Intelligent Design and the Alaska Governor’s Race

Just when I thought it was safe to go to Alaska I find this news via Evolution Research – General Evolution News:

The volatile issue of teaching creation science in public schools popped up in the Alaska governor’s race this week when Republican Sarah Palin said she thinks creationism should be taught alongside evolution in the state’s public classrooms.
Palin was answering a question from the moderator near the conclusion of Wednesday night’s televised debate on KAKM Channel 7 when she said, ‘Teach both. You know, don’t be afraid of information. Healthy debate is so important, and it’s so valuable in our schools. I am a proponent of teaching both.’


The Anchorage Daily News has more:

In an interview Thursday, Palin said she meant only to say that discussion of alternative views should be allowed to arise in Alaska classrooms:
“I don’t think there should be a prohibition against debate if it comes up in class. It doesn’t have to be part of the curriculum.”
She added that, if elected, she would not push the state Board of Education to add such creation-based alternatives to the state’s required curriculum.
Members of the state school board, which sets minimum requirements, are appointed by the governor and confirmed by the Legislature.
“I won’t have religion as a litmus test, or anybody’s personal opinion on evolution or creationism,” Palin said.

*snip*

Palin said she thought there was value in discussing alternatives.
“It’s OK to let kids know that there are theories out there,” she said in the interview. “They gain information just by being in a discussion.”
That was how she was brought up, she said. Her father was a public school science teacher.
“My dad did talk a lot about his theories of evolution,” she said. “He would show us fossils and say, ‘How old do you think these are?’ ”
Asked for her personal views on evolution, Palin said, “I believe we have a creator.”
She would not say whether her belief also allowed her to accept the theory of evolution as fact.
“I’m not going to pretend I know how all this came to be,” she said.

Doesn’t like someone I would be much interested in voting for if I lived in Alaska…
Update 1: Wow, who knew this old post would suddenly become relevant again. At any rate, when I got home from a long day at work and a function to attend afterward I discovered that it had. A few comments were caught by the spam filter because of links and I have published them. Josh offers his take on the subject as does Wesley both are worth reading.
To those who are trying to argue that the fossil record does not support evolution I can only say that you know absolutely nothing about the fossil record. You should take the time to become acquainted with the fossil record before saying such things, It will save you a lot of needless embarrassment. Since the primary focus of this blog is human evolution you can start here or here.
Update 2: Also Jason here and Bora has collected some links here. Brian has his say here.

107 Responses

  1. I’m still waiting for someone on the other side, anyone, who supports evolution, after hearing this deliberately created line “..alternative views should be allowed to arise in classrooms..” actually respond that:
    1. Alternate views have to be legitimate first and proven.
    2. That just because someone proposes that 1+1=5 doesn’t mean it has the right to be pushed in classrooms.
    and finally…
    3. If we allowed ID or creationism in schools then we might as well allow cabbage patches and stork deliveries into science classes as alternative theories to human reproduction.
    Both are just as valid as sex so why not? Teach the !@#$&! controversy! YOU WERE BORN IN A CABBAGE PATCH!
    MYOB’
    .

  2. And John McCain wants her to be the Vice President.

  3. I’m fine with creationism being taught in school, as long as they add a unit on Lamarckian evolution, and also require all churches to dedicate services to reading from On the Origin of Species.

  4. Where’s the Phlogiston Theory of Combustion in my chemistry class?

  5. “FoxNews source releases information that Governor Sarah Palin is McCains VP pick. Fox News claims McCain Camp has verified by email. ”
    http://elections.foxnews.com/2008/08/29/mccain-to-name-running-mate-on-friday/
    Febble made these points at Talk Rational:
    –She won’t bring in Hillary supporters because she’s anti-abortion.
    –She disables the attacks on Obama’s lack of experience because she doesn’t have any.
    –She’s embroiled in a scandal.
    –She’s rich.
    –She disables the attacks on Michelle Obama for following the campaign trail because she’s got small children, including a baby with Down’s.
    –Her lack of experience counts especially because McCain is old and sick.
    –Biden will make mincemeat of her in a debate.
    And she supports the teaching of creationism in schools.
    http://www.talkrational.org/showthread.php?p=145404#post145404

  6. Wow, if you people would actually bother to read what she said she basically said that if a student asks about creationism it should be open to discussion. Only a closed-minded zealot should have any problem with that.

  7. Wow, if you people would actually bother to read what she said she basically said that if a student asks about creationism it should be open to discussion. Only a closed-minded zealot should have any problem with that.
    And just what exactly would the discussion be???
    Student: “Did God create everything in seven days?”
    Teacher: “No.”
    End of discussion.
    Seriously, what is a science teacher supposed to discuss about creationism? It doesn’t come into play at all regarding evolution. If someone wants to teach their kid that evolution is false then so be it, but just because people want to believe wacky things doesn’t mean that science has to give it any credence whatsoever.

  8. I certainly don’t want to appear to be defending teaching ID in schools but I seems to me Palin’s position is pretty mild. I mean, let’s summarize:
    First she says teach both. That’s concerning but then she quickly backs off and makes it clear that she only meant that it shouldn’t be prohibited in debate. She specifically states “It doesn’t have to be part of the curriculum.” She then goes further by stating that it wouldn’t be part of her agenda to push teaching ID in classrooms. Nor would one’s views on the subject be a litmus test for her when appointing people to the state school board.
    I’d agree that her “teach both” comment and her apparent willingness to treat both as equally valid scientific theories is a bit worrisome. But she hardly seems dogmatic about it.

  9. Many Hillary supporters supported her solely because she was a woman and very few listed Hillary’s pro-abortion position as the primary reason for her support. Hillary has waffled on that position throughout her career.
    As for experience, experience as a mayor and governor trumps that of a Jr. Senator who’s never actually there.
    Her scandal is nothing in comparison to Obama’s relationships with racist Rev. Wright and terrorist Bill Ayers.
    Obama is rich. Most people in the US view being rich as a measure of success. Only dolts that are miserable failures themselves hold it against someone.
    Biden is a complete non-factor. A pro-abortion Catholic? Get real. He’s a joke and a terrible choice. That’s why he was a non-factor when he was a candidate to begin with.

  10. There’s literal Creationism and then there’s the belief that there’s a God behind all of creation. They are 2 very different things. Literal creationism has been proven false by science. I’d have no problem with schools teaching that contrary to that some people still believe in it – as long as there’s a pretty inclusive list of all the science that’s being dismissed as part of the conversation.
    The idea that an intelligent being is behind all of creation can neither be proven or disproven conclusively. There’s nothing wrong with teaching just that.

  11. I do not care for the idea of American children being permitted theological debates in public school settings. If parents are interested in making sure their children learn religious points of view, they need to do it in the home or in the church. There is a time and a place, but I would not want my child to have to sit through such a debate in class, because personally, I believe in none of it, and I would rather they spend the time on empirical science.

  12. Science teachers are educated in the ‘theory’ of evolution but what education do they have to facilitate a discussion on creationism? Did they major in Science and minor in Theology? Teachers in a public school can’t be expected to have this background, that’s what Catholic or private religious schools are for.

  13. “Her scandal is nothing in comparison to Obama’s relationships with racist Rev. Wright and terrorist Bill Ayers.”
    You’re telling me that there is more that concerns you in the fact that Obama listened to another person’s opinion than there would be in the potential of electing another Republican who has shown a willingness to abuse the power of their office for personal gain?
    You must be one of the few people in the country who benefited from the Bush years. I don’t fear your kind, because you are a Parrot.

  14. No one, especially Palin is suggesting that ID or Creationism become part of the curriculum, that the classroom is hi-jacked for some long-winded debate or that any theology is taught (although technically evolution is theology). All one poster merely suggested is the acknowledgment that many people believe that there is a god responsible for creation.

  15. We need to keep religion in the churches and science in the classroom.

  16. @Hello – “…technically evolution is theology”
    How do you figure? Evolution is the process that describes change over time of living creatures. Theology is studying god and religion. I fail to see the connection.

  17. “Many Hillary supporters supported her solely because she was a woman and very few listed Hillary’s pro-abortion position as the primary reason for her support. Hillary has waffled on that position throughout her career.
    As for experience, experience as a mayor and governor trumps that of a Jr. Senator who’s never actually there.
    Her scandal is nothing in comparison to Obama’s relationships with racist Rev. Wright and terrorist Bill Ayers.
    Obama is rich. Most people in the US view being rich as a measure of success. Only dolts that are miserable failures themselves hold it against someone.
    Biden is a complete non-factor. A pro-abortion Catholic? Get real. He’s a joke and a terrible choice. That’s why he was a non-factor when he was a candidate to begin with.”
    Spoken like a Spoon Fed Faux News Republican. Put down the Rush for a second. Palin’s experience trumps Obama’s experience? Really, based on what? Being involved with misusing authority pales in comparison to knowing a few so called ‘radicals’, really? I doubt you know what most people in the USA think. I won’t claim to. Obama doesn’t come from Money or Privilege, he wrote some books that sold pretty well. You may be correct about the PUMAs, all 2 or 3 dozen but otherwise, you and John McCain are wrong.

  18. “All one poster merely suggested is the acknowledgment that many people believe that there is a god responsible for creation.”
    On behalf of all of us who support teaching evolution as science, and continuing the thousands-of-years-old practice of letting families and religious communities teach their views on their own time, to people who choose to hear it…
    We hereby acknowledge that you believe there is a God responsible for creation.
    Now, leave the children of everyone else alone. This should end the discussion right?

  19. Here’s a woman, now vote for me!
    – John McCain

  20. There’s literal Creationism and then there’s the belief that there’s a God behind all of creation. They are 2 very different things. Literal creationism has been proven false by science. I’d have no problem with schools teaching that contrary to that some people still believe in it – as long as there’s a pretty inclusive list of all the science that’s being dismissed as part of the conversation.
    The idea that an intelligent being is behind all of creation can neither be proven or disproven conclusively. There’s nothing wrong with teaching just that.
    Evolution doesn’t deal with the “beginning of time” or “what’s behind all of creation” that you are alluding to. So that topic is irrelevant to the conversation and still doesn’t belong in science class alongside Evolution. So your entire point is moot.

  21. I have to say the “let them debate” stance makes my skin crawl because it does nothing to stop a wacko bio teacher from telling all the kids that, evolution is just a theroy anyway and we all know that God made everything is 7 days.

  22. So, to be fair and balanced would any religious gatherings that teach Creation be required to also have an E&E prof from a reputable university in to teach evolution. (Yeah, I know… Just making a point.)
    Religion says, “Trust me on this.”
    Science says, “Make me prove this.”

  23. First she says teach both. That’s concerning but then she quickly backs off and makes it clear that she only meant that it shouldn’t be prohibited in debate.
    Exactly: she panders to the Christian Reich, then weasels out of it, as her political convenience demands. Just like Bush and McSame.

  24. Creationism is a religious belief, not a scientific one. It depends on accepting certain untestable truths. Evolution depends, as all scientific theories do, on whether or not there’s any evidence for it.
    Because Creationism depends on the existence of a God Who transcends time and space there is, by definition, no evidence available (since, again by definition, evidence does have to exist in time and space).
    K-12 teachers don’t get training in “creationism” for the same reasons they don’t get training in “Flat-Earth Theory” or in teaching the creation stories from the Bible — or in the real truth that, of course, the world is suspended in the infinite branches of the great Ash Tree Ygdrasil. None of these stories or content areas are required nor appropriate to a science class curriculum.
    *I* teach creationism in logic classes as providing wonderful examples of fallacious reasoning — most fallacies are designed to deceive the listener. The kinds of fallacious reasoning used in Creationist arguments have the added dimension of deceiving the speaker as well.
    I guess the real question is whether we want a Vice President who doesn’t even understand the pretty simple set of positions I just outlined — and I have a high school education.
    hiho

  25. You are ALL missing the point.
    McSame picked Pallin because she makes his reported 5’7″ (5’5″) look almost tall.
    (McSame WOULD have been taller but he was a POW).

  26. McCain’s choice of Palin is a “Hail Mary pass.”

  27. How have so many people forgotten reality?! It is the THEORY of evolution, not the fact of evolution. This belief system requires FAITH, just like every other theory. Those who hold to one particular theory tend to count that theory as fact or truth. Doing the research – unbiased research – will reveal the truth behind the theory of evolution and the many, many holes in it that discredit it’s trustworthiness. It’s shameful that the public school system can’t admit it’s mistake in teaching this belief system as fact. What happened to teaching information? Leave the belief systems to individual discern and choice of faith!

  28. evolution is a religious belief, not a scientific one. it is the creation myth of atheism. As miller admitted:
    “Darwin knew that accepting his theory required believing in philosophical materialism, the conviction that matter is the stuff of all existence and that all mental and spiritual phenomena are its by-products. Darwinian evolution was not only purposeless but also heartless–a process in which the rigors of nature ruthlessly eliminate the unfit. Suddenly, humanity was reduced to just one more species in a world that cared nothing for us. The great human mind was no more than a mass of evolving neurons. Worst of all, there was no divine plan to guide us.” (Biology: Discovering Life, by Joseph S. Levine & Kenneth R. Miller (1st edition, D.C. Heath and Co., 1992), pg. 152; emphasis in original)

  29. as far as evidence, there is none for evolution. The fossil record does not show it, thus the need for punctuated equilibrium, and the biological big bang. Nor can it be seen today. examples of ‘evolution’ such as bacterial resistance to anti-biotics, are merely ‘micro’ evolution which does not add up to ‘macro’ evolution.
    the best that a Darwinist as prominent as Professor Francisco Ayala of UC Irvine could come up with as examples of evolution in action was: (1) bacterial resistance to antibiotics; (2) insect resistance to pesticides; and (3) the evolution of fur coloring of desert rodents. (Ayala, “Darwin’s Greatest Discovery: Design without designer,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (May 2007).)
    there is no there there. except the faith of atheism

  30. MH-
    I don’t know if you just kidding or what but I am going to go in to this because work is boring. Evolution is a FACT, we know this because wild Poodles never roamed the earth. The theory part you so foolishly discard is Natural Selection. A theory is science is GREATER then a fact, a theory is a working explaination for why something is a fact or why something is. The theory of evolution is a strong one supported by MASIVE amounts of evendence. Are there things we don’t understand or are unsure of hell yes that is what makes Science fun. Some day we will figure those things out so a whole new world of problems can be sovled.

  31. Hey, Backpacker! Did you read “t”? Hmmm, perhaps you should RE-research your “facts” before exposing your faith in evolution as “truth” with “MASIVE” amounts of “evendence”. It’s a wonderful thing that you get to express your religious beliefs, just don’t expect everyone else to adhere to your version of “truth”. Your exert MORE faith to believe in evolution than those who place their faith in God. Think about it. If you want to disprove creationism, then do the necessary work a scientist would to disprove a theory. And you must not forget that the research shall be UNBIASED!

  32. @MH…are you daft? That evolution happens is a FACT. The scientific “theory” of evolution by natural selection and common descent is so much stronger of an idea and ranks up there with the “theory” of gravity and the germ “theory” of disease, both of which you enjoy the benefits of today. Put down the bible and pick up a science book and stop spouting what you learn in church, whilst looking like a fool. Alas, another ignoramus who doesn’t know the definiton of scientific theory. Cheers.

  33. t-
    What stops micro evolution + time from turning in to Macro evolution. And I hate to say it to you but that crap about the fossil record not showing evolution is all Lies. Tektalic to name one example. There are also a whole slew of creatures from the same place in Canada that illistrate evolution veary well. The evolution of the human skull is another good one even though you need to know some stuff to see it in the skulls.

  34. There’s a deeper issue than Gov. Palin’s preference to have Intelligent Design taught or maybe just discussed in public schools; she believes in it. After eight years of an administration that has done serious violence to scientific investigation, would we want to have as vice president (or maybe president) a person who rejects modern scientific theory?

  35. I thought that is why people voted for republicans. Reality is scarry better to not except it.

  36. @MH
    Your last post is full of assertions without any evidence to justify your claims.
    In common usage, theory is typically synonymous with ‘conjecture.’ This is not the case with the scientific meaning of ‘theory’. A theory in science is an explanation that has predicative power and has been verified through experimental data. What you are referring to is called a hypothesis in the scientific lexicon.
    You cannot keep harping that its called the ‘theory’ of evolution (technically the theory of evolution by natural selection) because you are misrepresenting the meaning of the term.
    I would suggest that you read the wikipedia entry on the topic:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolution_as_theory_and_fact

  37. If she’s open to teaching alternatives, she should also be in favor of teaching that the world was created by the Flying Spaghetti Monster. His Noddliness accepts that other ways may be taught, but knows that none except His way are true.

  38. McCain picked her to appear more liberal. This doesn’t help him.
    As long as the majority of voters are educated and don’t follow aimlessly behind a party leader, I think we’ve got a good chance at avoiding 4 years of McCain and Palin.

  39. McCain himself has used Creationism-friendly language:


    Daily Star: Should intelligent design be taught in schools?
    McCain: I think that there has to be all points of view presented. But they’ve got to be thoroughly presented. So to say that you can only teach one line of thinking I don’t think is – or one belief on how people and the world was created – I think there’s nothing wrong with teaching different schools of thought.
    Daily Star: Does it belong in science?
    McCain: There’s enough scientists that believe it does. I’m not a scientist. This is something that I think all points of view should be presented.

  40. A few points – it’s called the “Theory of Evolution.” It’s a theory specifically because it’s not proven fact. Theology is the study of theory.
    There are a lot of scientific theories that theorize a creator. Science does not preclude the possibility of a creator. Anyone that thinks it does is simply a zealot.

  41. BTW, evolution also depends on untestable truths.

  42. Wow. As I peruse all the previous posts, it’s interesting how many spelling/grammatical errors appear in the posts of those who support evolution. I guess the defense of “science” is not necessarily an exercise in the other rigors of academia…
    Oh, and by the way; I’ll be enjoying eternity in the blissful presence of my Creator, and learning the infinite intricacies of REAL science. Y’all be sure an’ write…

  43. There seem to be some ideas, coming from IDers, that “theory” is a synonym for “dogma.”
    Theories are testable — and scientists test them all the time — including testing evolution (which holds up under test very well).
    Dogmas are either untestable, or their adherents have faith and refuse to test them. When others test them (where amenable) and disprove them, the dogmatists generally — and repeatedly ignore the evidence (aka “delusion”).
    Now that’s cleared up I’ll mention that, IMHO, Palin is just a cute Huckabee!
    😦

  44. @Reality (ironic name by the way)
    Here we go again…Evolution is a proven fact. The umbrella idea under which it falls is the called the Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection. Do your research. Gravity is a scientific theory. Germs causing disease is a scientific theory. Why does nobody call these only a “theory” and not a fact? Scientific theories are stronger than a few proven facts. Your misunderstanding of the definition of scientific theory (or just theory for short)really shows your ignorance. There are 0 (zero) scientific theories that propose a creator simply because science, by definition, only includes natural causes. You people are killing me with your trolling on a science blog.

  45. Anyone familiar with Inuit and Athabaskan creation myths? Those must be the two she’s talking about, right?

  46. Steven: It’s basically just Backpacker you’re referring to, I think. By the way, your creator is an asshole I wouldn’t want to spend 5 minutes with, let alone eternity.

  47. Give me a break on the spelling and grammar canard. This is a blog, no one cares, least of all me. If you really think you are going to die and then wake up in a new place where everything is happy you have bigger problems then spelling.

  48. “Oh, and by the way; I’ll be enjoying eternity in the blissful presence of my Creator, and learning the infinite intricacies of REAL science. Y’all be sure an’ write…”
    With all you looney bible-thumpers supposedly going to your so-called “heaven”, please… sign me up for hell.

  49. Bush is to Harriet Miers
    as McCain is to Sarah Palin

  50. Evolution is not a proven fact. It’s theory. It’s a theoretical explanation for a series of facts. If it were completely proven then man would be able to create life from non-living organisms or at least explain how it occurred. We can’t.

  51. Exactly: she panders to the Christian Reich, then weasels out of it, as her political convenience demands. Just like Bush and McSame.
    I suppose that’s one way to look at it. Who knows what is in her heart. My take was that she simply made an off-the-cuff remark during the debate that she probably just thought of as pragmatic. Then upon realizing that her response was being taken more literally than she intended, she clarified her position.
    Yes, it’s true politicians often weasel as you describe. But it’s also true that they sometimes stick to their guns and are unapologetic about issues that they feel strongly about. I think it’s significant that she didn’t do that here.
    In any case, nothing in the article suggests to me she’s a raving fundamentalist about the issue.

  52. Gravity is not a proven fact. It’s theory. It’s a theoretical explanation for a series of facts. If it were completely proven then man would be able to levitate or at least explain how gravity occurs. We can’t.

  53. Going back to the chicken and the egg debate again? Now where did that first egg come from? From some primordial snot that was struck by lightning? LOL, and Superman really came from Krypton? LOL! and there really is a giant flying saucer up there waiting to take us all and save us? LOL! Hey! watch out for “Manbearpig”. LOL again! Tell me this, if a 10 ton dinosaur can “evolve” wings, and they are my ancestors (LOL) then why can’t I fly? We wouldn’t be dependant on foreign oil. What other creature has to bundle up in heavy clothes every winter? Where’s my fur? We wouldn’t need Carharts. If rabbits have been chased and eaten by just about every carnivore, why haven’t they evolved ripping and tearing teeth, and sharp claws for defense? Hmmm? That would be a beneficial evolution, wouldn’t it? You don’t believe that God created the “chicken”, the “chicken” produced, nurtured and hatched the “egg”, and fed and raised its young? Too far-out for you, I guess. But, you believe in evolution…ROFLOL (rolling on the floor). Ah Gheez, I can hardly breathe, Haw Haaawwwwwwww!!!

  54. BTW, Miss Cogeniality also does not believe in global warming (surprised?) She sued the Feds to stop listing polar bears as an endangered species. Forget the melting ice cap and diminution in food supply and livable environment for the bears. I suppose she appeals to the “conservative base” because she continues their tradition of ignoring scientific fact, and attempting to construct theories that are contrary to the world we live in

  55. Evolution is an observed fact, and the theory of evolution is the theory that explains evolution.
    Gravity is an observed fact, and the theory of gravity is the theory that explains gravity.
    Evolution means “descent with heritable modifications”.
    Theory means “well-tested explanation of a wide variety of facts”.
    Go here, MH and your sockpuppet t, and learn. You should be ashamed of not knowing any basics, and mightily angry at your highschool teachers because they didn’t teach you any basics.
    I’m a paleobiologist, and to claim that the fossil record doesn’t show evolution is laughable. In the real world most of us live in, the fossil record doesn’t make the slightest sense without the theory of evolution, and fits that theory perfectly. For a start, go here — if you want more examples, just tell me.
    Like most people who aren’t evolutionary biologists, you have misunderstood what punctuated equilibrium means. It is the hypothesis (see the first link to learn what this word means) that, when looked at in very, very great detail (timescales of tens of thousands of years, instead of millions), lineages evolve at two different speeds, one very slow, the other faster. Both punk eek and strict gradualism occur in the fossil record (pdf).
    What can stop “microevolution” from adding up to “macroevolution”? A lack of time could. Are you a YEC?

    If you want to disprove creationism, then do the necessary work a scientist would to disprove a theory.

    Well, duh. Stupid design. Ever contemplated why your eyes are inside-out? Why we are born through a ring of bone? Why our hereditary information is stored in DNA, a substance that falls apart when stored in water, so that we spend lots of energy constantly repairing it — and sometimes making mistakes (mutations) in the repair process?
    Warning: if you say the Designer is ineffable, you have left science. If you appeal to the Fall, you’ll have to demonstrate that any such thing can even happen — good luck.

    There are a lot of scientific theories that theorize a creator.

    Name one.

    Science does not preclude the possibility of a creator.

    Indeed not. Instead, it makes the hypothesis that a creator exists unnecessary.

    BTW, evolution also depends on untestable truths.

    Name one.

    Oh, and by the way; I’ll be enjoying eternity in the blissful presence of my Creator

    How do you know?
    You don’t. You believe. You don’t know.

    Theories are testable — and scientists test them all the time — including testing evolution (which holds up under test very well).

    It would be so easy, oh cdesign proponentsists. Find a single rabbit skeleton in Silurian rock, and the theory of evolution would be in deep, deep trouble. What are you waiting for?

  56. “Going back to the chicken and the egg debate again? Now where did that first egg come from? From some primordial snot that was struck by lightning? LOL, and Superman really came from Krypton? LOL! and there really is a giant flying saucer up there waiting to take us all and save us? LOL! Hey! watch out for “Manbearpig”. LOL again! Tell me this, if a 10 ton dinosaur can “evolve” wings, and they are my ancestors (LOL) then why can’t I fly? We wouldn’t be dependant on foreign oil. What other creature has to bundle up in heavy clothes every winter? Where’s my fur? We wouldn’t need Carharts. If rabbits have been chased and eaten by just about every carnivore, why haven’t they evolved ripping and tearing teeth, and sharp claws for defense? Hmmm? That would be a beneficial evolution, wouldn’t it? You don’t believe that God created the “chicken”, the “chicken” produced, nurtured and hatched the “egg”, and fed and raised its young? Too far-out for you, I guess. But, you believe in evolution…ROFLOL (rolling on the floor). Ah Gheez, I can hardly breathe, Haw Haaawwwwwwww!!!”
    Wait let me get this straight, Your saying that the the idea of god one day deciding to create some chickens and shit them out of his ass is more reasonable then the possibility of evolution over the billions of years that the earth has exsisted. Makes alot of sense…..

  57. When I was pregnant with my second child and found she had a genetic disorder, my husband and I made a CHOICE to continue the pregnancy and also made a choice that I would quit my very demanding job as a county official in the rural Rockies in Colorado. We decided that our family and the welfare of both of our children came first.
    Frankly, I’m surprised that the Republican party as it exists today supports an adulterer and a mother who puts politics before her 5 children including one with a genetic abnormality.
    I’ve been all but driven out of the Republican party because I am not a Christian. I don’t get my morals from the Bible, but I know that McCain and Palin are highly immoral people by the standards of anyone who is TRULY pro-family.
    *********** This is for the strident Christians —–
    Steven, Skipper, the government of Iran believes in Creationism as well! They know for a fact that they are going to heaven while Christians, Jews, atheists, Buddhists etc are all going to HELL!
    The Imams and Mullahs all ROFLOL at YOUR ignorance.
    So keep looking forward to your deaths and your heavenly reward. (roflol) You are pretty darn funny.
    (Skipper, you would look more intelligent if you weren’t so ignorant about evolution — but then I guess you are making it up as you go along — sort of like the men who wrote your holy book.)

  58. I think we should also teach both theories of where babies originate, the theory of gestation and the theory of stork delivery.
    Anyone who cannot enrdorse a basic premise of science, who denies global warming and who thinks drilling will bring down energy prices is a dangerous ideologue. It makes her very Bushlike.

  59. Anyone familiar with Inuit and Athabaskan creation myths? Those must be the two she’s talking about, right?

    surprisingly, no, it’s not the Raven-Found-Naked-Pale-Blind-Humans-In-A-Seashell-And-Gave-Them-The-Sun-And-Moon-And-Salmon Creation Theory that she supports
    i know, i know. knock you over with a feather, right?

  60. “Palin was answering a question from the moderator near the conclusion of Wednesday night’s televised debate on KAKM Channel 7 when she said, ‘Teach both. You know, don’t be afraid of information. Healthy debate is so important, and it’s so valuable in our schools. I am a proponent of teaching both.'”
    What was the question? Her followup appears to be backpedalling away from a suggestion that creationism should be taught in schools.

  61. Even conservapedia acknowledges that micro and macro evolution both do happen.
    When your “science” is worse than their “science”…
    Seek help?

  62. I found the news article quoted:
    http://dwb.adn.com/news/politics/elections/story/8347904p-8243554c.html
    From Libertarian candidate’s response (“who intelligently designed the intelligent designer?”), the original question might have been something like “Should intelligent design be taught in public schools alongside evolution?”, but the article never actually supplies it. The Democrat’s response, as well as the news article’s opening paragraph (which you quoted) suggests that the original question could have included the term “creationism.”

  63. Evolution is fact. We can see fossils changing in successive geological strata, so species evolve. Darwin proposed a theory of evolution by means of natural selection. There is a lot of supporting evidence, but there are other proposed mechanisms, such as neutral shift. One good example of evolution is the polar bear. No one would confuse a polar bear and a brown bear, but basically they are still the same species. They are able in zoos to interbreed and produce fertile offspring (unlike the sterile mule hybrid of a horse and a donkey). How else can you explain this except by evolution and that polar bears and brown bears had a common ancestor perhaps 200,000 years ago?Scientific theories is what interests scientists. Theories explain facts. Without a theory, all you have is a large body of unconnected facts. Theories have to be based on more than ignorance and wishful thinking (such as ID and creationism), and the facts must not contradict theory.

  64. It’s very obvious that the pro-Palin influx does not represent regular scienceblogs.com readers (or science anything readers, for that matter).
    Is anybody willing to reveal which creationist/conservative blog/news-site posted the link to afarensis that brought y’all here?

  65. In the common usage, “theories” become “facts” when they are “proved.” In other words a fact is a “true” theory.
    This not how science uses the terms. To quote the late Steven J. Gould:

    Evolution is a theory. It is also a fact. And facts and theories are different things, not rungs in a hierarchy of increasing certainty. Facts are the world’s data. Theories are structures of ideas that explain and interpret facts. Facts do not go away when scientists debate rival theories to explain them. Einstein’s theory of gravitation replaced Newton’s, but apples did not suspend themselves in mid-air, pending the outcome. And humans evolved from ape-like ancestors whether they did so by Darwin’s proposed mechanism or by some other yet to be discovered.

    It really doesn’t matter how you define theory or fact because when scientists refer to the “Theory of evolution (by natural selection)” they use the scientific definitions not yours.
    You can still argue for creationism if you want, but please retire this argument because it is pure equivocation.

  66. Moreover, proof is something you can do mathematics and logic but in science, no such concept exists.

  67. I felt my comment from not long ago required some clarification.
    Some facts from conservapedia’s articles:
    – Macroevolution theory says that natural selection can lead to speciation.
    – Creationists accept natural selection.
    – Speciation is when microevolution on sub-populations of a species gets to the point of preventing reproduction between the sub-populations.
    – Creationists accept speciation.
    – So we have microevolution leading to speciation, which is (almost) conservapedia’s definition of macroevolution.
    All that using only the introductory paragraphs of the conservapedia articles:
    “microevolution”, “macroevolution”, “natural selection” and “speciation”.
    Am I missing something? Any logical fallacies anyone can point to?
    Seems too good to be true.
    .

  68. “How have so many people forgotten reality?! It is the THEORY of evolution, not the fact of evolution. This belief system requires FAITH, just like every other theory.”
    Wrong. “Faith” is NOT required where evidence is present. Evidence and ‘fact’ are the same thing. Creationism has neither. Christians who try to make evolution into “theory” are making the same “Hail Mary” play that McCain did when he chose Palin.

  69. I was at first surprised by the vice presidential choice by McCain, and as I learned of her beliefs sickened. She is anti abortion, pro guns, a global warming skeptic, and worst of all a creationist. As a public school teacher I am already shocked at the lack of education in the area of science in this country. We can not take a step back into the dark ages and stop teaching a proven theory that has been around for over 100 years. The earth really is 4.5 billion years old and regardless of what some Christians want to believe this is what must be taught in public schools if we, as a country have any desire to keep up with the rest of the world in the areas of science and technology. The only viable choice for president, for those who desire a real education for their children is Barack Obama. I am a church attending Christian who believes in the theory of evolution because I have investigated the fossil record, both personally and through many books, articles, and science journals. I have no problem believing in a god who made evolution possible without divine intervention at any juncture. I do not believe my personal beliefs should be imposed on anyone else in a public school setting, only facts should be presented there.

  70. Karl Popper is rolling over in his grave.

  71. Paleobiologist or some other scientist, please come back. It seems there are 2 basic things the majority of the country doesn’t understand and I think it would be worth having a major media blitz about them in some way.
    1. Theory in the scientific method is not fanciful or a product of the imagination. (Look it up, y’all.)
    2. Intelligent Design “Theory” is not just evolution + belief in God. Because it posits an intelligent cause, it does not allow for the trial and error of natural selection or for the fact that what’s lovely and bright isn’t necessarily what is most adaptable and therefore survives.
    It doesn’t allow for (or account for) the complexity of natural phenomena and it infuses organic life with some kind of morality.
    Scientists, please come back and discuss this better than I can!!!

  72. Gravity is a fact. The theory of gravity, often called gravitational theory explains WHY gravity happens. That it happens is a fact.
    Evolution is a fact. The theory of evolution, often called Natural Selection, explains WHY evolution happens. That it happens is a fact.

  73. A few points – it’s called the “Theory of Evolution.” It’s a theory specifically because it’s not proven fact. Theology is the study of theory.

    Well, if I were you, I’d ask for my money back if you paid for your education…

  74. Oh my goodness! The morons are out in force, aren’t they? It’s called a THEORY, gwangung, because ALL scientific facts are developed through theories, you great Wally!! There’s also a “THEORY of gravitational force” — I suppose you don’t believe in THAT one, either, do you, you moronic mouth-breather?? I hope a great anvil falls from the sky to wake you up to yourself.

  75. @Reality, the theory of evolution by natural selection does not include or make any mention of the origin of life. It only covers speciation. In the field of biochemistry, they are on the cusp of creating life from non-living organic chemicals. By your definition earlier, evolution will be “proven” when we create life from non-living matter or, at least, be able to explain it. I welcome the day.

  76. “Evolution is not a proven fact. It’s theory. It’s a theoretical explanation for a series of facts. If it were completely proven then man would be able to create life from non-living organisms or at least explain how it occurred. We can’t.” Reality
    Reality, you really are not keeping up with modern research. Do a web search. Viruses have already been created from non-living chemicals, and scientists are getting very close to self replicating bacteria. Surely your arguments will then change since they are based on belief not evidence.
    I rather doubt any of the anti-evo people here are able or willing to be educated, but just in case you are, read firstly for basics “the blind Watchmaker by Dawkins, then when you have grasped what evolution is about (hint it is not a religion, and does not take any faith) read Carroll’s “the making of the fittest”, this presents a whole line of evidence not based on fossils but DNA.

  77. The problem with the true believers is that they don’t really WANT to educate themselves as it might conflict with their beliefs. I know plenty of Christians who are willing to load me up with Christians books, but are completely unwilling to read Dawkins, or anybody else that may disagree with their tightly-held belief system. They just don’t want to hear it. It’s classic cognitive dissonance. The truth of evolution is just too uncomfortable for them to bear.

  78. Science, evolution and Palin:
    (Skip to the final paragraph if you wish.)
    There’s been the transcript of an interview with Rick Warren (author of “The Purpose Driven Life” and interviewer of McCain and Obama on their religious views) going around the Internet. It has to do with what Warren will do with his multi-million dollar income. The context in which Warren speaks shows the stringent limitations of speaking about reality while remaining in the “box” of religion.
    Warren’s conception of God is overly mechanistic. He asks God and God answers, giving him (Warren) two Bible passages to help him know what to dow ith his money. What a simplistic and utterly selfish theology! Innumerable persons are dying, starving to death, suffering horribly from disease and abuse. I for one disdain any god who gives Warren passages to read to help him make a decision while ignoring those countless others who do not have the problem Warren has (the problem being what to do with all his money) but are in infinitely more dire straits. We the comfortable display insane hubris when we assume there’s a god who is concerned with our small problems while allowing such immeasurable suffering.
    The idea of an interventionist god reaching into the life of the Earth when he chooses in order to accomplish something or other is a childishness and an expression of superstition we ought to outgrow. It’s just silly to think there’s a divine power “out there” somewhere who speaks to us or nudges us from time to time.
    But let us assume, for the sake of argument, that most people believe that is how it works: human beings ask God, and God answers (in one way or another, directly or indirectly); and therefore Warren was speaking with the assumptions of most people. In this context, I would have more respect for Warren if he told us that God wanted him to do something more radical than “helping” others. Not that helping the poor and the sick is not good. But how about not only alleviating suffering but working to change the structures and institutions of society that create much or most of the suffering?
    Here’s what this has to do with science, evolution and Palin: seemingly no amount of thinking and education will move most religious people from religious superstition to reality. I do not know whether the willful ignorance we experience in such as Palin is correctable. As one who came out of college having learned not to glory in my own ignorance, I live with the hope I will not believe tomorrow what I believe today. Unfortunately, much of our culture is built on the assumption that one can find the truth and hold onto it forever after. Unless we human beings evolve further, we’re probably stuck with such as Palin and the insidious evangelicals who wallow and glory in their own ignorance.

  79. Anyone who limits debate to opinions (and “facts”) with which they agree is narrow-minded, and I agree that many high school teachers are not open-minded enough to facilitate a discussion of various theories of almost anything — but, we have to start somewhere.
    My favorite moment in Ben Stein’s ID movie was when Dawkins suggested at some length that perhaps our universe had been set in place by superior beings from another universe, and Stein responded that it sounded like Dawkins had no problem with Intelligent Design as long as it was done by aliens instead of God.

  80. “Reality”:

    Theology is the study of theory.


    …you’re kidding us, right? Did your brain misfire one day and think that the words ‘theology’ and ‘theory’ are related in such a way solely based on – just guessing here – the fact that they share the same first four letters?
    I agree with gwangung – whoever paid for your education got ripped off.

  81. Personally I am a disbeliever (I feel the term unbeliever is too passive). That said, given that the majority of the people in the world believe in some kind of creator, and that by extension, the majority of the people in public office do to (probably disproportionally so because of the former fact), IF we are going to have a believer, creationist land in public office of any kind, let alone the Vice Presidency, I’d be happy to hear that they don’t want to “teach Creationism”, but take a passive position on conversations that may arise. So if the conversation goes:
    Student: “Did God create everything in seven days?”
    Teacher: “No.”
    Great. If it goes longer, so long as Creation is not taught as a science, or alternative theory (implying a basis by some empirical evidence), then fine.
    All that said…vote Obama.

  82. I ask of all of you who would have us discuss creationism in science class, so which religion’s view on the formation of the planet and solar system would you want us to use? Christianity? Buddhism? Mormonism? Scientology? On and on and on. I have a feeling I know which God you’d choose.
    Why don’t we do that in our med schools too? Why don’t we just throw all we know in modern medicine in the air and go go faith healing as well. We can have our med students watch tv evangelist for instruction. SCREW THE SCIENCE. WE DON’T NEED NO STINKIN’ SCIENCE.
    And now I go off on a tanget…I really wonder what would happen if all that science and invention have brought us would disappear in a day. I mean from penicillan and vaccines to satellites. So many people (INCLUDING EVANGELICALS) take what we have for granted and don’t realize how science has made our lives more prosporous. Leave my spiritual life to me, thanks. I can take care of that.

  83. Yes, let’s bring this discussion back to life! Way to go, Afarensis. I do not know why McCain can’t learn… always check with us first.

  84. In teaching Creationism, don’t forget that the sun orbits the earth, which is flat and has four corners.

  85. Actually, I agree with Governor Palin. Let kids know that there are other theories out there. Be sure to teach them that in the beginning there was nothing but the endless chasm of Ginnungagap. Ginnungagap was bordered by Niflheim, which is the place of darkness and ice, far to the north; and Muspelheim, a place of fire, far to the south. Out of this chaos the first being came into existence from the drop of water when ice from Niflheim and fire from Muspelheim met. This first being was Ymir, the father of the race of frost-giants.
    The Norse theory of Ginnungagap is just as valid as the Mayan theory that the earth was created by the gods Tepeu and Gukumatz. We ought to teach kids this theory, too, that Tepeu and Gukamatz told the storm god Huracan to create men out of mud. But when the mudmen crumbled away in the first rainstorm, the gods made men out of wood instead. Alas, the wooden men had no souls and soon forgot the gods that had made them. Finally, with the help of other elemental gods, Huracan crafted a couple out of corn dough. And that’s how human beings began.
    And children must also learn the Zoroastrian theory of creation, that Ahura Mazda created a white bull, which the evil spirit, Angra Mainyu, killed. The bull’s semen flowed to the moon and turned into animals and plants. Ahura Mazda then created the first man, Gayomard, but Angra Mainyu killed him too. Gayomard also managed to ejaculate before he died, and his semen turned into a rhubarb plant. This plant grew into Mashya and Mashyanag, the first mortals. Instead of killing them, Angra Mainyu deceived them into worshipping him. After 50 years they bore twins, but they ate the twins, owing to their sin. After a very long time, two more twins were born, and from them came all other humans.
    After all, we all have the right to learn every theory, and choose for ourselves which one we want to believe in. Right?

  86. The first thing we need is a common language with agreed upon definitions before we proceed any further. Theory isn’t a hypothesis though the poorly schooled treat it as such. Then we need to point out to the creationists that either they must follow the tenants of science or either science and/or religion must be restructured. If you listen to them it is science which is the myth as it sticks to naturalism without supernaturalism. So they demand restructuring, calling it a mass long term conspiracy against their unprovable belief system. For if you prove it would then negate the part about faith in it without works to prove it. JHVH’s works that is.
    One way to defuse the creationists is to study and use against them their own failures and faults in logic and rationality. Such as if all life was created at once and that 99% of them died because of one global flood why aren’t they all mixed together by general weight? Also how could such an ecology exist using all the species cataloged to exist at once with the niches taken by multiple species?
    Or the fact that in the hierarchy of life the further up you go in complexity the overall similarities of previous exhibited physiology are aggregated and the direct connexions to more simple older forms are made. The chemical reactions found in more recent species aren’t found in ancient ones. Older chemical reactions are found in more recent species. But so far none in the reverse. Also if it was special creation why is there this linkage? For special creation of all species they should be obvious that they aren’t related and are indeed unique for each type should be the case—-it isn’t.
    This is something I find lacking in the critiques of the creationists by evolutionists. Turn the tables, make them show where in nature this ‘special creation’ is exhibited. I would be interested in seeing them squirm out of that logic hole.
    Continue this fight against those who find the Enlightenment evil and that wishes to bring darkness to our minds. Can we stop a new Dark Age from coming here. {See what happened to Russia from 1920-1960’s when they made Lamarkanism the official rule of biology.}

  87. Science, true Science is defined as observable and testable with reproducible results. How does evolution qualify as science.

  88. @Nightgaunt: It’s interesting that you raise the Soviet Union’s adoption of Lysenkoism as an analogy. Frequently we see creationists defending their hypothesis by asserting that to accept it makes one a better person, which was exactly the intention of the Communists: the philosophical implications of Lysenkoism very much supported Communist ideology. Ironically, the same creationists often assert that Communism itself was inspired by evolutionary theory, an argument trivially refuted by comparing the publication dates of Darwin’s On the Origin of Species (1859) and Marx’s Manifesto of the Communist Party (1848). (As one commentator memorably put it: was it Marx or Darwin who had the time machine?) Not to mention that if we want to draw analogies between hypotheses of origin and economic models then I would argue that evolution by natural selection strongly resembles free-market capitalism, both being essentially based on “survival of the fittest”. Contrast creationism and Communism, which both require a central controlling authority. Were it not for the religious aspects, I have no doubt that the Communists would have been quite keen on creationism.
    I use “hypothesis” rather than “theory” deliberately, since these words are not interchangeable, though they are sometimes used as such in the vernacular and less rigorous writers will likewise fail to draw the distinction. A typical creationist strategy is to cast the theory of evolution as being nothing more than a hypothesis based on this confusion of elementary terms.

  89. Brian:Something from talkorigins

  90. “Creation science” is not science for all of the reasons so far given, and one more. Science is the search for natural explanations for natural phenomena. If you are doing science and you do not find a natural explanation, you go on looking. If you give up and propose a supernatural explanation, you have stooped doing science.
    I have no objections at all to anyone promoting supernatural explanations for natural phenomena, as long as they don’t call what they are doing “science” — and don’t use my tax dollars to support doing it.
    Unfortunately, McCain and Palin share the basic misunderstanding of science expressed in the phrase “teach the controversy,” and echoed in some of the comments here. From a McCain interview in the Arizona Daily Star:
    Daily Star: Should intelligent design be taught in schools?
    McCain: I think that there has to be all points of view presented. But they’ve got to be thoroughly presented. So to say that you can only teach one line of thinking I don’t think is – or one belief on how people and the world was created – I think there’s nothing wrong with teaching different schools of thought.
    Daily Star: Does it belong in science?
    McCain: There’s enough scientists that believe it does. I’m not a scientist. This is something that I think all points of view should be presented.
    Link: http://www.azstarnet.com/sn/opinion/90521
    From an interview with Sarah Palin in the Fairbanks News – Miner during her (unsuccessful) 2002 campaign for Lieutenant Governor:
    Q: The education section of the Republican Party of Alaska’s platform states “We support giving Creation Science equal representation with other theories of the origin of life. If evolution is taught, it should be presented as only a theory.” Do you support this position? Why?
    A: I support this plank in the Republican Party’s platform. I believe society can have healthy debates on scientific theories, so equal representation of creation and evolution shouldn’t be an offense.
    Link: http://www.newsminer.com/news/2008/aug/29/palin-issues-2002-alaska-gubernatorial-race/
    This is the anti-intellectualism of the last 8 Bush Years, continued.

  91. Brian – to answer that quest I recommend you check out the “Download Science Papers” and “Download Anthropology Papers” sections of my blogroll. There you will find some freely available papers detailing repeatable experiments concerning evolution.

  92. Since McCain and Palin are so confortable with teaching both versions of creation in our children’s science class perhaps they would feel likewise about teaching both versions of the Holocaust in the nation’s history classes as well. One rendition, popular with the president of Iran and other Middle Eastern biggies says that the Holocaust was a fictional episode of history with no basis in fact. Others, namely those with photographic, first person accounts and transcripts from an international tribunal at Nuremburg, tell a different story.
    Those who offer credence to fairy tales that masquerade as science do a disservice to this nation’s teaching profession. There is no place in our children’s curriculum for such nonsense. It is imperative that good science and math courses be taught to our students if we are to remain a viable entity in a competetive global environment.
    If McCain and Palin believe, as Bush does, that the jury is still out (regarding evolution) then perhaps Obama is right…it’s time for a change.

  93. I agree with Palin. We should teach our children all the theories about our origin. Why limit their knowledge? It’s always better to provide more information and let school children develop their own ideas. Schools should teach children how to think for themselves, instead of forcing any single agenda on them.

  94. The problem with that is one theory (evolution) has a preponderance of empiracal evidence backing it up while the other (creationism) has nothing. Why teach it if it has no evidence?

  95. “Oh, and by the way; I’ll be enjoying eternity in the blissful presence of my Creator, and learning the infinite intricacies of REAL science. Y’all be sure an’ write…”
    Isn’t pride one of the cardinal sins? Do you think Jesus would be approving of a remark that brandishes a big nya-nya-na-nya-nya at someone you should be trying to save? I didn’t know Christianity had changed its mission from proselytism to bragging. I think you should reconsider your attitude, and know that if devoid of your smug arrogance, I might be willing to listen to your points.
    The difference between evolution and creationism is that evolution encourages scientific observation and exploration in the attempt to gain an understanding of our world, while creationism assumes that we already know the reason, and that there is not a greater mystery to be discovered through science.
    Why would anyone bother to put their child in a classroom whose curriculum is so cannibalistic?
    And Steven, have fun in Heaven. I’ll be incensed by your remark when the end-times come; until then I’ll think you’re just another elitist, ideologue jackass.

  96. PRIOR ENTRY WROTE: Wow, if you people would actually bother to read what she said she basically said that if a student asks about creationism it should be open to discussion. Only a closed-minded zealot should have any problem with that. quoted From Aug 29, 2008 entry
    (1) I have read what she has been reliably quoted as saying. She was OK with teaching Creationism in school as well as debating Creationism as a valid scientific theory.
    (2) Debating Creationism in school requires people who understand science to criticize religious mythology as based on ignorance and superstition. We have Separation of Church and State and the public schools are not the place to hold up ignorant religious myths to public ridicule.
    (3) Sara Palin’s actual statements show that she is an extraordinarily ignorant woman when it comes to basic science and she is just as ignorant when it comes to constitutional law and the events that founded our country. Ms. Palin is so ignorant that she believes that the Pledge of Allegiance was around while the Founding Fathers were still alive and she is unaware that many of the Founding Fathers were not Christian and the Founding Fathers, both Christian and non Christian, expressly established a secular state.
    (4) Any high school student who has passed biology and civics should know much more about these subject that Sara Palin knows.

  97. I agree with Becky, above. If we are going to teach Creation instead of science in our science classes, then we need to be democratic about it. We must not teach only the Biblical Creation story, but at the very least the Hindu version and all those taught by the Native Americans faiths (say, Navaho, Hopi, Mohawk, Potawatami, Ojibwa, etc., etc., etc., etc.). It’s only fair.
    Of course, then we won’t have time for science in science class. That’s the whole problem. That’s why I wanted my kids to learn science in science class. I took them to church for religion. When it was time to learn astronomy, I objected when the teacher wanted to leave the lesson at, “God makes the sky blue” (I’m not making this up). When it was time for geology, I also objected when another teacher wanted to leave the lesson at, “Worms make the ground.” I felt the same way when my son came home to announce that he had learned in history class that the reason the “Blue Bonnet Plague” got that name was because people got blue dots on their heads in the shape of a bonnet. Of course, I live in Texas. Maybe that explains something. God, I hope not!
    No, I have this peculiar idea that kids ought to learn science in science class, astronomy in astronomy class, geology in geology class, and real history (about the Bubonic Plague, no less!) in history class. And if the teacher doesn’t know diddly squat about it, she shouldn’t throw in half-baked religion and she shouldn’t make up silly half-baked “theories” either.
    So there.

  98. From my own blog…
    Schools should teach science does not contradict the existence of God and cannot prove the “Big Bang” was not an act of creation. Science only challenges the literal description of creation presented in the Bible, and there are people of great faith who accept interpretation of what they view as symbolic language in the Bible.
    Read the full train of logic at http://rods-voice.blogspot.com/2008/09/social-issues-resolved.html

  99. Schools should teach science and leave religion to the Sunday schools…

  100. Bejassus afarensis, you and you ilk are a bunch of blinkered dogmatists!!! Even bloody Richard Feyneman himself said that anyone who tells you that he understands quantumn physics is a liar. And if we do not understand that then we do not understand how the universe came into being or was “created”. And now a bloody woman who does not claim to be a scientist at all says “I’m not going to pretend I know how all this came to be,” and you and your ilk start getting all snooty and patronising!! What a bunch of utter presumptious bigots you all are! What exactly is wrong with anything that Palin actually said? What actual claim or statement is so henious??? Mabye that “She would not say whether her belief also allowed her to accept the theory of evolution as fact.” What is wrong with that? Isn’t someone allowed to keep their own councel? On what or who’s compulsion MUST she here and now say whether “here belief” “allows” her to “accept the theory of evolution as fact” – maybe she simply does not know!!! For christ sake what sort of Inquisition is going on here! And for f*&% sake we do not even accept quantumn mechanics “as fact” it is a THEORY that so far as we can tell best explains certain facts, but not all!!! That is all we F*&%ING KNOW!!! Can you understand the frigging difference! Jesus what a bunch of utter pretentious prats most of you are on this stupid blog.
    Far bloody greater minds that any of yours on this blog have wonderd and pondered on the origins of everything and speculated about creation and intellgent design – from before bloody Aristotle to Newton an to Einstein and after -& – irrespective of it current “scientific status” – such speculation has been a major part of our whole cultural history and heritage – not just some bloody cult superstition! But becuase some woman says mere discussion of this sort of thing should not be prohibited, though it does not have to be part of the curriculum (what the hell is wrong with that?) we get all this half-baked pretentious judgemental drivel from most of you. What a bunch of utter petty little wankers!
    And I am a graduate scientist and for all you know I might be an atheist too.

  101. None of which qualifies it as someting worthy of being taught in a science class…

  102. I’m sure glad I live in a country that defines ANY religion as a CULT in its constitution and laws. Keeps all this sort of pointless discussion out of the realm of GOVERNMENT.
    There’s probably just as many know-nothing jackasses live here as in your country, but at least they aren’t encouraged to discuss those beliefs in public.

  103. Forgot to say, And they can’t pass laws foisting their beliefs off on an unsuspecting and generally poorly educated public.

  104. “When a creationist, Darwinist, Marxist, or supporter of any other theory defends his or her views publicly, he or she does everyone a service. But when anyone attempts to establish laws or rules requiring that certain theories be taught or not be taught, he or she invites us to take a step toward totalitarianism. Whether a law is to prevent the teaching of a theory or to require it is immaterial. No laws were ever passed saying that evolution had to be taught in biology courses. The prestige of evolutionary theory has been built by it impact on the thousands of biologist who have learned its power and usefulness in the study of living things. No laws need to be passed for creationists to do the same thing. When creation theorists strive to introduce creation into the classrooms as an alternative biological theory to evolution they must recognize that they are required to give creation the status of a falsifiable idea-that is, an idea that loses any special exemption from scrutiny, this is accepted as conceivably being false, and that must be continually tested until the question is settled. A science classroom is not the place for an idea that is revered as holy. ”
    -Evolution-Strickberger

  105. it was this blog
    http://www.allyngibson.net/?p=2027
    which it seems is a liberal blog that I found by ways of google.

  106. Has anyone ever heard of intelligent design? If you REALLY want to see what a real argument for intelligent design is study the “rotor motor” of a simple flagellate and the genetic code required to put this motor together everytime a new baby flagellate is “born”. Check it out. It is really cool. The formation different messenger RNA that is taken from the DNA helix and used to form various parts of this motor is incredible. And it really is a motor! Again, please check it out. Maybe Mrs Palin knows more than she is letting on. The study of intelligent design IS a scientific study. For the third and last time, Check it out.

  107. Scot – Have you ever actually looked through a microscope and seen a bacterial flagella in action? Works nothing like a motor as. for example this articledemonstrates. Yes, I have heard of intelligent design and have read quite a bit of the ID literature. ID is nothing more than recycled creationism dressed up in fancier jargon.

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