Sunday, September 14, 2008

Monkey Business Has No Place In School Science

A nutty professor has crawled out of the 19th century again with the audacity to suggest creationist belief should be taught in the 21st century school science lab. What a load of old monkeys. The Darwin caricature (opposite) may be offensive to some today but not to the Victorians. For some die-hards, the creation versus evolution debate just hasn't moved on.

Leading the foray into this hairy old chestnut is the Rev Professor Michael Reiss, director of education at the Royal Society, who is neither a physicist nor a chemist. 

Hiding behind the mantle of the auspicious Society, Reiss is well-known for his creationist views in science teaching and for dumbing down science in schools for Blair's government, as outlined in this 2006 Guardian interview.

Reiss, a practising priest, is professor of science education and head of the school of mathematics, science and technology at the Institute of Education. The Rev Reiss should heed this little ditty:
There was a young man from Trinity
Who took the square root of infinity
But the number of digits
Gave him the fidgets 
So he dropped maths
And took up divinity
There is a place for creationism in schools. It's in Bible Studies and Religious Education.

It's bad enough having to put up with our children being indoctrinated and manipulated by creationist evangelists in Blair's Academies run by his creationist pals and obscure establishment orders. 

But trying to sneak in this belief, masquerading as science and placing it on the school science curriculum would create a dangerous precedent.

It would take a blunt and eloquent Professor Richard Dawkins to give the best put down for this crazy idea, as he did in a recent TV series. 

To suggests that creationist belief is a science and as such it should be taught alongside Darwin's evolutionary science, is a nonsense.

Darwin's personal angst to reconcile his Christian belief and emerging hard scientific evidence is worth a discussion as part of his evolutionary theory. The famous US Stopes 'Monkey Trial' of 1925 is a useful part of a socio-political discussion. 

Creationist pundits like Reiss are welcome to dwell on the subject but not force their beliefs on innocent and susceptible children and not in a school science lesson. 

Einstein posed immaculate questions about God and the Universe but as a mathematician and theoretical physicist.

Medical advancements in the field of genetics could not have happened without the scientific groundwork of Darwin. Do we really want to take such a retrograde step?

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