Bill Nye: “Creationism is not Appropriate for Children”

Discussion in 'Science and Technology' started by Yminale, Aug 27, 2012.

  1. Shazam!

    Shazam! Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    So can Star Wars but you wouldn't teach it as history on grounds that it happened a long, long time ago.
     
  2. Coloratura

    Coloratura Snuggle Princess Premium Member

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    Teaching children origin myths is perfectly acceptable, IMO, but those myths do not belong in the science class, and even teached as part of a religious study, it needs to be emphasized the myth is one of many, and all of them are derived from oral traditions passed down, and are not, in any way, verifiable.
     
  3. Yminale

    Yminale Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    In the end creationism vs. evolution is all about control. Evolution is not a theory about the origin of life but the ORIGIN OF SPECIES. Organic chemistry has given us some clues about how life came about but we will never know the whole story. I personally don't think any creation story was meant to be taken literally. It was just filler, humanity's best guess at the time. The Hebrews came closest of all the ancient people but they did it by ignoring details ("God did it") or being metaphysical ("God pored his spirit/Breadth in to Adam") . The conflict arises because the control of the interpretation of reality is the ultimate form of control. The white patriarchy that rules America does not want to lose control therefore are fighting this meaningless fight.

    That being said I don't want scientist to have that control either. They can be as biased as anyone else and "self-correction" can take generation to occur even with a mountain of evidence.
     
  4. Nerys Ghemor

    Nerys Ghemor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I'm not sure the development of the human race can be attributed purely to the natural processes of evolution anymore, given that human creations and decision-making have entered the equation. Deliberate manipulation through medical technology, such as providing for those with genetic disorders, and other results of human decision making also have an impact on how humanity will continue to develop.

    The biochemical behavior of genes hasn't changed, but our decision-making has affected things and should also be taken into account when considering human evolution.

    Sometimes there are other sides that have merit that you may not have considered, though. I don't consider "creationism," referring to theories that insist on bending scientific fact, to be correct. However, you seem to ignore the fact that there is a significant number of people who are of faith but have no problem whatsoever with mainstream science. That, I think, is a reasonable choice to make.

    I would say I thought God was behind the creation of said star through the mechanisms you just described. No alterations to physics, timelines, or anything else you outlined, and no insinuations that anything science has found out about that star is incorrect.

    For me the whole thing is just a pointless argument by radical ideologues on both sides. Science contradicts literalist faith, but does not contradict the idea of ALL faith.
     
  5. Coloratura

    Coloratura Snuggle Princess Premium Member

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    Faith isn't the issue. Teaching faith as fact is the issue.
     
  6. Nerys Ghemor

    Nerys Ghemor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I don't think the public schools should be teaching creationism as science. I also would never teach my own children that it is science.

    However, I would take great issue if anyone suggested that private schools and homeschooling organizations, and parents on their own be forbidden from religious teachings. Perhaps require understanding of proper evolutionary theory to pass state testing requirements in science, since that would guarantee exposure to the other viewpoint, but I would not forbid parents or private schools from religious teaching. That is something that would be highly illegal.
     
  7. Crisp Crinkle

    Crisp Crinkle Admiral Admiral

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    Predictably, this thread has jumped the shark.
     
  8. Robert Maxwell

    Robert Maxwell so far this is a dumb future Premium Member

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    Yeah, what we've got in this thread is people being more concerned about religious freedom than their kids having a basic understanding of science.

    Unbelievable.
     
  9. gturner

    gturner Admiral

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    Yeah, it's like Sir Isaac Newton spending years writing commentaries on the Book of Daniel.
     
  10. { Emilia }

    { Emilia } Feminazgul Moderator

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    Are you really being serious with that term?
     
  11. Coloratura

    Coloratura Snuggle Princess Premium Member

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    No one is saying force kids to deny their religious upbringing in favor of genuine scientific study. Nye is simply saying that children who are taught these myths instead of critical thinking skills, grow up unequipped and unready to deal with the scientific community. He is right.
     
  12. Yminale

    Yminale Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    If you read between the lines, I think that's exactly what he's saying. Religion only works if it's presented as unerring eternal TRUTH. Present that in any other way and its essentially meaningless. There you have the conflict between atheists and believers.

    Atheists aren't being honest. They know promoting critical thinking will weaken religions because religions require the absence of critical thinking. In the end that's their agenda, to slowly strangle religion to obscurity. Of course they are using America's fear of losing our scientific superiority as a way to promote their agenda.
     
  13. Crisp Crinkle

    Crisp Crinkle Admiral Admiral

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    What does "highly" illegal mean anyway? Are there shades of illegality? To riff a blogger on the 'net, isn't the difference between illegal and highly illegal pretty much like the difference between slightly pregnant and pregnant?

    Well, I can put one and one together. I suppose it means not just illegal but also outrageous, and so not really more illegal than just the regular form of illegality. Is that what highly illegal means, both illegal and outrageous?
     
  14. gturner

    gturner Admiral

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    Of course. For several centuries all scientists were young Earth creationists, including Galileo, DeCartes, Mersenne, Newton, Darwin, and everyone else.

    There was no alternative to Biblical creation in the running until Lyle, Darwin, and others came up with an evidence based history of the planet, of how it came to exist and be populated with a bewildering variety of living things.

    The dispute with Agassiz (one of the world's best-known scientists of his day) is a reflection of the turning away from prior scientists, to whom science was a method of looking into the mind of God during his act of creation. These creationist scientists were the ones who developed the theories, evidence, and data that finally built a framework that allowed us to move past mythical creation stories.
     
  15. Coloratura

    Coloratura Snuggle Princess Premium Member

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    Religion? Maybe. Spirituality, certainly not.
    As for conflict, last I checked, I'm not the one trying to shoehorn mythology into the science class.

    Um... no, I'm being quite honest.

    I want children to think critically because thinking critically is how we build a society. It's how we go to the Moon. It's how we find new ways to advance the species. If a neurological disease were to suddenly afflict millions of human beings, I'd start talking to the neurologists who use scientific data to support their solutions rather than trying to pray it away. There's no agenda here other than facts remaining facts and myths remaining myths.

    You're essentially telling me that kids learning to think critically may one day cast aside the religion they have found to be lacking in evidence. Tell me again why that is a bad thing?
     
  16. Robert Maxwell

    Robert Maxwell so far this is a dumb future Premium Member

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    :rolleyes:

    I am sick and tired of religious people acting like they are so deeply, thoroughly persecuted in Western cultures. You have an astonishing degree of freedom to believe and practice as you wish, and yet when it is suggested that we teach actual science, it is seen as an effort to stamp out religion entirely.

    Well, if your belief system is so weak it can't stand up to the facts of reality, maybe you should consider how flawed that belief system is rather than blame scientists for simply trying to expand our understanding of the universe.

    And it's funny how religious people line up along with everyone else to benefit from the marvels of modern science and technology, in terms of medicine, communication, and everything else. But oh, we can't talk about evolution because that's against God.

    There are not enough :rolleyes: to give such bullshit the derision it so fully deserves.
     
  17. Yminale

    Yminale Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I don't think humans will ever lose their sense awe or desire for existential truth. That being said we should separate religion from spirituality. Spirituality is deeply personal and individualistic but the issue is the communal nature of religion. A shared truth is what makes a religion and difference in truth is where in theory religious conflicts occur.

    No but atheist want to use science to promote a certain world view. Whether it's right or wrong is not the issue. I just think Atheist should be honest about it.

    I can't say it's good or bad. Essentially you want me to justify the value of religion and I can't do that.
     
  18. gturner

    gturner Admiral

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    We've been teaching evolution in schools for well over a century. The new suggestion from Nye is that we don't let parents teach their kids religion. That would put quite a damper on the "astonishing degree of freedom to believe and practice."

    Another point is that evolution and modern science are not something we learned because it was just spoon fed to kids. It was developed through hard thinking, in which scientists had to convince themselves of things that were contrary to their own beliefs, instincts, and understanding. Trying to take the easy way out by mandating orthodoxy won't improve critical thinking skills, skills in which far too many of today's scientists are already horribly lacking, which is perhaps one of the reasons that an alarmingly high percentage of scientific papers are junk that can't be replicated even by the scientists who published them. That in itself is an interesting scientific subject.
     
  19. Coloratura

    Coloratura Snuggle Princess Premium Member

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    Who says anything about losing their awe for anything? Still, I will point out that "existential truth" is just a flowery term for "I don't understand it, so I'll just make shit up to explain it". It's like "homeopathic remedy", in that it seems like it has the cure, when all it really has is a way of taking in the gullible and the disadvantaged.

    Hence my statement where I separated the two.

    Do they? You know this for certain? When I say I'm being honest you don't accept that I am being honest?

    I can. It's good when people throw away myths in favor of facts, and I'm not asking you to justify the value of religion, I'm saying that believing a myth out of ignorance is bad, while accepting scientific data through critical thinking is good. It's not that difficult a concept.

    If religion is only valuable if it is unquestioned, or loses value when questions are asked, what does that say about the religion and the people who choose to follow it?

    Or, to paraphrase Mr. Asimov, "your ignorance is not just as good as my knowledge".
     
  20. Yminale

    Yminale Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I don't think it's an irrational fear that teaching critical thinking/science will lead to an end in organize religion. Europe has shown that the higher the percentage of science literacy the lower the percentage of church attendance. The same thing has been shown comparing states. The better your science curriculum is the fewer people identify themselves as religious.

    Well if the stakes are eternal life vs. eternal damnation, flaws or not you are going to fight for your beliefs. True believers don't need an understanding of the universe now because all will be revealed in the end.

    Religious people don't see the marvels of human science as the work of humans but gifts from God and they could care less if they exist or not. That's why they don't care about science education. Honestly from their point of view nothing science provides equal to eternal life and communion with God.