A PROGRESSIVE VOICE FROM THE LLANO ESTACADO

Monday, December 31, 2012

Ignoring Scientific Reality

The religious right in this country is still trumpeting the idea that evolution is nothing more than a theory, and has yet to be proven to be true. That is an outrageous lie. Despite what fundamentalists want us to believe, evolution is a fact, not a theory. And that fact has been accepted in the scientific community for quite a while now. Evolution has been proven to have taken place for all living things, and if it is true of all other animals, then why would we think it has nothing to do with humans? Like it or not humans are scientifically an animal -- an animal with a higher functioning brain than other animals (thanks to evolution), but an animal nonetheless.

But far too many states in the United States have decided that religion must be taught in our schools instead of established scientific fact, or that some science should be ignored if it cannot be replaced by religion. The map above shows the states that teach or refuse to teach evolution. Note that only a handful of states bother to teach the whole scientific truth (those states in green). A passel of others, those in yellow, are listed as "satisfactory". But don't let that word "satisfactory" fool you, since some of those states (like Texas and Montana) don't mention human evolution at all, and others mar their teaching on evolution with "creationist jargon". Personally, I don't think that's "satisfactory" at all.

We are falling behind the rest of the developed world in education in general, and in science in particular. And the idea that we can't teach the truth if it conflicts with religious myths is a prime reason for this. We have failed to adequately fund our schools, and now we don't want the truth taught. It's just sad when a nation is afraid of the truth, and it's a bad sign for that nation's future.

(The map above is from the blog called The Immoral Minority.)

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