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Judge Orders Removal of Evolution Stickers

argexpat

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January 13, 2005

ATLANTA (AP) -- A federal judge Thursday ordered a suburban Atlanta school system to remove stickers from its high school biology textbooks that call evolution "a theory, not a fact,'' saying the disclaimers are an unconstitutional endorsement of religion.

"By denigrating evolution, the school board appears to be endorsing the well-known prevailing alternative theory, creationism or variations thereof, even though the sticker does not specifically reference any alternative theories,'' U.S. District Judge Clarence Cooper said.

The stickers were put inside the books' front covers by public school officials in Cobb County in 2002. They read: "This textbook contains material on evolution. Evolution is a theory, not a fact, regarding the origin of living things. This material should be approached with an open mind, studied carefully and critically considered.''

"Science and religion are related and they're not mutually exclusive,'' school district attorney Linwood Gunn said. "This sticker was an effort to get past that conflict and to teach good science.''

But the judge disagreed: "While evolution is subject to criticism, particularly with respect to the mechanism by which it occurred, the sticker misleads students regarding the significance and value of evolution in the scientific community.''


Three cheers for Judge Cooper!

P.S. I propose we put a sticker on Bibles: "This book contains material on creationism. Creationism is mythology, not science. This material should be approached with an open mind, studied carefully and critically considered.''
 
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Jufarius87

your resoning is flawed i will assume the sticker/bible thing is a joke but i will prove it wrong anyways people who read the bible or own own do so willingly where as in public school you are forced to learn about evolution

the govt and public facilties such as school should be as truthful as possible w/ out being opinionated
evolution is not 100% proven therefore IT IS A THEORY when closely examined it requires just as much faith as a religion

i have no problem w/ evolution being taught in school so long as the atheist/liberal lie of it being unfallible is removed

also i think if something that requires faith will be taught in school they should teach about major religions in a historical basis (something public schools tend to neglect due to the fact that it is a "sensitive" issue)
 

argexpat

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Jufarius87 said:
i have no problem w/ evolution being taught in school so long as the atheist/liberal lie of it being unfallible is removed
Please see my post: "The "Theory" of Evolution vs. "Creationism." It covers every possible argument pro and con.
 

argexpat

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Jufarius87 said:
your resoning is flawed i will assume the sticker/bible thing is a joke but i will prove it wrong anyways people who read the bible or own own do so willingly where as in public school you are forced to learn about evolution
First, you're "forced" to learn about evolution in public school as you are "forced" to learn everything else. Second, evolution is the product of the scientific method. The scientific method is the cornerstone of science. If you don't believe in evolution, you don't believe in science.
 

Kenneth T. Cornelius

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Jufarius87 said:
your resoning is flawed i will assume the sticker/bible thing is a joke but i will prove it wrong anyways people who read the bible or own own do so willingly where as in public school you are forced to learn about evolution
But it's OK then to also force people to learn creationism in the schools?
 

Fantasea

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argexpat said:
Three cheers for Judge Cooper!

P.S. I propose we put a sticker on Bibles: "This book contains material on creationism. Creationism is mythology, not science. This material should be approached with an open mind, studied carefully and critically considered.''
An excerpt from a CNN.com articld on the subject:

"According to the AP, the schools placed the stickers after more than 2,000 parents complained the textbooks presented evolution as fact, without mentioning rival ideas about the beginnings of life."

I'm sure that if you were aware of this, you would have mentioned it, wouldn't you?
 

argexpat

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Fantasea said:
An excerpt from a CNN.com articld on the subject:

"According to the AP, the schools placed the stickers after more than 2,000 parents complained the textbooks presented evolution as fact, without mentioning rival ideas about the beginnings of life."

I'm sure that if you were aware of this, you would have mentioned it, wouldn't you?
No, I wasn't aware of it. Wow, to think, in 21st century America, there are still people out there who confuse superstition with fact, and want to make sure everyone else is as ignorant of science as they are. Thank God the forces of enlightenment prevailed!

Maybe we need a Surgeon General’s warning on bibles: “TAKING THIS BOOK LITERALLY MAY CAUSE SEVERE COGNITIVE IMPAIRMENT.”
 

Fantasea

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argexpat said:
No, I wasn't aware of it. Wow, to think, in 21st century America, there are still people out there who confuse superstition with fact, and want to make sure everyone else is as ignorant of science as they are. Thank God the forces of enlightenment prevailed!

Maybe we need a Surgeon General’s warning on bibles: “TAKING THIS BOOK LITERALLY MAY CAUSE SEVERE COGNITIVE IMPAIRMENT.”
Perhaps you will be kind enough to furnish some of the 'fact' to which you refer.

You seem to be convinced as only one who has 'proof positive' can be. In the event that you cannot produce some facts, what, then, will you do in an effort to buttress your contention?
 
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Jufarius87

i believe in the scientific method it says unless something can be proven without resonable doubt its theory still tons of doubt about evolution and yes as long as they dont teach creation as fact and more from historys perspective why not teach creation and any other religion?
 

Hoot

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>why not teach creation and any other religion?<Jufarius87

As far as High Shool, we're having enough problems teaching basic math, reading and writing.

I'm sure creationism and evolution are taught at colleges nation wide.

High school level? I think we're pushing that...just not enough time.

Hoot
 

Schweddy

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Jufarius87 said:
i believe in the scientific method it says unless something can be proven without resonable doubt its theory still tons of doubt about evolution and yes as long as they dont teach creation as fact and more from historys perspective why not teach creation and any other religion?
Neither should be taught as "FACT". Neither have been proven beyond any dought. I have no qualms with them teaching that both methods are viable. Presenting only one of them as a proven method is irresponsible at best.
 

Fantasea

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Hoot said:
>why not teach creation and any other religion?<Jufarius87

As far as High Shool, we're having enough problems teaching basic math, reading and writing.

I'm sure creationism and evolution are taught at colleges nation wide.

High school level? I think we're pushing that...just not enough time.

Hoot
'Just not enough time', is not the problem. The problem is really in the alphabet -- N E A U F T A C L U A F S A. This is what controls what happens in the public school classroom.
 

heyjoeo

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Hell I learned about Evolution/Creationism in my Theory of Knowledge class this year.

Personally I think if we talk about the Christian creationism story, we should talk about all the creationism stories. I mean come on, Pan Gu comes out of an egg with a big AXE! (bitchin'!) creating the sky and the earth and using his big body to seperate the heaven and the earth.

Now if you think that's ridiculous, why would you believe in the Christian one? The Chinese sure believed in Pan Gu.

Evolution comes from analyzation of facts, observations, etc. Countless studies have been done. Biology textbooks are merely portraying those facts (OH GOD FACTS!) to the reader.

By the way, I liked the cognitive impairment. :) You should make a bunch of those and sell them, I'd buy 'um.
 

argexpat

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vauge said:
Neither should be taught as "FACT". Neither have been proven beyond any dought. I have no qualms with them teaching that both methods are viable. Presenting only one of them as a proven method is irresponsible at best.
Here we go again...Evolution is an observable, undeniable fact. Only those who don't understand how science works and/or want to force their religious beliefs onto others claim otherwise. The theory that explains the fact of evolution is "natural selection." A scientific theory doesn't have to be "proven beyond any doubt." That's precisely the point: doubt is absolutely integral to the scientific method, and why it's the exact opposite of faith. A scientific theory, to be valid, simply has to explain the observable phenomenon (i.e. the facts) better than any other. This is where "creationism" fails miserably. Why? Because it's not a theory, it's mythology, and thus has absolutely no place being taught in a science class.

I've asked this repeatedly of every proponent of "creationism" on this site, and have yet to get a proper response: What is the "theory of creationism" exactly? Has it been published in a reputable sceintific journal? Has it been subject to peer review? Has it been tested? And if "creationism" is as valid a theory as natural selection, what criterion is used to determine validity? Is every creation myth a viable "theory"? And shouldn't they all be taught along with the Biblical one? Who will decide which creation myths to teach alongside evolution? And why stop at evolution? Why don't Christians question everything taught in science classes, like chemistry and physics? Have atoms been proven to exist "beyond a doubt"? DNA? Light waves? Shouldn't we be teaching phrenology and alchemy and voodoo as well?

If evolution is theoretical, then everything is theoretical. And if you don't believe in evolution, you just don't believe in science.
 

Fantasea

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argexpat said:
Here we go again...Evolution is an observable, undeniable fact. Only those who don't understand how science works and/or want to force their religious beliefs onto others claim otherwise. The theory that explains the fact of evolution is "natural selection." A scientific theory doesn't have to be "proven beyond any doubt."

..............

A scientific theory, to be valid, simply has to explain the observable phenomenon (i.e. the facts) better than any other.
Is this why the theory of a flat earth and the sun revolving around the earth made sense for so many centuries?

This is where "creationism" fails miserably. Why? Because it's not a theory, it's mythology, and thus has absolutely no place being taught in a science class.
At the risk of being repetitious, teach both comparitively in the same class, or separately in individual classes. Since the 'belief' in each is so widespread, why not find a way to teach both?

I've asked this repeatedly of every proponent of "creationism" on this site, and have yet to get a proper response: What is the "theory of creationism" exactly? Has it been published in a reputable sceintific journal? Has it been subject to peer review? Has it been tested? And if "creationism" is as valid a theory as natural selection, what criterion is used to determine validity? Is every creation myth a viable "theory"? And shouldn't they all be taught along with the Biblical one? Who will decide which creation myths to teach alongside evolution? And why stop at evolution? Why don't Christians question everything taught in science classes, like chemistry and physics? Have atoms been proven to exist "beyond a doubt"? DNA? Light waves?
It seems to me that school vouchers would solve everyone's problem with the subject, wouldn't they?

If evolution is theoretical, then everything is theoretical. And if you don't believe in evolution, you just don't believe in science.
I responded to this in an earlier post.
 

argexpat

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Fantasea said:
Is this why the theory of a flat earth and the sun revolving around the earth made sense for so many centuries?
Actually, a Greek mathematician, more than two millenia ago, using geometry, not only discovered that the Earth was round, but was able to measure its circumference with astounding accuracy. By the time Columbus sailed, only the ignorant believed the Earth to be flat. (BTW Fantasea, to be intellectually consistant, shouldn't you be advocating the teaching of the "flat Earth" theory along with the round-Earth one?)


Fantasea said:
At the risk of being repetitious, teach both comparitively in the same class, or separately in individual classes. Since the 'belief' in each is so widespread, why not find a way to teach both?
Yes, you're being repetitious. Therefore, so must I: Teach "creationsim" in Sunday school, and evolution in the science class. If you must teach them both in the same class, you could teach them in a class about the development of rational scientific thought against the backdrop of anti-intellectual religious zealotry.
 

Fantasea

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argexpat said:
Actually, a Greek mathematician, more than two millenia ago, using geometry, not only discovered that the Earth was round, but was able to measure its circumference with astounding accuracy. By the time Columbus sailed, only the ignorant believed the Earth to be flat. (BTW Fantasea, to be intellectually consistant, shouldn't you be advocating the teaching of the "flat Earth" theory along with the round-Earth one?)
In both instances, the word, 'ignorant', was the dominant factor in the inability of convincing persons that what they thought they saw was, in fact, not what they saw. The theoretical had advanced to the applied but the masses were not equipped to understand that.

Perhaps when the level of theoretical knowledge comes closer to approaching applied, then it will be easier for folks to fall into line.

Yes, you're being repetitious. Therefore, so must I: Teach "creationsim" in Sunday school, and evolution in the science class. If you must teach them both in the same class, you could teach them in a class about the development of rational scientific thought against the backdrop of anti-intellectual religious zealotry.
As the title Shakespeare chose for one of his works, "As You Like It."
 

argexpat

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Fantasea said:
Perhaps when the level of theoretical knowledge comes closer to approaching applied, then it will be easier for folks to fall into line.
It's already been applied. Just watch a dog show and marvel at the variety of breeds, the result of human manipulation of the mechanisms of evolution. God didn't create the massive utters on dairy cows, nor did "He" create the modern thoroughbred race horse. Monsanto has created crops that are immune to the effects of certain pesticides. Bacteria has evolved into heartier strains as a result of anti-biotics. We have seedless grapes. Multiply these changes over hundreds of millions of years and you get the amazing speciation of life on earth.

But no amount of evidence will convince the ignorant who wants to remain so.
 

ViperX83

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Creationism is not science. Evolution is. That evolution happens is fact. Natural selection is the current generally accepted theory for the mechanism of evolution.
 

argexpat

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ViperX83 said:
Creationism is not science. Evolution is. That evolution happens is fact. Natural selection is the current generally accepted theory for the mechanism of evolution.
Amen brother!
 

mect

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A few things to clear up here. First of all, science is not the only discipline taught in school. I agree that you shouldn't learn about creationism in your biology class. However, a humanities class or an ethics class would be a great spot. Second of all, people are confusing two different issues of evolution. The idea that living things evolve has been supported scientifically to the extent that I have no problems if you want to call it a "fact". However, how evolution applies to the beginnings of life is still very much a theory. This is the aspect of evolution that I believe most people have a problem with being portrayed as factual. This is the point that many scientists including biologists don't agree with. There are a lot of biologists studying evolution who still believe in creationism. One other point; I beleive you will find that in science, most things that are taught as "concrete facts" in the high schools are not facts. They are theories; in other words, tools that have been created in order to understand and model things. Science is not the "absolute knowledge" discipline which is often portrayed. If the model works, it is accepted. If it doesn't, then it is rejected. There are very few theories that work exclusively in science (because they don't capture the whole picture of what is goin on). That is why there are several theories which overlap, and they are applied where they work best.
 

ViperX83

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I think you're confusing evolution with how life began. The question of where we all came from (big bang, etc) is not dealt with by evolution. Evolution describes the process by which living things go from one sort to another through the process of genetic mutations and natural selection. It makes no comment on where the first form of life came from.
 

heyjoeo

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Evolution comes in the middle of the game. It doesn't necessarily define how everything began. However, Creationism can't do that either without ambiguous and mythological references.
 
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