A Quick Stop to Creationism in the Classroom March 15, 2011

A Quick Stop to Creationism in the Classroom

After activist Rob Sherman heard that a science teacher at Libertyville High School in Illinois was teaching Creationism — you can see the teacher’s handouts here (PDF) — all he had to do was speak up at a school board meeting to put a stop to it.

It was that simple:

Libertyville High School teacher Beau Schaefer has been ordered by School District 128 to stop teaching creationism during the evolution chapter of his biology class. The order came only four days after I informed the School Board that one of Mr. Schaefer’s students had expressed to me grave concern and frustration that Mr. Schaefer was asserting that creationism and intelligent design were more viable scientific theories than evolution.

District 128 Associate Superintendent Dr. Al Fleming informed me, yesterday morning, that all teachers in District 128 have similarly been advised that they can’t teach that creationism is science.

That’s how Rob self-reported the story. Here’s how the Chicago Tribune put it:

On Tuesday, Libertyville High School administrators said they had spoken with Schaefer and determined that creationism was being taught in his classroom.

“The administration looked into the matter and found that one LHS science teacher was referencing creationism in a unit on evolution,” said Mary Todoric, director of communications. “Steps have been taken to ensure that this teacher will no longer use creationism as part of his classroom instruction. Furthermore, the district has taken appropriate steps to ensure that all science teachers are not referencing or teaching creationism.”

District 128 officials would not comment on whether there has been any disciplinary action.

Schaefer did not return several phone calls.

In any case, there was no lawsuit. There was no dragged out process. There was simply a student, telling a parent, telling someone (Rob) they knew could do something about it. The administration, to their credit, took immediate action.

To any students out there who have to put up with shit like this: If you hear your teachers endorsing their faith in your classroom, you don’t have to let it go on.

Tell someone you trust: A parent, another teacher… hell, just tell me and I’ll pass the information along to the right people.

Or you can take the Matt LaClair route and tape your teacher preaching Creationism in the classroom

(via Skeptic Money)

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  • Wait, at first I thought the teacher was teaching creationism as fact. This is different. He was just contrasting the two. As long as he was stating that evolution was correct and creationism was not, I don’t see the problem. Was he teaching the two as side-by-side theories with equal validity? That I’d have a problem with.

  • SWare

    It didn’t seem like they were teaching evolution to be the correct one if I take the meaning of this quote.

    “one of Mr. Schaefer’s students had expressed to me grave concern and frustration that Mr. Schaefer was asserting that creationism and intelligent design were more viable scientific theories than evolution.”

    If he was presenting it as the “more viable scientific theory”, then there lies the problem.

  • Rokugo

    In the handout, it states one of the goals for students is to “Explain why macroevolution is not testable or observable and thus not scientific”.
    This is definitely a case of teaching creationism as fact.

  • Sarah

    Separation of church and state debates aside, creationism should not be taught inside a classroom unless that classroom is at a private Christian academy. It isn’t fair to set children a step behind in real science to fulfill a moral obligation to a church. Any religion a child has should be taught at home, by parents. This isn’t an exclusively atheist issue. My parents did not send me to school to be holy and moral…they sent me to Sunday school (it didn’t work there either). If the schools want to offer a religious studies class (and include all faiths, including non-faith) as an elective, then it would make some sense, but would still need the right teacher.

  • Rich Wilson

    creationism should not be taught inside a classroom unless that classroom is at a private Christian academy

    It’s a risky move, but if I were a teacher, I think I’d be tempted to use ID (or something very similar) to explain what a theory is, and is not. ID isn’t even a hypothesis, let alone a theory.

  • Nordog

    Separation of church and state debates aside, creationism should not be taught inside a classroom unless that classroom is at a private Christian academy.

    I would oppose the teaching of creationism in any classroom if it is taught as science.

    Some forms of creationism may be fine in a philosophy or theology class, other forms of creationism (i.e., Genisis as a scientific text) not fine in any classroom imo.

  • Silent Service

    Rich,

    That would be fine as it would demonstrate actual scientific methodology. In fact I wish my science teacher had actually done that instead of sleeping through my high school classes while we students ran amuck. Not all bad science teachers are creationists.

    Our science teacher gave my older sister a B in class her senior year. It was bad enough that she got a B which would have ruined her perfect 4.0 GPA, but she wasn’t even in his class that year (yeah it was a big blow up at school). Amazingly, he still didn’t retire that year and I had to endure the Lord of the Flies science program as well.

  • Rich Wilson

    It didn’t seem like they were teaching evolution to be the correct one if I take the meaning of this quote.

    It’s pushing very hard that we only have microevolution, not macroevolution.

    “macroevolution is still a guess”
    “man an apes have a common ancestor according to macroevolution”
    “explain how one can believe in both creation and evolution at the same time”

    I’d be interested in seeing what the teacher thought were the right answers to all those questions. In particular, the ones the student answered “God wants it that way”.

  • CanadianNihilist

    It it mind boggling that a biology teacher would even entertain the idea of teaching creationism.
    They need to start teaching evolution in elementary school.

  • Chris

    Anyone else found this quote funny?
    “Explain why macroevolution is not testable or observable and thus not scientific”

    Apparently he wants proof of evolution, but doesnt need any for god or anything else in the bible?…Huh go figure

  • Blacksheep

    I read through the study / classroom sheet pdf that was attached to the article. As far as I can tell, he wasn’t “teaching creationism” he was teaching creationism. evolution, and comparisons between the two. In a world in which millions of people believe in creationism, is it now verbotten to even bring up the subjrct in class?

    From what I read on the Friendly Atheist, I’m much more afraid of a future in which some sort of thought police tell me exactly what I can and can’t say than I am about controversial subject matter being taught. The main theme here is “You can’t say that! You’re not allowed!”

    As someone who leans toward being a libertarian, I don’t see what all the fuss is about (Especially in this case).

  • CanadianNihilist

    @ Blacksheep

    I think the main problem is not that he’s showing an objectionable comparative, but that he’s doing it with a bias towards creationism. It’s evident in the pamphlet with things like

    Explain why macroevolution is not testable or observable and thus not scientific

    That’s ridiculous. we know that Pluto orbits the sun, but no one has ever observed it. (knowledge of Pluto’s existence approx. 70 years. Full orbital cycle of Pluto approx. 230 years.) give or take a few years.

  • Blacksheep

    CanadianNihilist,

    think the main problem is not that he’s showing an objectionable comparative, but that he’s doing it with a bias towards creationism.

    I hear you.. and good example with Pluto. But plenty of teachers, and especially college professors, have biases that I totally disagree with. I don’t try to make them think in a particular way. (Although I suppose that universities are private, so that is different).

  • Steve

    Saying something “Some people believe in creationism, but that’s nonsense and here is why” is ok.

    But creationism is not a valid alternative point of view. It’s not a competing scientific principle. Christians love to “teach the controversy” because it gives creationism credibility. It also creates the impression that there is a genuine schism or debate within the scientific community, which is far from true.

  • ACN

    I hear you.. and good example with Pluto. But plenty of teachers, and especially college professors, have biases that I totally disagree with. I don’t try to make them think in a particular way. (Although I suppose that universities are private, so that is different).

    It sounds like you’re drawing a comparison between the political preferences of professors in a university, and the teaching of science in secondary school.

    These things are not at all equivalent.

    On political issues, it is rare to find a situation in which one party has the monopoly on good ideas. In the on the evolution/creation question, the issue is cut and dry because the latter is not a good idea. It isn’t even really an idea. All it is, is a bunch of fools yelling “Nuh uh! Goddidit” who have no respect for the observable fact of evolution, and the overwhelming evidence for the theory of evolution that explains said facts.

    Comparisons like this are a sneaky way to try to change these sorts of discussions from being about the science to being about some sort of first amendment issue. The only reasonable thing to say about creationism is what Steve said:

    “Some people believe in creationism, but that’s nonsense and here is why”

  • Rich Wilson

    @BlackSheep

    he was teaching creationism. evolution, and comparisons between the two.

    He’s trying hard to make it look ‘fair and balanced’ but his bias comes through, especially in some of his plain factual errors. Evolution isn’t a “well, we all have our points of view” thing. It’s not thought police.

    I keep using this explanation- it’s really like Galileo’s discovery that Jupiter had moons. It contradicted church dogma that the earth was the center of the universe, and everything revolved around it. But church dogma vs. looking through a telescope, dogma eventually loses.

    Molecular genetics is that telescope. Dogma says we’re ‘special’. God ‘created’ us on a different day, to have dominion over everything else. But the plain and simple fact is that we are more closely related to chimps than chimps are to gorillas. And the genetics of every living thing on this planet maps into a family tree. That leaves either God playing a giant joke on us, or evolution.

    If this were a subject of actual controversy, then sure, ‘teach the conflict’. But it’s not. It’s people putting their fingers in their ears and chanting, because reality violates their faith.

  • Blacksheep

    Steve,

    But creationism is not a valid alternative point of view. It’s not a competing scientific principle. Christians love to “teach the controversy” because it gives creationism credibility. It also creates the impression that there is a genuine schism or debate within the scientific community, which is far from true.

    There is a genuine debate. There are hundreds of scientists who believe in creationism, in fact below is a link to a group called “A Scientific Dissent from Darwinism.” the second link is to the signed petition. This represents one of several such groups similar to this one.

    Their statement is:

    “We are skeptical of claims for the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life. Careful examination of the evidence for Darwinian theory should be encouraged.”

    http://www.dissentfromdarwin.org/

    http://www.discovery.org/scripts/viewDB/filesDB-download.php?command=download&id=660

    No doubt you would disagree with their opinion, but from what I see, there is indeed a debate going on.

  • Rich Wilson

    I think the main problem is not that he’s showing an objectionable comparative, but that he’s doing it with a bias towards creationism.

    No. It’s not even that he’s showing a bias. Creationism doesn’t belong in the discussion anymore than the stork theory of human reproduction.

  • Rich Wilson

    @BlackSheep

    “We are skeptical of claims for the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life. Careful examination of the evidence for Darwinian theory should be encouraged.”

    That just covers the fact that they think evolution can’t account for the variety of life on this planet. But they have not come up with an alternate theory. “An intelligent designer must have done it” isn’t a theory. It’s a statement with no evidence, and no testability. If you don’t have any suspects in your murder investigation, you don’t throw up your hands and say “the butler did it”.

    Get a copy of “The Greatest Show On Earth” from the library. Or I hear “Why Evolution Is True” is good, but I haven’t read it yet.

  • Steve

    Just because you find some small fringe group of dissenters doesn’t mean there is a widespread controversy. Evolution is firmly established among too many different fields of science for that to be true.

    There is no real debate. There are just idiots screaming. And as always, the public listens to those who are the loudest.

    It should also tell you something that the vast majority of those people are from the US. That alone defeats any credibility they may have.

    That small statement already shows why creationism is complete BS – both in general and especially as science. “We don’t think this could have happened naturally, so god did it”. Creationism can’t stand on its own. All it tries to do is poke holes into other work and fill the gaps with religion.

  • Blacksheep

    There is no real debate. There are just idiots screaming. And as always, the public listens to those who are the loudest.

    We are in complete agreement.

  • Blacksheep

    If you don’t have any suspects in your murder investigation, you don’t throw up your hands and say “the butler did it”.

    As Christians, we are not throwing up our hands and throwing out a random culprit, we believe that God is responsible for creation. If one does not believe in God I can totally understand the frustration.

  • Erik

    @ Blacksheep

    Just so you know, the Discovery Institute is a fringe group of people who attempted to get Creationism taught in schools despite the lack of research in support of Creationism. After they lost the Dover case, they simply changed the word “creationism” to “Intelligent Design”. Seriously, look up the “edited” version of “Of Pandas and People” in which they simply deleted the word creationism and put intelligent design in its place. In some cases they didn’t even bother deleting the entire word “creationism”.

    These are the people who made up the phrase “Irreducible Complexity” and then failed to try and prove that it existed in nature. These are the people who presented a testable hypothesis, yet they’ve never bothered to test it.

    The biggest problem with creationism is that it first assumes a god exists without proving it, then assumes all evidence must relate to that faulty premise.

    This is not an either/or situation. One side has evidence provided from multiple fields of study, while the other has nothing other than a god of the gaps and misinformation. This is well illustrated in the handout mentioned in the article in which dating methods are misrepresented as well as the claim that there is only one fossil considered to be a transitional fossil when there are actually quite a few, some of which showing key points in evolution.

    I’m sorry, but there really isn’t a debate going on no matter how much one side would like there to be.

  • The main problem with creationism vs evolution false dichotomy can be summarized in the following analogy.

    Consider that you are studying an animal with lots of evidence suggesting that it is a cat. Consider that some of the evidence is questioned. You can’t therefore conclude that the animal is a dog. It might be some other animal.

    cat: current theory of evolution
    dog: creationism

  • ACN

    “We are skeptical of claims for the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life. Careful examination of the evidence for Darwinian theory should be encouraged.”

    This statement doesn’t sound like it says what you think it says. In fact, it sounds like it was worded incredibly broadly to try to draw in a slightly gullible group of scientists, or some vaguely deist/theist evolution folks.

    A good scientist should be skeptical of pretty much every claim, and should agree to carefully examine all of the evidence for a theory.

    The issue here is not that evolutionary biologists aren’t willing to critically examine the evidence for their theories. They are. Overturning established theories with new evidences and new ideas is how you get famous. It is the “holy grail” of everyone in a field! You don’t get published in journals, and earn the respect of your peers for lock-stepping the status quo, the rest of the world who wants to push the boundaries of human knowledge passes you by when you do that!
    The issue is that creationists do not contribute anything. They are thoroughly uninterested in finding out what is true, and have themselves so deluded by a book, that they are willing to twist reality around on its head to fit their book rather than test the claims of their book against reality.

  • Blacksheep

    Jeff,

    Many Christians, myself included, don’t have an issue with many aspects of evolution. We believe that God is behind the origin of life, that he guided it, and that it was intelligently designed. Is a dinosaur an ancestor to a bird? I don’t know, it could be. (I point out to my kids how much the wild turkeys in our backyard walk like dinosaurs.) but it doesn’t affect my faith either way.

  • Parse

    @Blacksheep,
    You may be interested in some background information on that list from the Discovery Institute. For example, did you know that there are very few actual biologists on the list, but a lot of evangelicals?
    Or that if you’re impressed by appeals to authority, have you heard of Project Steve? They have 1157 current signatures to an unambiguous pro-evolution statement (as compared to the mealy-mouthed DI statement), all of whom have Ph.Ds in related fields (as compared to taking all comers), and all go by Steve?

    In any case, actual scientific controversy isn’t determined by signing competing statements, or in public debates. It’s seen in the labs, the research journals, the conferences; none of which consider creationism of any flavor a real player.

  • Blacksheep

    ACN,

    The issue is that creationists do not contribute anything. They are thoroughly uninterested in finding out what is true, and have themselves so deluded by a book, that they are willing to twist reality around on its head to fit their book rather than test the claims of their book against reality.

    George washington Carver, Louis Pasteur, Johannes Kepler, Isaac newton, Nicolaus Copernicus, Erwin Schrdinger…

    Random sampling, and not enough time to continue. I understand the point you are trying to make, but to make a claim like that is silly.

    (Unless you meant that creationists do not contribute anything to the field of evolutionary study, which of course would be no surprise).

  • ACN

    I was unaware that you wanted me to be that pedantic when the topic of discussion was that of evolution/creationism in public schools and whether there is a serious debate amongst scientists as to which one is better description of the diversity of life that presently exists, and the origins of humanity. Message received though. You can have the cheap point, but don’t expect me to give up any opportunity for pedantic-ness in the future.

    To be very precise, I meant to the study of the origins and diversity of life, and its variation in time.

  • Rich Wilson

    As Christians, we are not throwing up our hands and throwing out a random culprit, we believe that God is responsible for creation.

    If you had been born into a different religion, or at a different time, you would believe differently. That sounds random to me. Your only evidence is your book. I have a copy of the Egyptian Book of the Dead that says otherwise.

    I can understand someone like Francis Collins saying that God started the first life, and then evolution caused the variety. Or I think the Pope’s current stance is that God imbued humans with souls at some point in evolution. I think it’s a stretch, but, ok. It’s not demonstrably wrong. But this nonsense about ‘kinds’ is demonstrably wrong. Just as the idea that the Earth is the center of the universe, and everything revolves around it, is wrong.

  • Rich Wilson

    (Unless you meant that creationists do not contribute anything to the field of evolutionary study, which of course would be no surprise).

    Actually, let me reiterate Francis Collins.

    Actually, I find no conflict here, and neither apparently do the 40 percent of working scientists who claim to be believers. Yes, evolution by descent from a common ancestor is clearly true. If there was any lingering doubt about the evidence from the fossil record, the study of DNA provides the strongest possible proof of our relatedness to all other living things.

    But why couldn’t this be God’s plan for creation? True, this is incompatible with an ultra-literal interpretation of Genesis, but long before Darwin, there were many thoughtful interpreters like St. Augustine, who found it impossible to be exactly sure what the meaning of that amazing creation story was supposed to be. So attaching oneself to such literal interpretations in the face of compelling scientific evidence pointing to the ancient age of Earth and the relatedness of living things by evolution seems neither wise nor necessary for the believer.

    (emphasis mine)
    I’m sure you can find the entire article on CNN using google. It’s one of the first hits under his name.

  • Rich Wilson

    I point out to my kids how much the wild turkeys in our backyard walk like dinosaurs

    Or at least what we think dinosaurs probably walked like 🙂

  • Jeff

    Or you can take the Matt LaClair route

    Yes, and you know what happened to him. He and his family were virtually driven out of town (not that Kearny, NJ was such a choice place to live to begin with).

  • Josh Evolved

    If, and I stress if creationism/ID is to be taught in schools it has to be relegated to the appropriate subject: philosophy, theology, or literature. Science classes should be for science and science only.

    It is not the fault of scientists that Genesis doesn’t hold up to observed reality, that onus is entirely on the writers and your “omnipotent” god.

    Anyway evolution isn’t about the cause of life, or the origins, it is about diversity and how species went from a to b. Creationism isn’t, it is an “origin concept”, one without any credence to it.

    If creationism is going to taught then surely it must be followed by Islamic creationism, Zoroastrianism creationism, or any of the other myriad of “origin concepts.” Frankly our education system is already bogged down, and to teach all the “controversies” would require an entire semester, if not a whole school year.

    Our children deserve better than that.

  • Courtney

    The worksheets are constantly stressing that macroevolution is unobservable.
    You know what I find to be more unobservable?
    God.

  • Bertram Cabot, Jr.

    This is an amusing post, “friendly” atheists, since in the later post you claim religion can’t be called out.

    BS I say.

    You just demonstrated that a person can be kept from stating their faith. In context, it was a teacher, but it won’t stop there.

    By the way, IT IS JUST AS ILLEGAL FOR A TEACHER TO DENIGRATE RELIGION IN THE CLASSROOM as it is to promote it.

    We are in the process of nailing one now in Kansas City.

    Stay tuned.

  • Hypatia’s Daughter

    Blacksheep, I suggest you check out this video: “List of Scientists Rejecting Evolution- Do they really?” by YouTuber DonExodus2
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ty1Bo6GmPqM
    What is significant about the scientists you mentioned, was that most (but not all) died before Darwin even wrote “Origin of Species” i.e. there was no scientific alternative to creationism: and they made their discoveries by shutting the Bible and studying nature with an open mind.
    This is in stark contrast with our current crop of so called “scientific (cough, cough) creationists.”
    Sorry, but scientists don’t advance new theories by setting up public debates in church basements and college lecture halls – they do science, publish their results, and let their body of work convince their peers. One may have a degree in a science, but if all you are doing is PR for a crackpot theory, you are not a scientist.

  • George washington Carver, Louis Pasteur, Johannes Kepler, Isaac newton, Nicolaus Copernicus, Erwin Schrdinger…

    Carver died in 1943
    Pasteur – 1895
    Kepler – 1630
    Newton – 1727
    Copernicus – 1543
    Schrödinger – 1961

    So out of that list, only three people were even alive at the time when the theory of evolution was published, one just barely. Which makes me wonder why anyone would identify the others as creationists as if they know that those great thinkers would have remained creationists if they had access to the information we have now. And, given that the rest of the names on that list died 50+ years ago, I think it’s similarly silly to assume they wouldn’t have changed their position given what we know now.

    More importantly – who cares? Throwing out a list of names of people who have done great things who were also creationists does nothing to support the concept of creationism. These people contributed a lot to our collective understanding as it exists today, but as creationists? Just as worthless as any other creationist – especially since most of them were creationists simply because they were ignorant of the theory.

    Regardless, there is no equivalence between the failed hypothesis that is creationism (and I’m being really nice even considering the idea in a scientific context) and the long standing theory of evolution. Those who attempt to do so are only able to because of their own biases and glaring lack of understanding/purposeful warping of both concepts.

  • Hypatia’s Daughter

    Bertram Cabot, Jr., if creationism is that teacher’s religious belief, what was he doing teaching it in a science classroom?
    I didn’t send my kids to school to have them taught that demons cause disease in health, Vulcan causes earthquakes in geography, the Earth is the center of the Universe in astronomy or that Goddidit in 6 days in biology. As a matter of fact, I didn’t send them to school to be taught any religious beliefs I don’t hold.

  • Rich Wilson

    You just demonstrated that a person can be kept from stating their faith. In context, it was a teacher, but it won’t stop there.

    The teacher didn’t state his faith. He taught things that are patently untrue. There are people who say the holocaust never occurred, but we don’t teach that in schools either.

  • Bertram Cabot, Jr.

    And it is also illegal to denigrate religion in the classroom.

    Did you realize that?

    As I said, there is one arrogant atheist teacher in Kansas City who is going to know that soon when tapes make it to the school board meeting.

    Stay tuned.

  • Rich Wilson

    As I said, there is one arrogant atheist teacher in Kansas City who is going to know that soon when tapes make it to the school board meeting.

    I’ll bet there are more Christian teachers denigrating Islam and Atheism and Hinduism. But you’re right. None of them should be doing it.
    But what does that have to do with this case? I don’t care what this teacher’s religious beliefs are. He didn’t make that clear in his handouts. What he did was teach the kids things that are not true. And not just opinion-not-true like to what degree did child labor aid the industrial revolution, but Jupiter-doesn’t-have-moons-not-true.

  • mekathleen

    This troubles me, as I went to Libertyville High School. I remember it being more conservative than when I was closer to the city at my previous school, but I didn’t think it was that bad.

    I also remember reading about creationist school board candidates in Lake Zurich and Mundelein. What is going on up in Lake County? Is there a new mega church or something?

  • “Be able to explain how homologous structures, vestigial structures, embryo similarities, DNA similarities, and the fossil record can be used to explain both macroevolution and creation.”

    This question isn’t even stated in a manner that makes sense… lines of evidence don’t explain a larger model. They give evidence for (or against) a larger model and the model explains the evidence.

    This entire incident just goes to show that science-literate teachers are needed in our schools. This whackadoodle has no place miseducating children.

    PS The fossil record says horses took 50 million years to change from a dog to a horse sized animal. “Creation” says it took 300-400 years. Creation is macroevolution on drugs, and much like other drugs, should be kept out of school.

  • Blacksheep

    More importantly – who cares? Throwing out a list of names of people who have done great things who were also creationists does nothing to support the concept of creationism.

    Sorry – I guess you missed my point entirely. What I thought RCN was implying in his comments was that people who have faith, or believe in creationism, have no interest in discovering the truth, are bad scientists, etc. I was pointing out that the majority of great scintific discoveries ever made – and you would need a whole book to list accomplishments, inventions, etc. – were by people who had faith in God at the time that they made those discoveries. I disagree that belief in God somehow limits someone from great scientific acheivment.

    Someone else made the comment about those discoveries only happening when those scientists “closed the book…” which may be true in the case of Darwin, but is not the case with the others, most of whom remained lifelong believers.

  • Blacksheep

    Or at least what we think dinosaurs probably walked like 🙂

    What took you so long!

  • Erik

    @Blacksheep

    It seems you are confusing creationism with the idea that many theists hold that evolution occurs, but it was led by god.
    Those two positions are not the same by any means. Creationism is a literal interpretation of the Genesis story. It’s always been presented as such. The whole point for the use of the phrase “Intelligent Design” was to attempt to separate it from creationism which was nothing more than theology. The problem however, was that the people touting ID didn’t bother to alter anything in terms of their argument. They are still pushing creationism, they’re just calling something else and refusing to discuss anything about the creator. This is done on purpose of course. If they did mention their hypothetical creator, they would show themselves for the Genesis oriented creationists they actually are.

    This is one of the biggest problems atheists who have followed the Creation vs. Evolution argument, the creation side is incredibly dishonest about their goals. The Wedge Document made it very clear what the actual goal was, much to their dismay however. You should look into it.

  • Hypatia’s Daughter

    Blacksheep, It was I who said that the scientists you listed “….made their discoveries by shutting the Bible and studying nature with an open mind.” I did not mean they ceased to be religious or believers – only that they did not use the Bible as a literal guide as to what they expected to find in nature, as modern creationists do.
    The observations and conclusions of Copernicus, Galileo, Kepler & Newton were most certainly contrary to Biblical literacy and/or theological based “scientific” theories off their times. Newton was vilified by the religious of his day (much the same as Darwin is today) because his Theory of Universal Gravitation (which explained the orbital motions of the planets), “moved God to the edge of the Solar System” (his words).
    Pious believers can be excellent scientists, but they must leave their religion outside the laboratory door.

  • I went to another D128 school and my sisters are still there. I’m glad the school board was swift and to the point.