as having evolved from shorter necked animals. As a short-necked animal, the sponge you describe would not need to be large. As the neck grew longer, the sponge grew larger. There is no mystery here.

      This is exactly why the recurrent laryngeal nerve makes its bizarre round trip around the aorta. As the neck grew longer, the nerve grew longer. If you go all the way back to fish, the nerve makes a straight shot from source to target. It’s not a mystery how this nerve became so warped in the light of evolution. It is only a mystery as to why a hypothetical god would create such a messed up system. Evolution is the better explanation because it is the only explanation that makes sense.

    • https://www.facebook.com/GentleGiantDK GentleGiant

      Irreducible complexity… really? You’re going to go with that “argument?”
      *facepalm*

  • Djeffr11

    Shannon, you mentioned that “Creation Science is NOT a
    science.”  I am assuming that you are
    qualifying “science” by something that can be observed, tested, and repeated.  May I remind you that evolution has never
    been observed, tested, or repeated (I am referring to macro-evolution, not
    micro-evolution.)

    If you are going to treat Creation Science as “breaking
    science,” then please admit that your own views do the same. 

    Evolutionists and Creationists observe the same evidence,
    study the same data, and have the same facts. The difference is interpretation.  Both scientists are interpreting the
    facts in light of their own worldview.  

    • http://www.patheos.com/community/exploringourmatrix/ James F. McGrath

      The claim to consider the same evidence and merely draw different conclusions is a common ploy of creationists. But the truth is that the same genetic evidence used to demonstrate paternity also demonstrates using the same methods that all life on this planet is related. It is only by ignoring some evidence, or insisting that it does not indicate what it clearly does, that one can deny the findings of mainstream biology and geology in the way that young-earth creationists do.

      • Djeffr11

        Please do not confuse logic with ploys. Consider what you said about genetic evidence. I do not ignore this evidence. But it doesn’t prove evolution from molecules to man. One would expect to find a similar ‘theme’ throughout a Creation designed by a common Creator.

        • http://www.patheos.com/community/exploringourmatrix/ James F. McGrath

          You would not expect things to look cobbled together from what is already there if directly created by a powerful and wise Creator. And since you use the phrase “molecules to man” I strongly suspect that you are confusing evolution either with abiogenesis or embryology. And since the latter involves molecules becoming men and women, can I assume you reject that as well? Or did you just not fully think through the implications of your caricature?

    • kenneth

      Creation “scientists” are not scientists in any sense of the word. They do not accept the most basic precepts of science, its methods or its rules of evidence. They start with the idea that the universe is irreducible complex and unknowable by observation and evidence, and then resort, sooner or later to supernatural explanation. That is not science and never will be, no matter how much they try to dress it up in the trappings of science.

    • kenneth

      Creation “scientists” are not scientists in any sense of the word. They do not accept the most basic precepts of science, its methods or its rules of evidence. They start with the idea that the universe is irreducible complex and unknowable by observation and evidence, and then resort, sooner or later to supernatural explanation. That is not science and never will be, no matter how much they try to dress it up in the trappings of science.

  • Terry Richardson

    Good we have a governor who denies climate change and a legislature that denies evolution. I’ll tell you what Indiana. You pass this measure and my wife and I will find another place to raise our kids. How’s that?

  • Terry Richardson

    Good we have a governor who denies climate change and a legislature that denies evolution. I’ll tell you what Indiana. You pass this measure and my wife and I will find another place to raise our kids. How’s that?

  • Anonymous

    For those Hoosiers still following this post, SB0089 goes to second reading in the senate tomorrow (1/30) afternoon.  Go to http://www.in.gov to find your senator’s contact info and call his/her office and voice your concern!  You can go to CFI-Indiana’s Facebook page to keep updated about this bill and others of concern to separation of church and state issues.


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X