Re: The Washington Post "Dissing Darwian"

From: Rich Blinne <>
Date: Fri Jun 03 2005 - 16:19:55 EDT

On 6/3/05, Terry M. Gray <> wrote:

> > >>> Rich Blinne <> 6/3/2005 12:07:41 PM >>>writes:
> >I think you can get some Darwinists to admit this point. If the goal with
> >respect to the public schools was true neutrality with respect to all
> >metaphysical conclusions you might get a consensus. Change your wedge and
> >split the Gouldians from the Saganites. Right now the current strategy
> gets
> >
> >the two camps to ally with each other against a common anti-Darwinist
> >enemy.
> >Most of the current educational proposals, however, have a much more
> >Gouldian flavor and the Gouldians are asking for religious allies. Even
> if
> >
> >we cannot stomach such an alliance at the very least we should encourage
> >that from the outside.
> >
> >Ted replies:
> >The "wedge" strategy is not of my making, and I don't endorse it. I
> accept
> >the general validity of MN, and I agree that public schools should aim
> for
> >true neutrality, though I do not believe that we can really achieve that
> >without allowing parents to pick their own educational philosophies,
> including various religious ones.
> Ted, Rich,
> Your posts high-lighting the "neutrality" goal for public schools
> caught my eye here.
> This goal is the heart of the problem. Is it really possible for
> education to be neutral? I don't think so. Thus, education is always
> grounded in some kind of worldview/religious expression.
> Perhaps a more pluralistic view of public education is in order. One
> model is that there could be government funding of all sorts of
> schools--Catholic, Evangelical, Jewish, Islamic, New Age, Secular and
> that these identities would be clearly defined so that parents could
> choose the school that most fit with their personal worldviews.
> The vision for public education in the 20th century is built in part
> on a liberal humanistic worldview (think Dewey here). The goal was a
> homogenization of the immigrant roots of our society into a common
> vision. This has fragmented significantly in the past several decades
> with the rise of post-modernism.
> Perhaps it's time to re-think the whole enterprise.

  You may be right about "true" neutrality. But, as long as we have a
monopolistic school system then as neutral as possible is about as good as
you are going to get. Trying to go a cafeteria-style approach seems to
always give the Christian worldview short shrift. At least that is what I am
seeing in Hope's schooling where everybody gets their shot except the
Christians. Since Hope is my daughter even with this setup it still isn't a
fair fight. :-) Terry I am afraid your proposals will produce a bunch of
isolated ghettos and possibly exasperate the already fragmented nature of
our society.
 The other thing I want to consider is being anti-Darwinist the warp and
woof of a Christian worldview? Everybody seems to know what are we against,
but what are we for? I think we can draw heavily on Kuyper here but such
full-orbed worldviews don't seem in vogue amongst Evangelicals. Contrasting
the "culture wars" of the early 20th and 21st Centuries show us the
attenuation of Evangelical thought in the last century.
Received on Fri Jun 3 16:21:03 2005

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