Texas Creationism Fight

Two sides of a long standing debate have chosen the Texas school curriculum as their battleground. Evolutionists and creationists are butting heads on what should be taught in public schools. On thursday the Texas Board of Education narrowly voted to uphold evolutionary science as mainstream teaching in classrooms. Social conservatives on the board were able to amend the ruling. Teachers will now be required to “evaluate critically a variety of scientific principles like cell formation and the Big Bang”, “analyze and evaluate the sufficiency or insufficiency of natural selection to explain the complexity of the cell”, and examine “current theories of the evolution of the universe including estimates for the age of the universe.”

I don’t have a huge problem with teaching creationism, as long as it’s kept in it’s proper context. Creationism is not science, it’s a religious belief. In a public school it must be kept as such. Religious schools are there for a reason. They give those who want religion and education to be linked with an alternate choice to what they may disapprove of in public schools. Of course home-schooling is probably the best option if you want total control of what your children are being taught.

Another issue I take is the upholding of one belief as fact over others. If one proposes Christian creationism be taught in schools, you can bet that will open the floodgate for teaching other religions creation theories. With the percentage of non-religious citizens estimated to be on the rise and half of Americans believing in evolution this is the wrong way to go. I must also say that in the survey on evolution people were only asked whether they believed in evolution or not, not what alternative to evolution they believed in or any at all.

When it comes to something like allowing Christmas celebrations in schools, or even saying the damn word, we’ve gone too far. However, when it comes to teacher religious beliefs as anything otherwise there’s a problem. It has to be all or nothing. Not because that is the most efficient way, but because there will be lawsuits up the wazoo concerning the fairness. Do schools really have the money to waste on things like that? Do we really want our teachers bogged down with even more varied curricular requirements? Can we afford to dilute our children’s learning even further?

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