Throw out the facts, lets teach myths

Discussion in 'Science & Society' started by Buddha12, Apr 25, 2012.

  1. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member

    You mean "purports". You are evading this word.
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  3. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

    There is nothing in that framework that conflicts with sophisticated modern versions of creationism - like intelligent design - which concede that natural selection and speciation are real things, but contend that they do not - cannot - account for the origins of life. It see no impediment to a teacher "teaching the controversy" about the origins of life, and so trotting out the entire litany of ID talking points - which are designed exactly for such a context. This isn't the old-school creationism of 100 years ago we're talking about, here. It is, rather, right in line with the modern "intelligent design" strategy.

    The situation is this: we have a GOP legislature in a state with a long and sordid history of anti-evolution teaching legistlation, adopting a "teach the controversy" bill taken directly from the ID playbook - its language comes directly from a similar bill passed in Louisiana in 2008 with the backing of the (creationist) Louisiana Family Forum, and the Tennessee bill was created by a conservative activist group called the Family Action Council of Tennessee, which is associated with Focus on the Family. All of which legislation closely resembles the model legislation produced by the Discovery Institute, which is a think tank dedicated to getting Intelligent Design taught in US public schools.

    Opponents of this bill include the ACLU, the National Academy of Sciences, National Association of Biology Teachers, Americans United for Separation of Church and State and the Tennessee Science Teachers Association.

    Proponents include the Discovery Institute (suprise surprise), the afore-mentioned Family Action Council of Tennessee, and the usual panoply of creationist and conservative activist groups.

    Meanwhile, nobody has been able to point to any actual problems with teachers being subject to liability for teaching science cirricula, the "problem" this bill is ostensibly supposed to "solve."

    So the picture is pretty clear: this is a stalking horse for creationism. We do have the small consolation that creationists have been forced to water their position down and go to such lengths to disguise it, but that's hardly a reason to give them a pass on this. Indeed, we should go the last mile and defeat any such efforts entirely.
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  5. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member

    Good points. I have read the positions of most of the opponents you mention. You are right about them.

    The state curriculum requirements for high school biology include a unit on evolution: the history of the development of the principles, genetics, comparative anatomy, the fossil record, correspondence between fossil variation and geologic variation, and the relationships between environmental change, variation, adaptation and speciation.

    The teachers are being encouraged to tell their students that this material is questionable.

    The other aspect of the curriculum that is under attack is the content of the textbook itself. Students will be told to question the authority of scholarship itself.
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  7. adoucette Caca Occurs Valued Senior Member


    The Bill only protects Science Teachers, teaching science as covered under the Curriculum Framework.
    And that doesn't include ID because ID is not science:

    Indeed, in HS, the issue of how life started doesn't even come up, because there is as yet, no viable theory to support a decent understanding of Abiogenesis, merely several different working hypothesis.

    No the bill makes no such encouragement.

    Indeed, for Students to meet the specified "Course Level Expectations" and pass the "Checks for Understanding" under the Curriculum Framework just the OPPOSITE of that has to occur.
  8. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member

    No, the law only protects science teachers who oppose science in the classroom. It does not protect the remainer of the teacher population.
    ID is addressed in the text, therefore the teaching of ID is protected.
    Abiogenesis is addressed in the book.
    Yep. It does so by encouraging "students to . . . respond to . . . differences of opinion about controversial issues", where "controversy" is attributed to "biological evolution, the chemical origins of life, global warming, and human cloning", thereby encouraging teachers to "help students . . . critique . . .scientific weaknesses of existing theories".
    Indeed, if the teachers followed that curriculum plan, there would be no need for protection under this law.

    With that in mind, now identify how an actual (not purported) need for protection arises.
  9. adoucette Caca Occurs Valued Senior Member

    What's with all the dots?

    Scientific strengths and Scientific weaknesses is indeed something that should be explored.

    Good news is there are LOTS of Scientific strengths to the Theory of Evolution (many are covered in the Curriculm Framework) and few scientific weaknesses, all of which can be discussed objectively.

    On the other hand:

    ID is NOT an existing Scientific Theory.

    Creationism is NOT an existing Scientific Theory.

    And neither are part of the Curriculum Framework.

    Protection for teachers who teach them is NOT covered under this bill.

    This is my last post on this, since I've been simply repeating myself for some time.

    I'll bet you though, that come next year this time, you will not find that your fears of what this bill is about have come true.
  10. river

    for nearly ALL life forms , evolution is true , microbiology , plants etc.

    for Humans is a different situation

    for instance the problem of the vocal chords in Humans is a very large step and no evidence in chimps or any primate and evidence leading up to this physical attribute in us doesn't seem to be around
  11. quadraphonics Bloodthirsty Barbarian Valued Senior Member

    Yeah, not sure why you thought that your goal of getting people to stop paying attention to this issue would be served by being argumentative about it.

    I certainly hope so.

    But then, if it's so obviously a non-issue of a bill, one wonders why the creationist think tanks came up with it in the first place, and why the creationist activist/lobbying groups rallied behind it, and why the science and teaching groups are pissed about it. You insist it's all a storm in a teacup, but you have nothing more than your own non-expert legal interpretations to support that.

    Likewise, you've failed to point to any existing problems with teacher liability that this bill is needed to fix. So do you disagree that this is a creationist effort, from start to finish? Or do you agree that such is the goal of this legislation, but hold that the creationists did such an ineffectual job that the bill will have no impact?

    The only other option is that you are pro-creationism and think this bill aids creationism, but want to blow smoke here to reduce the scrutiny directed at it. Which is it?
  12. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member

    To differentiate purported versus actual language.
    No, that is not in the curriculum framework, nor in the books, nor is the legislature the proper venue for assessing the strength of weakness of science, or for evolution by natural selection and global warming as weak. The textbook authors say exactly the opposite, that evolution by natural selection is sound and factual. Global warming is also presented as a resolved matter. Therefore both topics have been wrongly disparaged by the state assembly, and hence the objections here and nationwide to this law.
    That is your opinion, not the teaching of the framework or the text, or of the universally recognized experts. This opinion ignores the reality that fundamentalist teachers are now protected from teaching the curriculum, skipping the text, and substituting their own opinions of human origins, 6000 years ago, in the form of Adam and Eve. A larger number are protected to replace natural selection with intelligent design.
    Yes, both are. And the fundamentalist teachers will exploit the framework to teach religion, because they protected.
    Yes it is. They need only couch their doctrine as the discussion of scientific weakness. Besides, it's in the text. And besides fundamentalists don't follow the rules anyway. Thus the law that protects their disobedience has insulted educators, and the Governor, the State Board, teacher associations, textbook authors, scientists and parents who have objected to its enactment.
    If you mean the last time repeating opinions that contrary to fact, feel free to bring facts.
    You've already lost the bet. It's happening already.
  13. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member

    The actual topic is: the origin of species through evolution by natural selection, not the origin of organs. Evolution does not teach that humans evolved from primates living today, nor does the fact of evolution rely on the fact of the human vocal tract.
  14. adoucette Caca Occurs Valued Senior Member

    Source for that claim?
  15. billvon Valued Senior Member

    Primates have vocal cords. The big difference is that our vocal cords are lower, thus allowing us to have a resonant cavity (a pharynx) above it. This gives us a greater vocal range.

    An existing structure evolving a few inches lower is not all that much of a problem for evolution.
  16. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

    IOW, students are expected to believe that the stuff they learn in school isn't exactly true and has faults.

    What an excellent basis for trust in the system!
  17. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member

    No, it means creationists are selectively targeting evolution and climate science by infiltrating the classrooms.
  18. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member

  19. GeoffP Caput gerat lupinum Valued Senior Member

    It's pretty clear that this bill - whether ID is or is not legally "not science" - is a stalking horse for creationism, which quadra proposes above. I - and certainly no one - should object to the instruction of controversies, but the actual list of controversies would consist of contrasts such as saltation vs. microevolution (which, in point of fact, is not really a controversy at all anyway except in the minds of pedants), rather than gaps in the fossil record meaning Satan was deliberately scattering trilobites around in an effort to confuse us. So, since ID is the best that creationism is offering up right now, it's a bad stalking horse, but still a stalking horse.

    (By the by, not one of you charlatan primates has so much as countered that initial proposition about my having achieved a more liberal goal-post by the hypothesis that fossils, if indeed just scattered about by Satan, merely need to be found in order to validate the hypothesis that Satan just scattered them around. In the free field of human affairs, I call this another win. I defile your mothers and your mother's mothers.)
  20. adoucette Caca Occurs Valued Senior Member

    That's a 5 year old National report so no, it does not prove that the bet I made has been lost.

    Wait a year and we'll see.

    But in the meantime, consider the PROTECTION the Bill offers to Teachers teaching SCIENCE that agrees with the Curriculum Framework I linked to in contrast to this from your report:

    And the "objective Discussion" aspect of the law ALSO protects these teachers:

    And indeed, with this type of written explicit protection in place, my belief is that MORE science teachers will go this route.

    Now the report ALSO suggests that there already exists this minority of Science teachers:

    But since Creationism is not part of the Curriculum Framework, nor is it a valid Scientific Theory, this Bill offers them NO PROTECTION for doing so.
  21. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member

    Sure it does. . .unless your standard of proof is from another realm. Let me expand my search perimeter:

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    Tell that to the graduating 8th graders who will be taught creationism next year.
    No protection is afforded, as it has no enforcement or remedies provision.
    Nope, "objective Discussion" is legally meaningless.
    Now you admit they are teaching creationism.
    Yes it is in the framework now, and in the text. So creationism was/is/will be taught.
  22. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member

    Hi, GeoffP. You're going to hell for sure, where Satan has stashed the missing link. Sounds like a dream come true for a paleontologist.

    From the recent survey of high school teachers cited above, we can see the extent of teaching creationism and ID. 13% of the teachers believe humans were put on earth in their present form within the last 10k years. 60% of them believe humans evolved, but under God's direction, which fits with ID. That 60% probably won't need to invoke Satan, but now they're free to, and it may help them draw the line somewhere between humans, charlatan atheists and other primates. The other 13% can invoke Satan or any other idea including their running dispute over fossil dating methods, particularly that darkest of arts, radioactive dating. Obviously this bleeds over into any classes that introduce geology, also held hostage by this law, as well as any classes that introduce climate science.
  23. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member

    Students are expected to believe that creation is a myth, not that the teaching that creation is a myth is a myth.
    Which is what I said before, the law undermines education.

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