Discriminatory state education policy seeks to censor science teaching
Composed from 123rf.com/Sutisa Kangvansap
Published: 11 October 2013 (GMT+10)
In 2013, the Department of Education, Training and Employment in Queensland, Australia, issued a Fact Sheet on the teaching of creationism and intelligent design in Queensland government schools. This fact sheet is ambiguous, confusing, discriminatory, scientifically flawed, and should be removed. While this article deals with the Queensland policy, the issue is a global one, and the same principles apply (e.g. see Further restrictive legislation to keep Creation out of UK state-funded schools). The Queensland policy reads:
Fact sheet: Creationism and intelligent design
Education Queensland schools are required to implement the F–10 Australian Curriculum: Science and in Years 11 and 12 can select from the Queensland Studies Authority (QSA) senior science syllabuses.
The Australian Curriculum: Science and the QSA Biology syllabus require students to study the theory of evolution by natural selection. This theory explains the diversity of living things and is supported by a range of scientific evidence. Topics related to this theory include: the processes involved in natural selection; describing biodiversity as a function of evolution; explaining changes caused by natural selection; relating genetic characteristics to survival and reproduction rates; and evaluating and interpreting evidence for evolution including fossil record, chemical and anatomical similarities, and geographical distribution of species.
The Australian Curriculum: Science and the Queensland Studies Authority Biology syllabus do not recognise the following as scientific theory: creationism, intelligent design, or any other metaphysical explanations of changes over time to living things; and do not identify these as part of any science curriculum.
In Education Queensland schools, creationism and intelligent design are not recognised as scientific theory and are not included in the school science curriculum or in the teaching, learning and assessment associated with school science programs. Creationism or intelligent design is not to be compared with or evaluated against scientific theory.
School principals ensure school programs implement the curriculum as specified in the P–12 curriculum, assessment and reporting framework
The Policy is Ambiguous and Confusing
The policy is confusing because it does not distinguish between evidence that can be observed and tested in the present (which is what science is all about) and speculative stories about the past (which is what the evolutionary worldview is). None of the events described in the evolutionary worldview was observed over those supposed hundreds of millions of years in the past. All such hypothetical inventions depend on the story teller’s imagination—fuelled by his metaphysical assumptions and belief system. It is these speculative stories that are controversial, which is why the policy was issued.
The policy displays the same confusion on its use of the word ‘evolution’. Evolution is the name used for a biological process, and it is also the name used for a worldview about the origin of the universe, the earth, and all its living systems. In other words, evolution can relate to “changes caused by natural selection”, “genetic characteristics”, and “survival and reproduction rates”, all of which can be tested by observation and experiment. There is no problem with this aspect of the curriculum. We could call this process ‘natural selection’ or ‘adaptation’ in order to differentiate it from the worldview meaning of ‘evolution’.
As a worldview, evolution is used to explain the whole world over billions of years, including “the diversity of living things”. In this usage, evolution is a metaphysical thought pattern, not a scientific observation. (See Natural Selection is not evolution.) To teach evolution, the metaphysical worldview, in schools as established scientific fact is highly controversial. That is demonstrated by the fact that there is an alternative worldview that explains the origin and condition of the world including the diversity of living things. It is this alternative worldview—that everything was created, not ‘evolved’—that this policy is seeking to silence. To teach the evolutionary worldview as fact is wrong, because it is not fact but a pattern of thought held by a minority segment of the population.
The Policy is Unconstitutional
The Australian Constitutional says the Commonwealth is not to legislate with respect of religion.
116. Commonwealth not to legislate in respect of religion
The Commonwealth shall not make any law for establishing any religion, or for imposing any religious observance, or for prohibiting the free exercise of any religion, and no religious test shall be required as a qualification for any office or public trust under the Commonwealth.
Mandating the teaching of evolution the worldview as part of a national curriculum goes against the spirit of the Constitution because the idea that everything on earth originated by evolution over billions of years is a religious belief. Sir Julian Huxley, first Director General of UNESCO described evolution in his address to Darwin’s Centennial Convocation this way:
“In the evolutionary pattern of thought there is no longer need or room for the supernatural. The earth was not created; it evolved. So did all the animals and plants that inhabit it, including our human selves, mind and soul, as well as brain and body. So did religion.”1
Note that Huxley describes evolution as a “pattern of thought”. It’s not a scientific observation but a metaphysical belief. Note that evolution makes clear pronouncements about God, the creation, the nature of man, our minds and our souls, none of which have been established empirically by scientific observation. These are the doctrines of the evolutionary worldview. Evolution thus is not an objective, scientific fact but a metaphysical, religious belief system. That is why evolution is such a controversial issue, and why the Fact Sheet is totally inappropriate.
William Provine, professor of Biological Sciences, Cornell University, an atheist, said, “Evolution is the greatest engine of atheism ever invented.”2
Atheist Richard Dawkins also recognized the anti-God nature of evolution. He said, “Darwin made it possible to be an intellectually fulfilled atheist.”3
Albert Mohler, President, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, also made the point that evolution operates in the West as a rival religion to the Christian faith:
“… naturalistic evolution is the great intellectual rival to Christianity in the Western world. It is the creation myth of the secular elites and their intellectual weapon of choice in public debate.”4
Atheist professor of philosophy Michael Ruse said the same thing, that evolution is a religion, “a full-fledged alternative to Christianity”.
The Australian Constitution clearly prohibits the Commonwealth government from promoting one religion or suppressing another. That this Fact Sheet should promote the evolutionary worldview and prohibit other competing worldviews thus goes against the spirit of the Constitution.
The Policy is Discriminatory
It is discriminatory to permit only one viewpoint to be presented in the market of ideas and to exclude all competing ideas. This policy discriminates against those in the community who hold different views and who desire to raise their children from a different perspective. It is discriminatory to prevent their viewpoint from being respected and heard.
Recent polling in the USA indicates that “forty-six percent of Americans believe in the creationist view that God created humans in their present form at one time within the last 10,000 years.”5 And even in Australia, a large proportion of the population would reject godless ‘textbook evolution’, saying instead that man was created by God. So the size of the discrimination is massive.
The 2008 documentary film hosted by Ben Stein called Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed documents an alarming degree of discrimination within education circles in the West against the idea of design in nature. This documentary shows that educators and scientists are being ridiculed, denied tenure and even fired for the crime of suggesting that life is not just the result of accidental, random chance. We do not want this bigotry in Australian schools.
Jerry Bergman in The Slaughter of the Dissidents gives a detailed report on the educational establishment’s efforts to insulate evolutionary theory and philosophical naturalism from critical assessment. (See If you can’t beat them, ban them.) He describes the suppression of critical views, and the victimisation of dissenting teachers and pupils in schools, and students and faculty in universities. We do not want the Australian educational system to be taken over by this scourge. The removal of Education Queensland’s Fact Sheet on creationism and intelligent design would be a step in the right direction.
The Education Queensland policy that singles out creationism and intelligent design for prohibition is a policy that discriminates against a significant proportion of the people of the state and it should be removed.
The Policy is Scientifically Flawed
The Education Queensland policy was issued to establish the evolutionary worldview, that life on earth evolved naturalistically over millions of years as the only worldview to be considered in Queensland schools. The policy was issued to ban rival viewpoints on origins such as creationism and intelligent design.
Initially, the policy seeks to justify its position by use of two logical fallacies. The first is an appeal to authority. The policy reads, “The Australian Curriculum: Science and the Queensland Studies Authority Biology syllabus do not recognise the following as scientific theory: creationism, intelligent design, or any other metaphysical explanations.” Education Queensland does not need to give any reasons for this because they simply ‘appeal to authority’, which is a logical fallacy. The proper way to establish these issues (as set out in the aims of the Australian Curriculum to be discussed later) is by evidence, argument and debate, especially by ensuring both sides are heard.
The second fallacy is to label the competing views as unscientific and thus silence debate. The policy says, “Creationism or intelligent design is not to be compared with or evaluated against scientific theory.” The fact is that creationism and intelligent design are scientific theories. They are just as scientific as the concept of naturalistic evolution over millions of years.
The policy overlooks the fact that naturalistic evolution, the worldview, needs constantly to appeal to ‘miracles’ to make the story work, but they don’t call them miracles. In other words, they have to appeal to events that are so improbable that they are miraculous. And they have to propose events that defy known scientific observations and established scientific laws.
Here are a few examples. 1. The big bang: there was nothing and then it exploded and produced everything. 2. The origin of life: non-living chemicals spontaneously organized themselves into a self-replicating living cell with all its interdependent machinery and non-material software. 3. The origin of multi-celled organisms: single celled organisms clumped together and each modified their design in synchronism with all the other cells such that they specialised their function to work cooperatively as a single interdependent, differentiated, multi-celled organism. 4. Genetic information: random mutations, rather than destroying the genetic information on the DNA, produced encyclopaedias worth of new design information that could code for novel, innovative body components. (See 15 Questions for Evolutionists for more.)
The policy further attempts to justify its position scientifically when it says of evolution, “This theory explains the diversity of living things and is supported by a range of scientific evidence.” This statement is wrong because the theory of evolution over millions of years has so many fatal problems that it should be considered as falsified. But, because evolution is a worldview and not a scientific hypothesis, it continually morphs itself such that the worldview is non-falsifiable.
Textbooks that present the theory for schools systematically hide these problems from the students. They present incorrect information, recycle evidences that have been long abandoned, use fraudulent evidence, publish iconic images that even evolutionists say are wrong, suggest only one conclusion to explain evidence when the evidence could support a variety of conclusions, omit hypothesis from a competing worldview, use disingenuous wording, and give the impression that all problems have been solved when they have not. See the article They are teaching lies to our kids which lists some of the many scientific problems with the evidence and claims for evolution presented in textbooks used in Queensland schools. See also Biology exam fraud for an example of how frauds are used to support the evolutionary worldview in Australian schools. See also the brochure 15 questions for Evolutionists which highlights some of the fundamental scientific flaws with evolutionary theory for which there are no satisfactory answers, a situation even admitted by evolutionists themselves. These issues should be included in the curriculum and presented in the science classroom so that students are properly informed and can make educated decisions.
In attempting to provide scientific justification for the policy, the Fact Sheet mentions the “fossil record” but this is actually a problem for evolution. Living fossils are one feature of the fossil record that show evolution has not occurred. Other problems are the sudden appearance of new body plans without evidence of ancestors and the absence of transitional forms. There are other ways of interpreting the fossils, and students should be aware of these.
The Fact Sheet mentions “chemical and anatomical similarities”, but these do not prove evolution. There are all manner of similarities, even down to the gene level that evolutionists acknowledge are not due to common ancestry. The patterns of similarity speak of common design and there are many examples that actually thwart the notion of common ancestry.
It also mentions the “geographical distribution of species”, but again, this presents many problems for evolutionary explanations and there are other ways of interpreting the evidence. See: No evidence of evolution and ‘deep time’.
The scientific justification provided in the Fact Sheet for its policy to exclude competing ideas is flawed, and the Fact Sheet should be withdrawn.
The Policy is Educationally faulty
This Fact Sheet policy actually contradicts the stated educational aims of the Australian Curriculum: Science. Consider the following aims:
To ensure that students develop an interest in science as a means of expanding their curiosity and willingness to explore, ask questions about and speculate on the changing world in which they live
But according to this Fact Sheet ‘curiosity’, ‘exploration’, ‘questions’, and ‘speculation’ are only permitted with clearly delineated bounds defined by the policy. This is in clear violation of the aims of the curriculum.
To ensure that students develop an understanding of the nature of scientific inquiry and the ability to use a range of scientific inquiry methods, including questioning; planning and conducting experiments and investigations …
This requires an understanding of the difference between facts and interpretation, between observation and speculation. But according to the policy only naturalistic speculations are a valid field of inquiry for origins questions.
To ensure that students develop an ability to communicate scientific understanding and findings to a range of audiences, to justify ideas on the basis of evidence, and to evaluate and debate scientific arguments and claims
Education Queensland needs to consider this goal and put it into practice. It is time that they encouraged this scientific question to be justified on the basis of evidence, debate, and scientific arguments rather than trying to squash competing ideas by government legislation. It is time that the flawed Fact Sheet policy is withdrawn.
To ensure that students develop an ability to solve problems and make informed, evidence-based decisions about current and future applications of science while taking into account ethical and social implications of decisions
Students are not in a position to make informed decisions when information is withheld from them. Students are not able to evaluate the social implications of decisions if they are not allowed to explore those implications and consider alternatives.
One of Education Queensland’s stated goals is:
To ensure that students develop an understanding of historical and cultural contributions to science
This is a good aim. Students need to be aware of the intellectual and cultural conditions that led to the rise of science in the first place. They should know that the pioneers of science were creationists who described the evidence they saw for intelligent design. Students should be informed of such scientists as: Nicholas Steno, Isaac Newton, Robert Boyle, Louis Pasteur, James Maxwell, etc. It was the biblical worldview that provided the intellectual and cultural preconditions for the rise of modern science: See Biblical roots of modern science and The Fall and the inspiration for science.
The policy of Education Queensland is educationally faulty. It runs absolutely counter to the attitudes displayed by the founders of modern science, and it actually undermines the sort of thinking necessary for scientific innovation to flourish. It should be withdrawn.
Evolution has bad outcomes
The evolutionary worldview has bad outcomes at the personal, community and national level because of its harmful doctrines on the nature of God, the origin of the universe, and the nature of man.
Peter Atkins, professor of chemistry at Oxford and an atheist, said that man is ‘just a bit of slime on the planet’. That’s the logical consequence of the evolutionary worldview. That’s not the stuff to inspire students with purpose and sacrifice.
Atheist and evolution promoter Richard Dawkins in his book River out of Eden (ch. 4) said that we live in a universe that has “no design, no purpose, no evil and no good, nothing but blind pitiless indifference.” Again, he is simply expressing the logical consequences of the naturalistic evolutionary worldview.
Students should not have this evolutionary worldview pushed on them by government policy as if it is the only option they have. This worldview is held by only a small segment of society but they have been influential in getting the state and the media to fund the promotion of their ideas. There are other options that make better sense scientifically and have better outcomes for students and their families. At the very least students should be encouraged to discuss and debate the issue.
That the evolutionary worldview has such bad consequences is not surprising because a person’s understanding of where they have come from impacts the way they feel about themselves and how they should live. Here is one example, but there are many others.
On 20 April 1999 students Eric Harris (18) and Dylan Klebold (17) went on a shooting spree at the Columbine High School, Colorado, USA, killing their fellow students. 15 students died that day, including Harris and Klebold, the worst school shooting in US history. On the day Harris wore a T-shirt with the words “Natural Selection”. Their goal was to bring death to more than 500. Harris wrote on his website, “YOU KNOW WHAT I LOVE??? Natural SELECTION! It’s the best thing that ever happened to the Earth. Getting rid of all the stupid and weak organisms.”
Rachel Scott was one of the young students shot in the rampage. Her father, Darrell Scott, said, “If children are taught that they came from slime, that they evolved from a lower form of life, and that there’s no future after death, then their views of life are affected by that … life really doesn’t have the meaning that it does to children who believe they are created in God’s image and that they have not only this life but a future life as well.”
Tragic examples like this can be multiplied (See for example: Inside the mind of a killer, The Darwinian Roots of the Nazi tree, and Darwin’s impact—the bloodstained legacy of evolution).
The Fact Sheet policy of Education Queensland is charting a direction that will lead to bad outcomes for students, their families, school communities, and the state. It should be withdrawn.
The Fact Sheet: Creationism and intelligent design issued by Education Queensland for government schools is ambiguous and confusing. It flies in the face of the Australian constitution, discriminates against a significant proportion of the population, is scientifically flawed, educationally faulty, and leads to bad outcomes for students. The policy should be removed.6
References and notes
- Huxley, J., Darwinian Centennial Convocation, University of Chicago, 1959. Return to text.
- Provine, W.B., “Evolution: Free will and punishment and meaning in life.” Slide from his 1998 “Darwin Day” address, Darwin Day website, University of Tennessee Knoxville TN, 1998. Return to text.
- Dawkins, R., The Blind Watchmaker, Penguin Books, London, England, p. 6, 1991. Return to text.
- Albert Mohler, A., Creation vs. Evolution—The New Shape of the Debate, 1 February 2011, http://www.albertmohler.com/2011/02/01/creation-vs-evolution-the-new-shape-of-the-debate/. Return to text.
- In U.S., 46% Hold Creationist View of Human Origins: Highly religious Americans most likely to believe in creationism, 1 June 2012. http://www.gallup.com/poll/155003/Hold-Creationist-View-Human-Origins.aspx. Return to text.
- Contact details of government ministers in Queensland can be obtained from the Queensland Parliament website http://www.parliament.qld.gov.au/members/current/list. Return to text.
I am totally disgusted with what's been happening in our education system.
As a previous state high school science teacher my 3 loves were (and are) science, the children and education.
With the enforcement of 'evolution as a fact', I found .....
1. The government was destroying my happiness in science as I was forced to teach something (i.e evolution) which has no real evidence, and is littered with frauds, as 'science' over something which has many infallible proofs (i.e. creation). This compromised my professional integrity.
2. The government also hurt me by removing my 'duty of care'. I should have been warning the children of genetic entropy - not giving them false hopes of evolving- by chance and time.
Once again, my professional integrity was compromised.
3. Also, by removing "being created in the image of God", I then had no real basis for trusting my senses and thinking, and could impart to the children no real basis for theirs either. They were just as rational as the chemicals that I used and threw away. One can't teach, if one doesn't have this starting point!
The discriminatory state education policy is cruel to both teachers and children, and also the parents who have put their trust in the system.
Years ago when I once discussed my concerns of teaching evolution as fact, when there were serious flaws in the whole concept, with a year 9 student (a friendly chat at the end of a term), she said to me, "We wish teachers would just teach us what they really thought, and then let us make the decisions." I agree with what she said.
Great response, great points. If I was a science teacher I think I'd feel duty bound to ignore much of the policy - even for no other reason that it's so unscientific - and respond with a "fail, try again" mark.
What a great article! It should be widely distributed, especially to 'those in educational authority', the media & even churches.
Good on you CMI. We must keep up 'the message' & gradually the influential will 'get the message'! I'll distribute copies of this article as widely as I can - it's too important to be just for 'believers'.
Fabulous article! Thanks Tas.
When I was growing up we were taught that state funded propaganda was something that only happened in Nazi Germany and the Communist Block.
One generation later my children are sitting in Qld schools being subjected to a similar form of ideological brain washing.
If history is anything to go by the persecution of the dissenters will only increase. Where will it end?
Well written Tas, can CMI pass this on to all Education Ministers in our States and Territories, you never know it may get some of them thinking.
Have a great day.
Hi Bruce, That would be a good thing to do. It would be good if it came from people of Australia who are concerned about this development rather than CMI. It's important for our representatives to appreciate what the people think.
Science needs a solid foundation for robustness and that foundation is the real and reliable history, cosmos history. Otherwise science will be off track and not effective and not able to predict and discover things.
For example, evolution science which excludes the real and reliable cosmos history is off track and unable to predict and discover anything useful in biology, astronomy and other fields and dumb struck when evolution scientists find the opposite things.
If the evolution science worldview is robust why should they be afraid of other worldviews, especially the Bible worldview?
When the Queensland department of education goes to this extent to constraint science, it looks as if the evolution science worldview is not robust and the art of evolution interpretations on fossils and biology is an endangered art .
I agree that "the brochure 15 questions for Evolutionists ... highlights some of the fundamental scientific flaws with evolutionary theory for which there are no satisfactory answers, a situation even admitted by evolutionists themselves. These issues should be included in the curriculum and presented in the science classroom so that students are properly informed and can make educated decisions." Duane Gish, in his powerful book "Evolution: the Fossils Still Say No!" quotes zoology professor R. Alexander: "Our primary goal as educators should be to teach students to think, and such a comparison [between evolution and creation] ... may accomplish that purpose better than most."
A great article, which I have copied and sent to the UK Secretary of State for Education, Michael Gove.
I hate these articles that make me feel so helpless as a Christian Bible believer. I feel such a rage inside that I feel like I might explode. What can I do? Send an email. So what. It will only get put into the junk file like all the other items that don't fit the government agenda. I want to shake people, yell at them, (in love) show them that their arguments are false and ridiculous. (breathe. Just breathe.) How bad does it have to get before Christians join together on mass and protest against the lies and deceptions that our kids are being forced to swallow?
Hmm. Back to it then....
It is important to be informed so we can speak up and inform others. I agree that one can feel helpless but if we each do what we can it is amazing what the result can be.
Hi Tas. Great article that should be widely distributed but I was wondering if a precis of the article would be useful. It seems to me that politicans need to be made interested before they would make time to read and digest an article like yours. Just a thought.
Good article Tas. I think this must be viewed as the warning from the watchtower of what is coming against those of us who are Science and Social Science high school teachers here in Australia. Ancient Israel would have soldiers preparing for battle when they heard the warnings sounding out from the lookouts on the walls of Jerusalem. Who is going to make a stand for Gods Kingdom in Queensland? Leo Tolstoy's quote "All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing" is I think something we would all do well to ponder. It is time to fight (loving our enemies by proclaiming the truth) brothers, lets not lose our saltiness! Let us advance this wonderful gospel of peace and salvation, in both words and deeds, in this decaying and sad world.
Perhaps CMI could facilitate some type of internet forum or a non virtual meeting where like minded people, denominations and Christian schools could organise together to develop strategies and tactics to defend the faith and advance it. Perhaps this could be organised in conjunction with other groups such as ICSA, ACL etc. Perhaps it is time that the fractured voice of the Protestant Churches remnant, finds a way to speak as one? Please do something, someone somewhere in Queensland? And may God bless those of you who are fighting the good fight.
unfortunately, the Australian Constitution (vis á vis s116, as stated) means exactly what the HCA says it means....no more, no less!....
Christians can't really complain about this unless they are prepared to 'chip in' and fund *a massive High Court challenge* utilising the services of a team of highly experienced and competent QCs, well versed in constitutional law....
in the mean-time, home school yr kids....
OTW: you get what you pay for, eh?
You can add another item to the list of miracles claimed in the evolutionary belief systems and that is the development of sentience. That has been called the "Hard Problem of Consciousness" A more Christian restating of the problem is "What is the mechanism of the I AM?"
The accepted scientific answer is that consciousness "just happened" as a result of enough neurons firing.
Like Skynet, WOPR/Joshua, and Adam Selene, which were self aware computers in science fiction, we just "came alive" by virtue of how big our brains were.
This belief that sentience "just happened" is a major example of the invocation of miracles in the mythology of evolution.
I completely agree with you Tas - the contradictory nature of the policy flies in the face of scientific inquiry and a lot of what science fundamentally stands for.
As a year 6 teacher at a public school in Queensland, I find this a very challenging area of the science curriculum as I am a creationist. The indoctrination starts at a young age and it is intensely frustrating to be in my classroom while in the adjoining classroom the teacher presents the 'facts' of evolution. It isn't surprising to see that when ordering science resources they will often advertise a free Bill Nye DVD to supposedly sweeten the deal.
Because I am unable to present creationism as a theory I do my best to get the students to engage in critical thinking by posing some of the problems evolution has. Thankfully, God has also presented me with a lot of opportunities to discuss God as children have asked for my thoughts. Prayer is certainly needed for educational policy change and wisdom and guidance for fellow creationist teachers in the public system.
(For legal reasons, obviously the views I have shared are not the views of the Government of Queensland)
An excellent, albeit depressing, article. Distribute it, as widely as possible!
I believe the truth of Creation is making an impact, so much so that it is now being perceived as a significant threat. Since there is no possible way to refute it, the cowardly atheist approach is to ban it.
Look at this as a great opportunity to be proactive in exposing this biased censorship! The media loves controversy, run with it.
In countries where the Word of God is banned, bibles are a much sought after treasure.
When censorship and banning the truth begins, what is the inevitable outcome?
Many thanks to the faithful team at CMI for this vital ministry.
This morning I listened to a scientist share a project he did. He presented a paper with incorrect science, to paid peer review journals. Half of them published the paper. Even after he contacted them to let them know that the information was wrong these journals still published it. Deceit is everywhere! What damage is happening to children world wide! What damage to the faith of adults!
I agree that evolution should be taught in our schools. In its entirety. With all its suppositions and theorising. With all its nonsequiturs and illogicalities. I think students should be helped to understand the mechanics of the Big Bang and how life just happened to start without a cause. They should be shown how single-celled organisms began to grow into multi-celled creatures (oops!) that could self-replicate and how sexual differences actually appeared and strengthened the process of procreation. They also need to have it explained how simple life forms became more complex and changed into other life forms, how some of them took to living in water and some learned even how to fly. They need to be told how man accidentally came on the scene and found he could uncover all this just by digging and how, without being taught, he could live peaceably with his fellows and write laws to govern their social behaviour and punish misdemeanours like inventing a transcendent being who really made it all in the first place. Or am I just being stupid?
I think this article is absolutely brilliant and want to use it to show a few people what governments are doing across the globe.
Well done Alan J. U.K. - I was thinking along those lines myself, sending to Michael Gove.
And, whilst feeling helpless as another contributor said, I was reminded of the places where Christianity has been banned in the past - and the church grew .....
You mention that this is against our constitution. Would a court challenge stand any chance of success?
It is against the spirit of the Constitution. Australians do not want government pushing a government-approved religion down their throats. It would be a different matter to see if this could succeed in the courts because of all sorts of technicalities.
The ideals of science are so noble when expressed in these mission /manifesto type statements...
e.g. the rationale from the Australian Curriculum
"Science is a dynamic, collaborative and creative human endeavour ...exploring the unknown, investigating universal mysteries.... Science knowledge is contestable and is revised, refined and extended as new evidence arises".
but the murky details in the biology section from the same source show that 3.5 billion years is not contestable...
"understand the processes and mechanisms that explain how life on Earth has persisted, changed and diversified over the last 3.5 billion years"
The mark of metaphysical devil is in the erroneous detail...
just as in the Garden of Eden.
Thanks to your creation ministry for steadfastly convicting this world culture of its sin.
A supposed scientific theory that requires legistration to protect it from serious examination and debate and must be constantly revised by it's proponents is a theory that is terminally ill.
Why would any government want to brainwash students into the philosophy of evolution when every single evidence for molecules-to-man evolution is based on some combination of made-up stories, arbitrary assumptions, irrational statements, or outright lies?
This is a very good article and its placement on the creation site is something I would expect. However, the impact of the arguments will not be felt without a commensurate legal effort, which I hope is taking place, if there is an avenue for that to occur. Legal "missionaries" are available in the US for this sort of thing, but it is a very hard "nut to crack" with the bias that institutions have against creation--especially educational insitututions.
While the figures about the percentage of US people that believe in some sort of God-created earth appear high (I have seen the same figures that the article cites), the details when you talk to people show such a wishy-washy position that my guess is biblically-based belief in creation is actually well less than 10%. All the more reason, however, to see articles like this published, since many people do not realize the strength of the bias against any position that seems like it involves God.
Thanks for publishing this article. Keep it up.
"Creationism or intelligent design is not to be compared with or evaluated against scientific theory." You can bet your shirt on that. If they were, they'd win.
Whilst I heartily agree with my fellow UK correspondents' sentiments in wanting to send this excellent article to Michael Gove, I suspect that he, along with most other MPs, would not even bother to read it no matter how compelling the arguments. I would really like to see someone of influence in the press taking up the challenge of confronting the 'education' system with promoting 'the greatest lie of our time!'
Many Thanks Tas - The article is great and so are many of the comments sharing an important concern. Just want to encourage us all to be faithful in honouring God and upholding his word. Is anything too hard for our God who created the heavens and the earth (everything!) - as he says in his word.
Writing to our Government representatives is not a waste of time (It is something we can do - They too need to be informed and held accountable as we all need to be)
If there was a petition to remove this policy, I'd sign it!
It's good for people to write to their representatives on such issues. There is a link at item 6 of the "References and notes" at the bottom that gives contact details.
There is such a simple answer to all of this. Simply keep the main science curriculum centered on current data regarding extant phenomena which is useful for predicting and understanding the results of experiments. Natural selection, population genetics etc. would of course be included here , but without invoking imaginary creative properties to these mechanisms which clearly do not exist and are not helpful. ALL sciences dealing with speculations about unique past events should then be relegated to a philosophy of science course, which could be an elective, in which the controversial subject of origins could be debated and discussed in a forum which encourages critical thought from all sides. Of course, such a plan is far too simple to ever be implemented, not to mention it would undermine decades of careful indoctrination and manipulation by christophobes and misotheists everywhere.
Would it help clarify "evolution as a worldview" by instead using the term "Darwinism"? After all Dawkins cites Darwin as giving him intellectual fulfillment.
Conflating evolution (with natural selection as an important driving mechanism) with outcomes such as increasing progress towards all that exists now begs the question as to whether you can make that assumption. It confuses most who understand that natural selection is well proven but who don,t realise that it is a LIMITED process.
Darwinism is, I submit, what is ADDED to natural selection to justify 'evolution the worldview'
incidentally most do not realise that natural selection is foundation ally endorsed by creationists and IDers ....
Using "Darwinism" as the label sheets the responsibility home to the actual culprit, does it not?
Yes, that is a good point. The worldview is even bigger than Darwinism because the worldview includes cosmic evolution, geological evolution and chemical evolution. Terms are important and the confusion over this term has led to bad consequences.
Your web article is great and very comprehensive. However, I do not believe that it is appropriate or accurate to state that this policy is unconstitutional. This is Tas' opinion only (there is no reference to Tas having received any legal opinion on this matter) and appears not to be based upon any High Court decision.
This raises a very important matter and one I believe CMI may wish to pursue. I believe "once and for all" the High Court should make a determination as to whether "evolution" is "science" or not. If this matter relates to our Constitution, which your web article indicates it does, then let the matter be determined by the appropriate authority in this instance. That is not by CMI, scientists or others as we all know everyone has an opinion. If the High Court was to decide that "evolution" is not "science" then CMI and others would have another very powerful base to work from.