Comment on Supreme Court Decision on Church Employment Case by Eddie.
Holly Pham: The fact that SDA campuses do virtually nothing as far being “proactive” in the drug realm disturbs me quite a bit.
Holly, I’m curious to know the basis of your statement. Do you work on a SDA campus? Are you a professional counselor? Have you ever counseled a friend or colleague who abused drugs? What do you suggest SDA campuses do differently?
Eddie Also Commented
Holly Pham: Pacific Union College is well on the way down the same road as La Sierra. The problem of pot smoking there is horrible. I have had three relatives attend or are attending PUC, and they all have said over 50% of the students smoke pot, some coming to class “high.”
The administration is well aware of this problem and chooses to do virtually nothing.
Substance abuse occurs at all SDA campuses and the problem is not ignored by the administration of any campus. Any student caught abusing any substance is dragged before a judicial committee composed of deans and faculty members, and promptly suspended for a period of time (varying from 3 days to 1 year, depending on the nature of the behavior) or even expelled, in accordance with each institution’s policies. Furthermore, the student is placed on probation, required to take an online course on substance abuse, required to attend counseling sessions, and required to consent to random drug testing.
Supreme Court Decision on Church Employment Case
Nowack ECM, Melkonian M. 2010. Endosymbiotic associations within protists. Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci. 365(1541):699-712. Abstract (from website, not actual pdf): The establishment of an endosymbiotic relationship typically seems to be driven through complementation of the host’s limited metabolic capabilities by the biochemical versatility of the endosymbiont. The most significant examples of endosymbiosis are represented by the endosymbiotic acquisition of plastids and mitochondria, introducing photosynthesis and respiration to eukaryotes. However, there are numerous other endosymbioses that evolved more recently and repeatedly across the tree of life. Recent advances in genome sequencing technology have led to a better understanding of the physiological basis of many endosymbiotic associations. This review focuses on endosymbionts in protists (unicellular eukaryotes). Selected examples illustrate the incorporation of various new biochemical functions, such as photosynthesis, nitrogen fixation and recycling, and methanogenesis, into protist hosts by prokaryotic endosymbionts. Furthermore, photosynthetic eukaryotic endosymbionts display a great diversity of modes of integration into different protist hosts. In conclusion, endosymbiosis seems to represent a general evolutionary strategy of protists to acquire novel biochemical functions and is thus an important source of genetic innovation.
The conclusion: “endosymbiosis seems to represent a general evolutionary strategy of protists.” Doesn’t sound particularly convincing.
Holly Pham: Sounds like the typical “hokey” fluff that all colleges have. Regarding a “counseling center” this means absolutely nothing. Most pot smokers will not voluntarily “check into” any type of “voluntary” counseling.
Mandatory counseling has an abysmal record as to solving or even helping college students, as all colleges have them, and pot smoking in rampant on most campuses despite them.!
What is PUC doing “proactively” to address this problem? I believe the answer is nothing.
Holly, I have been a member of such a grievance committee. Many students admit that being “caught” was good for them. It gave them a chance to change their lives before spiraling downward on a self-destructive path. I personally know many students who have benefited from counseling at our SDA campuses. There are many positive things that happen at SDA campuses and they need our support.
I suspect you would be a happier person if you looked more at the positive aspects and less at the negative aspects of SDA education SDA church members.
Recent Comments by Eddie
SDA Darwinians compromise key church doctrines
Will humans and animals in New Jerusalem need to sleep?
Stephen Ferguson: Sean, how did we get to this position? In particular, why after spending decades and millions of dollars has the official Church’s own pet organisation, the Geoscience Research Institute, done so little to disprove evolution?
Why if it is all hogwash has it been thoroughly not been disproved over the last 150 years? Why do some 99% of scientists across a multitude of different fields (e.g. paleontologists, physicists, archaeologists, anthropologists, biologists, chemists, cosmologists, historians, cosmologists and geologists etc) all consider evolution to be the most plausible model?
Maybe because the evidence for microevolution and speciation is overwhelming. And some evidence for megaevolution (e.g., sequence of fossils) and long geological ages can be perplexing to explain from the perspective of most (but not all) young life and young earth creationists.
Stephen Ferguson: Why, if it is all rubbish, is there Adventist scientists and theologians who believe in evolution? Why would they risk their careers and standing in the Church to promote something they consider truth, given the huge pressure to just shut up, if they didn’t believe there was something in it?
Maybe because they’re not as honest as some prominent supporters here. Or their faith is weaker. Or, perhaps, physicians and lawyers are simply better trained than scientists and theologians to evaluate scientific evidence.
Stephen Ferguson: I really, really hope Christian scientists, especially Adventist ones, will disprove evolution some day.
Stephen Ferguson: If the SDA hierarchy wants someone to blame for all this, they should blame themselves. It has been their pet organisations that have so spectacularly failed to offer scientific arguments in favour of YEC. Ted Wilson must accept some of the blame onto himself – if not personally then on behalf of the hierachy he leads.
I wouldn’t blame anybody. But if they were to fire the current GRI staff, hire certain supporters here, and then move GRI from LLU to SAU or SWAU, I suspect a certain faction of the church would be happier.
La Sierra University won’t neglect creation teaching, president, chairman vow
Sean, you have essentially written enough about this to publish a book, which you ought to do, exhorting SDAs to abandon Sola Scriptura and rely exclusively on empirical data, which surely will be a best seller among neoconservative SDAs.
Dr. Ariel Roth’s Creation Lectures for Teachers
Like Ken, I am puzzled by the lukewarm reception of his suggestion to establish an endowed chair for intelligent design at LSU. Perhaps there was confusion about his term “intelligent design.” I think he had in mind the kind of creationism that most SDAs believe in, specifically young earth creationism or young life creationism (I realize some of you view ID negatively). So it could be called an Endowed Chair of Young Life Creationism, or whatever term is preferred.
For what it’s worth, I like his idea for several reasons:
1) SDA professors in all our institutions with the exception of LLU have relatively heavy teaching loads and scant time available for research, which means they have little time to conduct and publish research on creationism (I’m quite certain Art Chadwick would concur). That’s why as a denomination we have no well published and respected researchers with expertise on the subject, with the sole exception of Leonard Brand at LLU–who ranks among the world’s most successful scientists whose research focuses on YLC (if you believe there are other SDA experts with more expertise, you might be disappointed if you conducted a search of their publication records).
2) Most students in our institutions are seeking a career in a health profession, therefore SDA professors by necessity focus mostly on subjects that prepare students for the biomedical fields. Few have time to keep up with issues related to creationism and evolution, let alone conduct original research on the subject. You can’t really expect all professors to be as well informed with the subject as Leonard Brand.
3) It would be fantastic for LSU to have a professor with the available time and resources to pursue high quality research on creationism, which I believe was the intent of Ken’s wish. We already have one such professor at LLU; why not another at LSU? I’m astonished that some here seem to think it is undesirable to have another expert SDA researcher on the subject. Perhaps some of you naively imagine that ALL professors have the unlimited time and resources to become world-class researchers on creationism–and are wasting the denomination’s money by not doing so.
4) SDA institutions struggle to meet their payroll obligations and can benefit by obtaining financial assistance from donors.
5) If the evidence overwhelmingly favors the traditional SDA position of origins, as some here claim, what harm is there in funding a professor with the time and resources to discover even more evidence? It’s pretty hard to convince the world that the scientific evidence overwhelmingly favors our position unless the evidence is published in respectable scientific journals–as Leonard Brand has done repeatedly. It won’t ever happen unless there are more full-time researchers who focus exclusively on issues related to creationism.
Sean Pitman: Most scientists who believe in the Biblical model of origins interpret Tertiary sediments as post-Flood sediments.
So if Noah’s flood ended at the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary, which coincides with a period of high global sea levels according to geologists, does that mean Noah’s flood is represented by the second of two worldwide floods in this graph?
How would you account for the geological evidence for a worldwide flood during the Paleozoic and the lack of geological evidence for high sea levels during the early Mesozoic?