September 10, 2013

Texas Textbook Review Panel Wants ‘Creation Science’ In Biology Books

Texas religious conservatives serving on the state textbook review panel want the oxymoron that is “creation science” included in biology books. Never mind that the Supreme Court ruled in 1987 that creationism cannot be taught in public school science classes, the arrogance of creationists will not be thwarted.

The Dallas Morning News — “I understand the National Academy of Science’s strong support of the theory of evolution,” said Texas A&M University nutritionist Karen Beathard, one of the biology textbook reviewers. “At the same time, this is a theory. As an educator, parent and grandparent, I feel very firmly that creation science based on biblical principles should be incorporated into every biology book that is up for adoption.”

First, the ignorance is breathtaking. Second, evolution is only a theory? — I’ll let Inigo Montoya take care of that one…

Inigo Montoya: You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

A “theory” is an idea to explain something that is supported by independent observation and meticulous testing. When something rises to the level of a theory, it is no longer just an idea, it is a testable and provable explanation for why something is, or how something works. And evolution is just such a thing. Yes, it’s a theory, one that comes with a mountain of evidence backing it up. So this is clearly not what these creationist conservatives are critiquing, but if they are, then their ignorance is showing, which is all too often the case.

No, the word these conservatives are actually talking about is a “hypothesis,” which is a proposed explanation of something based on preliminary observational evidence, but not rigorously tested. If evolution were “just” a hypothesis, it would still be on firmer ground than so-called “creation science,” which is religion masquerading as science. But no such speculation is needed because evolution is indeed a theory.

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