Sunday, March 08, 2009


Educational Test

The Discovery Institute drones keep telling us that they don't want the teaching of Intelligent Design to be mandated in public school. No one on the side of good science education believes them, of course. Now it seems that the DI's allies don't believe them either. In an article in The Austin American-Statesman, Don McLeroy, chairman of the Texas State Board of Education, reveals his plans for the next round of votes on the state's science standards:

McLeroy's amendments [at the last voting session] included adding a requirement that students analyze and evaluate the insufficiencies of the theory of common ancestry to explain gaps in the fossil record.

He has succeeded in rewriting the state's definition of science as it pertains to teaching to require "testable explanations" of nature. McLeroy said the change should allow the questioning of all scientific explanations and opens the door to the possibility that the universe was created by God. But he wants more.

McLeroy says he intends to pitch another idea that he says should be taught in public schools: the insufficiency of natural selection to explain the complexity of cells.

So the children of Texas will be given a dose of "irreducible complexity" to confuse them sufficiently that, like McLeroy, himself a young-Earth creationist, some portion of them can pretend science doesn't count against their peculiar, and narrowly sectarian, religious views. Meanwhile, all the state's children will be lied to about science.

Even if he keeps saying he doesn't want to teach religion in science classes, at least give McLeroy some credit for being honest about his motive being to promote the possibility of God and creationism. If the DI had any integrity at all, it would be working feverishly against any such amendment. Any bets on whether it will be?

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