Creationism teaching

Can creationism be taught in religious education classes in America?

If not then why not? If yes then what is all the argument with science about?

any of you know?

I don't think so Chance. I'm not sure how much the public schools can "teach" in religion class and with all the demand for equity you would have to teach creationism from every religion most likely for face protests and outrage from every religious group out there.

When I was a kid we got mainly Christian creationism until we were older when we got an intro to world religions. I quite liked RE but had to drop it for other subjects. Wish I knew more because I often feel lost on religious threads here.

How about concerned Christian parents in the US taking their children to church/sunday school? As far as I can see, even if it can't be taught in public schools, creationism can still be taught to kids if the parents so desire? I'm just not seeing why the controversy arose in the first place.

Not sure about the US, but at my schools in the UK we studied the Biblical creation story - and those of other religions (the latter at secondary school; primary school was Bible only).

I took a world religions class in public highschool and they went over christian, hindu, shinto and native american creationism.

We watched a movie about ghandi.

The problem with the US is that the idea of "separation of church and state" gives every bitcher license to complain about the smallest thing and get their way for fear of lawsuits.  In many ways the US has set itself up to be controlled by small minded busy bodies.

That's why I think the only solution is a total privatization of schools.  This would eliminate all of these religous issues overnight and also make American more competitive. 

"That's why I think the only solution is a total privatization of schools."

That might be good for special interest groups and the rich..what about schools in horrible poor neighbourhoods? Do you think they would be best served by such an arrangement?

Maybe you need to change your laws instead. I'm in the UK and nobody really minds that kids in normal state primary schools get regular christian RE from about age 5 to 11. From 11 to 14 its mixed religion RE. After about age 14 the kids can opt out if they choose.

In catholic schools its much more. And Sunday schools are available for those who want them. There is no issue here. I don't understand the fight with science in your country. I feel like you might be focusing on the wrong target.

That might be good for special interest groups and the rich..what about schools in horrible poor neighbourhoods? Do you think they would be best served by such an arrangement?

me: competition would raise the level in those schools...they are already horrible!

In any competition there are winners and losers. Do you think that is appropriate when dealing with kids education?

How come many countries with great educational records manage with no competition? Why not just lobby for RE to contain creationism teaching? Again, I don't understand the fight with science..its not really a thing you can fight unless you make it out to be something its not.

Actually under my plan children from poor families would get vouchers to go to the school of their choice.  If the child was intelligent enough to meet the requirements of a particular high level school the money part of it would not be an issue.  Conversely those students who didn't give a damn would either go to a sub par school that just wanted their money or eventually no one would accept them.  The very idea of mandatory education for all kids is a sure enough way to bring the whole system down.  In order for the US to compete with the rest of the world the best and the brightest have to be set free to reach their potential instead of being slowed down by the dunce.

In my system there would be a national test for graduation from the primary level and then another for graduation from the secondary which would mean you would get a standardized diploma.  Outside of producing students which could pass those tests the schools would be free to teach what they wanted from any world view.  There would be atheist schools and parochial schools.  The only federal rule would be no racial discrimination or you won't get voucher money.

Will there be some casualties with such a system? Sure, but not anywhere near the amount that exists today with a public school system.  Plus some schools would be producing brilliant students because they could be picky about their entrance requirements and could have a zero tolerance policy for behavioral issues. 

Its actually very un-American to force people to send their children to state schools because of economic pressure of both paying taxes for those state based schools and trying to pay tuition at a private school.  There is no reason why a person who wants to raise their children according to certain values should have alternative values shoved down their throat like happens today.  I am always amazed at how little freedom most Americans really have when it comes down to core issues like these.

"Actually under my plan children from poor families would get vouchers to go to the school of their choice. If the child was intelligent enough to meet the requirements of a particular high level school the money part of it would not be an issue. Conversely those students who didn't give a damn would either go to a sub par school that just wanted their money or eventually no one would accept them. The very idea of mandatory education for all kids is a sure enough way to bring the whole system down. In order for the US to compete with the rest of the world the best and the brightest have to be set free to reach their potential instead of being slowed down by the dunce."

This is the standard right wing response. I think it can look like a good idea but when you see the standards in countries with good comprehensive education you see there is no need for it at all. The very real flaw with this kind of education marketplace system is that kids who are from good backgrounds necessarily have a better start than those who are not. Their parents read to them..they learn faster..they pass the primary exams with better marks etc. This kind of system is not doing anything to actively help the less fortunate.

Kids do not all arrive at school with equal potential; the pre-school time and money lavished on them by their parents is the deciding factor in where they are at when they arrive and how they perform once they get there. At least with comprehensive education poor/ mistreated kids are seen as valuable. In a market system they are just considered lazy or untalented.

I think a fairer way is what we have in the UK- comprehensive education of a high level for all with the ability to opt out if you want it. Rich people here pay to send their kids to private schools because they want to feel like they are doing something above the norm for them..in reality the comprehensives are good for the most part and are regulated by the government to reach certain minimum standards. Genuinely talented kids can apply to go to special schools if they meet certain standards (eg in music, science, sports).

I was in high school from 1988 to 1994 and it was in a poor area. I was probably one of the brighter kids there. I was one of about 10 from my year who went to university..the rest got jobs in fishing or agriculture. I don't feel that I was held back by the less academic kids around me and I am glad that the government took the time to give them the best chance they could get. In a market system the number going on to higher education would have been much lower because the number of kids with real "talent" out of those 10 was about 3. I'm also glad that I was around normal people from the area I grew up in. As long as choice is there, I think comprehensive education is by far the fairest system for the majority.

The other problem with voucher systems and unregulated schooling is how to compare the children. What exams would be fair for all? How does a kid who has been taught creationism apply for a molecular biology course at university? This kind of system results in the parents choosing the future path of their kids far more than in a comprehensive system..should parents have that much power over a childs future choices? I don't think so. Better to let them become their own person after a fairly neutral rounded education.

"In any competition there are winners and losers. Do you think that is appropriate when dealing with kids education?"

me: don't you think that is a reflection of life? Only in communism do we have "equality" in principle, just some who are more "equal" then others.

Right now, the US school system is an utter mess. Right now, there are losers and bigger losers. Most politicians opt out.

In my plan, it would be privatized with only 2 state run schools remaining open. These would be some type of vo tech school teaching some type of vocation (carpentry, construction etc.) w/ the basics (so they could read and right their name) and a military school. These would be reserved for those who couldn't or didn't want to go to a private school. The busting up of the govt. monopoly would drive prices down and increase the quality.

sounds very unfair on the unlucky kids.

how come european countries don't have such problems in their state run schools..what is your government doing?

Anyway back to my original question:

I found my own answer on wikipedia...

"Under U.S. law, religious education is forbidden in public schools, except from a neutral, academic perspective. For a teacher or school administration to endorse one religion is considered an infringement of the "establishment clause" of the First Amendment."

"In the UK, catholic, Church of England and Jewish schools have long been supported within the state system with all other schools having a duty to provide religious education within a broadly Christian context. There is no National Curriculum for Religious Education. The content of the Syllabus is agreed by Local Education Authorities, in the guidance of a council comprising members of different religious groups, teachers and local councillors."

So your constitution is the problem. If basic Christian religious education could be given in RE classes creationists would be happy, right? I still don't get why they target science and not the first amendment though. It is not the fault of science.

The first ammendment has been distorted and contorted to pretend that there is a "wall of separation" that doesn't exist. Jefferson wrote to a group of baptist preachers that there would be a wall of separation between the govt and the establishment of a state run religion (ie: no Italy and Catholicism, or England and the church of England etc.).

Religion was taught in state run schools really until I believe the late 50's when it became under assault (the move to end prayer in school and then a radical assault to end any mention of Christianity in schools).

It's not the constitution's problem it's the federalizing of the schools that's the problem. It behooves our govt. to have a populace dumbed down, reliant on the teat of the state rather then teaching self reliance, reliance on God etc. How can the largess be gathered if people realize the state is not God and is not responsible for "taking care of us" from cradle to grave?

Science is "attacked" because Christian scientist have realized that there is much about science that is both assumptive and interpretitive and believe that there is a case to be built that supports much of the bible and is disregarded due to secularism (a type of religion).

"it's the federalizing of the schools that's the problem. It behooves our govt. to have a populace dumbed down, reliant on the teat of the state rather then teaching self reliance, reliance on God etc. How can the largess be gathered if people realize the state is not God and is not responsible for "taking care of us" from cradle to grave?"

Why are there so many other countries in the world whose governments manage not to make this mistake? Most often they avoid it without bringing in extreme right wing measures. I don't think many people in Europe for example would care at all if their kids sung a few hymns and got taught about Adam and Eve (as many do). Why is this fuss a specifically American trait? The only thing I can see that is different is your laws.

"Science is "attacked" because Christian scientist have realized that there is much about science that is both assumptive and interpretitive and believe that there is a case to be built that supports much of the bible and is disregarded due to secularism (a type of religion)."

You are mistaken in believing there is some science/secularism conspiracy or even connection. Science is a separate entity, although secularism can lean upon it sometimes. There are many religious scientists who can separate metaphysical belief from their science which is only concerned with the physical world. It is important you realise the disinction between these scientists who are religious and so-called Christian Scientists who don't qualify as doing science because they bring in non-natural explanations.

I think you need to focus more on the positives like the fact that there is freedom of religion in the US and you can teach your kids anything you want, send them to private schools, sunday shools, churches etc. Since this is possible, why do you feel the need to attack science like it is part of some plot against religion? Science is not concerned with religion in the slightest..it addresses a different area of experience. If you really want religion taught in your public schools then you should focus on the laws instead of trying to push it somewhere it doesn't fit like science education. Lobby for RE teaching and I would support you 100%. It sometimes seems like you care more to attack science than to get religion taught in schools.

you: Why are there so many other countries in the world whose governments manage not to make this mistake?

me: because the secularist in our country fear religion, specifically Judeo/Christian religion.

you: You are mistaken in believing there is some science/secularism conspiracy or even connection. Science is a separate entity, although secularism can lean upon it sometimes. There are many religious scientists. I think you need to focus more on the positives like the fact that there is freedom of religion in the US and you can teach your kids anything you want, send them to private schools, sunday shools, churches etc.

me: right, but it's not a postive that I'm taxed to fund state run schools that spit on my beliefs and have to pay additionally to send my kids to private schools. I'm paying twice.

you: Since this is possible, why do you feel the need to attack science like it is part of some plot against religion? Science is not even concerned with religion..it addresses a different area of experience.

me: I think it's more appropriate to say I am against scientist who try to interpret events of the past as a method to negate my beliefs which can also be built upon a foundation of inquiry and testing.

you: If you really want religion taught in your public schools then you should focus on the laws instead of trying to push it somewhere it doesn't fit like science education. Lobby for RE teaching and I would support you 100%.

me: I'd be fine with that but it would never fly. The secularist would howl like stuck pigs. They want no presentation of Christianity in schools unless it's to criticize them. See my article on "more aig propaganda". The secularist behave like the ACLU guy noted whose goal is to "get back" and Christianity because someone insulted or offended a secularist in the past. It's like a huge cultural war here.

Also, I think that's why ID doesn't suppose to identify the Designer, just make observations and conclusions based on the laws of nature and the interdependency of bio machines and their systems.

I visited the determatoligist yesteryday and he had all his charts up showing the epidermal layer, how the blood vessels interlace the layers, hair, oil glands etc. and I was amazed at this mini factory of specific purpose. I mentioned to the Dr. my interest in ID and he told me that he was Jesuit trained and required to learn logic. There were give (back then) 7 proof of God and one was the complexity, design and purpose of the creation-an idea that he as a Dr. still believed and was reinforced by his profession every day.

"I think it's more appropriate to say I am against scientist who try to interpret events of the past as a method to negate my beliefs"

I think you will find that while many evolutionary scientists are interested in interpreting evidence to explain past events, very, very few of them are interested in religion or in discrediting religion. If asked then most scientists will give a naturalistic explanation because as scientists they view the world naturalistically.

You are confusing the world of science with politicians (maybe secularists as you say) who, for whatever reason, perhaps DO want to challenge religion and its status in your country. Just because these people choose to use a scientific viewpoint as an attack on religion does not mean they represent science. Science is headless..it doesn't have a direction or an agenda besides natural explanation of the world.

I really wish science could be removed from this debate because it is being used by people for their own ends from both sides of the argument. This harms science.

"because the secularist in our country fear religion, specifically Judeo/Christian religion"

who are these people and why would they fear religion? do you have an idea of how they operate and more importantly what started the whole thing?

"right, but it's not a postive that I'm taxed to fund state run schools that spit on my beliefs and have to pay additionally to send my kids to private schools. I'm paying twice."

You should focus all of your attention on getting RE back into state schools then rather than trying to damage science. There is nothing wrong in my opinion with kids hearing religious teaching in religion class. Trying to mix science and religion is bad for both areas of experience and bad for the kids. Stay as religion and you have a reasonable argument I feel.

"I'd be fine with that but it would never fly. The secularist would howl like stuck pigs. They want no presentation of Christianity in schools unless it's to criticize them. See my article on "more aig propaganda". The secularist behave like the ACLU guy noted whose goal is to "get back" and Christianity because someone insulted or offended a secularist in the past. It's like a huge cultural war here."

Who are "the secularists" and how come they control the whole country when most people there are religious? This is sounding slightly like anti-federalist paranoia. Why would such a meddling group of evil secularists arise only in America?

"Also, I think that's why ID doesn't suppose to identify the Designer, just make observations and conclusions based on the laws of nature and the interdependency of bio machines and their systems."

All of the molecular genetic science we have today comes from the modern evolutionary synthesis. It works and we can use it to do things. None of the predictions of ID allow us to do meaningful work. This is why working scientists choose the naturalistic explanation rather than the supernatural design explanation. There is no supernatural in science and a designer is by definition supernatural. If you say "aliens" then it is endless regress to the ultimate supernatural being who first designed the first alien. If IDers were really scientists then they would point out the flaws in the theory and try to formulate a better naturalistic theory in its place, or simply say "we don't know".

If there really is a supernatural creator then that is ok too, but science will never see him because it is not allowed to look for him, if you see what I mean.

"an idea that he as a Dr. still believed and was reinforced by his profession every day"

As I said before, most medical doctors are not scientists. They do not do experiments. Think of them more like engineers. There are also many scientists who are religious and feel happy living with two different views of reality. They do not let it get in the way of their work.

chance: I think you will find that while many evolutionary scientists are interested in interpreting evidence to explain past events, very, very few of them are interested in religion or in discrediting religion. If asked then most scientists will give a naturalistic explanation because as scientists they view the world naturalistically.

me: right, which means they have already assumed "out" God. So how could they reasonably make any valid defense of scriptures, when it's either out of their area of expertise or they flat out deny it's possibility?

you: You are confusing the world of science with politicians (maybe secularists as you say) who, for whatever reason, perhaps DO want to challenge religion and its status in your country. Just because these people choose to use a scientific viewpoint as an attack on religion does not mean they represent science. Science is headless..it doesn't have a direction or an agenda besides natural explanation of the world.

me: maybe in the pure sense "science" like "communism" means something else to purists. But to practicing humanity, it encompasses man's inability to separate his own biases, assumptions, interactions, prejudices, experiences, beliefs, opinions, networks, FUNDING $'S, reputations, prestige etc. from their work. Science (or the scientific method) may dilute that impact but it's always there, as natural a part of the human condition as breathing.

you:
I really wish science could be removed from this debate because it is being used by people for their own ends from both sides of the argument. This harms science.

me: nah, methinks you view science or religion for that matter as way to fragile. Debate is the great light in the marketplace of ideas.

you: who are these people and why would they fear religion? do you have an idea of how they operate and more importantly what started the whole thing?

me: college professors, liberal journalist, in general democrats, femininsts, socialists, communists, anarchists, gangsters, entertainment elites, rich and poor, I don't know, do you want more names?

you: You should focus all of your attention on getting RE back into state schools then rather than trying to damage science.

me: ?? Damage science? Science has been alive in well in our country for centuries, in much more religious environments. Seeking to establish a harmony between religion and science will not "damage science..."

you: There is nothing wrong in my opinion with kids hearing religious teaching in religion class. Trying to mix science and religion is bad for both areas of experience and bad for the kids. Stay as religion and you have a reasonable argument I feel.

me: so could they teach ID, and creationism, using experiments, interpretations of catastrophe, gravitational impact on light, young t rex blood, etc? Could they teach young earth, young universe, no evolution in religion class?

you: Who are "the secularists" and how come they control the whole country when most people there are religious? This is sounding slightly like anti-federalist paranoia. Why would such a meddling group of evil secularists arise only in America?

me: I think global socialists are alive and well in europe as well.

you: All of the molecular genetic science we have today comes from the modern evolutionary synthesis.

me: no it doesn't. Molecular genetic science would not exist w/out the work of creationist Gregor Mendel.

you: It works and we can use it to do things. None of the predictions of ID allow us to do meaningful work.

me: sure it does. I offered up evidence of gross misdiagnosis of back diseases and therapies based on a false assumption that we evolved from quadpedal primates.

It took the work of an ID'er to recognize the irreducibility, complexity, and design for purpose of the back to recognize that the therapies, exercises and prescriptions from evolutinary perspectives were HORRIBLE for the back/back pain. His diagnosis based on irreducibility and designed purpose is now utilized today over the evolutionary method.

you: This is why working scientists choose the naturalistic explanation rather than the supernatural design explanation.

me: yet the reality is it doesn't really matter in determining the limitations or possibilities of variation or application to practical science. Whether my dermatologist believes in God (he does) and in irreducible complexity (he does) or not isn't going to really impact his recomendation that I use a lotion for exzema, will it?

you: There is no supernatural in science

me: tada...and there you have your required presuppostion...I'm not even sure how you qualify that!!! An aborigine might look at the internet, digital cameras, space travel etc. as "supernatural".

Who knows what we might explain today that was dismissed because we didnt' understand it?

you: ...and a designer is by definition supernatural.

me: I guess if the shoe fits, follow the evidence, where ever it leads.

you: If you say "aliens" then it is endless regress to the ultimate supernatural being who first designed the first alien. If IDers were really scientists then they would point out the flaws in the theory and try to formulate a better naturalistic theory in its place, or simply say "we don't know".

me: but you are wrong in assuming naturalism is an ultimate purveyor of sole truth.

you: If there really is a supernatural creator then that is ok too, but science will never see him because it is not allowed to look for him, if you see what I mean.

me: chance, I actually do finally think I know what you mean, and for that, I'm sad for secular scientist.

you: As I said before, most medical doctors are not scientists.

me: they would consider themselves scientist no?

you: They do not do experiments.

me: not true, I would say every prescription is backed by not only "book smart" prescriptions for maladies but must be reinforced by the myriad patients they see, the day to day decisions impacted by intuitive understandings after years of observation and prescription.

you: Think of them more like engineers. There are also many scientists who are religious and feel happy living with two different views of reality. They do not let it get in the way of their work.

me: that sounds like saying, "nazis (not saying scientist were nazi's though some were) were happy being religious and nazi's, they didn't let these 2 realities get in the way of their work"?!?!?!?!