Senseless cynical censorship
Humanists target creationism in Welsh schools
Published: 17 September 2019 (GMT+10)
British secularists are yet again up in arms about teaching creationism in schools—this time in Welsh schools. But Welsh schools are not actually teaching creationism, and it’s not as though creationists have been pushing for it either. The fact of the matter is, since humanists erupted in 2011 over the inclusion of the creationist perspective in a religious education class,1 teaching creationism in science classes has already been effectively banned in British schools, even including religious education classes! So why have 46 leading science organisations and scientists, including British atheist big-guns Richard Dawkins, David Attenborough, Steve Jones and Alice Roberts, joined forces in a campaign to ban teaching creationism in Welsh schools?
In what can only be described as a highly cynical move, they have written to the Welsh Government expressing their deep concern that a new draft Welsh science curriculum could “increase the possibility of teaching creationism as science”.2 Increase the possibility? The campaign, unsurprisingly, is organised by the British Humanist Society (BHS), who also ran the ‘Teach evolution, not creationism!’ campaign in England in 2012. This led to the ban on creationism (mentioned above), which saw evolution added to the British National Curriculum for primary schools. The BHS’s latest alarmist clarion call demands that any possible loop holes be closed, and potential weaknesses in the Welsh curriculum be exposed—lest these somehow be exploited by those ‘pernicious creationists’, masquerading as science teachers!
Evolution: a self-refuting philosophy
So why get so hot-under the collar about it all? Why the panic? After all, if God doesn’t exist, as the BHS signatories proclaim, why the rush to censor all references to His existence or creative design within schools? Furthermore, evolution, as a philosophy, is self-refuting, in that nothing can be truly known if we really are merely the sum-total of random, meaningless processes. Therefore, no concept of ultimate truth, including the ideas that creationism is bad or evolution is true, can be defended within the atheist world-view. Critical thinking must actually be sacrificed by these humanist campaigners, in favour of empty dogmatism.
Indeed, science itself was rooted within the biblical worldview, and the founding fathers of the major branches of science, were practically all Bible-believing creationists. The fact that science should work at all is testament to the existence of an Ultimate law giver, one who created a logical universe that can be comprehended by His creatures. Atheist Richard Dawkins, one of the signatories of the BHS letter, once infamously stated the implication of evolution for ‘truth’:
“The universe that we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil, no good, nothing but blind, pitiless indifference.”3
He is wrong of course, for the design in the universe is real, not apparent. Furthermore, can you think of a more damaging doctrine to teach the next generation than the one Dawkins espouses? In the minds of those who succumb to its tenets, such thinking divests them of any basis for ultimate truth, knowledge, morality, or human dignity and value.
Censored and silenced
The fundamental problem for the BHS and those who are leading this latest campaign, is that the new draft Welsh science and technology curriculum doesn't explicitly prohibit the teaching of creationism. But that surely is a given, since the carpet-ban against creationism came into force in British schools in 2012. However, apparently not content with the censorship that already exists, they are pushing for evolution to be more actively taught in Welsh primary schools, rather than waiting until the age of 14–15 years. So, in reality, it is not the creationists who are attempting to exploit the system to their advantage, rather it’s those who are pushing a godless, atheistic agenda. These people seek to expunge all religious faith, replacing it with a religion of materialism. Such militant atheism cannot tolerate even one instance of a dissenting voice. It recoils in horror at the idea of questioning Darwin in the minds of the young and impressionable. So much for critical thinking!
The campaign letter represents a concerted effort by the BHS to pressure the Welsh Government with ‘science’,2 thereby silencing Welsh schools into submission. The letter (which can be seen in full on the BHS web site4) begins by expressing the collected sense of alarm of its signatories at the perceived areas of vulnerability in the new curriculum. The second paragraph of the letter boldly asserts that “Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution”; they offer no citation for this dictum but it was originally stated by leading twentieth century evolutionary biologist Theodosius Dobzhansky.5 However, the facts do not bear this out when it comes to most biologists’ day jobs. It has been stated that evolution’s "day-to-day irrelevance is a great ‘paradox’ in biology", and furthermore, it can be shown that evolution has harmed science and society.
Who is denying whom?
The BHS letter continues that evolution must be taught to primary school children, so that “children in Wales are not exposed to pseudoscientific doctrines masquerading as science.”4 Welsh Humanists Coordinator (for BHS) Kathy Riddick comments further that it is “very worrying” that there is no explicit ban on creationism in Welsh schools. In her opinion, “This would deny Welsh students the right to a high quality, evidence-based education that enables them to understand how life came to be, to reason scientifically, and to be equipped to tackle misinformation in everyday life.”4 But it would deny no such thing and is an illogical claim! How can removing a competing paradigm in any argument better enable children to develop critical thinking? How can they better reason scientifically if they are not even allowed to critique the opposing side’s claims?
Denying the right to know that a competing paradigm even exists is censorship, plain and simple. One can only shake one’s head in disbelief at the obsessive paranoia displayed by the BHS and those who have signed their latest letter. Such efforts seek to completely excise from public life all vestiges of the Christian worldview, that which underpins our laws and institutions, culture and education, and the foundations of science.
Always a silver lining
However, there is hope. God can and does use the message of creation to reach pupils, parents and teachers with the message of salvation, even if creation is censored from the schools. That is why CMI’s primary ministry focus is to the Church, and it is through many Christian testimonies, and by being armed with good apologetic materials—such as CMI’s Creation magazine or Creation.com articles—that the battle for the hearts and minds of the next generation can be effectively waged.
References and notes
- CMI-UK/Europe’s Philip Bell was given equal time, along with a theistic evolutionist, to teach religious education classes at a secondary school, which sparked an alarmist national campaign against creationism. Return to text.
- Anon, Scientists want creationism teaching ban in Welsh schools, bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-49579519, 5 September 2019; accessed 6 September, 2019. Return to text.
- Dawkins, R., River out of Eden, Weidenfeld and Nicolson, p. 133, 1995. Return to text.
- UK’s top scientists tell the Welsh Government: ‘Teach evolution, not creationism!’, humanism.org.uk/2019/09/05/uks-top-scientists-tell-the-welsh-government-teach-evolution-not-creationism/, 5 September 2019; accessed 6 September, 2019. Return to text.
- Dobzhansky, T., “Nothing in Biology Makes Sense Except in the Light of Evolution”, American Biology Teacher 35(3):125–129, March 1973. Return to text.