Monday, February 04, 2008
... and some slugs, too
Just after I finished congratulating the Florida Department of Education for showing backbone in the face of the political pressure by creationists, in slithers one Fred Cutting, a member of the Framers' Committee on the new standards and a walking, talking data point for the Salem Hypothesis. Inching his way in immediately behind is Robert Crowther from the Discovery Institute, once again claiming that "no one has proposed teaching intelligent design" in Florida, dismissing all those resolutions passed by local school boards asking for "alternatives" to evolution to be included in the standards. According to Crowther, the "only serious attempt" to change the standards (hear that school board members?) is that being submitted in a "minority report" by Mr. Cutting.
Proclaiming that he opposes including religion in the science classroom, Mr. Cutting is nonetheless on record demonstrating how serious he really is about the separation of science from theology:
Once a year for the past four years, Cutting has found himself at Countryside High School in Clearwater during the Great American Teach-In, talking about ID to honors students.He's not teaching religion, just that the history of life "may not have been just the way the Bible story tells it" but it is the result of a "he" who may not be a particular god but is a god.
"I've got the really good students, and they ask really good questions," he said. "I'm not teaching religion; I'm teaching, 'Let's think.'"
Cutting passes along not just an encouragement of intellectual curiosity but his reading of the evidence about how life came to be on Earth.
"It may not have been just the way the Bible story tells it, but I'm looking at it as a scientist, and it is pretty evident to me that there was an intelligent designer," he said. "It doesn't say he was a Christian God, or anybody's god, but just that he did exist. Anything else is just faith."
So what does he want to include in the standards? This:
Students should learn why some scientists give scientific critiques of standard models of neo-Darwinian evolution or models of the chemical origin of life.Now, Mr. Crowther, what "scientific critiques" exactly are you and Mr. Cutting talking about other than the ID blather?