Evolution Education Fish He Fries With Relish!

22 02 2009

Pun intended. 🙂
Don’t miss this. Pass it on. That is all!

Evolution is a fish I choose to fry. It’s an idea that I want my children and as many others as possible to know and care about.

A list of reasons to champion evolution education:

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18 responses

28 02 2009
Mrs. C

I was taught evolution as a child in Australia. The Aborigines are obviously less evolved than we are, we were taught. See the skull shape of the Aborigine? And see how his culture is *obviously* less advanced than ours? When you look at an Aborigine, you see a true Stone Age person.

Yes, I have a problem with evolution. The idea that some of us are better and more evolved than others is a bit much IMO. Though then again, I do not object to someone saying something like, “Most scientists believe evolution occurred because (state evidence).” I have a real problem with statements like, “You are stupid if you believe in a Creator because all *real* scientists believe in evolution.”

A matter of words, perhaps. But if evolution were really, really true I *still* don’t know that I could teach that hateful stuff I learned as a child to my own children. If it were *really* true that Aborigines were less evolved… I would just sit on that knowledge and not feel compelled to pass it on.

I know most evolutionists don’t feel that seething hate, just as most Christians don’t really buy that stuff about slavery being good for black people. But… I just have a problem with it. Bad memories.

28 02 2009
JJ

Mrs. C, it sounds like you were taught some unethical lessons under the false banner of “evolution” just as some children are taught unethical lessons under the banner of “Christianity” or the other religions (terrorist bombers, for instance?)

What you’ve said here imo makes the case that children are in fact harmed by these false teachings. Apparently for life, even after they become parents themselves and are confused about what to teach their own children . . .

1 03 2009
NanceConfer

So, Mrs. C, do you not raise your children as Christians?

Confused again . .

Nance

1 03 2009
Mrs. C

Ah, sorry to confuse you. YES, I am a Christian. I even believe the world was created in six literal days.

BUT I am willing to listen to other people’s ideas. Surely, if God is God, He is not threatened by an idea. However, I will not allow my children to “sit under” teaching that Jesus is nobody and that people who believe in Him are fools.

Ideas are ok. Attacks in public education, IMO, are not.

I think that the theory of evolution as a scientific concept is not threatening; however, I would not want my children steeped in it. I would not want someone to purposely undermine the faith of my children through the curriculum. I would not want this idea taught to younger children.

Now, perhaps I feel this way because of the way race was dealt with when I was a kid. Or maybe not.

But… evaluating Truth as Truth has nothing to do with what *I* believe. It has to do with what Truth is. Obviously, I as a fallible human being can be wrong sometimes. So, when I think about this evolutionary idea and try to imagine what it would be like if it WERE Truth, I’m left with the quandry of whether I would teach that to my children.

I’m thinking I couldn’t teach it as Truth, just for the simple fact of what that Truth would do to my fellow human beings. And especially what that Truth would mean to my autistic children.

Mmmm… hopefully I haven’t muddied the waters further. What I am trying to say (in synopsis) is that with older children at least, discussion of ideas without nastiness should be a welcome thing. I just wouldn’t want any ideology ramrodded down our children’s throats by educators. Hey, that’s my job as a parent LOL. (kidding… sorta.)

1 03 2009
JJ

Autistic kids tend to be quite smart in a more literal understanding of the world than kids not on the spectrum, yes? Nuance and feelings harder to convey to them, etc? If that’s so — not my area of education knowledge, I freely admit — then it seems to me hard science would come much more naturally to them than grasping religion stories as literal truth?

1 03 2009
Mrs. C

LOL I’m learning about my autistic kids as I go. It’s very unfortunate that I don’t feel safe asking for a bit of help from our public schools, as they *do* have specialists who have dealt with autism through the teen years and etc.

Anyway, Elf (my 8 yo) is very literal, but about all things Bible. Autistic people DO tend to be very literal, and since we are a Christian family and believe the Bible as literal truth… my goodness. You just have not seen such literal, black-and-white thinking unless you have met my son.

I can’t see myself (as I said) teaching non-Christian worldviews as Truth, but I would like him to see these worldviews as existing in the same time and space that HE does. It’s funny that we are homeschooling his little brother Emperor as well, and I can see the doctrinal QUESTIONS from him like, “What did the worms do wrong that they must go to hell?” Hmm. But ask Elf a question about whether God can make a rock so large that he can’t move it and his brain will about explode. Emperor could have fun with that sort of thing. We can discuss ideas, but Elf has a little trouble with that to put it mildly.

1 03 2009
NanceConfer

I’m thinking I couldn’t teach it as Truth, just for the simple fact of what that Truth would do to my fellow human beings. And especially what that Truth would mean to my autistic children.

***

Two thoughts:

Imagine that you are trying to decide whether or not to belong to some religion or other. You are told as a child that one particular sect is just awful. You are taught that they are the worst sort of humans. You are further taught that this is a sufficient reason to avoid all religions.

Then you grow up. You are free to read and research and think for yourself.

Do you continue to believe what you were taught with no further consideration and therefore never join any church or adopt any religious belief of any kind? Or do you use your freedom to learn to find out for yourself whether that sect is really awful and what that means about religion.

Let’s say you find out one sect IS awful. They are terrible people. But in the course of your research, you find that other sects are not awful. They are lovely people.

What do you do then? Explore the possibility of joining some religion? Continue to reject any and all religion based on the false information you were taught as a child?

Second thought:

On truth to autistic children. Do you really think that current teachings about the theory of evolution would include the hateful nonsense your racist teachers forced on you as a child?

The confusion that not knowing about the theory of evolution and all the science based on it seems an unnecessary burden to place on children. It is their passion to figure the world out and to have this vital piece of the puzzle withheld seems . . . what’s the word . . . irrational. Science shouldn’t be about worms in hell. It isn’t about worms in hell. It’s about the beauty of a garden helped along by the work of the worms.

Autistic or not, I can imagine a lot of confused brains exploding with this sort of approach.

Nance

1 03 2009
Mrs. C

Oh, no, science isn’t about worms in hell LOL. Just giving an example of the sort of doctrinal questions I field from my son Emperor.

Nance, of course you are right that all evolutionists aren’t hateful people. And I don’t reject evolutionary theory *solely* on that teaching I received. But I am a bit skittish about evolutionary theory being taught in an environment hostile to Christians.

As my children age, I’m sure that we will have to cover this topic in some detail, if for no other reason than to alert them to the fact that not everyone thinks as we do. :]

2 03 2009
Nance Confer

Most of the people they will run into, in fact. If they get outside their circle of family and friends and expect to do anything in the world that is remotely related to science. Or anything that involves thinking about how the world really works.

Nance

2 03 2009
JJ

Not to mention anything to understand how their own brains and bodies really work! 🙂

2 03 2009
Mrs. C

Hey, whoa. We don’t learn “how our bodies work” until we’re married. *wink*

2 03 2009
Mrs. C

Ok, this is off topic, but my goodness I had to share this “Paleolithic Diet.”

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paleolithic_diet

Good grief.

2 03 2009
JJ

LOL – Young Son is a huge fan of the Simpsons and last week was urging me to come see one episode called The Monkey Suit he’d discovered from a few years ago, that spoofs the Scopes Monkey trial and the movie/play Inherit the Wind about the trial. So we settled in with him at the controls, and he narrated and was doing pause-rewind-repeat so I wouldn’t miss all his favorite parts.

The reason I bring it up is that the plot device to get to a trial, is that the friendly neighborhood evangelical family, the Flanders, go to the museum and every exhibit is closed except the History of Man. The two young boys begin to ask disturbing questions such as “Was our mother a monkey?” and why, if as they’d been taught God created everything including boys like themselves, then where did the stork you told us about, come in?? 😀

2 03 2009
Mrs. C

LOL, JJ, these modern marriages can be complicated. :p

Did you know that Vision Forum has an entire series of guidebooks to help Christian families navigate through these troubling exhibits?

http://www.visionforum.com/boysadventure/productdetail.aspx?productid=33540&categoryid=20

There ya go. Happy shopping!

2 03 2009
JJ

I didn’t know about that specifically, but it doesn’t surprise me. And the oceans are made of god’s tears, right? 😉

2 03 2009
Mrs. C

Actually, I have the Zoo book but didn’t go for the other stuff. I like that it’s spiral bound and groups animals by continent.

It doesn’t strike me that they’re going to market it as a *science text* so much as a supplement to the exhibit, but Ned Flanders didn’t plan ahead too well, did he?

2 03 2009
JJ

😀
True — he’s reduced to screaming that there’s no such thing as storks, that storks are god in disguise.

2 03 2009
Nance Confer

We’ll have to see if Mrs. C does much better when she has her little talk with her kids. I’d love to be a fly on that wall!

Nance

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