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"The Plot to Kill Evolution" (Wired Magazine)

 
 
Reply Thu 7 Oct, 2004 06:34 pm
So I was just wondering what other people though about the fight to teach "Intelligent Design" (aka Creationism) alongside Biology in high schools around the US.

The argument goes something like this: Evolution is a theory and cannot explain all the intricacies of the world. There are many creatures on this planet, even some of only a single cell, that seem far too complex to have evolved naturally. Intelligent Design advocates would say that a "supernatural being" (aka God) designed the universe with the express purpose of creating these organisms exactly as they are, for a specific reason.


For anyone who wants to read an article on it, go to wired.com and look at this month's (October) issue. It's the cover story.
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Type: Discussion • Score: 9 • Views: 5,758 • Replies: 74
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timberlandko
 
  1  
Reply Thu 7 Oct, 2004 07:20 pm
Makes about as much sense to teach creationism theory alongside evolution theory as to teach voodoo alongside electromagnetism.
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angie
 
  1  
Reply Thu 7 Oct, 2004 09:49 pm
What would the text be: The Bible ?

Jeez.

(no pun intended)
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Eccles
 
  0  
Reply Thu 7 Oct, 2004 11:05 pm
I think it should, but only very, very briefly ( ten minutes or so), although I believe in evolution. I'm not a Christian and I think the question " Evolution vs Creationism" is extremely Eurocentric to include only the theory of the main Western religion , because there are many, many other beliefs concerning how we originate.

But, as well as being respectful to a large cultural group, it would help teach children critical thinking skills and prevent indoctrination by the Creationists by giving them forewarning about their argument ( "To be forewarned is to be forearmed" as both grandmothers and social psychologists say") . YOu could even give the children a choice like: "write a 750 word essay examining alternative theories of the origin of the world. State, giving evidence, which is the most credible" or " Using archeological evidence, prove that the current theory of evolution is more credible than intelligent design".

It shouldn't be taught in depth, no.
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Aldistar
 
  1  
Reply Thu 7 Oct, 2004 11:14 pm
I remember my first day of biology in highschool. Our teacher was standing at the front of the room going over the syllabus for the year. When she got through she added..."yes we will be learning about evolution, it is a major component of this class. You do not have to believe in it but if you want to pass you will have to learn it."

I don't think they should teach creationism in public school for a couple of reasons.
1. It is a violation of church/state
2.There are churches and bible study and religious schools that are built just for that type of education.
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Mr Stillwater
 
  1  
Reply Thu 7 Oct, 2004 11:21 pm
Tired of godless secular theories of natural history?

Still angry about the Skopes Monkey Trial?

Sure that YOUR G-d could whip up a whole Universe in one week? Heck, he could make TWO Universes in a week and still have time for 18 holes of golf!

Well friend, get in your car and take the children to
http://www.nwcreation.net/images/dinoadventure.gif
Where archaeology and mindlessness meet!!
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Mr Stillwater
 
  1  
Reply Thu 7 Oct, 2004 11:30 pm
Gasp in amazement as you see how dinosaurs and humans lived together at the dawn of time!!

Stick it to the godless with a bumpersticker that says it all!
http://www.drdino.com/shopping/images/products/708.jpg
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roger
 
  1  
Reply Thu 7 Oct, 2004 11:38 pm
I prefer the one with feet on the fish. Thanks anyway.
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Mr Stillwater
 
  1  
Reply Thu 7 Oct, 2004 11:41 pm
Is this REALLY your great-great-great....-grandfather?
http://www.drdino.com/shopping/images/products/461L.jpg

DO YOU DARE TO DISBELIEVE THE DARWINISTS!!!!










This is toooo fu<king much!!
[URL=DinoLand]http://www.dinosauradventureland.com[/URL]
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Odd Socks
 
  1  
Reply Fri 8 Oct, 2004 02:27 am
Actually, he's a damn sight prettier than my great-grand daddy, and even my brother.

Aldistar, you never get taught to analyse anything in bible school, and ,in fact, only to ignore all logic, which is bloody difficult. Getting the children to analyse the claims that the creationists make would be much more effective. In the long run, it would make the kids less likely to believe in creationism, anyway. In order to prevent discrimination, you could even get the kid's parent's to sign a permission slip so that if it's against a child's background ( say the parent's are fundamentalist anythings), the child has to do an alternative project.

Love from the Artist formerly known as Eccles.
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val
 
  2  
Reply Sat 9 Oct, 2004 04:39 am
Re: "The Plot to Kill Evolution" (Wired Magazine)
The belief that the world was created by a god, with a purpose is a religious belief. No one, even science, can prove it is wrong, or true.
Evolution is a scientif theory, and scientif theories must be able to be "falsified". That means that a theory has a scientif nature if, and only if, it is possible to contradict it with experimental facts.
But when people oppose to the theory of evolution another theory that says that not only god created the world with a purpose, but also created all living species like they exist in the present, they make a statement that pretends to be scientif. So, they must accept the possibility of factual falsification.
Fossils, genetic mutations, the different climatic and geological periodes of earth's history, are facts that contradict creationism. So creationism is false.
What a creationist cannot do is to invoque the authority of the bible or other religious sources. He must accept the rules of the game. If he debates scientific theories he must accept scientific verification.

I don't understand some religious people desire to mix religious propositions to scientif propositions. A religious proposition, like a philosophical one, cannot be proved false or true, unless it is incoherent or self contradictory. There is no way to mix them to science.

As for the idea that evolution doesn't explain everything, I agree. That's way it is a scientif theory.
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Cyracuz
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Oct, 2004 06:12 am
"Intelligent design or creationism"???

What are we now, outside creation? This "intelligent design" is creation. Even more, it is one of creations finest achievments. Now it has the abillity to percieve itself, however fragmentary. The ironic thing is that anyone who is inclined to speak for "cretionism" is actually opposing it by doing so.
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timberlandko
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Oct, 2004 06:17 am
If it weren't for astronomy, archaeology, math, physics, and logic, Intelligent Design/Creationism would work just fine.
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USAFHokie80
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Oct, 2004 10:23 am
I think it's a rediculous proposal, myself. I was watching a show the other night about this and one of the ID people cited the Grand Canyon as proof of ID. He said something to the effect that it was cut by a "mighty river" fed by the northern lakes. What he *meant* was that after the "Great Flood" the water rushed through and cut the canyon. Of course, we know there is no way in hell that any amount of water with any amount of pressure could cut a canyon so vast in anything less than several hundred years.

I don't mind the argument, I think it's great to question what should and shouldn't be taught. BUT, ID has absolutely no scientific basis, and therefore, should NOT be taught in a science classroom. Separation of church and state notwithstanding, ID could perhaps be taught in an elective religious exploration class, but definitely NOT a biology classroom.
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Mr Stillwater
 
  1  
Reply Sun 10 Oct, 2004 02:47 am
Welcome to A2K Artist-who-up-to-now-was-known-as-Eccles!!




<Emily the Strange! Good one!>
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Terry
 
  1  
Reply Sun 10 Oct, 2004 04:30 am
The Wired story also included this column. How many people here think that school children will be able to understand the fallacies when they read this?

Quote:
The Darwinist materialist paradigm, however, is about to face the same revolution that Newtonian physics faced 100 years ago. Just as physicists discovered that the atom was not a massy particle, as Newton believed, but a baffling quantum arena accessible only through mathematics, so too are biologists coming to understand that the cell is not a simple lump of protoplasm, as Charles Darwin believed. It's a complex information-processing machine comprising tens of thousands of proteins arranged in fabulously intricate algorithms of communication and synthesis. The human body contains some 60 trillion cells. Each one stores information in DNA codes, processes and replicates it in three forms of RNA and thousands of supporting enzymes, exquisitely supplies the system with energy, and seals it in semipermeable phospholipid membranes. It is a process subject to the mathematical theory of information, which shows that even mutations occurring in cells at the gigahertz pace of a Pentium 4 and selected at the rate of a Google search couldn't beget the intricate interwoven fabric of structure and function of a human being in such a short amount of time. Natural selection should be taught for its important role in the adaption of species, but Darwinian materialism is an embarrassing cartoon of modern science.

What is the alternative? Intelligent design at least asks the right questions. In a world of science that still falls short of a rigorous theory of human consciousness or of the big bang, intelligent design theory begins by recognizing that everywhere in nature, information is hierarchical and precedes its embodiment. The concept precedes the concrete. The contrary notion that the world of mind, including science itself, bubbled up randomly from a prebiotic brew has inspired all the reductionist futilities of the 20th century, from Marx's obtuse materialism to environmental weather panic to zero-sum Malthusian fears over population. In biology classes, our students are not learning the largely mathematical facts of 21st-century science; they're imbibing the consolations of a faith-driven 19th-century materialist myth.

George Gilder publishes the Gilder Technology Report and is a senior fellow at the Discovery Institute.


It seems to me that the Discovery Institute objects to science because it refutes the Conservative agenda: have lots of children, rape the earth, and don't worry about the future, God will provide.
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Grand Duke
 
  1  
Reply Sun 10 Oct, 2004 05:07 am
In the UK I think schools would have a hard time teaching Creationism. We all do Religious Education from 11 to 16, but it covers all world relgions, compare and contrast, that kind of thing. Since any Creationism taught is that from a Christian viewpoint, it would be seen as heavily biased - how could you expect Muslims, Sikhs, Jews and any other religion to learn the bible version?

There would be outcry from many groups in society. Besides, it's wrong anyway, and what's the point in teaching kids stuff that is wrong?
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Grand Duke
 
  1  
Reply Sun 10 Oct, 2004 05:10 am
And ID / Creationism would absolutely never be taught in a Biology classroom. Where is the science?
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timberlandko
 
  1  
Reply Sun 10 Oct, 2004 04:48 pm
Lets just take a look at the "Defense" presented by the quoted Mr. Gilder, shall we?

In that Wired Article, Gilder wrote:
The Darwinist materialist paradigm, however, is about to face the same revolution that Newtonian physics faced 100 years ago. Just as physicists discovered that the atom was not a massy particle, as Newton believed, but a baffling quantum arena accessible only through mathematics, so too are biologists coming to understand that the cell is not a simple lump of protoplasm, as Charles Darwin believed.

Nonsense. Evolution Theory grows and expands in accordance with the precepts of Scientific Method, building on all that has gone before, correcting itself where misapprehension is discovered in the light of new findings, seeking ever more accurate answers while acknowledging there remain questions for which current understanding provides no answer. Precisely the same is true of physics, Newtonian or otherwise, or for any other true, academically valid, forensically sound, evidence-based scientific discipline. The atom itself includes among its attributes the quality of mass, as do many of its components. The individual atom and many of its individual components are not abstractly " ... accessible only through mathematics ... " but to direct and indirect observation and manipulation. Quantum Theory did not replace Newtonian Theory, it grew from, expands upon, compliments, and validates it. And neither Darwin nor intervening and contemporary biologists present the cell as a "simple lump of protoplasm".


Quote:
It's a complex information-processing machine comprising tens of thousands of proteins arranged in fabulously intricate algorithms of communication and synthesis. The human body contains some 60 trillion cells. Each one stores information in DNA codes, processes and replicates it in three forms of RNA and thousands of supporting enzymes, exquisitely supplies the system with energy, and seals it in semipermeable phospholipid membranes. It is a process subject to the mathematical theory of information, which shows that even mutations occurring in cells at the gigahertz pace of a Pentium 4 and selected at the rate of a Google search couldn't beget the intricate interwoven fabric of structure and function of a human being in such a short amount of time.

Poppycock proceding from an otherwise valid observation. The mere existence of domesticated animals, crop vegetation, and decorative plants clearly, broadly, unambiguously differentiated from their naturally occurring direct ancestors, in some instances even to the extent of precluding crossbreeding, renders the assertion patently absurd.

Quote:
Natural selection should be taught for its important role in the adaption of species, but Darwinian materialism is an embarrassing cartoon of modern science.

The "cartoon" is not scientifically based, constantly evolving, Evolution Theory, but the simplistic "This must be the answer because it is so much more comforting to me than to admit there are things we do not yet know" mindset that permits preposterous, disingenuous-to-the-point-of-dishonesty, thoroughly unscientific notions such as "Intelligent Design" and/or "Creationist Theory" to persist even in the overwhelming presence of resoundingly counterindicative evidence and the absolute absence of any forensically, academically, scientifically valid support.

Quote:
What is the alternative? Intelligent design at least asks the right questions. In a world of science that still falls short of a rigorous theory of human consciousness or of the big bang, intelligent design theory begins by recognizing that everywhere in nature, information is hierarchical and precedes its embodiment. The concept precedes the concrete. The contrary notion that the world of mind, including science itself, bubbled up randomly from a prebiotic brew has inspired all the reductionist futilities of the 20th century, from Marx's obtuse materialism to environmental weather panic to zero-sum Malthusian fears over population. In biology classes, our students are not learning the largely mathematical facts of 21st-century science; they're imbibing the consolations of a faith-driven 19th-century materialist myth.

There is no alternative to science but superstition. Intelligent Design asks no qusetions, but rather denies the fact our current understanding is incomplete. The students of today in fact are " ... learning the largely mathematical facts of 21st-century science ... ", as they must, lest they fall to " ... imbibing the consolations of a faith-driven ... ", far, far older than 19th-century, myth. A scientific theory does not say "This unarguably is the answer", but rather says "As far as we can tell given current understanding, this appears to be consistent with much of the phenomomon at study. We're still working on it. Stay tuned for updates as they become available."
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Odd Socks
 
  1  
Reply Sun 10 Oct, 2004 10:13 pm
Yes, ID has no scientific basis, but it claims to, and inoculating teens against pseudoscience would be a valuable experience . There is a lot of pseudoscience in the media, and teaching, say, 15 yos about how to analyse this information, if you did it in a highly structured way, would help them become critical thinkers. It wouldn't even necessarily have to be ID that you dismember ( if you wanted to protect the feelings of local christian). Instead, you could go work through something like the ideas found in "Chariots of the Gods" or alien abductions. Teaching the kids to be critical consumers of information would probably help them a lot more in most of their adult lives than teaching them, say, organic chemistry.

Thanks, Mr Stillwater.Smile I feel very welcome, lol.
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