[asa] FW: [ncse-news] Evolution education update: May 25, 2007

From: Dick Fischer <dickfischer@verizon.net>
Date: Sun May 27 2007 - 12:39:29 EDT

And while the prestigious ASA resembles “Hear no Evil” and “See no
Evil,” our friends in science but blasť in religion lead the attack
against the indoctrination of ignorance of our youngsters. Ah, if only
my own organization knew how to champion a cause and garner a little
favorable publicity in the process …

 

Please pardon the interruption, resume the important stuff like how do
mid west universities tenure their professors.

 

Dear Friends of NCSE,

 

Answers in Genesis's creation "museum" is eliciting concern from the

scientific and educational communities as it prepares to open. Stanley

Miller, a pioneer in scientific research on the origin of life, is

dead. And Alliance for Science announces the results of its essay
contest.

 

REACTIONS TO CREATIONIST "MUSEUM"

 

With the young-earth creation ministry Answers in Genesis scheduled to
open

its lavish creation museum in northern Kentucky over the Memorial Day

weekend, there is a great deal of concern among the scientific and

educational communities in the adjacent states about its impact on the

public understanding of evolution. NCSE executive director Eugenie C.

Scott told ABC's Good Morning America (May 25, 2007) that her fear is
that

students will "show up in classrooms and say, 'Gee, Mrs. Brown, I went
to

this spiffy museum last summer and they say that everything you're
teaching

me is a lie.'"

 

Early reports from the museum suggest that its exhibits are just as

scientifically misleading as expected. Edward Rothstein of The New York

Times (May 24, 2007) offered a bemused review of the museum, which

impressed him with its "sheer weirdness and daring." In a report in the

eSkeptic newsletter (May 23, 2007), Stephen T. Asma, the author of a
book

on the history of natural history museums, said that skeptics will find
the

museum quirky and amusing, but added, "When I think, however, of the
young

children who are unprepared to critically assess the museum, my sense of

humor fades."

 

Over 800 scientists in the three states surrounding the museum --
Kentucky,

Indiana, and Ohio -- have signed a statement sponsored by NCSE reading,

"We, the undersigned scientists at universities and colleges in
Kentucky,

Ohio, and Indiana, are concerned about scientifically inaccurate
materials

at the Answers in Genesis museum. Students who accept this material as

scientifically valid are unlikely to succeed in science courses at the

college level. These students will need remedial instruction in the
nature

of science, as well as in the specific areas of science misrepresented
by

Answers in Genesis."

 

Additionally, the Campaign to Defend the Constitution (or Defcon) is

sponsoring two petitions denouncing the creationist pseudoscience on

display at the museum: one for educators, signed by over 3500 teachers,

and one for the general public, signed by over 15,000 signatories. "The

main problem," Lawrence Krauss, a professor of physics and astronomy at

Case Western Reserve University and a member of DefCon's advisory board,

told the Lexington Herald-Leader (May 25, 2007), "is that this is a
museum

of misinformation." In his opinion column in the Louisville

Courier-Journal (May 22, 2007), Krauss was similarly outspoken,
describing

the museum as "an educational travesty."

 

And a protest called Rally for Reason is scheduled to take place outside

the museum on Memorial Day, with a press event to be held on the
preceding

Sunday. Rally for Reason's organizer Edwin Kagin told the Cincinnati

Enquirer (May 25, 2007), "We want to let the world know that most
rational

people do not share the primitive world view of creationists that the
Earth

is only a few thousand years old, and that humans and dinosaurs existed
at

the same time." "Various groups, representing both religious and secular

orientations, will join together to protest this destructive world view"
at

the rally, he added.

 

The editorialist for the Los Angeles Times (May 24, 2007) cut to the
heart

of the matter, lamenting, "Young Earthers believe the world is about
6,000

years old, as opposed to the 4.5 billion years estimated by the world's

credible scientific community. This would be risible if anti-evolution

forces were confined to a lunatic fringe, but they are not," citing the

political influence of creationism. The editorial concluded, "With the

opening of the Creation Museum, young people will be getting another
side

of the story. Too bad it starts with 'Yabba-dabba-doo!'"

 

For the Good Morning America story, visit:

http://www.abcnews.go.com/GMA/story?id=3211737

 

For the reviews of the museum, visit:

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/05/24/arts/24crea.html

http://www.skeptic.com/eskeptic/07-05-23.html#feature

 

For the NCSE-sponsored statement of concern, visit:

http://www.sciohost.org/states/

 

For the DefCon petitions, visit:

http://www.defconamerica.org/

 

For the story in the Lexington Herald-Leader, visit:

http://www.kentucky.com/news/state/story/79412.html

 

For Lawrence Krauss's op-ed in the Louisville Courier-Journal, visit:

http://www.courier-journal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070522/OPINI
ON04/705220309

 

For Rally for Reason, visit:

http://www.rallyforreason.com/

 

For the article in the Cincinnati Enquirer, visit:

http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070525/NEWS0103/70
5250385/1077/COL02

 

And for the editorial in the Los Angeles Times, visit:

http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/editorials/la-ed-round24may24,1,7795
619.story

 

Forwarded by,

 

~Dick Fischer

To unsubscribe, send a message to majordomo@calvin.edu with
"unsubscribe asa" (no quotes) as the body of the message.
Received on Sun May 27 12:41:05 2007

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Sun May 27 2007 - 12:41:05 EDT