Thursday, March 27, 2008


And the Stupid Keeps Coming

Just incredible! Here is Florida State Senator Ronda Storms, sponsor of the newly renamed "Evolution Academic Freedom Act":

Storms said the law specifically prohibits discussion of creationism and intelligent design.

She said a teacher might say: "Here's the theory of evolution and here are the flaws and here are the breaks. Here are the people with legitimate questions. Here's what the theories are."
Oh, right! Teaching ID and creationism is banned -- teachers will just be able to tell children that somehow, some way, evolution is wrong and here are the people who say it's wrong and why. But that's not "teaching" it. I wonder what she'd call it if some teacher said that there are flaws in the evidence for the existence of Jesus as a historical figure and here are the people who say that and the evidence they present. And speaking of evidence, this is the sort of dreck Florida children will be officially allowed to be indoctrinated with if the law passes:

David Brackin, an Orange County teacher who came Wednesday's hearing but did not testify, said he would appreciate such a law.

When he began teaching 23 years ago, Brackin said he taught students that there are "missing links" in the fossil evidence that led him to question evolution.

"You don't find any partial-bat partial-rats," he said.
Of course, the many transitional sequences, such those between reptiles and mammals, dinosaurs and birds, terrestrial mammals and whales and our most recent spectacular find, Tiktaalik roseae, a transitional fossil between fish and land-dwelling tetrapods, will be ignored or misrepresented. But if there was any doubt whatsoever that ID will be taught under this law, Mr. Bracken continues:

An assistant principal heard Brackin and told him to stop teaching religion, he said.

"I don't want to say evolution is fact. I don't want to say intelligent design is a fact. I want my kids to question. I want to be able to do that without being dragged into the office," Brackin said.
I can only make sense of all this if Storms and the rest are laboring under the delusion that the word "teach" is synonymous with "assert the truth of." Unfortunately for them and the children of Florida, who will see millions of dollars better spent on educating them thrown down a legal rat hole if this law passes, the courts understand that "teaching" includes "presenting as a valid alternative."

It's all Tiktaalik's fault! If it had just stayed where it was, Florida would have been spared certain brainless mammals entirely!

Man, I'd like to have their permission to slap their faces every time they uttered an absurdidty about what evolution predicts. "You're confidnet of your position, right? You know that you're characterizing evolution accurately, right? So why don't you put your mug where your mouth is and give me permission to slap you every time you lie about evolution? OK? That's fair, isn't it? You've investigated it and you're telling the truth, right? So what's the problem?"
As it is, civility prevents me from indulging in some fantasies. My second tactic would be to proclaim some garbled version of Christianity: "Christians worship donkeys on sticks and believe that they will get the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow." That's about as accurate as their account of evolution. Then, whenever they said anything about Christianity, I'd cry, "But you haven't answered my question about the donkeys! You're just in denial! You're avoiding the question! Why won't you have a real dialogue with me?"

If I could keep that up for months and years, maybe we'd see them getting a bit cranky at the first mention of teaching the controversy and offering open discussion of their religion.
As it is, civility prevents me from indulging in some fantasies.


Oh, I suppose you're right ...


Maybe we could just smack them with a rubber chicken ...
That isn't nearly as satisfying.... I'd better downgrade my fantasy to thirty lashes with a wet noodle.

My favourite would be a trapdoor so that when they perjured themselves, a buzzer would sound and they'd drop straight from the courtroom, podium, hearing, or public meeting into the basement.
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