Board member says she hasn’t fully read standards.
The ID idiots are back at it again.
|In 1999, the Kansas State Board of Education, with a conservative majority — which included Abrams — deleted most references to evolution in the science standards. The next election led to a less conservative board, which adopted the current standards describing evolution as a key concept for students to learn before graduating high school.|
Last year, conservatives captured a majority again, and many scientists fear the board will adopt revisions supported by intelligent design advocates. The conservative majority includes the three subcommittee members, Abrams, Martin and Connie Morris.
Intelligent design advocates said they only want to expose students to more criticism of evolution, giving them a more balanced picture of the theory attributed to 19th-century British scientist Charles Darwin.
Mike, I understand and sympathise with the point you’re making. But not very many weeks ago, you were telling me that democracy is the right and only way.
So, in view of that, I think that a democratically elected body should have the right to decide on issues such as evolution, etc.
Likewise, the speed of light should be subject to local ordinance too.
Just imagine if in your county the speed of light was restricted to 30 MPH.
When the sun rose in the morning, you’d have an extra 2 hours in bed before the light hit you.
A state full of fat women could vote in a senate who legislated the gravitational constant to half of what it is now, and overnight, they would all lose 100 pounds!
Look at PI, 3.14159 blah blah blah.
Wouldn’t it be a lot easier for school kids everywhere if PI was just made into an even 3?
Long live the democratic process. I love it!
|Likewise, the speed of light should be subject to local ordinance too.|
I don’t get the beef over all this. What is wrong with teaching both Evolutionary Theory AND Creation/ID Theory? Let the students reason their way through which to be accurate. Might actually teach a few to think for themselves all BY themselves.
Well, the simple answer TG, is that scientifically speaking, ID is not a theory, (it’s not testable).
But over here, that’s not a problem. Schools teach science, and they teach religious education too.
We have Christmas trees in schools etc., and we don’t seem to have any problems with teaching religion and science both.
It’s a big world, and a child’s mind is an even bigger world, so I agree with you, pour as much in as you can.
Yeah. I guess first they (whoever the h#!! “they” are) need to agree on a definition of “theory”.
|It’s a big world, and a child’s mind is an even bigger world, so I agree with you, pour as much in as you can. |
Once again ol’ bean you have smitten the proverbial metallic, pointy, fastener doo-dad right on it’s squat, little, cranial resevoir!! The “they” referred to above probably really could care less about the kids. They have to war this shinola out to satisfy their STUPID egos.
I was setting here reading this and getting ready to respond when, the really bad oder from my bedroom slippers hit me nose! Holy Moly, where’s the Clorox!
|Well, the simple answer TG, is that scientifically speaking, ID is not a theory, (it’s not testable).|
You & I are in agreement on something.
You can teach ID in religion class (maybe), as long as you don’t try to make it sound like science, which it is NOT.
Critical thinking is required people
I’ve posted this before & I’ll post it again - Evolution as Fact and Theory.
|The basic attack of modern creationists falls apart on two general counts before we even reach the supposed factual details of their assault against evolution. First, they play upon a vernacular misunderstanding of the word “theory” to convey the false impression that we evolutionists are covering up the rotten core of our edifice. Second, they misuse a popular philosophy of science to argue that they are behaving scientifically in attacking evolution. Yet the same philosophy demonstrates that their own belief is not science, and that “scientific creationism” is a meaningless and self-contradictory phrase, an example of what Orwell called “newspeak.”|
“Scientific creationism” is a self-contradictory, nonsense phrase precisely because it cannot be falsified. I can envision observations and experiments that would disprove any evolutionary theory I know, but I cannot imagine what potential data could lead creationists to abandon their beliefs. Unbeatable systems are dogma, not science. Lest I seem harsh or rhetorical, I quote creationism’s leading intellectual, Duane Gish, Ph.D. from his recent (1978) book, Evolution? The Fossils Say No! “By creation we mean the bringing into being by a supernatural Creator of the basic kinds of plants and animals by the process of sudden, or fiat, creation. We do not know how the Creator created, what process He used, for He used processes which are not now operating anywhere in the natural universe [Gish’s italics]. This is why we refer to creation as special creation. We cannot discover by scientific investigations anything about the creative processes used by the Creator.” Pray tell, Dr. Gish, in the light of your last sentence, what then is scientific creationism?
Well, I’d be the last to argue against evolutionary theory, but we need to be clear about what the ID argument is, and what science is, before we say that ID is not science and that it ought to be taught only in a religion class.
“Science” has meant many things through the years, so I take it that ALi and Toker here are using it in the sense of “modern empirical science” rather than, say, Thomsitic rational science. To the extent that science can include a rational, non-empirical element, ID can be part of science, since ID is not a faith-based argument, but rather is a rationalist argument - and hence is properly taught in philosophy courses as well as in religion classes.
The conflict between the two, at the philosophical level, has to do with competing epistemologies - ID claims that there are certain things that can be said about the world by reason alone (or at lesat better than other ways of knowing), modern Darwinian evolutionary theory is premised on the idea that modern empirical science provides better knowledge.
So if the issues were taught as presenting an epistemological problem, then by all means, teach them to kids at the appropriate time - that is, when they are ready to do philosophy. 12-13 years old, would be a safe bet for that, since by then they should be able to handle variables, which is a necessary skill to do logic well, and all fo the arguments need to be presented in their logical forms.
But since here in the US nearly everyone is as ignorant of their philosophical heritage as is possible in an advanced society, well, one guesses that the discussion would not be done properly.
Additionally, the people offering the ID argument (which has at least as many problems as Darwinian evolutionary theory) are not interesting in the truth, but for the most part only in ramming their exclusionary, apocalyptic fundamentalist form of Christianity down our throats (and not all ID theoriests fit this category, of course), well, it needs to either be kept out of the curriculum, or it needs to be taught properly, by qualified philosophers of religion.
Tom, I’m sure what you’re saying is correct, (if only I could understand what you said).
But to me, science only deals with what is testable.
So instead of our usual method of; gather data, then formulate an hypothesis; scientific methodology adds a third step; which is to test, to try to disprove the hypothesis.
So, if something is not testable, if one cannot conceive of a way to try to disprove an hypothesis, then it’s not in the realm of science.
That doesn’t mean it’s not true, or not useful, but it’s not science.
Now I know that that is only one definition of what “science” is.
Philosophers may argue and propose other definitions, but it is one that’s accepted by scientists.
(And the day when a scientist meets a philosopher who can solve general second order differential equations using only pen and paper, then the scientist might start to listen to the philosopher, but until that unlikely moment, they’ll continue along their own way, and get their hands dirty with empiricism).
Anyway, although “science” may not have been defined as such in the 16th century, nonetheless, it was practised that way. Tycho Brahe spent his life gathering data, Kepler formulated the hypothesis, Newton gave the fundamental mechanism of why the hypothesis was correct, and it’s been tested continually ever since. Even today, post-grad researchers have gained their PhD’s by devising new ways of testing for the congruency of gravitational mass and inertial mass.
The modern “elegance” arguments of string theory haven’t gained much support. Elegance may be a way of formulating new and useful models, but it’s not science; not in the minds of scientists anyway.
TG, there is in science a definition of “theory”. It’s an hypothesis that has been rigorously tested and has passed with flying colours. After a few hundred years of even more rigorous testing, it may even become a “law” (but that doesn’t mean the testing stops).
So for ID to enter the purview of science, it needs to be testable. Yet, whenever one inquires too deeply into the nature of this “superbeing” one is told that “man cannot understand god”.
Fair enough then. As Tom said, let philosophers and theologians discuss ID. They may come up with some useful ideas and insights, but it’s not science.
And just to spell out a point which I may not have made clear; I don’t believe that the method of science can find all answers to all things. Other methods may provide more useful results in certain situations.
But science is science, and supporters of ID who claim that ID is science are flying under false colours.
Attach chrome fenders to your horse, paint racing stripes on its side. But it’s still a horse, not a car. And even if you attach a Rolls Royce flying lady to its nose, you still gotta take it to a veterinarian for a tune-up, not an auto-mechanic.
You mean that it is not modern, empirical science. I agree. And you mean “empirically testable,” and not just “testable,” since elegance is a testable thing. I think it is very important to be as accurate in this case as is possible, so that all sides understand exactly where everyone stands - that is, by insisting on naming things accurately, I don’t mean to be pedantic. If we are not precise in this matter, soon darwinian evolutionary theory will either be taught with a warning to the effect that it represents an ungodly doctrine, or it won’t be taught at all. I know it’s too much to hope for, since I know that the fundamentalists who are behind this don’t care a whit for evidence, or truth, or philosophy for that matter, but I do wish they would actually study the matter a bit, at least read Darwin, if not one of the more contemporary treatments of the theory. Oh well, as I said, I expect too much from people with a political agenda that excludes the use of reason. But what really honks me off is that they present their position often enough as if it embodied a reasoned approach to things. Converting anti-reason into reason - that’s a bit of alchemy there, isn’t it?
BTW, If you didn’t understand what I wrote, I can only blame myself!
How do you test elegance Tom?
I think my girlfriend’s arse is very elegant, but you might not, and I could never prove it!
(Anyway, as you well know, by “test” I meant “conceive and carry out a method of trying to disprove the hypothesis”.)
Anyway Tom, you’re a philosopher (and lawyer), whereas I’m just a hairy-arsed practical engineer.
Different viewpoints of life.
But yes, I do completely agree with your argument.
Actually, I think it is possible to “test” for elegance in some sense. The criteria are aesthetic, and are those of Greek antiquity. It is really astonishing to see how often such a measure shows up in history - including non-western. Consider the geocentric view of centuried past - how, other than perfect circles (or spheres), would a perfect creator work? Or - take natural rights theories - how other than through a universal gift of equal rights would God do things? I have a deep suspicion that it goes even deeper than this. Consdier: if scientific models are just that - models - and if a good scientific model is one that works for us (That’s straight from a Hawking book I was just looking at yesterday - he’s a pragmatist!) - and if there is in any single case more than one model that fits the data - is it not possible that our selection of what “works” reflects our aesthetic desires as much as anything?
I’m a recovering lawyer, Ali. Recovering. I want to stress that…
Do you really think there is a universal human aesthetic Tom?
You may be right, and on some level you probably almost certainly are.
Take the human body; every man looks at a woman with the subconscious thought at least, of how does she look from the point of view of fertility and the ability to bear our child.
So; youth, absence of obesity, good boobs etc, all come into it. But I suspect that “beauty” is something else perhaps.
But those standards of human beauty are not always universal; neither in culture nor in time.
But on a more abstract level, harmony does seem to be associated with beauty in some way. Whether that’s the harmony of a mathematical equation, or a shape, or a sound, or whatever.
But there again, there are cultural differences. The appreciation of a specific musical form is not universal.
Anyway, trying to define “beauty” is probably as futile as trying to define “god”.
So I’m not sure that aesthetics really are a way of measuring elegance.
The way physicists use the word, is more in the sense of “fitness” and of “feeling right”.
And your example of the circle is a good one.
The concept of crystal spheres and the orbits of the heavenly bodies being circular, does indeed “feel right”, but as you well know, that concept caused cosmology to stall for 2,000 years!
But I’m not decrying “do it ‘cos it feels right” as a methodology, after all, it’s worked for me for many years, but, I still say it’s not science.
But to continue re models.
The important thing about models, is whether they are “useful” or not. And a model that is “good” is purely one that is useful. I don’t think aesthetics comes into it.
The Mona Lisa on your bathroom wall would certainly be more aesthetically pleasing than the roll of toilet paper lying below it; but ask Jerm (with his many sojourns to the crapper), which he considers more useful.
And final point, does a lawyer ever recover?
|Quote (Ali_T @ May 07 2005,18:47)|
|(Anyway, as you well know, by "test" I meant "conceive and carry out a method of trying to disprove the hypothesis".)|
just a question...
How might someone go about the process of "testing" the evolutionary hypothesis? We haven't seen it happen, neither did we see any creationary process happening...so How do we test either?
If I remember correctly, from science, the theory being tested remains a theory until proven or disproven. Since , in my view, we can't objectively prove either...both remain hypothesi.--simplistic, I realize.
Both, are amatter of faith in a certain way, almost like the objective "test" that Tom speaks of in the area of beauty and elegance. These matters are subjective at best, biased in every circumstance, and, as we have seen on this board, emotionally charged to many.
I am not anti- evolution, I just prefer to see myself as something greater than a cosmic accident.
|Quote (pastorbrian @ May 09 2005,00:44)|
|I am not anti- evolution, I just prefer to see myself as something greater than a cosmic accident.|
We, as human beings, are terribly egocentric. We really do not want to believe that billions of years of evolution could produce us. We would much rather believe that we are made in the image of God. The concept that we just might be talking apes really sticks in our craw. So we come up with a story that fits what we want to believe.
This is certainly not without presedent. For a while there, we humans believed that the universe revolved around the earth. We believed that we were so important to the universe that we were at the core or center of the universe. We also believe that we are made in God's image infering that we are God-like.
ID (Intellegent Design) is a silly name for what we are. Who with any intellegence would design a race of beings so angry and destructive to it's own kind?
Do I believe in God? You bet I do. I don't see where God's existance and evolution is contradictive. To push "ID" (a truely egocentric version of man's birth) as a real possibility to mans existance only weakens the existance of God in my opinion. For it lays out a concept that is so far afield that it insults the existance of God.
just a few more cents,
Teach science in schools, and the creation myth in church. If parents want their children to consider ID and the existence of deities then they can take them to church or sunday school or whatever. There’s no need to have it in schools.
[quote=Mr Soul,May 07 2005,00:13]<!–QuoteBegin>
I’ve posted this before & I’ll post it again - Evolution as Fact and Theory.
It seems a little odd to me that you quote from a book that is nearly a quarter of a century old. Has the science of evolution not evolved in the last 25 years? Is this generic attack on creationism still up-to-date or even relevant?
|Quote (ksdb @ May 09 2005,09:41)|
|It seems a little odd to me that you quote from a book that is nearly a quarter of a century old. Has the science of evolution not evolved in the last 25 years? Is this generic attack on creationism still up-to-date or even relevant?|
Ouch. The Bible is thousands of years old in it’s stories. As you say, is it "still up-to-date or even relevant?"
Sure it is. The truth need not be changed for the times to be relevant. But keep in mind that much of the Bible is based on stories. Stories that were explained in a way so that people could understand the concepts. Quite ingenious actually. Write in a way that can be understood by people today and a thousand years from now.