The facts of evolution may be written in stone and bone and DNA, but close to half the American public “accepts a biblical creationist account of the origins of life,” according to the Pew Research Center for People & the Press. Evolution is just one front in a broader conflict between science and individual belief. Climate change is another: according to a 2009 Pew survey, about half of Americans doubt that human activity contributes to global warming, despite strong scientific evidence that it does. Smart and caring parents, swayed by a purported though discredited link between vaccines and autism, are refusing to immunize their children… While doubters of evolution are often linked to the political or religious right, the rejection of science knows no social, economic, or ideological bounds.
Over at the CSICOP website, a new Sounds Sciencey by Sharon Hill: Astrology, More Like Religion Than Science. A great series, every month – do keep it in your RSS feed.
You should also check out her Doubtful blogpost – Skeptic outreach: Talking to kids about the end of the world:
Back in March, our local YMCA asked parents to volunteer to be guest speakers for their teen summer camp. I suppose most adults are called in to talk about their jobs or their hobbies, but I saw an opportunity to talk to kids about critical thinking. Specifically, about the 2012 Mayan apocalypse. My own daughter (13 at the time) had expressed curiosity about the Mayan calendar and the end of the world prediction…
And on the topic of education I haven’t posted a link to Jonny Scaramanga’s latest YouTube video on the ACE yet – here it is: Leaving Fundamentalism: The War on Reason.