Beta

Slashdot: News for Nerds

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Bill Allows Teachers to Contradict Evolution

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the legislating-science-is-a-challenge dept.

Education 1049

Helical writes "In an attempt to defy the newly approved state science standards, Florida Senator Rhonda Storms has proposed a bill that would allow teachers to contradict the teaching of evolution. Her bill states that 'Every public school teacher in the state's K-12 school system shall have the affirmative right and freedom to objectively present scientific information relevant to the full range of scientific views regarding biological and chemical evolution in connection with teaching any prescribed curriculum regarding chemical or biological origins.' The bill's main focus is on protecting teachers who want to adopt alternative teaching plans from sanction, and to allow teachers the freedom to teach whatever they wish, even if it is in opposition to current standards."

cancel ×

1049 comments

This happens everywhere (5, Funny)

Naughty Bob (1004174) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637220)

I only had to look at my teachers to see that they contradicted evolution.

Re:This happens everywhere (5, Insightful)

Psmylie (169236) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637402)

They should put a little protection in there for those that want to teach the Flat Earth concept, too.

Mod Parent Down (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22637688)

Replying to the first comment with your own, unrelated comment is so pushy.

Not hugged enough as a child, or simply still a (slashdot subscribing) child?

Desperate fundie bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22637232)

no comment

Sounds fine to me (4, Insightful)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637234)

What's the big deal? Stupid teachers still wouldn't be allowed to teach "Intelligent Design" anyway, since -- according to the summary -- the information still has to be scientific (and "ID" fails at that).

Re:Sounds fine to me (4, Insightful)

KublaiKhan (522918) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637344)

OK, now, prove to some fundamentalist teacher or other that it's not scientific, when they 'know' that it is.

Is there some religion or another that insists on reality? So that I can claim religious persecution by these fundies?

Re:Sounds fine to me (0, Troll)

gnick (1211984) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637372)

...the information still has to be scientific (and "ID" fails at that).
There are a lot of "experts" out in Utah that would argue vehemently against that assertion.

Re:Sounds fine to me (1)

wattrlz (1162603) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637374)

It's a good idea on paper, but it would only work if each individual teacher - or at least the principal who reviewed his/her lesson plan - was capable of determining what is and isn't scientific.

Under Who's Watch? (4, Insightful)

Bananatree3 (872975) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637384)

The Intelligent Design crowd has pushed "scientific" evidence that is in their favor. Under what jurisdiction would the "scientific" basis fall? Would it be the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS?) The School District's "science" advisor? The teachers themselves?

Without a concrete definition of whose "science" you are using, any teacher could find some half-baked textbook that proclaims to be scientific and tell the School Administrators they're teaching true "scientific" information.

Re:Under Who's Watch? (4, Informative)

Hatta (162192) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637536)

Without a concrete definition of whose "science" you are using, any teacher could find some half-baked textbook that proclaims to be scientific and tell the School Administrators they're teaching true "scientific" information.

There's a simple, unambiguous test anyone can apply to objectively determine whether a theory is scientific. That is: is the theory falsifiable? Does the theory make predictions that could potentially be proven wrong by evidence? Intelligent Design fails this test.

So if you have kids, and they are taught intelligent design in this school system, then sue. You'll win. Every time a judge has heard the issue, he's ruled that intelligent design is not science. Because it's not, and it's easy for anyone impartial to see that.

Re:Under Who's Watch? (4, Informative)

KublaiKhan (522918) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637574)

The courts have clearly stated that ID is not scientific.

Re:Sounds fine to me (0, Redundant)

uncle-gendo (1247352) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637432)

and "ID" fails at that

Watch them try to argue with that statement...

Re:Sounds fine to me (-1)

ArcherB (796902) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637564)

What's the big deal? Stupid teachers still wouldn't be allowed to teach "Intelligent Design" anyway, since -- according to the summary -- the information still has to be scientific (and "ID" fails at that).
Actually, there is good science [ideacenter.org] to support ID [actionbioscience.org] also.

Either way, forbidding teachers to teach something is no different than the Catholic church of old forbidding teachings that said the world was round. To say one side is "not scientifically based" just because it is different than your view is just as bigoted and close minded as the Catholic church calling Newton a "heretic". You can't block information just because you don't agree with it.

Evolution needs to be taught with both sides presented so that the students can discuss and make up their own minds. Kids tend to learn better when given the facts and allowed to draw their own conclusions.

Re:Sounds fine to me (5, Funny)

geekoid (135745) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637590)

As my ID pushing narrow minded coworker said:
"The Bible IS science."

I shit you not.

science teachers != scientists (1)

caffeinemessiah (918089) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637244)

Every public school teacher in the state's K-12 school system shall have the affirmative right and freedom to objectively present scientific information

Unfortunately, the majority of K-12 teachers might -- at best -- have an undergraduate degree in a science. This does not make them scientists, or qualified to judge/review/select scientific discourse as they see fit.

Re:science teachers != scientists (2, Insightful)

Macblaster (94623) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637380)

It seems worse than that. The language is "every teacher", not "every science teacher". The high school biology teacher may be teaching evolution, but the music teacher is trying to throw some intelligent design at the kids. (Again, ID != science)

Re:science teachers != scientists (0)

XxtraLarGe (551297) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637490)

Unfortunately, the majority of K-12 teachers might -- at best -- have an undergraduate degree in a science. This does not make them scientists, or qualified to judge/review/select scientific discourse as they see fit.
Yeah, what gives them the right?!? Don't they know only Ph.D's in the IVORY TOWER are qualified to judge/review/select scientific discourse???

Re:science teachers != scientists (1)

Ardaen (1099611) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637628)

So what do you suggest? Allowing the legal definition to be so wide open that each and every person can redefine it at will?

Re:science teachers != scientists (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22637620)

And, in other news: "!=" is not English for "not."

BAD idea. (2, Insightful)

PC and Sony Fanboy (1248258) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637248)

While teachers should be allowed to teach what they please, they should not be allowed to impress their beliefs on others.
Teachers need to stick to a standardized curriculum, and if they disagree with evolution, they should simply SAY so when teaching it - teachers could say "This is NOT what I think happened, but there are a lot of people that DO think this way".

Teach the information, NOT beliefs - I want the state OUT of my bedroom, and separate from religion!

Re:BAD idea. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22637350)

I want the state OUT of my bedroom

Uh...you consider K-12 classrooms your bedroom?

Maybe you shoulda posted that as AC...

Re:BAD idea. (1)

XxtraLarGe (551297) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637678)

The primary reason for the need of a bill like this is because with all the panic over ID, teachers have been VERBOTEN from teaching any kind of criticism of Evolution. There are several legitimate scientific critiques of Evolution which many teachers aren't allowed to bring up without endangering their livelihood. The cult of Evolution is a lot like the cult of Scientology, where anybody who questions it is severely chastised.

Re:BAD idea. (3, Insightful)

geekoid (135745) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637680)

That's crap. A teacher is in a position of authority and in a science class, science needs to be taught.
Evolution is how science explains observations, and until someone come along with a different theory with falsifiable tests and makes prediction, evolution best explains the observations.

That's it. Very simple. It's not about religion, it's not about thinking this is some sort of 'anti-belief' movement. Most people who ACTUALLY study the bible and it's history agree. The creation myths in the bible are parables. Pretty good ones, I must say.

Huh? (1)

jimbobborg (128330) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637252)

"to allow teachers the freedom to teach whatever they wish, even if it is in opposition to current standards."

So the people we ask to give us an education can decide what we can learn, based on what they feel is the truth? WTF?!?!?!

Of course, I had this problem with some professors in college, but come on, facts are facts. They are not up for interpretation.

Re:Huh? (1)

Timothy Brownawell (627747) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637556)

So the people we ask to give us an education can decide what we can learn, based on what they feel is the truth? WTF?!?!?!
Yes, that's kind of what they're supposed to do. Or would it be better to legislate the facts, and teach that pi = 3 and other garbage?

but come on, facts are facts. They are not up for interpretation.
Sure they are, collecting and interpreting facts is what science is all about. This only causes problems when those doing the interpreting don't understand what they're doing.

Contradicts herself (1)

zoltankemeny (1217722) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637264)

'Every public school teacher in the state's K-12 school system shall have the affirmative right and freedom to objectively present scientific information relevant to the full range of scientific views regarding biological and chemical evolution in connection with teaching any prescribed curriculum regarding chemical or biological origins.'

So when is intelligent design/creationism within the full range of scientific views? She's unintentionally making pro-evolution views.

Re:Contradicts herself (1)

evilklown (1008863) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637560)

She's unintentionally making pro-evolution views.
There's a difference between being pro-evolution and being pro-science. This announcement definitely falls in the latter category. Although IANAS, I know that there are more scientific views to how we got to where we are than evolution, but evolution happens to be the most widely accepted science-based explanation.

Re:Contradicts herself (1)

zoltankemeny (1217722) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637608)

Ack, thanks for correcting my sloppy diction!

Re:Contradicts herself (2)

paiute (550198) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637632)

The end game:

Supreme Court Justice: You assert that this bill has no religious mandate?
Laywer for the State of Florida: Yes, we do. It's all about good science teaching.
SCJ: Then why is the bill about biological evolution specifically? Why not allow the alternate teaching of mathematical theories?
LftSoF: er um er...
SCJ: Yeah, that's what we thought.

FG (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22637266)

Sweet, no more law against teaching the evolutionary theory that Gill Gerand used a time machine, went back in time and ejaculated into the primordial ooze

Re:FG (1)

Sabathius (566108) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637538)

It's Gil Gerard [wikipedia.org] , man. If you're going to desecrate a favorite T.V. show from my youth (yes, I know it's cheesy), at least spell the guy's name right.

They should pass this (1)

Markemp (562755) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637268)

It can be viewed as a trojan horse. If the bill states that teachers should be able to present any *scientific* evidence to support views on the origin of species and life, then by presenting Intelligent design or any other offshoots can be taken to court, where it can be argued that those are faith based, and not scientific evidence. In other words, to the legislator who is trying to make it safe for teachers who want to talk about ID.... this bill won't have the effect you think it will...

political evolution (2, Insightful)

thoughtlover (83833) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637274)

Concepts like Senator Storms should make her a dinosaur, but have seemingly allowed her to evolve and keep a job in politics.

Re:political evolution (1)

Sczi (1030288) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637562)

She's young. She was a local florida politician.. County something or other? I forget, but anyway, she's been a total biatch for as long as I can remember. I was hoping she wouldn't get elected senator to shut her up, but since she won, she has actually been well out of the news mostly, so I'm glad I don't have to hear her name every day anymore, but it sucks that she basically got promoted. But yeah, seriously, she's pretty young, so I'm sure she has a long and promising career of being a nosy, pushy, self-righteous, know-it-all c00nt for many years to come.

Wikipedia: "Storms had an eight-year tenure on the Hillsborough County Commission (1998-2006), for which she is well known, and pushed a number of controversial issues. These issues included a fight against establishing the proposed Florida A&M University School of Law in Tampa, a campaign in favor of the sterilization of men and women convicted of child abuse, eliminating county-appropriated money for Planned Parenthood, and perhaps most publicized, her crusade for the county to officially abstain from recognizing gay and lesbian events held inside county lines, which was passed in June 2005 despite vocal opposition, most notably from openly gay topless dance club proprietor Joe Redner. She is also recognized by her quick tongue and often scathing sarcastic remarks, many of which she does not retract, stating "I am not apologizing for who I am."

Re:political evolution (1)

rucs_hack (784150) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637584)

I'd be more worried about the effect of policies like this on the long term economic growth of the US.

In the short term some politicians get enough of the electorate pleased to get their votes. In the longer term, the quality of scientists, or even normal people with a decent understanding of science drops, and the US starts to fall behind other countries.

I'm in the UK, and I'm still worried about the effect of this on the US. After all, we're pretty major partners.

Unfortunately, (1)

Peter Trepan (572016) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637668)

it's survival of the fittest, not the most deserving. Religious fundamentalism may triumph over reason and science for the same reason a swarm of army ants might triumph over Stephen Hawking.

Weep for our republic, fear for our children... (1, Insightful)

Captain Sarcastic (109765) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637280)

So, it sounds as though the state legislature is trying to pass a law that says that if a teacher personally disagrees with evolution, then they can refuse to teach it.

Is the next step going to be that if I hold a strong religious and ethical belief about the speed limit, I'm not bound by it?

"...let us wear upon our sleeves the crepe of mourning for a civilization that had the promise of joy..."

Re:Weep for our republic, fear for our children... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22637376)

How come every time I read some news like this I start to hear "Dueling Bangos" playing?

How about a law that says that if I don't believe pot causes health problems I can choose to smoke it legally?

Re:Weep for our republic, fear for our children... (2, Interesting)

madseal (916186) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637494)

It's curious how people can be so angry at this (which allows teachers to teach what every they want) because they can't be trusted. At the same time be angry with No Child Left Behind (which gave minimum standards for what teachers HAD to teach) because it doesn't give teachers flexibility. Sounds a bit hypocritical to me.

Re:Weep for our republic, fear for our children... (1)

chillax137 (612431) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637656)

These two ideas are not mutually exclusive. NCLB forces the schools to teach how to pass certain tests. This bill would allow them to tell students things that aren't true. They should be given flexibility but not to the point where they can tell students that ID is science.

Re:Weep for our republic, fear for our children... (2, Funny)

Butisol (994224) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637510)

Reminds me of Ms. Garrison "All right, kids, it is now my job to teach you the theory of evolution. Now I, for one, think evolution is a bunch of *bullcrap*! But I've been told I have to teach it to you anyway. It was thought up by Charles Darwin and it goes something like this..." "In the beginning, we were all fish. Okay? Swimming around in the water. And then one day a couple of fish had a retard baby, and the retard baby was different, so it got to live. So Retard Fish goes on to make more retard babies, and then one day, a retard baby fish crawled out of the ocean with its... ...mutant fish hands... and it had butt sex with a squirrel or something and made this. Retard frog-sqirrel, and then *that* had a retard baby which was a... monkey-fish-frog... And then this monkey-fish-frog had butt sex with that monkey, and that monkey had a mutant retard baby that screwed another monkey... and that made you! So there you go! You're the retarded offspring of five monkeys having butt sex with a fish-squirrel! Congratulations!"

what would spaghetti monster do? (3, Insightful)

the_fat_kid (1094399) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637586)

I can hardly wait untill a teacher starts spreading the truth of the Giant Spaghetti Monster.
I bet that goes over real well.

Re:Weep for our republic, fear for our children... (1)

edn4 (1214790) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637588)

Not really, even if you read just the summary you will see that the teacher still needs to present evolution as part of a "range of choices"

Contradict a Theory? (0)

nexuspal (720736) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637284)

If I'm not mistaken, doesn't the existance of an intermediate life form (monkeys) show that "natural" selection lost, as we now have humans (selected appearantly) and monkeys together (the life form that "lost"). Another is "missing" fossil evidence showing these half ape creatures morphing into man, along with all of the other itermediate life forms for every other evolved creature that's out there. So I would go so far as to say real evidence contradicts postulates of evolution, not just some ho hum redneck teacher...

Re:Contradict a Theory? (3, Informative)

nuzak (959558) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637382)

What the sam hell are you blathering about? We didn't evolve from modern monkeys.

Yes, you are (0)

illegalcortex (1007791) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637452)

You are mistaken so many times in your post, that's it makes me wonder if you were educated by someone who had a religious opposition to evolution.

I'm torn on whether I should actually try to correct your incorrect beliefs, or just ignore it. Do you ACTUALLY want to know the real answers? Or are you so set in your ways that you'll just ignore it? Such is the problem of the teaching of evolution on the national scale.

Re:Contradict a Theory? (3, Funny)

bckrispi (725257) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637454)

^ Mod -10,000,000: dumbshit.

Re:Contradict a Theory? (2, Insightful)

grub (11606) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637472)


Modern primates, including humans, evolved from a common ancestor. That tired line "Why are there still monkeys?!" is just fucking retarded. Of course you're free to present any actual evidence supporting your position...

Re:Contradict a Theory? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22637482)

You're joking, right?

Re:Contradict a Theory? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22637502)

Wrong. Different species have different niches. There is no half-monkey as rather both human and monkey descend from the common ancestor by different adaptations.

Re:Contradict a Theory? (5, Informative)

KublaiKhan (522918) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637532)

Incorrect.

Apes, monkeys, and humans all evolved from a common primate ancestor. Due to differing environments and differing pressures and selection criteria for said differing environments, the populations of primate ancestor-species evolved in separate directions.

The 'missing' fossil evidence question is a red herring: every time a transitional fossil is found, the creationists say "OK, what came between that one and the next one?"--moving the goalposts, in other words. Archaeology is not geneology: you will not get a continual record of every generation back to when time began.

In addition, fossils are not the only evidence. There are patterns of genetic structures, there are cases of comparative anatomy, there are multiple other lines of evidence to choose from.

Re:Contradict a Theory? (1)

tomandlu (977230) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637550)

Err, who told you that monkeys were an intermediate life form? They are not. Man, apes and monkeys (indeed all primates) are descended from a common ancestor; man and apes are also descended from a common ancestor, but a more recent one than the common ancestor for all primates.

As for missing fossil evidence - this is fundy bait and switch. Many intermediary fossils have been found. Queue the response from the fundys: "ah, but where are the intermediary fossils between the fossils you've just found?"

Re:Contradict a Theory? (4, Informative)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637554)

If I'm not mistaken, doesn't the existance of an intermediate life form (monkeys) show that "natural" selection lost, as we now have humans (selected appearantly) and monkeys together (the life form that "lost").

Well, you are mistaken.

Here's a hint: if evolution really predicted that every time a speciation event occurred there would be a "loser" species that would go extinct, then it would predict that there would be exactly one species of organism on the entire planet. Obviously then, either evolution is absolutely ridiculous (since there is obviously more than one species in existence) or you don't understand it. Which is more likely?

Hint number two: both branches of a speciation event can "win" because they can fill different ecological niches. Monkeys lost out on the "high intelligence and tool-making" niche; humans lost out on the "living in tall trees" niche.

Re:Contradict a Theory? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22637666)


Monkeys lost out on the "high intelligence and tool-making" niche; humans lost out on the "living in tall trees" niche.


But then why do they both still seem to compete in the "throwing shit to show displeasure" niche?

Re:Contradict a Theory? (1)

tuffy (10202) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637626)

Another is "missing" fossil evidence showing these half ape creatures morphing into man

You want to see human ancestors morphing into man, you got em [si.edu] .

This reminds me of "March of the Penguins" (1)

Butisol (994224) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637288)

Substitute 'Idiots' for 'Penguins' and that's pretty much it.

Wait a minute (1)

greg1104 (461138) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637290)

So they want to allow teachers to ignore standards and provide their own unique implementation of the curriculum that's incompatible with the rest of the thinking world. Who is sponsoring this bill, Microsoft?

Woo Hoo (1)

BlowHole666 (1152399) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637296)

Now if we can just get teachers to teach Math, Reading, History, and Science. While they are at it can they stop giving children grades and make them have to work for it. Perhaps they can go back to spanking the children that act up as apposed to having to not hurt the child's feelings and make sure they are "happy". Maybe then the United States will dominate the world again in the tech and science sectors.

Re:Woo Hoo (1)

nuzak (959558) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637498)

Yeah, the solution to the education problem is spanking. Gosh, why didn't we think of that.

Yunno, I'm all for homeschooling if it keeps 18th century nitwits from thinking they should be running the public schools. Sad that it doesn't seem to work out that way.

Tag (1, Redundant)

Dogtanian (588974) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637302)

I think this is one case where Slashdot needs to copy Fark(!)..... we need a "Florida" tag. Now. :-)

Tag it yourself (1)

Constantine XVI (880691) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637474)

Slashdot's got a pretty open tagging system, use it.

Re:Tag (1)

Hillgiant (916436) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637682)

No. /. does not need to copy Fark.

I love it (1, Insightful)

Clockwurk (577966) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637304)

Right-wingers bitch about how our public schools do a shitty job, then insist on teaching pseudoscientific garbage like intelligent design. It'd be funny if it wasn't so sad.

Re:I love it (1)

glueball (232492) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637652)

As a right-winger, I bitch that schools are into left-wing touchy feely measure-the-kids-by-the-best-they-can-do philosophy.

Because, well, that's the scientific fact defining the best teaching method for today. Or was it yesterday?

ID is nearly the least of my concerns.

Thank Heavens for that (4, Funny)

krog (25663) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637308)

God willing, math teachers will be the next to be freed from the chains of having to teach facts in school.

Math teachers don't teach facts. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22637644)

They teach the real truth.

Pardon me, what?? (1)

downix (84795) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637310)

The claim that this would enable teachers to objectively present scientific information is not just misleading, it's downright dangerous and bogus. What it does enable is for teachers to push religious and philosophy as scientific fact, which only hurts our educational system.

If Florida cannot grasp that religion does not belong in the science lab, and science does not belong in church, I will be forced to move to a state which does understand that a solid understanding of science is critical for development of a productive member of society. My son is 5, he will start having to deal with grade school science in 2nd grade. You have 18 months to fix yourselves Florida, or you shall loose out on not only myself, but my company, and any potential workers I may hire in the future.

Re:Pardon me, what?? (1)

ptbarnett (159784) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637426)

You have 18 months to fix yourselves Florida, or you shall loose out on not only myself, but my company, and any potential workers I may hire in the future.

Yours is an admirable position, but expressing it here will have no effect.

Re:Pardon me, what?? (1)

downix (84795) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637504)

I'm forwarding that to my state rep and senator as well as to the governor as well.

Science != Teleology (0, Flamebait)

explosivejared (1186049) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637324)

As long as there was actual dissenting science being taught, I wouldn't care. However, I realize this is probably just an attempt to teach Christianity as science. People are just so insecure and downright anti-intellectual. Science has no purpose related to teleology or ontology for that matter. It used to be outrageous, now it's just depressing and I feel sorry for the people that push this stuff.

retarded (3, Insightful)

grub (11606) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637332)


They aren't thinking of the students if they teach fairy tales. Any teacher outside of a Sunday school teaching mysticism should have their teaching papers revoked.

Re:retarded (1)

mrchaotica (681592) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637580)

I agree completely... but if the summary is to be trusted (a dangerous assumption, I know), then "fairy tales" and "mysticism" (such as "Intelligent Design") wouldn't be allowed anyway!

One of the many "theories",,, (1)

heckler95 (1140369) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637352)

That's right kids, there's a big purple elephant that lives in outer space and one day that elephant had a dream about a little 2-legged creature with a big brain and tiny sex organs and when the elephant woke up, through his magical powers, his dream had become a reality and Adam, Eve, Cain, and Abel appeared in the Garden of Eden on Earth, at the center of the universe. And the rest is history.

Re:One of the many "theories",,, (1)

Malevolent Tester (1201209) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637408)

Purple elephant? Heretic. Everyone knows the world was formed by a green caterpillar.

Re:One of the many "theories",,, (1)

heckler95 (1140369) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637616)

Of course. That's a given.

But it was the purple elephant that made humans and put them on that flat world in the center of the universe. And it goes without saying that the golden flying monkey was responsible for setting the sun, the planets and all the stars in rotation around the Earth.

Here comes the FSM (2, Funny)

Maximum Prophet (716608) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637354)

Proponents of the Flying Spaghetti Monster will now be able to teach their viewpoint and will flock to Florida. Yeah!

School is the place for Education! (1)

DZPM (1197015) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637356)

Right, just like they should allow scientists to contradict Religion in local churches...

The school is the place for knowledge and science, just let's keep the myths outside.

Why limit it to just one area? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22637362)

Let them present alternate views on the entire range of science, literature, whatever. If it gets kids talking and thinking critically instead of just being spoonfed facts to memorize, only good can come of it.

I Have Been Touched By His Noodly Appendage (2, Funny)

ZipK (1051658) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637368)

Finally we'll be able to teach Pastafarianism in public schools! www.venganza.org

science? (4, Insightful)

jmnormand (941909) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637370)

so at what point do we stop letting english and business majors decide what science teacher should be able to teach?

Sounds fair... (1)

Penguinisto (415985) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637416)

As long as objective scientific fact is presented and not used as a tool for propaganda in any direction at all.

'course, a semester or two of logic and rhetoric, coupled with one on how various scientific methods actually work would be more beneficial to the kids than all this faffing about with which biological theorems should or shouldn't be relayed as curricula.

/P

that was a close call (1)

Digitus1337 (671442) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637430)

'Every public school teacher in the state's K-12 school system shall have the affirmative right and freedom to objectively present scientific information relevant to the full range of scientific views regarding biological and chemical evolution in connection with teaching any prescribed curriculum regarding chemical or biological origins.'

This should show those creationists, teachers are kept to teaching scientific information relevant to the full range of scientific views!

Please, Science-Away To Your Heart's Content (1)

TheLazySci-FiAuthor (1089561) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637444)

It says right there "...objectively present scientific information..." and as far as I know, the whole I.D. movement (isn't that dead yet?) has lacked my favorite part of the scientific method: experiment.

If the teacher wants to do experiments to disprove evolution, then I applaud that teacher. All should be concocting reproduceable, falsifiable experiments which are intended to challenge any current theory. Don't we all want for misconceptions and blatant errors in our theories to be exposed?

I would be very interested to see rigid, biological experiments which support I.D. since I know of none yet and rare things are typically interesting, after all.

Re:Please, Science-Away To Your Heart's Content (1)

DM9290 (797337) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637674)

There was never any need of legislation to protect teachers who perform bonafide science in the class room. This legislation attempts to protect teachers who simply disagree with the science on religious grounds and give them a platform to teach superstition as a substitute. At most such teachers should simply refuse to teach science as a violation of their religious beliefs, and then they should be reassigned to another subject such as sex education. And when they say sex education violates their religious beliefs then they should be reassigned to another subject such as being unemployed.

Re:Please, Science-Away To Your Heart's Content (1)

edn4 (1214790) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637684)

And while we're at it, i'd love to see some reproducible experiments that prove macro evolution.

here we go again (5, Insightful)

Protonk (599901) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637462)

Creationism wrapped up in the guise of scientific knowledge and academic freedom. This is an OBVIOUS effort by members of the FL legislature to pander to religious groups. It just happens to be couched in an "academic freedom" argument. Don't buy it. It isn't value neutral and it isn't fair.

Students already face an uphill battle in getting over unscientific hunches formed in childhood. Evolution, in its fullness, is a rejection of those hunches. This bill clouds the issue by allowing teachers to present a curriculum that plays to those hunches in order to serve as religious indoctrination. Think about some of the main "tenets" of ID: the notion that complexity cannot occur from iterated evaluations of simple rules--they claim things like the eye are "too complex" to have been formed via "random" mutation. This SOUNDS reasonable, until you realize that it is just a play on our intuition. It isn't true in the slightest. The same with the claim that animals or humans were elegantly designed. While there is what some scientists would call elegance in plenty of biological forms, their implementation shows signs of prior adaptations. It takes a lot of careful study to learn exactly how and why our endocrine system or our vascular system is imperfectly adapted let alone begin to think about how pregnancy is an imperfect adaptation. This is why ID is primed for the 8-12 crowd. Those critical thinking skill are just solidifying. There isn't a large movement to teach ID in colleges because the material would be rejected at greater rates.

This is religious nonsense packages as science. Nothing more.

Why limit the freedom to science? (3, Insightful)

DM9290 (797337) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637484)

Why should teachers be obligated to teach to a curriculum to all the other subjects but not science? I say let them teach math that contradicts mathematics, grammar that contradicts english, history revised to their personal taste, imaginary geography, using non standardized mapping systems, let them teach kids the wrong organs. For example if I believe people have 3 hearts, why shouldn't I be allowed to teach that? If some teacher thinks that the solar system rotates around the earth, or that the earth is flat, or that heavier objects fall faster, well whose to say they aren't allowed to teach that? Isn't the real purpose of having a teaching job to have a platform to spread your personal views to other peoples children?

Why stop at the subject matter? If teachers think children learn best by playing outside all day long and having no homework, well aren't the teachers the ones who are supposed to know how beast to teach? That is their life long profession isn't it? Its not like we let the teachers dictate what the current state of scientific knowledge is... oh.. wait.. that is what this bill is about isn't it?

Standards (4, Insightful)

Weaselmancer (533834) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637500)

...to allow teachers the freedom to teach whatever they wish, even if it is in opposition to current standards.

Then they're not standards anymore. That's why we have standards, so you can be guaranteed a certain level of uniformity and quality. If you don't have to follow standards then they become suggestions.

I'd like to see these people eat a big pile of USDA Grade A beef - but with flexible standards that the stores are allowed to define as to what "USDA Grade A" actually means. Would you eat it? Hell no.

Absolute Bullshit (1)

FunkyELF (609131) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637506)

This is why the government shouldn't have any say in education.
I believe education should be like food. If you have children, you have to give it to them, it should be required.
If you can't afford it, the gov. will help you out like they do with food-stamps.
That way church-going morons can pay for teachers to tell students that god created the earth with burried with dinosaur bones and they never walked the earth, that evolution doesn't exist, that it is possible to turn water into wine and to walk on water.
I'll send my kids and my money to a school taught by people with a brain.
It is complete bullshit where my money is paying for teachers to not teach evolution.

science and politics (1)

MECC (8478) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637518)

Political battles over science education make no sense. Science classes need to teach current science, and if a political tussle results in legislation one way or another, later teaching of current scientific material becomes burdened by the state. This just seems to cement the point that there is now almost no boundary between politics and religion. I read somewhere that Sidhartha had written that blind faith is political, and while I haven't found a link ro source with that quote, it seems more true than ever.

Evolution of Bill (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22637526)

Who is this dude "Bill" anyway?

Tempest in a tea pot (0, Flamebait)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637544)

I realize most slashdotters have no children (and are statistically unlikely to), but I need to explain something.

When it comes to matters of religion and philosophy, kids are going to take a cue from their parents, and make their own conclusions, just like we did. A child can be told all about intelligent design, but it doesn't mean they'll believe it. It isn't some grand conspiracy to "ruin science".

The people on both sides of this fight are childless morons, eager to tell people how to raise their children. But both sides are fighting a futile fight.

It really doesn't matter to me what any teacher wants to tell my kids about various theories of where the world came from. To me, it's more important that they grow up with respect for other people, and that other peoples belief systems for the most part wont interfere with them. What Mrs CBag general arts degree has to say about the origins of life means shit-all to them in the long run.

I'd hate for them to be the kind of thoughtless shitbags I see posting here about how everyone but them is a "big stupid idiot" for not believing exactly what you're told to, especially when what I was told about evolution 20 years ago is different than now.

I'd hope they realize that at the end of the day, it really doesn't matter if the lady in the office next to me believes God made the universe 6000 years ago, or if some other guy thinks it just popped out of nothing 2.53 billion years ago - both "calculations" are based on a ridiculously small data sample, and both are completely worthless, and almost guaranteed to be wrong.

Personally I think the smug jackasses who wander around, so sure they know everything about the universe from a book jacket or two they read, make bigger fools of themselves than anyone else.

There are very few vocal ID supporters. There are legions of evolution jackasses wasting time preaching to the choir, and generally annoying everybody. Nobody cares what you think, and nobody is impressed with your stupid flying spaghetti monster joke thing. Dawkins really must believe he's the first person in history to question the existence of God. What a fucking douchebag, how would anyone idolize him?

Re:Tempest in a tea pot (1)

Mox-Dragon (87528) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637672)

I'd hate for them to be the kind of thoughtless shitbags I see posting here about how everyone but them is a "big stupid idiot" for not believing exactly what you're told to, especially when what I was told about evolution 20 years ago is different than now.

Of course it was. That's how science works; it evolves. That doesn't mean what you were originally told was wrong, it was just less right than what we know now.

I'd hope they realize that at the end of the day, it really doesn't matter if the lady in the office next to me believes God made the universe 6000 years ago, or if some other guy thinks it just popped out of nothing 2.53 billion years ago - both "calculations" are based on a ridiculously small data sample, and both are completely worthless, and almost guaranteed to be wrong.


Not quite: One is based on absolutely no objective explanation and one is based on a relatively small but existent data set. It's perfectly valid to question the faith in the scientific method as the ultimate measure of knowledge, but you can't hold religious belief up to standards of scientific knowledge and call it equal, because they simply operate in separate spheres.

There are very few vocal ID supporters. There are legions of evolution jackasses wasting time preaching to the choir, and generally annoying everybody


Clearly, you've never been a student at a certain large (mid)(south)western university. There are incredibly vocal ID supporters everywhere here.

Let's see how well it protects... (4, Insightful)

dpbsmith (263124) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637568)

...teachers who elect to teach their students scientific material about homosexuality or birth control.

Or does the bill only protect the "freedom" to teach material on certain selected sides of certain selected controversies?

Isn't this common sense? (1)

the computer guy nex (916959) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637592)

In science class you were never taught that light is definately a wave, definately a particle, or definately both. School should teach the basic foundation, which is the combination of plausible scientific explanations.

Freedom is fine (1)

tringtring (1227356) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637606)

...if exercised responsibly.

It is difficult to consider an action responsible when it goes against the grain of the domain in which the action takes place. That is, teaching is supposed to be about spreading widsom and accumulated intelligence, so how can one consider teaching obviously incorrect stuff like intelligent design or creationism as responsible?

Gotta give 'em props, though (1)

jhylkema (545853) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637612)

The anti-science, anti-evolution crowd is nothing if not persistent. In their religious fervor, they'll stop at nothing, including lying to children which, last time I checked, their buy-bull is against.

New movie coming out http://www.expelledthemovie.c (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22637624)

A new movie about this topic is coming out

http://www.expelledthemovie.com/ [expelledthemovie.com]

Yes! (4, Funny)

ADRA (37398) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637634)

The flying spaghetti monster has always sought to be taught in Florida classrooms, and thanks to some foresight by genius politicians, he can!

School is junk anyways (1)

fatlaces (848825) | more than 6 years ago | (#22637638)

I look at schools as prisons(daycare) and conformity camps, with some opportunity to learn and expand. (I would forge a hall pass and hang out with the only ][gs in the building.)

No matter what crap they teach, hopefully a handful of kids will take the Red Pill, and go seek truth at a library or the Web.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...