Bill in Mississippi would permit the teaching of creationism in public schools.

Bill in Mississippi would permit the teaching of creationism in public schools. February 15, 2016

Rep. Mark Formby (I’ll let you guess his political party, but it rhymes with Bepublican) has introduced a bill in Mississippi that would permit the teaching of creationism in public schools until a Dover-like trial put a stop to it:

House Bill 50 “encourages students to explore scientific questions” and allows teachers to discuss “weaknesses” in the approved curriculum.

Funny story: it’s not for high school science teachers and 9th graders getting their first test of the scientific basics to decide what is established science.  That’s for people with PhDs who have spent well over a decade poring over the scientific literature and conducting well-informed experiments.  The process is called peer-review, and that’s not what takes place in a high school intro to biology classroom.

If legit weaknesses to a scientific fact or theory exist, it’s on scientists to find them — not on high schoolers, most of whom have no clue what RNA is.  It’s up to high schoolers to learn established science, and on teachers to teach it.

While the text claims it does not promote religious doctrine, one of its sponsors admitted the bill is geared toward allowing educators to teach creationism in science classes.

“I just don’t want my teachers punished in any form or fashion for bringing creationism into the debate. Lots of us believe in creationism,” Rep. Mark Formby told the Clarion-Ledger newspaper. “To say that creationism as a theory is any less valuable than any other theory that nobody can scientifically prove I just think is being close-minded.”

No, it’s factually accurate.  Creationism has no experiment to support it, no paper that has passed peer-review.  The theory has not survived the gauntlet, so to speak, that evolution has.  While evolution is a scientific theory in much the same way gravity is a scientific theory, creationism is most certainly not.

The National Center for Science Education said the bill opens the door to letting educators teach just about anything.

The bill “would, if enacted, allow science teachers with idiosyncratic opinions to teach anything they pleased — and prohibit responsible educational authorities from intervening,” the organization said.

Such views would include those shared by Formby, who in another interview dismissed the Big Bang theory while also showing that he doesn’t seem to understand it.

“I don’t want every student to be taught that the Big Bang theory is the rule but I don’t mind them discussing that. In fact I want them to discuss that,” Formby told WTVA. “Because from my opinion the more they discuss it the more ludicrous they will find that there was nothing — nothing exploded and created everything.”

Ah, that feeling when people who don’t understand the basic science want to override actual scientists in terms of what gets taught and, rather than getting laughed at, they get elected to positions of law-making authority.  #Murica

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