Re: Nicholas Humphrey

Bill Frix (
Mon, 3 Mar 1997 07:31:15 GMT-5

Talk about speaking out of both sides of your mouth! I found
Nicholas Humphrey's statement to be hypocritical at best. As quoted
by Geoff Bagley on Sun, 2 Mar 1997 20:58:02 GMT:

> "We live in a society where most adults - not just a few crazies, but most
> adults - subscribe to a variety of weird and nonsensical beliefs that in
> one way or another they shamelessly impose on their children. At home,
> parents are allowed, even expected, to determine for their children what
> counts as truth and falsehood, right and wrong.

> "Parents have no God-given licence to encultrate their children in whatever
> ways they choose; children have a human right not to have thier minds
> addled by nonsense. And we as a society have a duty to protect them from
> exposure to bad ideas ... "
> "My suggestion is science - universal scientific education. That is to say,
> education in learning from observation, experiment, hypothesis testing,
> constructive doubt, critical thinking - and the truths that flow
> from it ...

> "In the words of Deuteronomy ... "

How can a person who evidently considers non-scientific thoughts as
"weird" thoughts use the words, "God-given" or justify his concerns
from the Bible? There are many people who consider belief in the
Bible and/or God to be a "weird" and "nonsensical" belief. The
problem, from a human perspective, is that one person's "weirdness"
is another person's reality. Who decides what is weird and what is
sensible. Pure scientific thought is not sufficient for life. After
all, by _pure scientific thought_ one cannot prove life existed
yesterday, since it cannot be experimentally determined in the

To extend his thought, that parents have no right to encultrate
(indoctrinate) their children into their belief system, he is
essentially advocating state control of child rearing. Not only is
this non-Christian but un-American and flies in the face of any sense
of freedom we have.
William M. Frix
Assistant Professor, Electrical Engineering
Box 3021
John Brown University
Siloam Springs, AR 72761
Phone: (501) 524-7466
FAX: (501) 524-7499