Once again the New York Times publishes a hit piece on creation and the faith of Christian students. This time, they enlist the aid of Florida high school biology teacher, David Campbell. Campbell reveals his bigotry in the closing comments:
“ We also failed to include astrology, alchemy and the concept of the moon being made of green cheese,” he said. “ Because those aren’t science, either.”
Science teachers’ methods evolve to not drive off faithful students
by Amy Harmon (New York Times)
Charlotte Observer, August 24, 2008
David Campbell switched on the overhead projector and wrote “ Evolution” in the rectangle of light on the screen.
He scanned the faces of the sophomores in his Biology I class. Many of them, he knew from years of teaching high school in this Jacksonville suburb, had been raised to take the biblical creation story as truth. His gaze rested for a moment on Bryce Haas, a football player who attended the 6 a. m. prayer meetings of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes in the school gymnasium.
In February, the state Department of Education modified its standards to explicitly require, for the first time, public schools to teach evolution, calling it “ the organizing principle of life science.” Spurred in part by legal rulings against districts seeking to favor religious versions of natural history, over a dozen other states have also given more emphasis in recent years to what has long been the scientific consensus: that all of the diverse life forms on Earth descended from a common ancestor, through a process of mutation and natural selection, over billions of years.
Evolution is the framework
Olivia Judson is a contributing columnist for the New York Times
The Philadelphia Inquirer, August 17, 2008
Ignore it, and biology becomes a hodgepodge of disconnected facts.
When the dog days of summer come to an end, one thing we can be sure of is that the school year that follows will see more fights over the teaching of evolution and whether intelligent design, or even Biblical accounts of creation, have a place in America’s science classrooms.
For instance, we are causing animals to evolve just by hunting them. The North Atlantic cod fishery has caused the evolution of cod that mature smaller and younger than they did 40 years ago. Fishing for grayling in Norwegian lakes has caused a similar pattern in these fish. Human trophy hunting for bighorn rams has caused the population to evolve into one of smaller-horn rams. (All of which, incidentally, is in line with evolutionary predictions.)
Originally published in Tuesday’s, June 26, 2007, New York Times’ Science section, here’s a viewable copy published in the English language Bangkok Post:
Darwin still rules, but some biologists dream of a paradigm shift
by Douglas H. Erwin
Bangkok Post (Thailand), page 36.
02 Jul 2007
Is Darwin due for an upgrade? There are growing calls among some evolutionary biologists for just such a revision, although they differ about what form this might take. But those calls could also be exaggerated. There is nothing scientists enjoy more than the prospect of a good paradigm shift.
Paradigm shifts are the stuff of scientific revolutions. They change how we view the world, the sorts of questions that scientists consider worth asking, and even how we do science. The discovery of DNA marked one such shift, the theory of plate tectonics another.
Many scientists suffer from a kind of split personality. We believe that this is the most exciting time to be working while yearning for the excitement of a revolution. The philosopher of science Thomas S. Kuhn gets some of the blame for this state of affairs since he distinguished normal science from paradigm shifts in his 1962 landmark The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. What ambitious scientist would not want to be part of a paradigm shift? Who wants to admit to doing ‘‘normal’’ science? Not surprisingly, this yearning occasionally manifests itself in proclamations that a revolution is at hand.