Re: [asa] Brownback on evolution

From: PvM <>
Date: Sun Jun 03 2007 - 13:03:32 EDT

The following may explain the concepts of science as they relate to
terminology such as theory and fact. The fact of evolution is well
established, the explanation(s) of the facts become theories and the
theory of evolution seems quite deserving of its title.

However the Cobb county stickers were not meant to inform but rather
to confuse the issues, much like 'teach the controversy' approach
chosen by ID now that ID has failed to be scientifically relevant.
None of this is about encouraging critical thinking or teaching though
and the courts see straight through this.
Perhaps the stickers may be about hatred, hatred of science but I
cannot speak in too broad brushes, however ID, YEC and other religious
attempts to redefine science hardly seem to come from a loving
perspective of science (nor theology I'd argue)

Cobb County Georgia:

<quote>In "Remove stickers, open minds," published in the Boston Globe
on January 22, Kenneth R. Miller applauds the Selman decision from a
unique standpoint: he is the coauthor (with Joseph Levine) of the high
school biology textbook used in the Cobb County School District.
Miller comments, "So what's wrong with telling students that evolution
is a theory? Nothing. But the textbook they were using already
described evolution as a theory, and I ought to know." Challenging the
misuse of "theory" in the disclaimer, he writes, "Theories in science
don't become facts -- rather, theories explain facts," explaining,
"Evolutionary theory is a comprehensive explanation of change
supported by the facts of natural history, genetics, and molecular
biology." Isolating evolution for special attention, as in the
disclaimer, is unwarranted: as Miller ironically comments, "The
sticker told students that there was just one subject in their
textbooks that had to be approached with an open mind and critically
considered. Apparently, we are certain of everything in biology except
evolution. That is nonsense." Removing the disclaimer is what truly
promotes critical thinking, Miller writes, by letting "students see a
science of biology in which all theories, not just one, are the result
of constant, vigorous, critical analysis." Miller, who teaches biology
at Brown University, is a Supporter of NCSE.</quote>

Hope this helps

and Ken Miller's remove stickers open minds

To unsubscribe, send a message to with
"unsubscribe asa" (no quotes) as the body of the message.
Received on Sun Jun 3 13:03:44 2007

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Sun Jun 03 2007 - 13:03:44 EDT