The Orleans Parish School Board in Louisiana Just Voted to Ban Creationism from Their Schools

Louisiana has a lot of problems when it comes to education. Governor Bobby Jindal, for example, passed a voucher plan over the summer that would give more than $11,000,000 of taxpayer money to private schools that teach Creationism, despite the fact that their curriculums wouldn’t meet the state’s science standards.

But one school district has taken a big step toward making science education better for students.

Earlier tonight, the Orleans Parish School Board voted to amend the way they select their textbooks in the district. Previously, the Superintendent had the final say in “all textbooks and supplementary instructional” that would be used, with optional input from teachers and administrators.

Tonight, the board decided to add a new caveat to that policy (PDF):

No history textbook shall be approved which has been adjusted in accordance with the State of Texas revisionist guidelines nor shall any science textbook be approved which presents creationism or intelligent design as science or scientific theories

Wow.

They just forbade the adoption of any textbook that promotes Christian nonsense under the guise of science or history. That’s *huge*.

In addition, the board adopted a policy that would change the way curriculums are set in the district:

No teacher of any discipline of science shall teach any aspect of religious faith as science or in a science class. No teacher of any discipline of science shall teach creationism or intelligent design in classes designated as science classes.

Thomas Robichaux, the President of the school board, is one of the good guys. He tweeted this earlier tonight:


Considering that the New Orleans City Council unanimously struck down the Louisiana Science Education Act (that allowed Creationism to sneak into the classroom) back in May, the way the city is handling science education should serve as a model for other progressive districts in the state.

If only Governor Jindal cared about proper science education as much as this school board did.

***Update***: After the American Humanist Association urged its members to contact Thomas Robichaux and thank him, Robichaux responded with this message:

To all of the members of the American Humanist Association: Thank you so very much for all of the notes of support and and thanks regarding the Orleans Parish School Board passing our policies banning religion in science classes. The response to this has been overwhelming! As school board members, our jobs are usually thankless. Once again I thank you for showing your support and appreciation. These policies have been long overdue, and I am very proud to have gotten them passed before my term of office ends.

(via Zack Kopplin)

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • MoriyaMug

    Awesome. Stunning, but awesome. Best news of the day.

    Also, past tense of “forbid” is “forbade.” :)

    • http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/ Hemant Mehta

      Fixed!

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

    No teacher of any discipline of science shall teach any aspect of religious faith as science or in a science class. No teacher of any discipline of science shall teach creationism or intelligent design in classes designated as science classes.

    A few years ago there was an English teacher who was trying to sneak creationism into an English lesson, suggesting that it was science.  This should really read like this…

    No teacher of any discipline shall teach any aspect of religious faith, including creationism or intelligent design, as science.

    • Terminaljive

      It should, but for someplace south of the Mason-Dixon Line, this is a great start!

    • Mooseman

      What about a history class?  I feel like people should know what creationism claims as well as knowing it’s not a science

      • Xenocyde

        Why in school?  They are taught facts and real history in school.  If parents want their children’s heads filled with creationism, take them to a church where it belongs.

        • Birdie1986

          Creationism as an idea that was widely accepted is real history.  Do you want to hide it from kids?  I’d rather my kids learned that some people actually believed that crap, but that science shows that it is wrong, and many people changed their views.  That’s the history aspect of it.

          • ReadsInTrees

            Agreed. Social studies classes should cover world religions with some general idea of what each religion believes.

          • amycas

             In almost every geology class I had (except oceanography) we learned about James Ussher and the history of how people tried to figure out the age of the earth.

          • TonyWilliams

             We could always just introduce classes like “Greek Mythology” that teach “Creationist Mythology”. The only caveat being that we don’t teach it as truth, just teach it as what it is; a structure of beliefs based on faith – not fact.

        • Artor

          I want my kid to know about creationism as a history & social studies topic, with the understanding that it’s false, but is something that alot of people believe. It serves as a tribal marker for many, and as a symptom of ignorance for most.

      • Ibis3

         Teaching *about* alchemy isn’t the same as teaching alchemy.

        • redscream5

          Hehe that was clever.

    • Reginald Selkirk

       Speaking of English, there’s a great article in the Jan/Feb 2013 issue of Skeptical Inquirer on Creationist interpretations of Beowulf. Did you know that Grendel was a dinosaur?

      • Artor

        Link, please?

      • http://religiouscomics.net/ Jeff P

        I
        thought Grendel was suppose to be part of a Neanderthal clan that hadn’t quite
        gone extinct yet.  I can see that
        creationists would find the idea of Neanderthals quite troubling.

  • nakedanthropologist

    This is great! Keep up the great work New Orleans!

  • viaten

    What about “abstinence only” sex education?  They should include fixing that too.

  • TheG

    I think it is really important that the “revisionist” Texas textbooks are banned.  This is also a big deal for atheism in that many of that state’s guidelines include removing historical atheists or those holding rationalist thought.  Louisiana will now be able to have textbooks that don’t whitewash the important church/state separatism of early America.

    • B_R_Deadite99

       It’s funny how the Far Right insists that atheists are just parasites of what Christianity has built here in the West, yet they still feel the need to downplay atheistic contributions in their “history books”. The same contributions that would not exist if the Far Right did have their heads stuck up their collective asses.

      • RobMcCune

        Not only that but they exclude the religious opposition to science and new ideas, all the while pretending religion created them.

  • Kat

    It’s almost enough to make one believe in miracles!

    • Godlesspanther

      You sexy thing. 

      • coyotenose

         *snarfs drink*

      • http://www.facebook.com/premiere.final Premiere Final

        Best. earworm. ever.

  • Aspieguy

    Obviously, many christians don’t realize that accepting your hypothesis as true and working backwards to prove it isn’t science. 

  • kenneth

    I knew there were some forward thinking (even just thinking) people in the Bible Belt. I just figured they always had to play defense down there. Nice to see them emerging as a potent force. 

  • http://openid.anonymity.com/rvnojc Mr Q

    Was that the average IQ in Louisiana I just heard rise by a dozen points?

    • Xenocyde

      Just New Orleans.  Lets wait and see if the rest of the state can catch up to the 21st century.

      • Butt-lord 420

        They have to make it to the 20th century first….baby steps y’know?

      • Tawilliams

         Let’s hope they catch up with the 20th century first!

      • C Peterson

        I hope this move represents a move into the 21st century, but accepting evolution really doesn’t prove that they’ve done more than enter the 19th century!

      • Jstorm9000

        I lived in New Orleans for almost two years. The city is almost as corrupt as the hometown of the author of this article. (That would be CHICAGO, in case you weren’t paying attention.) They are some of the most bigoted, arrogant, close-minded people I’ve ever met. The entire populace treats anyone who isn’t from New Orleans like they are mentally disabled because they “just don’t get it”. I regularly got comments like “Oh, you’re not from here, huh? Yeah, you wouldn’t understand.” Or “See you probably wouldn’t understand because you’re from NORTH Louisiana.” Or “It’s a New Orleans thing, you wouldn’t understand.”

        Now that I think about it, they have a lot in common with atheists. It’s no wonder so many of you are applauding their actions!!

        • danny king

          You sound bitter.  Could it have anything to do with your sky-fairie-fantasy being rejected because it promotes hatred of women, sexuality, free-speech, as well as ignorance and bigotry?

          • Jstorm9000

            Nope. It has everything to do with the fact that the city is corrupt and hateful towards outsiders.

            True Godliness promotes equality of the sexes, sexual freedom in the proper context, free speech, education, and I don’t even think you know the meaning of bigotry. I do. By textbook definition, no, I’m not a bigot. But you probably are and most people who have a humanistic mindset definitely are.

            big·ot
            /ˈbɪg ət/ Show Spelled [big-uh t] Show IPA
            noun a person who is utterly intolerant of any differing creed, belief, or opinion.You can believe whatever you want and I’m totally okay with that. My Bible says that you have every right to be wrong. 

            • Crysalim

               You’re so cute!  Every time I forget that willful ignorance still exists, one of you pops out of the woodwork.

              Thanks for reminding us why we have to pass these laws. :)

              • http://www.facebook.com/people/Hassan-Hamza/1313490761 Hassan Hamza

                 Crysalim, I think  what he just said was “You wouldn’t get it, it’s a christian thing.”

                • Jstorm9000

                  Right. What he said. ….as if.

                • ZeroKaiser

                  Brilliant comeback.

                • Austin

                  you are correct, I dont get that christians pray to a MASS MURDERER, as I recall the story of noah and the MASS MURDER of the planet

              • Jstorm9000

                Willful ignorance? Please tell me how I am willfully ignorant.

                • Austin

                  If you dont know why your ignorant, why is it my job to inform you, 

                • stringchopper

                  Maybe you can’t inform him, because you don’t have the brain-power? Just a guess :)

            • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=546098560 Cody Herrmann

              Sorry, when your position actually, you know, advances a scientific hypothesis into theory territory (bonus points in doing so without committing genocide), then we can sit down and begin to even possibly contemplate teaching your position in a science class room.

              Until then, your religion with be taught in Mythology or World Studies.

              It’s not that we’re intolerant of creationism, it’s that creationism isn’t a science. As such, doesn’t belong in a science classroom.

              • Jstorm9000

                So here’s an interesting question. Is there ever a way that you COULD prove creationism? What evidence would possibly prove it?

                • Porkbiscuit

                  God could like. Appear. And say “I told you guys not to make me come down here.”

                • Jstorm9000

                  You win! Ten Internets! This made my day!

                • Austin

                  yea or I will kill you all AGAIN

                • stringchopper

                  Or someday, I could be, like, walking down the street, and suddenly “nothing” could, like, become “something” and then, like, organize itself into something more complicated and surprise the hell out of me. Or, like, I might win the Powerball lottery every day for a thousand years.

                • CriticalThinking

                  You Could propose a scientific theory for creationism if archaeological records indicated that all the species of the world had appeared simultaneously, and as they appear today (or in the time of the bible’s being written at the least).

                  They don’t, however. There are Huge amounts of evidence in direct conflict with the ideology of creationism. It show species growing and evolving or dying off at different rates and at different times. 

                  But, by your line of thinking: You asked how it could be proven, believing the answer would be that there would be no way because you believe that a god could not be physically proven due to it’s very nature As a god- Not seen or heard or tangible to any physical sensation, but there- and while your god cannot be proven in that way, his Actions on this planet could be if they were there. If he really created all these animals within one day, it would be apparent in the fossil records but just to Opposite is true.

                  Apply the same question you just proposed to ancient Greek or Egyptian or Celtic myths.  You won’t be finding any hard evidence for Zeus or Sekhmet or Brighid’s existence  because of their very nature as gods- that is, as man-created ideas imagined as intangible to human senses so as to be unable to effectively prove or disprove.

                  Reiterated in another much cruder way:

                  Is there ever any way that you COULD prove that there’s a giant invisible spaghetti monster in the sky? What evidence could possibly prove it?

                • Jstorm9000

                  “You asked how it could be proven, believing the answer would be” stop right there, alright? You don’t know WHAT I believe, ok? Let’s just get that straight right off the top. I asked because I wanted to know. The first part of your comment is very useful. The rest you kinda started assuming you knew me and I don’t appreciate that. By your definition of creationism…I am not a creationist. Hmmm…that IS interesting. We’re arguing over different terms now. How funny. Thank you.

                • CriticalThinking

                  I apologize If I offended you then, but the definition I set up through my comment is the biblical form of creationism. The story of the bible illustrated that all fauna on earth was set up in two days (pardon my earlier error here it’s been a while since I read this), specifically, in the 5th and 6th day of his creation (it also illustrated flora being created before the sun and other stars, with flora on day 3 and stars on day 4). If you don’t believe that, then the creationism you believe is not the biblical type of creationism and I am curious to hear exactly what your take on it is.

                • stringchopper

                  So, you think all matter and space stretched from a tiny dot into infinity, yet time remained constant?

                • CriticalThinking

                  Who said I believed in the big bang theory? And why do you feel the need to make an assumption off of all of nothing towards the point you did draw? I only made clear that I do not believe creationism is a valid scientific assumption for the beginnings of the universe. I made no indications or allusions towards a belief in the big bang theory, though I do, in fact, find it a greatly more credible theory than your creationism. There are more theories available than just those two, and I don’t have to believe either or any of the rest. I can simply eliminate the options which make the absolute least amount of sense (creationism and other deity-driven theories which defy natural laws by the very way in which they are set up) and await soundly set science. Though it’s unlikely to emerge within my life, I take more comfort in accurately saying “I don’t know how”, than saying “I know how” without evidence. Even saying “I don’t know how” doesn’t prevent me from logically ruling out absurd options.

                  Additionally time is relative in regards to just about everything. Your feet age slower than your head does because it’s closer to the core of the earth. If you leave earth, days are only measured in 24 hour increments because that’s what you’ve always known a day to be based on the rotations of this particular planet around our sun. In space- blank space- there are no days & no nights, but we continue forward with thought and action. Records of time mean nothing in that place. Time is not “constant” as you would put it. In fact, even since the last large earthquake in japan, the rotation of the earth every day since was accelerated by 1.8 microseconds. Now while you may think this makes little difference, it still changes our (as humans living on earth) typical flow of time. These things and more show the absolute relativity of time, so how is it that you purpose to name it as constant?

                • stringchopper

                  Did I say you do or don’t believe in the Big Bang Myth?

                  I don’t understand your second sentence (I assume English is your second language?).

                  My point is not that the Big Bang didn’t happen. As a Christian, and as a person interested in science, I don’t believe that the Big Bang speaks one way or the other about intelligent design. My point is that the Big Bang wasn’t observed and hasn’t since been observed, and it is not repeatable – therefore it remains a theory / myth, and can only be accepted *by faith*. We may have “evidence” that points to its reality, but it can only be accepted as true, if one chooses to believe it on faith. We may even build models and test the models, but models are always inherently flawed. Again, the Big Bang says nothing about the question of whether there is a Creator or not – that question is one of philosophy, either naturalism or creationism / intelligent design.

                  You misunderstood my point about time remaining constant, but that was, perhaps, easy to do, because my statement was actually intended as a reply to another post – i.e., I put the reply in the wrong place. I was making the same (or similar) point that you just now made, in your latest reply. If space can stretch, why can’t time stretch as well?

                • CriticalThinking

                  “So, you think all matter and space stretched from a tiny dot into infinity, yet time remained constant?”
                  All matter stretching from a tiny dot is essentially what the big bang is generally condensed to. Since the reply Was to my comment (though you say now you did not intend such), I did believe that is what you had been inferencing.
                  English is not my second language. I’d ask you to read the sentence again if it was so troublesome, ordinarily, but since you chalked it up to a second language, I assume you’ve already attempted to make sense of it reading it 3 or 4 times (Not that I see the need for such; it makes perfect sense to me.) Instead I’ll reiterate what I asked for you in a less condensed manner: Why do you feel the need to make an assumption as to my belief in a thing, particularly, the big bang theory, off of a grand total of no evidence towards the point you did draw (that of my supposed belief in the big bang theory, which you alluded to by saying -”So, you think all matter and space stretched from a tiny dot into infinity, yet time remained constant?”).

                  A scientific theory is not accepted “on faith” but on a Great deal of tested facts and evidence surrounding a hypothesis; at the point that a hypothesis becomes a theory, it needs not evidence to be proven, but rather to be disproven, because of the amount of evidence already accumulated in support of the theory. While you may view the small error for margin as a way of discrediting the evidence, when an experiment is repeated numerous times in hundreds of ways in order to prove beyond Reasonable doubt that this is the most likely cause, then I am inclined to believe such proof. I would say too, that though the big bang theory does not Implicitly rule out creationism as the way that the expansion began, I do believe that by the bible’s accounts, the big bang does not sufficiently in any way match the description “given by god and transcribed by man.” Now while there Is a common belief among many more modern christians that many bible stories were meant more-so as god-given parables to teach than actual stories, what purpose would a god have in providing an incorrect, scientifically impossible description of how the earth began. Even if the big bang Were this deity’s intended way of beginning the universe, and were “too complicated” for the men of that time’s perception, why should the 7 day description have fallen in a way impossible to have occurred by all currently known science? Would the deity, in it’s omniscience, not have foreseen this and rather have delivered the parable in a way that would later at least hold a Minute amount of credibility by following the laws of nature in it’s set-up? (e.g. Stars *Before* life on the planet?) So I’m inclined to disagree that it’s a question of philosophy, unless your belief of intelligent design is intended with an independent god separate from that of the christian bible.

                  Wherever it was you intended to place your initial comment, I personally see no reason time would not be able to stretch as well. Gravity has an effect on time, as do a million other things, aside from it’s utter relativity in the very first place.

                • PB

                  I think its you who doesn’t know what you believe.

                • stringchopper

                  the simple cell.

                • llShadyGuyll

                  Anyone saying the cell is proof of creationism is less competent than a freshman or sophomore high school student. I’m willing to bet biology wasn’t your favorite subject, huh?

                • stringchopper

                  Argumentum ad hominem.
                  Am I suppose to recoil now? So go ahead… prove the cell arose naturally through mechanisms of evolution.

                • James Lewis

                  We both know that “proving” what happened billions of years ago is not possible, however if you’re asking for a plausible mechanism for the origin of cells, then I can do that. It’s been shown that Lipids can be produced by models of the pre-biotic environment… Lipids have a hydrophobic region and a hydrophilic region, and as a result they tend to clump together and form water filled spheres… the spheres have semi-permeable membranes and are aproximately 25nm across…. this can be observed.
                  Animal cells today are aproximately 25nm across, and are essentially a semi-permeable membrane containing biological machinary that has taken perhaps 4 billion years to evolve. Any self replicating molecule which occurred may have found itself inside a lipid membrane and would then have a much creater chance to replicate…. evolution occurs, QED. It’s not hard to see how this probably occurred.

                • stringchopper

                  No, I wasn’t asking for a naturalistic myth. I was asking for a fact. Can you reproduce a cell in a lab? Actually, if you reproduced it, that would tend to argue for Intelligent Design, so better yet, can this be observed anywhere, happing naturally?

                  Get the Myths out of science! All of them.

                  Lipids are molecules – not cells. And your euphemism “biological machinery” (of a cell) is quite a misnomer. The “simple” cell is a complex factory with way too many interdependent parts to be labeled as mere “biological machinery”. Whether one argues from Naturalism or Creationism, the simple cell is an absolute miracle. The simple cell is perhaps the most astonishing embarrassment to atheists.

                  But none of that matters. I’m only pointing out that Naturalist Philosophers who call themselves scientists are deluding themselves. They believe many things (on faith) that they can not show to be true.

                • James Lewis

                  What exactly are you arguing… Evolution occurs, this is a fact observed in so many demonstrable ways it’s not in any doubt.
                  Lipids are molecules (not alive), yes, that’s the point!
                  A simple cell is far from simple, yes – it’s taken billions of years to evolve and is exquisitely complex today… that says nothing about the first self replicating molecule, which was certainly not a cell, and no one has ever said that it would be…. the exploitation of lipids is an example of how a cell could have begun to evolve.
                  I can certainly show you how this happened, how long can you wait?… I imagine you would get bored after the first half billion years.
                  As for facts about how abiogenesis occurred, noone has claimed to have any facts about how it actually did occur, but we can learn plenty of facts about how chemistry could have allowed such a thing to occur…
                  I find it amusing for someone who promotes “magic” as a hypothesis to argue that scientific enquiry is “deluded”… that is the embarrassment here.

                • http://twitter.com/FelyxLeiter Felyx Leiter

                  That’s EXACTLY why it isn’t science.  There’s no evidence whatsoever to support it.  It isn’t testable, and “acts of God,” i.e. miracles, aren’t able to be reproduced.  It flat-out doesn’t fit the basic tenets of science.

                • stringchopper

                  The Big Bang Myth isn’t testable, the evolution of the simple cell isn’t testable, the branching of the genders isn’t testable…. plus a whole lot more of naturalistic *philosophy* isn’t testable – because it isn’t science.

                • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

                  You’re confusing reproducible with testable.  We can make predictions based on hypothesis, and we can test those predictions.

                  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_Bang#Observational_evidence

                  Trying to disprove things is science.

                • stringchopper

                  are you implying that the Big Bang Myth is one or the other, both or neither?

                • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

                  The Big Bang, like many of the things we know in science, is testable, not reproducible.

                • stringchopper

                  Do you really mean that? Or, do you mean we can test models?

                • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

                  Sure. Please excuse my haste induced mistakes. I’m pretty sure you’ve known exactly what I mean all along, which makes this all a waste of time.

                • stringchopper

                  I’m not trying to be pedantic – honestly. I also want to let you know that I’ve read a few of your other comments, and I appreciate your neutral / friendly tone. It’s rather refreshing.
                  I find that it’s important to speak plainly, especially to non-scientists (like school board members).

                  I have no problem with the Big Bang Myth. I don’t see it as a concern for Christians / creationists. I am concerned when people starting mixing up words and concepts, and on the basis of semantics, lead the uninformed to believe that science has disproven God / Creation, and that allowing the teaching of Intelligent Design in schools is unscientific, while the teaching of godless philosophies is somehow “good science”. There are many concepts / myths / theories in Naturalistic Science, that one simply must accept on the basis of faith. For instance, you (or someone like you) might testify to a school board that the Big Bang Myth is good science because its testable. When you leave out the little fact that only “Big Bang Myth Models” are testable, it’s a bit disingenuous.

                  True science says very little about origins, therefore Intelligent Design and Naturalism should either be allowed to coexist (in a philosophical branch, if you will) or both should be purged from the textbooks altogether.

                  In my opinion, the decision by this school board has more to do with politics than the *truth* and the pursuit of knowledge. Socialists / Communists have for a long time thought that Christianity is their greatest enemy in the West. Too many individual liberties are contained therein to foster an “appreciation” for collectivism.

                • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

                  lead the uninformed to believe that science has disproven God / Creation

                  I’ve never heard a scientist not be clear on the fact that we can never disprove God. We also can’t disprove the notion that our consciousness is a computer simulation, and all our memories are created, and nobody else exists.

                  There are many concepts / myths / theories in Naturalistic Science, that one simply must accept on the basis of faith.

                  I disagree. They may require a level of background knowledge that someone doesn’t have, but that doesn’t mean they require ‘faith’. Richard Feynman gave a very good explanation of that, when addressing an interviewers very simple question “why do magnets repel/attract” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wMFPe-DwULM

                  For instance, you (or someone like you) might testify to a school board that the Big Bang Myth is good science because its testable. When you leave out the little fact that only “Big Bang Myth Models” are testable, it’s a bit disingenuous.

                  No. That’s not something anyone would leave out. It’s the important point.

                  Faith is my god’s word against your god’s word. We can each believe our version with all our heart, but a 3rd person listening to both of us won’t have any way of knowing which of us, or either of us, is right. With science, given enough time, we should be able to show this person not just what we know, but HOW we know it.

                • http://www.facebook.com/hugh.vincelette Hugh Vincelette

                  Religion is based on faith; not facts. Science is based on facts available at any point in time, & are always subject to change with expanded knowledge. BTW, I find some of the comments/arguments herein to be most impressive.

                • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

                  Actually, that’s why creationism isn’t a scientific theory.  I make the distinction because I think you could make the argument that Intelligent Design is science, albeit shoddy science.  The sole purpose of ID is to disprove a scientific theory, and that is science.  What ID isn’t is a scientific theory, for the reasons you state.  It makes no testable or falsifiable propositions.  The ID people fully admit that. 

                • Austin

                  Tell your god to have an interview on CNN LOL

                • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=546098560 Cody Herrmann

                  Beats me, it’s supernatural, so ipso facto it’s automatically outside of scientific boundaries.

                  So it’ll never set foot in a science classroom ;)

                • stringchopper

                  There is no god, therefore all things arose naturally… also ipso facto outside of scientific boundaries.

              • stringchopper

                and the statistical improbability of random forces creating a highly designed “simple” cell necessitates that we separate science from naturalistic philosophy. Naturalism isn’t science, it’s a philosophy, and as such, it demands no greater respect than creationism.

                • http://www.facebook.com/people/Brian-Williamson/100002655531852 Brian Williamson

                   Statistics only matter when something is actually examined or tested for.
                  This evolution is chance argument fails entirely on the basis of that no tests or observations were actually made to show biblical creationism or any natural system arise from pure artificial construction like found in TV’s. Where as observing the change in the fox biology when exposed to captive breeding is one way to see evolutionary change and humans are part of nature even if we refuse to believe it.

                • stringchopper

                  Thanks for making my point. Naturalistic Philosophy, and its associated presumptions, are not science. True science says very little (if anything) about the argument over Intelligent Design / Naturalism.

                • http://www.facebook.com/people/Austin-Rozzell/1741018449 Austin Rozzell

                  That’s because you don’t read anything but your bible science has plenty to say you just don’t listen

                • stringchopper

                  accustom to making assumptions, are we?

            • ReadsInTrees

              True godliness…..but the Biblical definition or your own definition? The Bible definitely does not promote equality of the sexes or free speech (using god’s name in vain) so that’s why I ask.

              • Jstorm9000

                Using God’s name in vain has nothing to do with cursing and everything to do with being a good representative of God’s “character”, I suppose you could say. And in the new testament there is gobs of information about equality of the sexes and about every man and woman being personally responsible to God for their actions.

            • redscream5

              Humanism - Humanism is a group of philosophies and ethical perspectives which emphasize the value and agency of human beings, individually and collectively.

              Sounds nothing like bigotry, you colossal idiot.

              • Jstorm9000

                Humanism is man as god. I’ve met more bigoted humanists than I have ever met bigoted Christians.

                • RobMcCune

                  Humanists believe they are human, not all powerful supreme intelligences. Please find a more accurate trope.

                • Jstorm9000

                  This is the definition that Google gave me: An outlook or system of thought attaching prime importance to human rather than divine or supernatural matters. So, as I said, man as god. Divine matters are not important, only humanistic ones. Worshipping the created rather than the creator. But the funny thing is that when you put God in the center of all things, what pleases him is to take care of the people around you. Which I and my family do, actually. So we’re Humanistic Deists, I guess. Or whatever that is.

                • RobMcCune

                  Nope, prime importance does not mean worship. In fact if one attaches prime importance to human matters they actively participate in them and try to change them for the better. Human concerns are things to be addressed, not venerated or worshiped. That you can only conceive of important things as objects of worship shows how your religion has warped your thinking.

                • Austin

                  then get out of your parents basement more.

              • stringchopper

                I wonder why Nick Altman thinks, “they dismiss all collective non theists as hostile, close minded, and rude to outsiders. “

            • http://www.facebook.com/evilknick Nick Altman

              Isn’t it awesome how Jstorm9000 pretends to believe in a God which represents their own personal ideals while somehow ignoring the god which is represented in their bible?

               And notice how they dismiss all collective non theists as hostile, close minded, and rude to outsiders. 

              It is as if they have to see non believers as a rival religion for it to make sense to them. In reality, the same way the Christian does not believe in every other god or religion that is not the god of Christianity, non theists are simply all of the other people who happen to not believe in the Christian god either as well as the ones the Christian does not. The religious are stuck with nothing but circular logic and selective judgement, psychologically trapped by the well honed meme of religion, the meme itself a wonderful example of an emergent system like natural selection, a tangled knot of rhetoric and cognitive dissonance all selected across the centuries for offering any means necessary to keep from doubting a thing . They actually praise faith, as if calling close minded dogmatic zealotry a pretty word like “faith” makes it different somehow.  The most difficult thing is that by simply not believing in their gods, this challenges the very thing they’ve built all meaning in their life upon, it is an attack to even share your personal view in their hearing.

              • Jstorm9000

                The God of the Bible, eh? Do tell. I don’t pretend to have a God that fits my own personal ideals. Sorry if I have misrepresented that to you.

            • Mark S

              Your god is nonexistent, the world was not created in seven days, and you are a clown. I am bigoted toward stupidity.

            • stringchopper

              you nailed it. Atheists are the most bigoted people I know, generally speaking. Their discourse reminds me of the Nazis. History shows us that thoughts become words, and then words become actions. As they gain more control, we will start seeing another holocaust – one directed at anyone who has not submitted to their thought police. I’m still waiting for one of these naturalist philosophers, who mistakenly associate that philosophy with science, to prove to me that a “simple” cell can be produced purely through evolutionary mechanisms. I have a feeling I will be waiting a *long time* for that one.

          • stringchopper

            you sound bitter.

        • Guest221

          I lived in New Orleans for two years, and I found the people to be warm, friendly and outgoing.  I felt like I had found a home 12 hours after I unpacked the truck.  And I’m from New York – that’s about as big an outsider as it gets.  Maybe it’s all about the attitude you bring with you.

          • Jstorm9000

            New York and New Orleans have a lot of similarities. It could be attitude, yeah, I’ll take that. Everyone’s experience is different.

        • amycas

          You said:

          “They are some of the most bigoted, arrogant, close-minded people I’ve
          ever met.”

          and:

          “The entire populace treats anyone who isn’t from New Orleans
          like they are mentally disabled because they “just don’t get it”.”

          You just said everybody in an entire city is bigoted, arrogant, and closed-minded.

          • Jstorm9000

            That’s my opinion. Didn’t find many people in New Orleans that redeemed the city for me. Even the “nice” people were still arrogant about being from there. I was looking for a place to call home and they completely alienated me.

            • Austin

              thats because they could tell that you are damaged, in other words they dont like people like you. get it LOL

        • SmartNewOrleanian

          Yeah, you really just don’t get it.  

          • Jstorm9000

            I’m actually pretty happy about that, to be honest. Terrible city. Drags the whole state down.

        • Austin

          Well the atheists have it right, your dog/god is a MADE UP STORY, and ALL BIBLES from any religion should in the fantasy section , only checked out and read under ADULT supervision since they contain DEATH, VIOLENCE, RAPE and other christian DREAMS

        • nolagirl

          I am from New Orleans and while I can agree with you on some things, everywhere you go has a “you wouldn’t get it” attitude about something. It has more to do with an intimate connection you feel to the place you grew up. People in Boston don’t “get” The Mardi Gras Mambo song. I don’t “get” the fascination with the song Sweet Caroline that they sing at baseball games. But I know it’s dear to them and that doesn’t bother me.

        • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.haddox.1 Daniel Haddox

          When you said “Atheists” just now, I think you meant you meant to say “theists” as they are typically the most intolerant. Atheism represents the truth of reality, no matter how emotional or ‘spiritually’ painful it may be. It’s your kind, that suppresses anything that differs from your logic. Some Atheists, yes, are retarded, protesting nativity displays outside of churches. Those are the bad ones. The good ones don’t care about your historically inaccurate birthday of your savior to convert paganism to your ways, we just look the other way. But we, embrace truth, whether it hurts us nor not.

          And of course we applaud this action, because science is based upon REAL discoveries and evidence, whereas religion is based upon the exact opposite – faith. You can be religious all day, and I personally think highly of religious people’s sincerity who are genuine people, I honestly do. But to teach it as scientific fact? This move should’ve happened long ago! Don’t Theists preach to have faith, with or without evidence?

          • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.haddox.1 Daniel Haddox

            I read a few of your comments after posting this, and clearly you fail to “turn the other cheek” like you should. I’m not sure if your a follower of Jesus, or just a fan. If you are a follower, I suggest you sell all of belongings and give all that money to the poor. I hear Somalia could use the help. And Jesus said to do excatly that.

            When being accused of bigotry, whether its legit or not, turn the other cheek. We’re all going to Hell and you’re not, remember? So don’t judge any of them, or the decision the school board makes because as far as your concern, only god can judge.

            On the other side of the coin, I truly respect you as a person, just so long as your faith in god is genuine, and not just because you were told to do so. But, if faith IS genuine to jesus christ and to god, you will turn the other cheek. Reply to this to judge me or any other ‘heretic’ on this page and your faith is flawed, weak, and untruthful. If you are true to the book, then walk away :)

    • Jstorm9000

      IQ isn’t the only measure of intelligence, sir. I’d say the comments of a bunch of God-haters who are bigoted against the South display an alarming lack of intelligent design. But that’s just my opinion. Maybe being an atheist means that you are too stupid to be reasonable? I don’t know. But I’m FROM Louisiana so my IQ is probably on a par with Forrest Gump or something anyway so what do I know.

      • C Peterson

        It isn’t bigotry to recognize that much of the South demonstrates intellectually backwards thinking. To implicitly assume that any given individual is stupid simply because they are from the South would be a gross misuse of a broadly accurate stereotype, of course. But when a comment applies to the general population, that’s a different matter.

        • Jstorm9000

          Yes, broad statements. Where is your data to back up those broad statements?

          • C Peterson

            Religiosity is higher in the South. That means the people are less intelligent and less well educated, on average. That’s just simple logic.

            • Jstorm9000

              I’ll take an omnipotent, omniscient, omni-present loving God over my own pitiful reasoning and education and intelligence any day of the week. The just shall live by faith. Not all “sheep” are stupid.

              • C Peterson

                So would I… if such a creature existed. But there’s absolutely nothing to suggest it does, so only a fool would base their ideas on the Bronze Age traditions of a few hundred supremely ignorant people.

                • Jstorm9000

                  I’ll be a fool. What have I got to lose? If I’m wrong, I just die and that’s it.

                • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

                  You’re treating this as an either or.  If you’re serious about it, then you’ll also investigate all the other religions that will send you to hell if you do the wrong thing.  Maybe you’re supposed to be praying to Mecca seven times a day to avoid hell.  In which case, look me up when you get there.

                • C Peterson

                  We all die. What matters is how you live. One of the great tragedies of your faith is the reduction of everything to the moment of death.

        • Jstorm9000

          Nevermind. I saved you the trouble. BROADLY speaking, you are right…but then again, according to THIS data, California is dumber than Louisiana. Ouch. http://www-958.ibm.com/software/data/cognos/manyeyes/visualizations/iq-by-state-us-2

          • C Peterson

            You missed the point. The statement may be wrong (or not), but it isn’t bigotry.

            • Jstorm9000

              big·ot·ed
              /ˈbigətid/

              AdjectiveObstinately convinced of the superiority or correctness of one’s own opinions and prejudiced against those who hold different opinions.
              Expressing or characterized by prejudice and intolerance.I’ve lived in several other places besides the South and I am almost always treated like I need people to use small words because of where I’m from. The OP on this thread is: “Was that the average IQ in Louisiana I just heard rise by a dozen points?” Sounds pretty prejudiced and intolerant to me. But then again, I’m proud to be from Louisiana so I got a little offended by that comment.

              • C Peterson

                So based on the definition you’ve provided, I see that you agree with me that you have not used “bigoted” correctly. I’m glad you can admit when you are wrong.

                • Jstorm9000

                  I still think a lot of people from the North are bigots against people from the South. But you’re right about me being wrong.

      • ReadsInTrees

        How would you like us to measure intelligence? In general, the IQ levels in northern states are higher on average than southern states. Northern states also tend o have more high school and college graduates, and students from northern states also tend to score higher on the SATs.  Now, these are just on average. Maine scores lower on the SAT’s than other northern states, and Tennessee scores higher than other southern states.

        So….can you give us some examples of other ways to measure intelligence? 

        (By the way, it’s silly to call us God-haters. Would you call yourself a leprechaun-hater or a Zeus-hater?)

        • Jstorm9000

          Can you give me some statistics on Intelligence levels in the North vs. the South? I know most atheists are very scientifically minded individuals, so looking strictly at empirical standards, no, there really isn’t any other way to measure someone’s Intelligence Quotient. But I wasn’t talking about empirical measurements and the general tone of my post was definitely sarcastic in its tone. Therefore, the measurements of which I speak are strictly subjective, i.e. “a matter of opinion”. It’s also not “silly” to call atheists “God-haters” since so many of you rail against even the idea of god or the possibility of a god of any kind. And the term used to describe someone who doesn’t believe in any supreme being is an “a-theist” or, literally, “no god”. But every time I suggest to someone that they may be wrong about the whole positive denial of a supreme deity, they inevitably get angry at me for calling them wrong. Almost like they hate even the idea of God…but this is just my opinion.

          • Anonymous

            I love God. I also love science and facts and things mankind has proven. So, shut up.

            • Jstorm9000

              So then you’re not an atheist. So shut up.

              • PatrickG

                You do realize Patheos hosts a wide variety of bloggers, not all of whom are atheist? Finding a person who embraces an empirical system of thought AND believes in God is not that unusual here. Not for me, but it’s not exactly unheard of.

                Oh, and I *am* an atheist, so you can’t shut me up because — well, I’m not sure what your position is here, but I’m not really sure you know either. Yeesh, are you paid by the ridiculous post, or do you really just have this much free time?

                • stringchopper

                  To be fair, he was only mirroring the words of the previous poster. I believe in God and scientific methods. I would agree to removing both Creationism and Naturalism from all science classrooms.

          • Fishes

             Well, then as a christian you must be just like those christians from Westboro Baptist Church… oh, now you don’t like painting with broad strokes?

            • Jstorm9000

              Define “Christian”. Geographical location is not very subjective, now, is it?

              • pb

                 Doesn’t matter how many ways you twist it and bend it.  He still isn’t real.

          • amycas

            There are some definitions of god that I hate. I don’t hate the panentheist version of god, but the omnipotent, will send people to hell version I do hate, as an idea. You can hate an idea for its merits. What’s your definition of god though?

            • Jstorm9000

              I’m sorry you hate that version. That’s the version that makes sense to me. Good and evil. Right and wrong. Just and wicked. And at the top of it all is a supreme entity who is judging the world declaring the good as good and the evil as evil. I have no problem with evil people being sent to eternal punishment. I have no problem with “good” people going to hell…because my notion of what is good and what is evil might be wrong.

              Which is worse? To kill a baby or to lie? To use words of anger to hurt another person or to beat your spouse? Right is right and wrong is wrong. I don’t like being wrong so I will do my best to side with what is right. My humanity will shine through, undoubtedly, but hopefully some trace of divinity will also shine through and God will see a reflection of himself and approve of what I have been on this earth.

              The Lord of All Creation. The God of Heaven and Earth. The Ruler, Master, and Judge of All Things. That is the version of God that I live by…or try to anyway. :(

              • Count_Von_Krolock

                “I have no problem with evil people being sent to eternal punishment.”

                You know what’s funny? There’s absolutely no logical way to justify eternal punishment for temporal crimes. Although there probably isn’t an afterlife, if there was, I would definitely like to see tyrants and corrupt politicians pay for what they’ve done. But I would have to be a sick fuck to wish them an eternity of suffering for they’ve done, because what they did had limited consequences. The Spanish Inquisition was horrible when it happened, but no one alive now has suffered because of it, so why should the Inquisitors deserve eternal punishment? It’s like sentencing a shoplifter to life in prison without parole. But your “god” is far more heinous. He doesn’t just condemn people to an eternity of suffering for what they’ve done; he damns them for not loving him. This perfect being* has a twisted and incredibly Narcissistic standard of “love”; “love me, or I’ll have you tortured every moment of every day for millions and billions and trillions and quadrillions of years times infinity for not loving me back”.

                This is the most sick, vile, and perverse notion of divinity Man’s imagination has ever produced. A creature who makes every tyrant and mass murderer in history look like innocent butterflies in comparison. So what is wrong with you that this is the only concept of Gd that “makes sense” to you??

                • Jstorm9000

                  Well since you put it that way…not so appealing now, is it? The requirement is not to love him, but to obey. Jesus is Lord. Master. Ruler. He gives us the option. Why would anyone in their right mind choose Hell?

                • B_R_Deadite99

                  If that were the case, I’d sooner choose Hell on a matter of principle than degrade myself like a dog just to save my skin.

                • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

                  “Give my liberty or give me death!”

                  Seems like perhaps someone like Patrick Henry, who was possibly the most religious of the founding fathers, valued liberty so that he was willing to die for it.  What is the threat of hell if not removal of liberty?  What kind of choice is it to say “obey me no matter what or suffer for eternity”?  Is that really liberty?  Is that really a choice?

                • stringchopper

                  There are many Christians, including myself, who don’t believe that Jesus or the Apostles taught “eternal damnation”, but that this teaching developed later to be used as a fear tactic to convince the pagans to convert (St. Augustine is a good example of this). As a Christian, I won’t even try to justify the silly teachings that have arisen with Christianity through the years. But I also believe that the latter doesn’t negate the former. I appreciate truth and honesty in my philosophy and in science. Can atheists like Richard Dawkins say the same, when they combine naturalism with observations and then call the mutant offspring “science”? (That’s a rhetorical question, btw).

                • jstorm9000

                  Unless somebody put a WHOOOOOLE bunch of words in Jesus’ mouth, then I’d say he talked about eternal damnation and weeping and gnashing of teeth more than just about anything else. It’s all over the Gospels…I can give you the verses if you want.

                • jstorm9000

                  Where do you get this definition of a perfect being?

                • B_R_Deadite99

                  From the definition of “perfect”.

        • Jstorm9000

          Found you some actual data. In a very broad spectrum, yes, the north is “smarter”. However, the scale averages from 93.3 to 101.5. Given that in most statistics the acceptable margin or error is +/- 4% this means that, on average, some states in the Northern US are as much as 12 IQ points smarter than states in the Southern US.

          Don’t break your arm patting yourselves on the back, okay?

          http://www-958.ibm.com/software/data/cognos/manyeyes/visualizations/iq-by-state-us-2 

        • amycas

           I think a lot of that has to do with economic factors. The religious and intelligence factor seem to be functions of the economic problems.

      • Merrill_loveii

        I’m from the south. You can’t hate something you know doesn’t exist.

        • Jstorm9000

          But that’s just the thing, though. HE DOES. And you’d have to hate someone a whoooole bunch to spend most of your life actively denying their existence when it’s obvious that they are most certainly real and that they do most certainly exist.

          • ufcg

            I like how this Jstorm9000 guy/gal can demand data to back up statements from other people yet will not provide the data and evidence to back up anything he/she claims.

            • Jstorm9000

              What data do you seek? And if I can’t provide it, then what? Yes, God is real. Don’t believe it? Okay good for you. Nope, there’s not a shred of evidence that I can provide for his existence and I’m sure there’s no data. But then again there’s no data to prove that he’s NOT there either. An interesting little arrangement isn’t it?

              • Willy Occam

                Logic 101: The burden of proof is not on us to prove that your God (or unicorns, or sasquatch, or leprechauns) don’t exits, but on you to prove that he (they) do.  See Bertrand Russell’s celestial teapot.

                • Jstorm9000

                  He said he wanted data. I got nothin. Admittedly. We never do. We had the Higgs-Boson, but apparently that’s been found or something like that.

          • http://religiouscomics.net/ Jeff P

            Yes God positively absolutely definitely exists IN YOUR MIND. I don’t dispute that. The mind is a very complex organ that can summon up all kinds of beliefs. Just look at all the world’s religions and all the different sub-religions and cults. There are probably as many ideas of a supernatural entity as there are people believing in a supernatural entity. Yes, it’s all in the mind of the believer.

          • Richwilder

            No, in your opinion he exists.  You can’t state it as fact because there is no way to prove it.  If it were ever proven, then we’d have an entirely different world.

            If you are being met with anger or hatred, it’s because you are arrogantly stating an opinion as a fact, just as if you said “The television show ‘Friends’ is BY FAR the GREATEST SHOW EVER and if you don’t agree with me then why do you HATE THAT SHOW?”

            It just sounds weird and irrational.  

          • IKG

            I have seen absolutely NO evidence here that ANYONE on this site hates Odin.  Please show me where this hatred of the Allfather appears.

            • Jstorm9000

              Bravo, good sir! Well played!

              • stringchopper

                actually it was a straw man. Perhaps well-played if you consider diversionary tactics a good move. I prefer honesty and substance in debates.

          • redscream5

            Atheists don’t “spend most of their lives denying the existence of an imaginary being”, they spend their whole lives reacting to the idiocy perpetuated by those that do.

            The idea of god doesn’t offend me. The actions of those that base their lives on that idea do.

            • Jstorm9000

              Okay, so what idiocy are these believers perpetuating and what actions are you talking about?

              I grew up with country people. They were men and women of integrity who were honest and hard working and kind. They were everything that convinced me of the existence of God. But once I moved into a more urban setting, I saw so called “christians” that were nothing like that. They were mean, petty, vicious people, disinterested in the lives of those around them. They were just like “the world” that we were told to separate ourselves from in my small town church growing up. They were not good people…not all of them. Not even most of them.

              To be honest, I don’t even go to church anymore because they don’t even follow their own tenets. Yet you will not find anyone on this planet who is more firmly convinced in the veracity of Scripture and in the existence and benevolence of God. I wish that I could impart to others what I see and show them what is out there…but I can’t…and I’ve discovered that I’m really not meant to.

              • CultOfReason

                Did you ever stop to think that the nice “chrsitians” you grew up with were nice because that’s just the way people are in that quaint little town, and has nothing to do with the fact that they were christians?  Correlation vs. Causation can be tricky business.

                • Jstorm9000

                  Yeah, you’re right. Correlation does not necessarily equal causation. Not every quaint little town is like that I don’t guess. I’m living in a smaller sized town now (like 36,000 or so) and the people here are awful. Went to the same church for two months and everybody there treated us like we were a disease. Saw the same thing happen with several friends, too.

                  Then again, that was their stated reason for being such upstanding individuals. I work in a very small town about 20 miles from where I live and if it ain’t nailed down here at the shop, it’s growing legs and walking off. Totally different.

      • Austin

        You are wrong I dont hate god, I dont believe in your god and your religion is fake, its common sense not hate, buy I bet you dont have any sense, so the logic evades you.

        • jstorm9000

          My religion is very real, I mean, come on, I practice it every day. So am I just part of an imaginary religion that I made up? Your argument makes no sense. And your common sense is blinded by your logic.

          • stringchopper

            well, he says he doesn’t hate god, but then he makes a hateful statement toward you. He lost his credibility somehow :)

      • CriticalThinking

        I’d like to indicate that I’m also From Louisiana, an atheist (if that wasn’t apparent from my previous comments on your other post- though I was catholic for about 16 years of my life or so) have a tested IQ of 144 and have been tested academically within the top 10% of the nation on standardized testing on multiple occasions. 

        The original poster obviously has little understanding of what an IQ number actually signifies. Or intended to be what they Thought would appear witty, (That’s kind of pathetic, clinging to the ideology that you’re better than a group of people and so “putting them down”) But I do take some offense form their pre-conceived notion that all people in Louisiana, or people or religion, are idiots.
        IQ is not measured by a belief or disbelief in things such as creationism
        My IQ has not changed since my belief in the god of the Catholic bible ended, and there’s no reason for it to have done so.
        IQ’s, in most cases, are judged by measuring logical-mathematical intelligence through some form of standardized test. (logical-mathematics intelligence, I should mention, is only one of 9 types of intelligence commonly recognized)

        However, more in regards to your own post, a person who does not believe in the existence of a deity will not, and Can Not, hate said deity. They can hate the worshipers of said proposed deity for their actions while interpreting their faith, but they won’t hate the thing they do not believe exists. I could perhaps as easily call you a Tooth fairy-hater because you do not believe in the tooth-fairy and most likely think that people should, At Some Point in their lives, grow up and see the absurdity of such a notion. You would think it ridiculous if you ran into a relatively intelligent 34 year old man who somehow earnestly believed in the tooth fairy, would you not?  This is a similar opinion to what many Atheist view Christianity as. Absurdity.

        Additionally, you’re obviously upset with he poster for lumping those who believe in God and creationism into one category, that being, that of stupidity. So, your brilliantly mature plan was to counter by stating that all atheists must then be stupid and unreasonable? And then sarcastically likening your intelligence to that of Forest Gump from their perspective? The immaturity of this post easily cancels out any point you were trying to make to most people.

        Christians are Not ALL stupid and unreasonable.
        Atheists are Not ALL stupid and unreasonable.

        There are people who fall under both labels who exemplify stupidity.
        There are people who fall under both labels who exemplify intelligence.

        Neither quality is exclusive to either side.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Robert-Bootier/100001550546729 Robert Bootier

    It’s a great start.

  • Doug7854

    That’s so awesome…I never thought I would see the day that Louisiana education system pulled their heads out. Congrats Louisiana school children you will forever be endowed with critical thinking skills…best regards…a state still in waiting

    • http://religiouscomics.net/ Jeff P

      This is only one parish in Louisiana, not the entire state. But a good start.

  • Piet Puk

    A great day for education. There is hope for the US of A.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sandy-Kokch/100000074576649 Sandy Kokch

    Well done that man! Hats Off! Three cheers!

    Hip Hip…

    • Thackerie

       Hooray!

      • redscream5

        Hip Hip…

        • B_R_Deadite99

           Hooray!

  • cipher

    Orleans Parish has just thrown God out of their schools!

    Well, we know who’s due for another hurricane soon, don’t we?

    • joe

       Schools are for education. Science, math, history, etc. “Faith” based studies belong in the church. Is that so difficult to understand and separate? You seem to be implying that schools teach Hinduism, Buhdism, Catholicism, etc. Whose faith should they teach? Oh yes, yours, of course.

      • coyotenose

        Cipher was being sarcastic.

        • cipher

          Thanks. I thought my ranting was well known enough that I no longer had to place “[/sarcasm]” at the end of my posts. Apparently, I give myself too much credit.

          • Jstorm9000

            Well why do you think they got the first two? Decadence? Anyone?

            • RobMcCune

              What hurricanes were the first two? Don’t tell me you’re so ignorant as to believe hurricanes only happen in modern New Orleans.

              • Jstorm9000

                Oh, sorry about that. I forgot to say, Katrina and Wilma. I think it was Wilma…and I meant “the first two that wiped out the city and a significant portion of the population” i.e. Katrina and Wilma.

                And no, I’m well aware that there have been hurricanes for probably all of history in this area.

                • RobMcCune

                  So an annual that has been going on forever is somehow God’s punishment? What was Betsy about?

                • Jstorm9000

                  Beats the heck out of me. I wasn’t even born then so how should I know? Payback for slavery maybe? I don’t know.

      • cipher

         Please see my reply to coyotenose below.

        (I can’t believe two people “Liked” your comment. One person not getting it, I can understand – but three?)

        • http://religiouscomics.net/ Jeff P

          maybe they like the sarcasm

        • Guest

           I’m new here. I read your comment at face value also. I had not one reason to believe it was sarcastic. I can easily see where Joe was coming from.

      • Nathan B

        Although I think he was being sarcastic, when looking at history, to ignore religion would be to ignore a major parts of our past. The crusades, the persecution of Jews in WW2, the pilgrims, the Greeks, the Romans .. Looking back at all of history, religion played a part, and if you remove religion from school most of history will not make sense. Without at least students having the basic knowledge of religions, the basic understanding of why certain events happened history would fall apart. To teach religion and creationism as science is just stupid and ignorant, but to completely remove it from existence would be just as bad as a book burning.

      • Jstorm9000

        I agree. Acknowledge the Creator in schools and you will have kids killing each other in the classroom before you know it!! Oh wait, that’s happening NOW.

        • amycas

           I know a lot of high school atheists, and none of them have shot up their schools, so fuck you. Maybe this is why atheists respond to you with anger: it’s not that they hate god, it’s that they hate your arrogant ass.

          • Jstorm9000

            Maybe none of them have shot up their schools (that we know of). I know I couldn’t find anything just by doing a quick google search, but it’s a self-defeating argument for Christianity. No point explaining it, because it operates on some basic assumptions that are irrelevant if you’re an atheist.

            I did find this: http://bigwhiteogre.blogspot.com/2010/10/whos-doing-killing-atheists-or.html and it is an interesting read, especially the comments at the bottom.

            I will say this though….I don’t mind you calling me arrogant any more than I mind you being an atheist or whatever you are. To me, I’m right at a basic level and you’re wrong on the same level. I start out assuming there is a supreme being and that one day he will hold me accountable for my actions on this plane of existence and I will be either praised for it or damned for it. If you’re an atheist, you don’t believe that. But if I’m wrong, I win. If YOU are wrong, well, sorry. I don’t know about a lot of things. One of the greatest apologists for Christianity was C.S. Lewis and his take on the afterlife and judgment was very different from the stereotypical American Fundamentalist view of things. 

            Don’t be angry, amycas. If that article I posted is anywhere near accurate then we’re playing on a pretty level playing field. 

            • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

              You say that like you think we’ve never heard of Pascal’s wager.

              • Jstorm9000

                Considering that “I” have never heard of Pascal’s wager, then yes. Please explain.

                • ZeroKaiser

                  What are you, 12 years old?  How’s about you do an ounce of research and learn what Pascals Wager is, and more importantly why using it in an argument only makes you look like a fool.

                • jstorm9000

                  How about you learn some effin manners?? I grew up on a FARM, genius! I’m smart, yeah, but I haven’t read all of this crap because YOU DON’T NEED TO KNOW THIS CRAP TO GROW CORN!!! I work in the Oilfield now, totally blue collar, so why don’t you learn what manners are and quit biting my head off for (admittedly!!!) not being as educated as you on the subject.
                  It’s probably BETTER, for your sake, that I’m NOT that well versed in this, because I would undoubtedly pick your little house of sticks apart and then set them on fire in front of your face. I’ve got what I believe and very little else. Why does that bother you? Who cares if I’m ignorant? Why should I be as enlightened as you are? I’m content with my God and I am happy being a Christian. Where is the harm in that?

                • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

                  There’s nothing wrong with being happy as a Christian. But you’re coming to an atheist blog and in your own admissions, trying to stir things up. You’re going to get a range of responses from polite to not-so-polite. Trust me, it’s nothing atheists don’t get on any Christian blog. That is, if they even allow comments. Many don’t, or delete anything that questions anything.

                  However, are you more interested in believing something because you want to believe it, or because it’s true? Most of us on here either were Christians at one point, or have investigated it in great detail. Most of us have read or listened to a lot of apologetics and debates. That we have come to the conclusions we have doesn’t mean we’re right. But it does mean that whatever argument you come up with, chances are extremely small that we haven’t seriously considered it before.

                  You’ve got a lot more than what you believe. What you have is the capacity to learn more.

                • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

                  You’ve heard of it, you just didn’t know what it was called.

                   http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pascal’s_WagerIn short, it’s what you proposed.  If I’m wrong, I’ve lost nothing.  If I’m right, I go to heaven not hell.  The problems include: 1)  it assumes only one religion exists to choose from, 2) it assumes God will reward you for ‘choosing’ to believe based on a gable rather than true faith.  Google a bit and you’ll find arguments against it much more elegant than mine.

    • Bottle Rocket

      DAMN THOSE GODLESS COMMIES!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Merrill_loveii

      Oh imaginary god could you take your brainless followers with you? Just the brainless ones please.

      • Jstorm9000

        So is that why you’re an atheist?

  • NOLA John

    With all our faults, we tend to be the West Berlin of Red-state-istan.

    • WoodyTanaka

      LOL.  Nice.

  • BeasKnees

    Excellent news!  

  • Tom Zarek

    Thank the LORD!

  • Jstorm9000

    Mr. Q, you have no idea what you are talking about. I’m from Louisiana and I live here still and I can guarantee you that there are plenty of people here with high IQ’s who do not bow down to the idea that evolution negates the existence of a benevolent Creator who is still actively creating new species even today. The thing is, we don’t have to sit around and talk about how right we are to make ourselves feel more secure in our belief system.

    In fact, most of the “Christian rhetoric” that I hear comes as a defense against those who try to deny what should be obvious. I’m sorry you and your like are too advanced to believe in God or too hurt or whatever your reasons are. I have no problem believing in God and the last IQ test I took put me at around 132 or so. I took the ACT in the 10th grade and scored a 29 and I hadn’t even taken Trig yet. I’m not exactly the dumb redneck so many of these comments make Louisianians out to be.

    As for the rest of you who think the South is full of a bunch of morons…maybe you ought to think twice. Do YOUR research on what the South is REALLY like as far as intelligence and education is concerned and quit bashing us with your high-minded arrogance.

    • ohshutup

       ye well hitler had some pretty smart scientists too….

      • Jstorm9000

        But Germany is also in Northern Europe…

    • ReadsInTrees

      I don’t think anyone is saying that ALL Southern people are morons. Just acknowledging that the South does seem to produce an awful lot of moronic politicians.

      • Jstorm9000

        Um…what? Maybe you should read up a little bit on politics of late. Obama is from Chicago and so is ol’ Crazy Hair that just got booted out of office awhile back. I’d say there’s no bigger moron than our current president…but he’s an educated moron, so it’s okay.

        • amycas

           Obama is a constitutional scholar. Hardly a moron.

          • Jstorm9000

            What exactly is a “constitutional scholar”?

            • redscream5

              Someone who studies the constitution and its history, you troll.

              • Jstorm9000

                I thought that’s what she meant. Or he. Maybe that whole “constitutional scholar” thing is why he’s so good at circumventing it, hmm? But I digress. This is not a political thread, now is it?

  • Dgodon

    Great news!  Now if they’d just stop privatizing the public schools.

  • Gr8dump

    I think they need to teach both sides of the argument otherwise people become ignorant.

    • Merrill_loveii

      No reason to teach idiocy.

      • Jstorm9000

        I concur! Evolution has got to go!

        • cipher

          So, on the one hand, “there are plenty of people here with high IQ’s who do not bow down to the idea that evolution negates the existence of a benevolent Creator”, yet on the other, “Evolution has got to go!” and “How’s that whole “missing link” thing working out for ya?”

          • Jstorm9000

            I apologize, cipher. I’m being a smartass. (and thoroughly enjoying myself, too, actually).

            However, the first statement is correct. Evolution as a whole is a sound scientific theory, but does not explain the origin of Man, I don’t think. Not in the sense that man evolved from a lower life form or even in the sense that all life evolved from a common microbial ancestor. There just isn’t any evidence in the fossil record to support that part of the theory. At least, not that I’ve ever seen. But then again, I DO live in Louisiana so, ya know…not a lot of debate going on here about this issue. Well, besides New Orleans, of course. 

            • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

              Endogenous Retroviruses are pretty clear proof that we either share a common ancestor with chimpanzees, or God is a smartass.

              http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qh7OclPDN_s

              • Jstorm9000

                I’ll take, God is a smartass for $200 Rich! My opinion? It’s possible that these viruses could have infected all of those different species in the earlier days, right?  Didn’t HIV come from modern chimps? And why, if there has been so much change to the genetic code, would there still be evidence of that virus in the code? You’d think it would disappear over time right? Just asking.

                • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

                  The problem with your explanation is that a few viruses had to infect just humans.  And a few others just chimpanzees, and a few others just gorillas.  But then some infected humans AND chimps but NOT gorillas.  Hm, why is that?

                  As for change in the genetic code, that’s actually pretty interesting.  It turns out that the rate of change is fairly constant.  Not perfectly fixed mind you, but constant enough that by comparing the difference between any two species, we can get a rough estimate as to how many generations back they shared a common ancestor.

                • jstorm9000

                  Very interesting. Thank you for summing that up for me.

        • http://harry-canary.myopenid.com/ Harry Canary

          And you were the one whining about people being douchebags. 

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=705066677 Desiree Bell-Fowlks

      There is no two sides.  Creationism is not science and should not be taught in school as such.

      • Jstorm9000

        So then what is the other side of evolution?

        • Lauren

          Evolution does not have an opposite. Creationism is not science because Creationist/Intelligent Design hypotheses cannot be tested in a scientific framework. Evolution, on the other hand, can be tested, has been tested, and has yet to be rejected by science. (Remember, science seeks to reject hypotheses, not prove them. When a hypothesis or theory has been tested by many different experiments cannot be rejected, it is considered a sound explanation for a natural observation.)

          • Jstorm9000

            I once saw a documentary that showed tons of evidence of new species appearing out of nowhere in the fossil record. Do you know of any evolutionists who would be able to explain this phenomena or have you ever heard of this before? I ask because I just don’t know. Sounds like something that could be a serious bit of research.

            • redscream5

              That evidence SUPPORTS the theory of evolution… not the opposite.

              • Jstorm9000

                No, you don’t understand what I’m saying. I’m talking about entirely new species with no close relatives or even close look-alikes. They were showing where certain skeletons appeared in one strata, but appeared out of nowhere, no prior skeletons even remotely similar to them in any of the previous strata. I wish I knew the name of that documentary. It was really interesting stuff.

                • B_R_Deadite99

                   First; which documentary? Secondly, the fossil record is not complete. Because of erosion, we have been left with gaps in some places where large chunks of geologic time have been erased. These are called disconformities, if I remember correctly. So finding new fossils with no relatives or look-alikes doesn’t prove anything unless cross-correlation with the same level of strata across the globe brings up the same results.

                • Jstorm9000

                  I’ll see if I can find something more on it. It’s been years since I saw it and it was just something I stumbled across on TV one day. I’ll see what I can find.

                • RobMcCune

                  Without details it’s hard to dispute what you’re saying. A common event creationists harp on is the cambrian explosion. It is consistent with the theory of evolution because during that time there was a rapid change in the earth’s environment to make it more habitable to complex life. Additionally there are fossils indicating the presence of animals before the the cambrian period. It hardly came “out of nowhere”.

        • marzipanpieplate

          Asking what ‘the other side of evolution’ is is akin to asking what the ‘other side’ of, say, molecular theory or gravitational theory is. There isn’t one. There doesn’t need to be. That’s kind of the deal with a scientific theory. It’s useless if the scientific community hasn’t come to a consensus based on peer-reviewed evidence and data.

          Scientists are happy to admit when they just aren’t sure (see: plenty of debate in modern physics.) We’re glad there are still many puzzles to solve in the universe. Evolution as a broad theory is not debated. Some of the specifics may be disputed (e.g. there’s no definite conclusion on what the purpose of the appendix may have been,) but not the theory itself.For the sake of the world, please read a book.

          • Jstorm9000

            Hey! Leave out the insults, ok? For the sake of humanity, please quit being a douche. I asked a question because I DIDN’T KNOW THE ANSWER. Scientific inquiry and all, right? I’m just an ignorant farmboy, ok? Teach me something, would ya? Otherwise, shut your pie hole and let the grownups do the discussing, m’kay? Don’t need some rude high schooler shooting snark at people who are trying to give your views a fair shake.

        • amycas

           Exactly, we should also teach the other side of “germ theory” as well. Teach kids about demons and germs, then let them decide.

        • RobMcCune

          Evolution is an idea (a collection of related ideas really), it doesn’t have a side. It does have status as a currently accepted scientific theory, which is why it is taught in schools.

        • Godlesspanther

          The same as the alternative to mathematics. 

  • Imsuchtherockstar

    Intelligent design as a theory is very intelligent. Since scientists have no idea what started the big bang (only theories), it seams unintelligent and unscientific to rule out any theory until proven otherwise.

    • Langbeinet

      You obviously have no idea what a scientific theory is, so I suggest you read up on it. Also, intelligent design is not “very intelligent”.

      • Jstorm9000

        The fossil record says otherwise. How’s that whole “missing link” thing working out for ya?

        • http://twitter.com/TheSherbs Tre’

           How many prehistoric skeletons are we going to have to find? So far we have humanoid type skeletons dating as far back as 6 million years. By creationist and intelligent design standards, that skeleton has been around 5.994 million years longer than the Earth has.

          • Jstorm9000

            Depends on who you talk to, I guess. I don’t believe the whole “Earth has only been around 10,000 years” shpiel. Actually, there are some Bible scholars who believe that the Universe is as old as we know it to be by what we see in the stars and such, but that our recent history on the Earth is only a reflection of what happened here after an initial civilization was wiped out by some sort of cataclysmic event. It’s in Ezekiel, I believe, that it talks about this. Very interesting stuff…well, I mean, if you don’t flush the Bible as a bunch of crap anyway…

        • amycas

           How’s that whole “not understanding how evolution works and therefore asking pointless questions” working out for ya?

        • RobMcCune

          Quite well, since there is no missing link. It’s still a bit of a problem because morons believe in it, even though they can’t adequately define it.

          • Jstorm9000

            I’m not sure if you’re agreeing with me or mocking me, but I’m gonna go with mocking. So when did we discover that there’s no missing link? Did we lose the whole chain or something?

            • RobMcCune

              The idea that a “missing link” some how disproves evolution is ridiculous since numerous fossils predicted by evolution have been found, though we’re still waiting on the crocoduck. Even if there weren’t, there is plenty of evidence from comparative anatomy and physiology, embryology, and genetics.

              In fact the number “missing links” is n-1 where n is the number of forms that show evolution. This is because between two forms (ancient or modern) there is a gap. If a new fossil is found that shows transition between the two there are now 2 missing links, one between the current form and the newly discovered fossil, and a gap between the old fossil and the new one. The more discoveries of things creationists demand results in creationist demanding more discoveries as proof.

        • redscream5

          It’s funny to me that you pretend to be humble and “just a farm-boy” in other parts of these comments: but it’s fairly easy to see that you’re just a creationist troll at heart. You really should bother learning about the theory of evolution before you start criticizing it.

          Educate yourself. It’s not hard.

          • Jstorm9000

            Regurgitated lines, huh? I don’t know how we got here and I don’t care. That’s my line. Totally original. You wanna believe you came from an ape that’s great. Want a banana? Do I believe God created Man in his image and made him a special creation? Yes. If that’s not true does it change my theology? Not really. There is a God. I’m not him. He will judge the world one day. I pray he judges me to be in the right. That’s what I believe.

            Am I trolling your comments…maybe. But only because I like the intellectual stimulation. I try not to bait people too much because I’m trying to keep this an intellectual or at least mostly intellectual dialogue. Am I a farmboy? Yes I am. Raised growing cotton, soybeans, and corn in central Louisiana and NE Texas. I’m sure those “in the know” think they know what I am but they don’t have a clue.

            Since you know so much and are so obviously superior to me then by all means, educate me. I’m open to knowledge, but I choose what I believe and what I don’t.

            • http://harry-canary.myopenid.com/ Harry Canary

              You are not open to knowledge.  You have your closed mind and superior arrogance which is not possible to educate. 

              And when he talks about you recycling arguments from the ’80′s you realize that is the 1880′s.  Your arguments were old and stale then.  If anything the fossil record is more complete now.

              • jstorm9000

                Not superior, just picky. I choose what I believe and what I don’t. I’m mostly ignorant on probably 95% of the stuff you’ve all been talking about, I’m just making conversation at this point. I don’t have time to research all of this because I don’t care. It isn’t going to change what I believe.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/John-OBrien/100001338658769 John O’Brien

      Huh?

    • http://religiouscomics.net/ Jeff P

      Intelligent Design can be fully defined and described in three words.  “God did it”.  As a theory, it doesn’t have much descriptive detail.  It doesn’t predict anything.  It doesn’t explain anything.  It really does nothing at all except for give believers a warm fuzzy feeling in their guts.  Scientific theories should be about more than that.

    • B_R_Deadite99

       Intelligent Design is anti-evolutionary nonsense; creationism by stealth. I.D. address biology, not cosmology, which is what the Big Bang relates. It has nothing to do with evolution whatsoever.

  • Tatsukun

    Okay, sorry, but as a teacher I just have to point out that the plural of “curriculum” is “curricula”, not “curriculums”. If you want to avoid the word curricula for some reason, you can go with “sets of course materials” if you like. FYI, it’s “syllabi” in case you are thinking of going there.

    Thank you, and sorry to be a pain.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Joseph-Hoffman/100000537946064 Joseph Hoffman

    So its not allowed in a science or history class.  So not even in a historical reference.  Now who are being exclusionary bigots.  Say what you want, cheer for whatever victory you wish but when you ban or outlaw the outlet of something as simple as this you now get to look like the bigoted know it all who knows best and could care less about debate or discussion much less actual openness of thought as you now make it clear you are willing to silence the opposing view point and not even allow it to be heard.  If you exclude either side of the argument or discussion you no longer get intellectual growth, you get brain washing and bigotry.

    • amycas

       The “debate,” if one could call such a one-sided argument such a thing, should be held in the scientific community, not in high schools with teenagers who do not understand all the science. If intelligent design can win the scientific debate, then it can be taught in schools as science. Why do you want to skip the scientific debate and go straight to teaching it to kids?

    • Mentos

       Reading comprehension is your friend.  Give it a go sometime, see how it works for you.  The snippet in red up there doesn’t say anything about denying the existence of creationism or intelligent design.  It says it can’t be taught “AS” science, which is absolutely correct, since it isn’t.  By definition theocracy and science are mutually exclusive.  One requires experimentation, theory, scientific method, and a whole slew of people trying their level best to disprove theories.  If after exhaustive effort, a theory is not disproved, then and only then can it be accepted as valid.  The other only requires you to believe it hard enough ….

      No one says that theology has no place.  It would be irresponsible to dismiss the existence of it.  But to call it “fact” or “science” is incredibly irresponsible and it should not be taught “AS FACT” in public, state-funded schools.

      There’s already a place that deals exclusively in all manners of faith and theology.  That place is called a church.  If people want a heaping dose of it, they’re free to go there.  Public schools, on the other hand, are filled with people from all faiths (and no faith).  They go to school to learn, not to be indoctrinated.

      There is no “other side of the issue”.  Science is not an opinion, therefore cannot be argued.  Theories can certainly be disproved, but not debated.  And that’s why faith and science do not belong together.  You can’t disprove someone’s faith any more than they can prove it.

      And besides, whose faith should get taught, anyway?  Should it be Christianity?  Should it be Islam?  What about Buddhism, maybe that’s the one?  Or maybe it should be Wicca?  Hell, even amongst a single faith, there are so many interpretations of the SAME SOURCE MATERIAL that members can’t even agree among themselves.  How many denominations of Christianity are there right now?  Which one of those is the right one to teach in school?

      This was the right move.  The only “facts” represented by faith are the acts committed in the name of God, and of course those are a part of history.  Events should be taught, but only in the respect that they did occur.  How those peoples’ interpretation of faith motivated them to commit these acts is better left to the theology department.

      • Jstorm9000

        So when was it disproved that the Universe was created?

        • Mentos

          Who said it was?

        • redscream5

          Never dis-proven.

          It’s just an unsupportable assumption in the first place. You try to limit your assumptions in science. Occam’s Razor.

          • Jstorm9000

            What is Occam’s Razor?

            • Godlesspanther

              Something that the grown-ups talk about. It’s past your bed time. 

              • Jstorm9000

                If you are going to be a dick about it, then shove off. I asked because I didn’t know. Since when are science minded atheists against explaining things to us moronic god-believers?

                • http://harry-canary.myopenid.com/ Harry Canary

                  Reading your first post you have no right to complain about anyone being a dick, but then again CONservatives are the biggest whiners in the world whenever anyone pushes back against their trash.

                  And as far a Occam’s Razor goes, there is this thing called the Google.  It is your friend if you are not too lazy to use it.

                • jstorm9000

                  Yeeeaaaaah, see, I was thinking that one of you could just give me the Reader’s Digest version of it, but apparently I’m not smart enough for you to break it down into small enough words for me to understand.

                • ZeroKaiser

                  If you would pull your head out of your ass and spend 5 seconds on Google you could skip the part where people have to explain simple concepts to you and maybe stop being an embarrassment to your faith.

                • jstorm9000

                  I know plenty about my faith. How about you pull your head out of yoru ass and spend 5 seconds looking at the world around you so you can skip the part where someone as stupid as myself has to explain simple concepts to you like God and maybe stop being an embarrassment to the human species.

                • Godlesspanther

                  I agree with the others who have suggested that you look it up and get several different views on Occam’s Razor. While you are at it, look up ‘parsimony’ and ‘falsifiability.’

                  Get a good understanding of these three things and then come back for a better discussion. 

                • jstorm9000

                  How about you keep your sanctimonious attitude? Has it ever crossed your mind that maybe I don’t know about all this crap you’re talking about because I really don’t think it’s that necessary to living a full and healthy life? So you can quote some dead guy or talk about PHILOSOPHIES that have been around for hundreds of years. Where is the original thinking? I know you have your little sub-culture that you’re trying to preserve and you want to keep us lesser mortals out of it by being so high-minded, but if you’re too educated to even speak in plain English and then you’re a jerk when someone asks you to explain then it makes me REALLY glad that I’m not in the same league with you or as “well read” as you. It sounds like, to me, the more “well read” you are (by Ivy League standards) then the more you decide that you don’t need God or even the most obvious notions of morality and clean living. I’ll keep my ignorance, thank you very much, and be happy. Tolstoy and the Brahmin.

            • Carine Clary

              There’s this thing called Google.  Look it up, dingbat.

        • RobMcCune

          Creationism is unfalsifiable, any way the world works could have been created, that is why it’s an article of faith, not an answer.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/John-OBrien/100001338658769 John O’Brien

    We won this round!

  • Bubbe70

    New Orleans is the only bright spot in that state. Props, Sir, good job.

    • Jstorm9000

      I’m guessing you’ve never been to New Orleans?

  • strangeday

    This is an excellent bit of news!

  • Epratz

    N.O. has segmented it’s education by forming charter schools. The O.P. School Board does not lead those schools, so not all N.O. schools will follow this directive.

  • redscream5

    Man… Lewis was a decent writer, but a horrible apologist and theologian… 

  • redscream5

    You didn’t bother to read the article did you?

    I’d hate to say that this is typical… but…

  • WoodyTanaka

    Oh, and yet another reason to love the Crescent City.  Laissez les bons temps rouler!!!

  • Carine Clary

    I went to a Protestant parochial school in New Orleans back in the day.  We had religion classes and we had science classes.  And they were two different classes.  Nuff said.

    Kudos to Robichaux and his Twitter comment!

  • Phelix22

    anyone notice it says teaching creationism as science, it can still be taught, just not as science, pretty big loophole

  • SeekerLancer

    Cue the Christian spin doctors trying to find new ways to weasel their crap into schools in Louisiana.

  • Mdwelch27

    Could we get this guy’s e-mail address.  He and the Board deserve a big “way-to-go”  They could use a little support to counterbalnce all of the shit they are likely to catch in the coming weeks and months.

  • Raymond J. Campo

    Robichaux scores a HUGE win for a better tommorrow-Diggin it

  • http://www.undertherainbow.us Ralyn Speerly Schraceo

    How about if they get rid of their bogus theory that we came from monkeys while they are at it. Maybe their uncle was a monkey but mine sure wasn’t.

    • Ryan

      ^This is a perfect example of someone who rejects evolution because they have absolutely no clue what it is.

  • Nicole Youngman

    New Orleans is very much its own place, despite the fact that we are technically in Louisiana. It’s a big bright blue dot in a big red state (although actually Baton Rouge and a few other parishes [counties] went blue-dot this last time around too). It’s also worth noting that our school system is one huge experiment at the moment, with over 80% of our kids in charter schools, and that people statewide are beyond furious at the Jindal administration for constantly cutting education funding to the bone and deeper. Obviously I’m thrilled to hear that our school board has decided to symbolically whack Jindal et al upside the head, but this isn’t a place where religious wingnuts have had the kind of power they usually have in the rest of the South anyway (and to be fair he’s not a religious wingnut, just an economic conservative from hell).

    Jstorm, sorry you didn’t like it here. Not everyone does, and it does tend to be a love-it-or-hate-it kind of place. There is certainly a helluva lot of political corruption here, though I daresay our current mayor is worlds better than what we’ve had before. It sounds to me though like you weren’t a good fit culturally–perhaps you should have tried to learn a bit more from those folks who kept telling you you had to be here a long time to really “get” the place, and we are definitely colorful and quirky (mostly but not always in a good way). And we’re a little defensive about such things since Katrina–too many people from elsewhere being too judgmental about everything we’ve been through and why.

    • jstorm9000

      I appreciate your candor…and the lack of venom in your words. It was probably a cultural thing, like you say, but for me a very large part of it was how every issue, it seemed, was turned into a Black vs. White issue. Every time any kind of controversy happened, it was turned racial and it made. me. SICK. I got SO tired of hearing how bad New Orleans had it and how nobody understood and how nobody else knew what they were going through…it was a whine a minute! Please don’t misunderstand me, what happened in New Orleans was terrible, but Katrina was over 200 MILES wide when it hit…more than just New Orleans was wiped out but that’s all anybody ever talked about was New Orleans! I didn’t see people rallying together to rebuild their city, unfortunately. Most of what I saw, even from people who were well off, was a wringing of the hands and a finger pointed at someone else laying the blame. That’s what turned me off to New Orleans more than anything else.

      My dad moved to Biloxi after Katrina and you know what? They picked up the pieces and they moved on. They didn’t sit around and whine about it or say that Bush bombed the levees or the sea wall or the canals or whatever. There was about a 50 mile stretch of the beach that runs from Ocean Springs to Pass Christian that just simply vanished. Every house. Every building. Even the sand from the beach had to be brought back in because the storm surge washed it away. I drove down that road a year after the storm and still there were only concrete pylons left where many of the largest, sturdiest hotels had been. I never once heard anyone talk about it being the government’s fault that they weren’t better off or anything of the sort. Even when the city council was jerking everybody around about building standards-took them over two years, I think, to finally settle how high the new buildings had to be-the people of the city were like, “Screw you, man! We’re rebuilding and we dare you to stop us!” And the rebuilt their homes however they saw fit.

      I don’t know, you know. I’m a different kinda person and I’ll freely admit that I’m pretty picky about certain things. I went to NOLA expecting a new life and my life was actually destroyed. Maybe if I would have been better off it would have been more tolerable.

      • Nicole Youngman

        Well, you’ve just demonstrated a very deep level of ignorance and a profound lack of willingness to even try and understand what we went through, so I suspect those folks who pissed you off so much were largely right. If you went around saying shit like that it’s no wonder people were angry at/around you all the time. What happened to us and what happened to the MS Coast were both tragic but they were not the same thing at all. There are a host of excellent studies of the storm out there now that it’s been several years, so if you’d like to educate yourself further I suggest you start with Jed Horne’s _Breach of Faith_ and Ivor Van Heerden’s _The Storm_ and go from there.

  • Cricket

    It’s interesting that creationism is such a target. I think scientific study and research should always be able to question it’s own theories and constantly search for the truth. But lets be fair, The Theory of Evolution as it is taught in text books today has outdated facts and information that is no longer 100% correct. And I’m not talking about current discoveries, I’m talking about 20 year old discoveries. It simply leaves out a lot and disregards possible issues. Honestly, It reads just like a fairy tale as well. All science text books start with “a long long time ago…” it might as well continue with “in a land far far away”. Not that I feel that one theory should be taught over another. But at least in the presence of another theory, scientists and children who will grow into scientist will have something to debate and galvanize them to search for the truth. It would be very refreshing to see scientists start challenging their theories, find new ways to measure the true age of rocks, fossils, etc. and examine historical texts as well. Even if a civilization accounted a phenomenon to a god, there was a scientific reason for it, that might shed more light on current theories. The truth is out there. We shouldn’t discourage thoughts that are different from ours but constantly examine what we hold to be true. We are supposed to be growing as a civilization, but instead we are just banning what doesn’t agree with us.

    • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

      I think scientific study and research should always be able to question it’s own theories and constantly search for the truth.

      It does. Highschool classrooms are not a place for research however. And highschool students by and large aren’t expected to be making new scientific discoveries. A very few really brilliant ones do, but not during class time. They do it on their own.

      The Theory of Evolution as it is taught in text books today has outdated facts and information that is no longer 100% correct.

      Judging from how poorly so many Americans understand evolution, even many who support it, I’d venture to say that it is often taught very poorly. I’m not sure if that’s the fault of the textbooks, or the teachers who have been convinced that there’s some sort of controversy over its validity.

      Not that I feel that one theory should be taught over another.

      There is only one theory that explains the diversity of life on this planet. There are many myths, and there are many things that claim to disprove evolution, but there is no actual testable falsifiable bona fide scientific theory to explain the diversity of life other than evolution. Even the ID people will tell you that (and if you really want I can find the clip in the PBS documentary “Evolution on Trial” about the Dover PA case). Until (and I’m not holding my breath) the ID folks can come up with their own explanation, there is only one game in town- evolution.

      But at least in the presence of another theory, scientists and children who will grow into scientist will have something to debate and galvanize them to search for the truth.

      Again, there is no ‘other theory’. People can discuss the various creation myths, including Genesis in a social sciences class, but they’re not appropriate in a biology class. They are not scientific theories because they cannot be tested. For every “God did it” there is a “No, MY god did it!”

      It would be very refreshing to see scientists start challenging their theories, find new ways to measure the true age of rocks, fossils, etc. and examine historical texts as well.

      They are. That’s why the margin of error for the known age of the earth has shrunk. The same goes for the age of the universe.

      We are supposed to be growing as a civilization, but instead we are just banning what doesn’t agree with us.

      There are a lot of things that we used to think are true, but we now don’t. We don’t need to ban the geocentric model of the universe, or the demon theory of disease. There is no value in wasting time considering whether maybe the earth really IS the center of the universe. We know it’s not. Move on. Advance. Grow.

      • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

        Here’s that video I mentioned (It’s actually ‘Intelligent Design on Trial”) I highly recommend watching the whole thing to perhaps understand why in a federal court, in front of a conservative (Reagan appointed) Judge, ID failed miserably. The part about ID not having a theory of its own is at the 1:29:00 mark. But the segment before that is pretty amusing, especially for anyone saying “missing link!”

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8hTZ5AYzs8o

  • Robert

    What a nightmare, school districts are mandating that schools deny God int classroom.

  • Liam

    I disagree with completely writing off the revisionist history textbooks. In my high school IB History classes, we had some revisionist textbooks in the mix in order for us to be able to critically identify revisionism and comment on it. (In my class, single-sourcing a paper, ESPECIALLY if the source was our primary textbook, was tantamount to writing the paper in txt spk, and had a similar effect on the grade.)

    • Liam

      Most starkly, our US-published history book (I’m Canadian) had a tendency to whitewash anything that mildly resembled a US military defeat. It sometimes came dangerously close to “after the devastating rout(strike-through) DRAW, the enemy pressed their advantage and the good guys attempted to regroup and recover.”

  • SarScar

    Having called New Orleans home for eight years, it felt as though my stomach did a little flip of joy when I read this article. New Orleans is an extraordinary city in so many ways–glad to know it’s rectifying some of the nonsense.

  • http://squeakysoapbox.com/ Rich Wilson

    AHA had an action alert to thank Thomas Robichaux. Over 1800 did. His response:

    To all of the members of the American Humanist Association: Thank you so very much for all of the notes of support and and thanks regarding the Orleans Parish School Board passing our policies banning religion in science classes. The response to this has been overwhelming! As school board members, our jobs are usually thankless. Once again I thank you for showing your support and appreciation. These policies have been long overdue, and I am very proud to have gotten them passed before my term of office ends.

  • http://www.facebook.com/lance.larsen.35 Lance Larsen

    Sounds like Jstorm9000 is a little pissed off about his fairy tales being banned from the schools and labeled for what they really are. Let the ignorance, hate and bigotry of your christianity spew forth.


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