Pennsylvania Joins the League of Idiots
Another school mandates the teaching of neo-creationism in public school science classes. Woohoo, another group of kids will be completely misled by complete dunderheads. Let me be clear about this. Intelligent Design (ID) is not a theory. A theory must explain things–i.e., what scientists call data which are in turn facts. ID does not do this. ID basically does the following:
- We can’t explain how this evolved
- God did it…or fuzzy pink bunnies, or magic, or Odin, or aliens, or…whatever you want.
There are at least two problems with the above. First it is a “God of the Gaps” argument. We don’t know right now, so therefore I’ll fill in my favorite explanation. I don’t know what causes thunder, thus Zeus, Thor, or any number of man-made Gods are responsible. I don’t know how the sun rises and sets so a God in a flaming chariot must be riding across the sky. Of course, once an explanation is found that does not hinge on any of these supersitions the supporter/believer of the superstion must retreat.
The second problem is that it treats all hypotheses as having equal weight. This is complete junk science. I have a hypothesis that earth is the center of the universe. Should this be given the same weight, scientifically, as the current theories of astrophysics? No. Should ID be given the same weight as the current theory of evolution? No. Why not? For the reason in the above paragraph: ID explains nothing, it merely rules out certain explanations (supposedly).
Now there are other problems with ID that are rather arcane for many people, and this is why the ID people are using them as it allows them to fool the general public, IMO. For example, how many people want to hear a lengthy discussion of the Frequentist vs. Likelihood approach to statistics? Not many is my guess. But this is precisely the ground that William Dembski bases his claims about ID. It is for many people a MEGO (My Eyes Glazed Over) topic. By doing this and at the same time sounding intelligent, informed and being extremely well educated they manage to convince people that ID is legitimate science when in fact it is precisely the opposite.
“I think it’s a downright fraud to perpetrate on the students of this district, to portray one theory over and over,” said Buckingham. “What we wanted was a balanced presentation.”
That this man sits on the board of education is a slap in the face to the students under his care. Why not mandate a balanced view for the flat earth theory, the Ptolemic model of the universe, and alchemy. What, you say the earth is round. Piffle that is just a theory. I haven’t seen the earth as being round. What? Pictures from space? Ha! Everybody knows that is just a secularist conspiracy to keep evangelical Christians down!
Oh if you are a weirdo like me and want to talk about Frequentist vs. Likelihood statistics you can do so here.
Update: Just thought a quick word about people’s beliefs would be a good idea. I personally don’t care what a person believes in in regards to evolution, abiogensis and religion. I think that is up to each individual. You want to believe in a young earth, fine go right ahead. However, I have a very serious issue when somebody wants to drag their religious dogma into a public school science classroom. Dogma is the antithesis of science and as such has no business being in science classrooms. If you want your children to know about intelligent design, then go buy the books and teach them yourself, but please keep your religious views from the classroom.