Intelligent design proponents not intelligent enough to know when to quit

Blatant bill for Creationism surfaces in Missouri. Is it placating the constituency or are they just that stupid?

“Intelligent design” bill in Missouri | NCSE.

House Bill 291, introduced in the Missouri House of Representatives on January 23, 2013, would, if enacted, require “the equal treatment of science instruction regarding evolution and intelligent design,” according to the legislature’s summary of the bill. The equal treatment provision would apply to both public elementary and secondary schools and to “any introductory science course taught at any public institution of higher education” in Missouri.

HB 291’s text is about 3000 words long, beginning with a declaration that the bill is to be known as the Missouri Standard Science Act, followed by a defectively alphabetized glossary providing idiosyncratic definitions of “analogous naturalistic processes,” “biological evolution,” “biological intelligent design,” “destiny,” “empirical data,” “equal treatment,” “hypothesis,” “origin,” “scientific theory,” “scientific law,” and “standard science.”

For public elementary and secondary schools, HB 291 also provides, “If scientific theory concerning biological origin is taught in a textbook, the textbook shall give equal treatment to biological evolution and biological intelligent design.” After the bill is enacted, new textbooks purchased for the public schools will have to conform to the equal treatment requirement. A committee will develop supplementary material on “intelligent design” for optional interim use.

Yet another attempt by creationists to shoehorn in their religion in the public school system. When will this stupidity end? Science doesn’t work this way. And the law is clear. “Intelligent design” is warmed over Creationism – a religious belief. You can’t give equal treatment of such a subject matter when the competing theories are based on evidence and rigorous scientific scrutiny for over a century and the other is a tale from a 2000 year old book.

Where’s the Missouri version of Zack Kopplin when you need him? Don’t worry, NCSE is on the case.

More Bible stuff today — Schools can offer students a choice to take a class that explores the non-religious influences  of the Bible. What is wrong with that?

Arkansas Bible Course Bill Proposed By Rep. Denny Altes To Teach Elective In Public Schools

Arkansas schools could soon have an easier way to teach a Bible course as part of its public curriculum.

Republican state Rep. Denny Altes has proposed a bill that would allow the state’s public school districts to adopt an elective curriculum for academic study of the Bible. The course would “consist of a nonsectarian, nonreligious academic study of the Bible and its influence on literature, art, music, culture and politics” and would “be taught in an objective and non devotional manner with no attempt made to indoctrinate students as to either the truth or falsity of the biblical materials or texts from other religions or cultural traditions.”

Well, according to The Texas Freedom Network’s report on Reading, Writing & Religion II (2013) [in public schools]:

Many Bible courses reflect the religious beliefs of the teachers and sectarian instructional materials they use in their classrooms. In every course in which religious bias is present, instruction reflects a Protestant — most often a conservative Protestant — perspective, including a literal interpretation of the Bible.

A number of courses and their instructional materials incorporate pseudo-scholarship, including claims that the Bible provides scientific proof of a 6,000-year-old Earth (young Earth creationism) and that the United States was founded as a Christian nation based on biblical Christian principles.

Are teachers capable of setting aside their faith and/or bias’ and lead these courses in an objective manner? Or are bills like these just another attempt to introduce creationism in public schools, this time through under the guise of literature and art studies?

[Editor: Andrew contributed to this piece.]


  6 comments for “Intelligent design proponents not intelligent enough to know when to quit

  1. RDW
    January 24, 2013 at 4:15 PM

    It’s shameful that those people want not only to indoctrinate there own and other people’s children into their particular brand of Dogma, but also that they want to use public money and public schools to do so. Hopefully, wisdom will prevail, but if not, hopefully the Feds will step up and do what is appropriate. If they want to fill their children’s heads with falsehoods, they should do that on their own time and in their own homes. Schools should be for gaining knowledge, not ignorance.

  2. Ian P.
    January 24, 2013 at 4:37 PM

    If they are going to teach Science and call it Science, then it has to be Science. Sure, the Bible may contain truth, but until we can prove it, it’s not Science. Teach only what can be tested and proven.
    I’m a Christian but I’m no moron. I know the definition of “science”.

  3. Chris Howard
    January 24, 2013 at 6:14 PM

    Pretty much every country that excels at science and math, and out scores our students in these areas has a standard federal curriculum. They don’t allow “states rights” to trump best evidence, objective reality, or ethics.

  4. January 24, 2013 at 10:32 PM

    These Creationists don’t know when to quit. Eventually, the “Creationism” concept will go the way of the “Flat Earth” concept. Till then…..we have this foolishness.

  5. Bobbi Snow
    January 25, 2013 at 2:24 AM

    In my own personal view “Intelligent Design” can include much more than Biblical Interpretation. Intelligent Design, taken literally, can mean that a Christian God who sits on a throne in a far away place called Heaven by the followers, may also be expanded to accept “a race of people adapted from natural species who have been transformed by life forms from other planets” for various reasons… but the hard-right Christians would NEVER accept that something so simple and so probable over the millions of years of our evolutions could EVER be a remote possibility. The term “Intelligent Design” can mean many other possibilities, but just try to sell that alternate probability to the ones who believe the Earth is only 7,500 years old, and created by their own warped translation of the Christian Bible which is – at best – just a historical conglomerate of books allowed, leaving out those which were purged because the other books somewhat disagreed with Constatine’s idea of bringing many religious philosophies together to unite those ancient people into one accepted religion. I’ve studied different religious theosophies for the past 30 years; There seems to be a little truth in all of them, but modern day Western Religions are preaching with their eyes shut and their minds totally closed. Anyone who refuses to seek beyond the box are possibly way off the truth.

  6. KitchenKnives
    January 26, 2013 at 8:55 PM

    Why aren’t they happy with teaching religion in Religious Education classes? I had to take them. Never believed a word of it, but it didn’t harm me learning about other people’s beliefs and cultures. If a student decides Intelligent Design sounds more plausible than… well, reality… then they can opt-in for it. I’d probably be happier keeping religious teachings in the church/home and out of school altogether, but this is still a better solution than sabotaging science classes.

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