Tennessee Bill Allows Creation in Science Classrooms

By Sean Pitman

A new pro-creation education bill that passed the Tennessee Senate 24-8 last month and 70-23 in the House last year is on the governor’s desk.  Many think it likely that this bill will be signed into state law by governor Bill Haslam today (April 10, 2012).

“These bills sound very innocent,” said Eugenie Scott, executive director of the National Center for Science Education. That’s intentional, she said. The legislation has been crafted to be legally bulletproof.

The Tennessee bill hijacks language from scientists and skeptics: Teachers are allowed to promote “critical thinking” in areas where there’s “debate and disputation.” …

The summary says that schools cannot prohibit “any teacher in a public school system of this state from helping students understand, analyze, critique, and review in an objective manner the scientific strengths and scientific weaknesses of existing scientific theories covered in the course being taught, such as evolution and global warming.”

NCSE’s Scott has been fighting antievolution legislation for 25 years, so she has seen creationism in many guises. The problem with academic freedom bills like this latest one is that if creationism is not prohibited, teachers will teach it as science. In national surveys, she said, about 25 or 30 percent of teachers say they’d like to teach both evolution and creationism or intelligent design. [emphasis added]

Intelligent design, she said, lost credibility and power in the 2005 trial in Dover, Pa., when a Republican-appointed federal judge ruled against teaching it in public school on the grounds that it was a religious idea and not a scientific one [see video below]. Read More…

 

It is interesting to me that a higher percentage of public school teachers (25-30%) actually want to teach about creation and/or intelligent design in their classrooms, but are being prevented from doing so while very few if any science teachers in some of our “Adventist” schools (like La Sierra University) want to discuss anything beyond neo-Darwinism.

 

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16 thoughts on “Tennessee Bill Allows Creation in Science Classrooms

  1. As I have noted before, Eugenie Scott’s most horrifying nightmare would be to have a competing philosophy to counter her Darwinistic viewpoint. So, she and her friends will continue to support that only “evolution as fact” be taught.




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  2. NCSE’s Scott has been fighting antievolution legislation for 25 years, so she has seen creationism in many guises. The problem with academic freedom bills like this latest one is that if creationism is not prohibited, teachers will teach it as science.

    How fascinating that they are so willing to admit that liberal litigation is the only arena in which blind-faith evolutionism can stand on its own — not in the science classroom!

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  3. As pointed out – the first argument against ID is that nobody in science should be allowed to admit that something was ever done by design in nature – since that observation cannot be limited to strictly natural causes. Oh no wait – the complaint was that the non-natural cause can not be God – because if God does something then science cannot see it or know about it “by definition”.

    Such are the nonsensical arguments of the blind-faith brand of evolutionist. (Makes me think that the brits are right when they speak of it as evilution)

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  4. Insofar as public schools are concerned it seems to me that if evolution is taught as a fact, why shouldn’t parents who believe in Creation be allowed to have their children exempt from a teaching contrary to family beliefs?

    It would be more intellectually honest when evolution is taught in public schools that it be taught as a theory and students made aware that there are various views about beginnings including Intelligent Design.

    This politically correct culture that permits atheistic intellectuals to determine what is taught in public schools is most unfortunate.




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  5. At a news conference on 4/10/2012 Gov. Bill
    Haslam did not sign into law this bill, but, rather will allow it to become law without endorsing it.




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  6. Pingback: Tennessee Bill Allows Creation in Science Classrooms, by Sean Pitman « adventlife

  7. Haslam has stated himself that he does not want to be involved in any controversial topics, such as abortion (he is supposedly pro-life), so he is at least consistent in his actions. Does he have any “backbone?” Well, I would say “NO!”




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  8. Oh dear, they’re going to be poisoning our children’s minds with their delusions.

    Let the brainwashings begin!!

    Sure, let’s all believe that a man in the sky said POOF and built this earth in six days. Let’s go a little further, and leave them with an outdated collection of books written by nomadic people which tells them to believe in a god who tells them to believe what the outdated book says. Perfect circular logic for simple people who fail to question dogma.

    I understand that creationism is a simple-minded concept for simple-minded people, but at least give our children who have no interest in science a shot at a decent science education.




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  9. @Bill, Are you an SDA? A Christian? If not, then why are you here disparaging our beliefs? Don’t you have anything better to do?

    BTW, why didn’t you sign your full name? Are you so afraid of being “found out” that you hide behind anonymity?




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  10. Question, even if we personally believe in God’s literal creation of the world in 6 x 24 hours, and whilst we should teach this in our church schools, should public schools be following likewise? What happened to the Adventist position on the separate of Church and State, which is in effect the cause of eschatological persecution.

    Isn’t this Bill (despite perhaps good motives) a frightful example of the rise of the joining of Catholic-dominated (think Santorum) Christianity, joining hands with Protestant Evangelicals, to take control of the United States? Which is more of a threat – the teaching of evolution, which this Bill attacks, or the separation of Church and State, which this Bill also attacks?




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  11. bill: Sure, let’s all believe that a man in the sky said POOF and built this earth in six days. Let’s go a little further, and leave them with an outdated collection of books written by nomadic people which tells them to believe in a god who tells them to believe what the outdated book says. Perfect circular logic for simple people who fail to question dogma.

    Bill – it is “a given” that atheists do not accept the Bible statement on origins and prefer instead to “imagine” that dust, rocks, sunlight and gas — will “Make a horse given enough time” as well as a host of other non-science stories to go with that kind of wishful thinking.

    And yes – as you point out – those atheists have no use at all for the Bible as a trustworthy document.

    Nobody questions that fact.

    But are those atheists able to account for the fact that the Bible predicts over 2000 years of history “in advance” in the book of Daniel??

    Daniel writing at the time of the Babylonian empire – predicts the 4 major world empires in his region of the world – and also the dark ages that follow in Daniel 7.

    So the atheist simply turns a blind eye to the evidence.

    How fascinating that when atheists like Martin Reese and Leonard Susskind look at the evidence for intelligent design – they find it so blatantly obvious that the only way to “escape it” is to “imagine” 10^500 power other entire universes!! An astounding “by faith alone” solution on their part!

    in Christ,

    Bob




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  12. Tenn Law

    Why the law

    a survey of Louisiana teachers showed:

    •48% of teachers were afraid that “teaching controversial material could affect [their] … tenure, salary, promotions, or job security.”

    •50% did not feel free to critique evolution.

    •55% felt “intimidated regarding the teaching of the controversy surrounding origins

    La Times take;

    David Zucchino
    Los Angeles Times

    Dear Mr. Zucchino:

    In your article entitle “Creationism discussions are now OK in Tennessee schools” from April 11, 2012, you wrote:

    “The measure will allow classroom debates over evolution, permitting discussions of creationism alongside evolutionary teachings about the origins of life. … The state’s teachers are not allowed to raise alternatives to evolution but, under the new law, would be required to permit discussion of creationism and other beliefs if they are raised in class.”

    The real story;

    . You can see the actual Amendment here:

    http://www.capitol.tn.gov/Bills/107/Amend/SA0901.pdf

    The language is quite clear. It repeatedly states that the new law does not introduce new material into the existing curriculum, and is instead restricted to “scientific subjects required to be taught under the curriculum framework developed by the state board of education.”

    Furthermore, it goes even farther in avoiding any confusion with creationism as it states: “This section only protects the teaching of scientific information, and shall not be construed to promote any religious or non-religious doctrine.”

    In addition to your erroneous description of the law, your article was also heavily slanted toward the opposition, even including Barry Lynn, a well known partisan on this issue. Unfortunately all of this simply feeds an on-going cultural myth that really needs clarification rather than reinforcement.

    Will you be issuing a correction to the story?

    Sincerely yours,

    Cornelius Hunter

    http://darwins-god.blogspot.com/2012/04/here-is-response-from-los-angeles-times.html




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