Italian Government decrees creationism

From: Peter Ruest <pruest@mail-ms.sunrise.ch>
Date: Thu Apr 29 2004 - 15:23:20 EDT

A report in the Bern, Switzerland, daily newspaper "Der Bund" of 29 April 2004 (my translation):

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*Protect the children from Darwin!*

In *Italy*, the theory of evolution has been eliminated from the curriculum - what counts is what the Bible says

By Dominik Straub, Rome

"God is the Creator and Father of all humans": Thus it is written in Decree Nr. 59, which the Italian Government has recently published, and from now on, Italian schools are to teach the origin of the world and of humanity in this way. Moratti, Minister of Education, has unceremoniously eliminated the theory of evolution from the curriculum. She belongs to the catholic-fundamentalist wing of the Forza Italia of Silvio Berlusconi and is said to be connected with the Opus Dei. The initiative is unique in Europe - not so in the USA, where conservative circles have been trying for years to banish Darwin from the schools.

Scientists and intellectuals from all over Italy have protested against the "absurd and unbelievable" reform plans. An appeal of scientists and Nobelists published in the newspaper "La Repubblica" has been cosigned by more than 10,000 persons within a few days, and the liberal-conservative business paper "Il sole 24 ore" has even printed a special supplement about the topic of Darwinism. Scientists now even consider filing a suit at the Constitutional Court against the curriculum. With the "ordinary people", however, the educational policy revolution has hardly set off any response. This may be due to the fact that one in three Italians doesn't believe in evolution anyway, but in the biblical creation story. Critics of Moratti point out that in 1996 already, the pope, when addressing the members of the Vatican Academy of Sciences, maintained: "There is reason to consider the theory of evolution to be more than a hypothesis. It is indeed remarkable that, after a series of dis
coveries in various fields of knowledge, this theory has been increasingly accepted by research."

The Ministry of Education, however, defends its policy by claiming that the theory of evolution is not eliminated at all, but simply taught later, at levels after the end of compulsory education, because Darwin's theory is considered to be still "too complex" for the younger students.
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Peter Ruest

-- 
Dr. Peter Ruest, CH-3148 Lanzenhaeusern, Switzerland
<pruest@dplanet.ch> - Biochemistry - Creation and evolution
"..the work which God created to evolve it" (Genesis 2:3)
Received on Thu Apr 29 15:23:53 2004

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