Tuesday, February 26, 2013

I was not terribly happy with his job hosting the Oscars, but this quote pretty much makes up for that.

One of my pet peeves when I hear people talking about Evolution vs Creationism is that the argument has been defined as depending on "which one you believe." But that is allowing the Fundamentalists to define the terms of the debate.

Science is not a faith based discipline. It's acceptance, and progress, are based on the fact that if a scientist does not accept the findings of a previous scientist they are welcomed, nay encouraged, to discover on their own whether or not it holds up to scrutiny or to the introduction of new evidence.


That happens all of the time of course, which keeps science a constantly evolving exploration of the world around us.

Creationism on the other hand is fragile and is based on the notion that the whole of it must be taken on faith and cannot be questioned too closely nor argued against too aggressively. On the other hand they feel completely justified in suggesting that if there are ANY unanswered questions in Evolution that the entire field of study should be dismissed out of hand.

The only way I would support the introduction of Creationism in the public schools is as an example of exactly what kind anti-intellectual arguments are made by people terrified of the truths that science may discover about their world, and the fact that those discoveries might endanger their ability to use faith in unseen forces to comfort themselves in the face of a confusing and sometimes frightening reality.

11 comments:

  1. Maybe all kids from flyover country should be given a mandatory and complimentary two years of college in one of the major cities (kind of like a draft); remedial education. Some of it will stick.

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    1. Darlene? Your name is Darlene, and you have the effrontery to comment about "flyover country"? If you were half as smart as the rock you live under, you could figure out that two years of a mandatory "draft" system, roughly analogous to that in Czech Republic and other "less-developed" nations of the European continent would be much more cost-effective and socially productive than two years of college in any American educational institution.

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    2. Anonymous3:54 AM

      How about a big FUCK YOU. I live in "flyover country" and from your comment I doubt you have ever even been here. It's people like you that paint with such broad strokes.

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    3. What a nasty, foolish thing to say. I live in a rural area, in "flyover" country. I also work at a very well-regarded university focusing on the STEM fields as well as traditional liberal arts. It employs highly educated people from all over the globe to teach students from all over the US and the world. So take your very unscientific generalizations and stuff them.

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  2. Boscoe6:34 PM

    "they are welcomed, nay encouraged, to discover on their own whether or not it holds up to scrutiny"

    Actually, they are *obligated* to verify and validate the findings of other scientists. It's called peer review and it is how science works. :)

    It is also why this bizarre notion that some conservatives and religious nutcases have about evolution and climate change (for example) being some sort of conspiracy among scientists is nothing short of sheer stupidity.

    But that's exactly the kind of "common sense" that Palin represents to the trailer trash. People who think that because it's cold outside in January, global warming is a hoax, or since they don't understand how science works, that means that scientists are just makin' stuff up that sounds science-y.

    They just can't seem to parse the difference between philosophy, opinion and science.

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  3. Anonymous6:56 PM

    Come on, these parents are just lazy and dumb and want their kids to get out of tough schooling to get a diploma.

    I just don't see how these childish and naive products would keep America competitive nor exceptional.

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  4. Anonymous7:04 PM

    Since we're touching on science, check this out Jesse:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vdz7njiLvM0

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  5. SHARON9:26 PM

    Sigh....this gets so damn old, religion is just plain lazy, science takes work. I do think Seth is incredibly talented, but the Oscars was not his cup of tea. It always comes back to critical thinking which entails intelligence and a curious mind, and OMG book learning. I can't imagine any young person escaping the South to go to college anywhere else would ever return to work and raise a family. Once they are out of the bubble...the world is a huge, wonderous place filled with such diverse cultures. I grew up on the Jersey Shore with an Archie Bunker type of dad....now having lived all over the US, I loved having friends of every ethnic background. What it really showed me is how boring our family was..who knew.

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  6. Anonymous12:22 AM

    Gryphen, why do you approve comments you know are written in hate and are slanderous? Don't you at least want to try to up the professionalism? Your blog is pretty trashy. Why do you seemingly revel in attracting trashy haters?

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    1. Leland6:19 AM

      Maybe BECAUSE everyone has the right to speak their mind - and get slammed when they are being stupid?

      It's like Senator Kerry just said: Everyone has a right to be stupid!

      They DON"T have a right to NOT get slammed for it!

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  7. Anonymous8:54 AM

    I think creationism could easily be presented in a world cultures type of class where you're studying comparative religion and the "myths of the world." Put Christianity, Judaism, and Islam right next to the fascinating stories of dyfunctional Zeus -- kids are smart. They'll see right away that we've been worshipping the same being, or the same type of being, for aeons. Nothing has really changed. Show it side by side -- the bloody acts of Zeus, the insane psychopathology of the God of Abraham, and let kids figure out the truth on their own.

    I've been enjoying a book by Steve Wells called "God's Killings in the Bible." He started a blog where each day he would outline just one of the terrible deeds Jehovah/Yahweh committed as told in the Bible, then realized he could go on forever with it and finally published a book that simply outlines all of God's bloody deeds. Funny, nobody from within mainstream religions EVER talks about these things; they certainly pick and choose the way they present their God. And when you see them on such stark display, this is clearly the same entity or type of entity depicted in the pantheons of the Greeks, Romans, Sumerians, and Egyptians because "Yahweh" acts the same way as Zeus, Ra, Marduk and all those other pissy "deities" of old.

    Humanity is suffering from spiritual Stockholm Syndrome; loving their "captors" because they've been imprisoned by fear of their "gods" for so long; instead of fighting against their abusers or daring to complain.

    Anyway, Steve also keeps a cool ongoing blog called Dwindling in Disbelief.

    His main site is:

    DrunkwithBlood.com

    Jennifer aka Media Insider aka Lipstick Mystic

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It just goes directly to their thighs.