Home » Education » New Brochure on Kansas Science Standards Sets the Record Straight

New Brochure on Kansas Science Standards Sets the Record Straight

Tom Magnuson at ARN “In the News” and Robert Crowther at Evolution News & Views have both reported on a new brochure published by Kansas Science Standards 2005. It’s clear and concise and should really help to dispell any misinformation that has been circulating about.

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15 Responses to New Brochure on Kansas Science Standards Sets the Record Straight

  1. Sorry, had nowhere else to post this, but here is an article UD readers may enjoy* over coffee when you guys in the US get up a few hours from now:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/story/0,,1740391,00.html

    *well, ID does get conflated with flat-earth theory but such is life. Its just good to see that not everyone buys into Richard Dawkin’s rhetoric.

  2. 2

    antg,

    I suspect most ID supporters are not going to enjoy reading that article, as it reiterates what Ken Miller and Eugenie Scott have been saying all along: there is no necessary conflict between Darwinian theory and religious beliefs.

    Interestingly, the author writes that Dawkins thinks Darwinism leads “ineluctably” to atheism. This is not true. While Dawkins credits Darwinism as a major contributor to his own atheism, he acknowledges that it does not logically require atheism.

  3. (A comment to Antg’s link)
    “A raft of disciplines, from evolutionary biology and psychology to anthropology, are generating new insights into this persistent human phenomenon, religious belief.”

    Let me translate that: “Scientists are now discovering why people still believe in God. It can’t be because God exists; it has to be something else.”

  4. Sarcasm alert!

    Reading that brochure it is obvious the writers are lying. We all know Kansas is going to teach flat earth, geocentrism, global flood- IOW we all know Kansas will be teaching a literal Genesis in its science class. After all we know the Kansas Citizens for Science don’t lie or exagerate. We also know how honest all anti-IDists are.

    Look at the brochure again. That is Sir Isaac Newton on the cover- a well known Creationist! And that Einstein character tells us that “science without religion is lame; religion without science is blind.” Can it be any clearer that the new standards want religion in the science classroom?

  5. @antg: thanks for the pleasuring read :)

    “… Wolpert argues that the origins of religious belief are linked to our unique capacity to make tools;”

    How did we get the unique capacity to make tools?

    “Dennett links it to a survival instinct to attribute agency to phenomena.”

    What has faith to do with surviving?

    “Both Dennett and Wolpert acknowledge that religion may have provided evolutionary advantages for humans. There’s good evidence for faith improving mental health and optimism, and reducing stress; shamanism, with its placebo effect, was the best healthcare system for thousands of years. Dennett cites those who argue that faith improves cooperation within groups (though not between them). This argument raises the crucial question of whether, in an era of globalisation and limited resources, religion has outrun its evolutionary advantage. ….”

    P1: Well Religion seems to be an old idea which we should get rid of!
    P2: Well in that case what are we going to believe in? Naturalism?

    P1: Yes I think Naturalism can eventually explain everything in a scientific manner. Simple dry facts, mathematically proven.
    P2: Mhh ok, but how does Naturalism give humans an evolutionary advantage?

    P1: Mhhhh well we don’t quite know yet but lets just wait and see. When we understood ourselves and Nature then we have aquired all knowledge and then we could mhhh advance or something.
    P2: Well how do you know that Naturalism is going to get all the answers?

    P1: Mhhh we will just get more and more data. I mean you just have to trust the idea!

  6. Neuromonopolist

    I suspect most ID supporters are not going to enjoy reading that article, as it reiterates what Ken Miller and Eugenie Scott have been saying all along: there is no necessary conflict between Darwinian theory and religious beliefs.

    That depends on whose definition of Darwinian theory and which particular religion. For instance, just about any strict or loose, long or short definition of the theory conflicts with any religion where mankind is a special creation. Darwinian theory is inflexible in the manner that mankind arrived on the scene – descended from non-human animals – and it takes some rather extraordinary convolution of revealed religions to reconcile the two. Some religions are willing to be flexible (subservient) to Darwin and others are not.

    This does indeed mean that Darwinian theory is necessarily in conflict with some religions and in effect the plea from the Darwinists isn’t that Darwinian theory IS compatible with religion, the plea is that religion can be contorted into compatibility with Darwinian theory if only people would be flexible enough to adapt their religious beliefs.

    Interestingly, the author writes that Dawkins thinks Darwinism leads “ineluctably” to atheism. This is not true. While Dawkins credits Darwinism as a major contributor to his own atheism, he acknowledges that it does not logically require atheism.

    Again, it depends on whose version of Darwinian theory you talk about. The infamous statement by the Wiesel 38:

    “Logically derived from confirmable evidence, evolution is understood to be the result of an unguided, unplanned process of random variation and natural selection.”

    certainly seems to be an inescapably atheistic declaration. Granted the Wiesel 38 are not the definitive craftsmen and caretakers of Darwinian dogma but they must certainly be taken seriously as representatives of the scientific community.

  7. “A raft of disciplines, from evolutionary biology and psychology to anthropology, are generating new insights into this persistent human phenomenon, religious belief.”

    This should read: A raft of disciplines… are (oops, is) generating a raft of totally speculative, made-up stories that have no foundation in anything but a philosophical pre-commitment to the notion that the Darwinian hypothesis must be true regardless of the evidence, and that it can explain everything.

  8. neuromonopolist,

    If the ID supporter is a creationist then perhaps you have a point. However the real question from an ID perspective is not whether Darwinism and religion are compatible, but whether Darwinism is correct or not.

    On Richard Dawkins, quite simply he equivocates:

    as you point out, he correctly says that evolution does not lead to atheism (his reason – there are plenty of theists that accept evolution) see this interview here: http://www.beliefnet.com/story.....889_2.html

    but…

    at around the same time he made a speech at the world Congress of Secular Humanism stating that evolution and theism are NOT compatible (see the same link for an audio excerpt)

    The second position has been well reinforced in his recent UK TV series.

  9. ATTENTION CONTRIBUTORS: A friend just forwarded this article to me: “Scraps of God and Darwin” http://www.tcsdaily.com/article.aspx?id=032406C. Is anyone up for debating it?

  10. Gotta love Dawkins. Thanks for the link antg.

    Maybe belief in evolution alone doesn’t lead to atheism, but Dawkins sure thinks intelligence does:

    Q.How would you feel if your daughter became religious in the future?

    A. Well, that would be her decision and obviously she’s her own person, she’s free to do whatever she likes. I think she’s much too intelligent to do that, but that’s her decision.

    And if you’re fool enough to believe in God, Dawkins is there to tell you how to at least be respectable about it:

    In fact, any respectable theologian of the Catholic or Anglican or any other sensible church believes in evolution.

    And if you somehow believe (what you are told by evolutionary scientists) that this unguided, purposeless process is actually unguided he’ll draw you a lovely little circle:

    Natural selection is anything but random. Natural selection is a guided process, guided not by any higher power, but simply by which genes survive and which genes don’t survive. That’s a non-random process.

    The differential survival and reproduction of genes is guided by which genes survive. Nice. And I thought it was random.

  11. 11

    Neuromonopolist

    I suspect most ID supporters are not going to enjoy reading that article, as it reiterates what Ken Miller and Eugenie Scott have been saying all along: there is no necessary conflict between Darwinian theory and religious beliefs.

    That depends on whose definition of Darwinian theory and which particular religion. For instance, just about any strict or loose, long or short definition of the theory conflicts with any religion where mankind is a special creation. Darwinian theory is inflexible in the manner that mankind arrived on the scene – descended from non-human animals – and it takes some rather extraordinary convolution of revealed religions to reconcile the two. Some religions are willing to be flexible (subservient) to Darwin and others are not.

    DaveScot,

    Certainly Darwinian theory conflicts with some religious beliefs (young-earth creationism being the obvious example). Eugenie Scott and Ken Miller would tell you the same thing. The point is that it doesn’t require atheism. You don’t need to give up a belief in God in order to be a Darwinian.

    Even the Wiesel 38′s definition of evolution is compatible with theism. They only state that the process of evolution itself is unguided and unplanned. It’s quite possible to imagine God creating the universe and then allowing it to unfold on its own.

    You don’t need to give up a belief in God in order to be a Darwinian.

    Of course not. All they have to do is pick a different God. Why don’t you practice that by picking a different blog. You’re just not fitting in well here. -ds

  12. To tb:

    LOL

    Funny exchange ;-)

  13. well, ID does get conflated with flat-earth theory but such is life. Its just good to see that not everyone buys into Richard Dawkin’s rhetoric.

    Where has Dawkins ever said that? Plenty others have, but Dawkins? He’s so sensible! :P

    Hello MattDean. Goodbye MattDean. -ds :cool:

  14. If one believes that the genetic variation/natural selection dynamic is unguided by any intelligent agent, then I suspect that person’s belief system would rule out a God that is a creator/maintainer of living things and their evolution. If they hold that belief, then chances are they are not going to be theists period, because beliefs in God and His role as creator/maintainer go hand-in-hand in most theologies I know of. In my humble opinion, people can hardly claim to be both religious believers and Darwinists, and if they do advertise themselves as such, then they embrace some problematical logic: for they would be implicitly claiming that God exists, but that He takes no active, guiding role in nature, or put another way, they would be effectively proclaiming His presence, but that he stands idly by while nature does a grand, unguided dummy act called Darwinian evolution, and does nothing to imbue nature and matter with His guiding intelligence. What an odd concept that would be. If they believed that, then their concept of a God would be so minimal, fuzzy and ill-defined that they would probably be de-facto atheists. Therefore, Neo-Darwinism, which holds steadfastly to that principle of non-guidance, leans very much, in my personal estimation, towards atheism.

    Deists don’t get any respect anymore and here you are all acting like they don’t even exist! -ds

  15. An interesting article about deism.

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