Re: The science educators' Vietnam

Susan B (
Mon, 23 Aug 1999 19:44:10 -0500 (CDT)

>>SJ>Darwinists have used Darwinian evolution as a vehicle to disseminate
>>their materialist-naturalist philosophy in public schools for decades,
>>cleverly using the separation of church and State provisions of the USA
>>constitution to foist their own secular religion on the majority of
>>Americans who are creationist.

>SB>Since Steven is so fond of quotes here is one for him to chew on:
>My point was that "*Darwinists* have used Darwinian evolution as a
>vehicle to disseminate their materialist-naturalist philosophy in public
>Whether the Pope believes in evolution does not change that fact one iota.

my point (which you seem to have missed entirely) is that evolution *can* be
taught without any sinister motive (like a non-religion). The Pope is not a
materialist/naturalist. Nor are the Jesuit science teachers.

>SB>"It is indeed remarkable that [The Theory of Evolution] has progressively
>>taken root in the minds of researchers following a series of discoveries
>>made in different spheres of knowledge.
>>"The convergence, neither sought nor provoked, of results of studies
>>undertaken independently from each other constitutes in itself a significant
>>argument in favour of this theory."--Pope John Paul, Oct. 24, 1996
>>you can read the whole thing at: >
>Thanks to Susan for the reference but it is just a *report*, not the full text
>of what the Pope said. There are a number of web sites which have the full
>text of what the Pope said. For example, here is a link to it in First Things:

thank you! I'll ad this to my bookmarks. I want a t-shirt that says "The
modern age can be summed up in five words: The Vatican has a website!"

>"the origins of life and evolution" the Pontiff's words were probably
>intended to draw limits to what it was permissible for Catholic scientists to

you are probably correct, since he isn't a materialist/naturalist but a
religionist like yourself.

>But then I never said the Pope was one of the "Darwinists" who "have used
>Darwinian evolution as a vehicle to disseminate their materialist-naturalist
>philosophy in public schools..."

that's true, you didn't. However, people (like the Jesuits) with a
religionist agenda happily teach evolution in Catholic schools which are
considered to be the best in the country. Why is that I wonder? Could it be
that evolution has NOTHING at all to do with religion and religious belief?

>Quite frankly, as a Protestant it is irrelevant to me what the Pope believes
>about Evolution. That the Roman Catholic church had long since accepted
>some form of `theistic evolution' is old news.

as I pointed out

>SB>How does Johnson respond to the Pope's remarks?
>AFAIK Johnson has only mentioned them briefly in passing:
>"The centerpiece of Gould's essay is an analysis of the complete text of
>Pope John Paul's statement of October 22, 1996 to the Pontifical Academy
>of Sciences endorsing evolution as "more than a hypothesis." He fails to
>quote the Pope's crucial qualification that "theories of evolution which, in
>accordance with the philosophies inspiring them, consider the spirit as
>emerging from the forces of living matter or as a mere epiphenomenon of
>this matter, are incompatible with the truth about man."

Yes, the Pope thinks (apparently) that God created the human body using
evolution and directly created the human soul. Nobody minds that he believes
that, least of all Gould.

(the Johnson quote continues)
>Of course, a theory
>based on materialism assumes by definition that there is no "spirit" active in
>this world that is independent of matter.

evolutionary biology is silent on the subject of "spirit."

(More Johnson)
>Gould knows this perfectly
>well...Gould's essay is a tissue of half-truths aimed at putting the religious
>people to sleep, or luring them into a "dialogue" on terms set by the
>materialists. Thus Gould graciously allows religion to participate in
>discussions of morality or the meaning of life, because science does not
>claim authority over such questions of value, and because "Religion is too
>important to too many people for any dismissal or denigration of the
>comfort still sought by many folks from theology."

What an evil man! Gould wants people to continue to draw spiritual comfort
and moral guidance from religion!

(Johnson continues)
>Gould insists, however,
>that all such discussion must cede to science the power to determine the
>facts, and one of the facts is an evolutionary process that is every bit as
>materialistic and purposeless for Gould as it is for Lewontin or Dawkins.

So what? Science's sole purpose *is* to determine facts about the material
world. Johnson, is shocked, shocked to discover that it does just that.

>SB>How does he account for the fact that Catholic schools have taught
>>evolution since the 1960s even though their philosophical foundation
>>can hardly be called "materialist/naturalist"?
>I don't know that Johnson would be *bothered* to "account for the fact
>that Catholic schools have taught evolution since the 1960s".

:-) he's a propagandist. There are quite a few facts he wishes not to be
bothered with.

>That "Catholic schools" (and Protestant schools for that matter) "have
>taught evolution since the 1960s" is *irrelevant* to my claim that:
>"Darwinists have used Darwinian evolution as a vehicle to disseminate their
>materialist-naturalist philosophy in public schools ...using the separation of
>church and State provisions of the USA constitution to foist their own
>secular religion on the majority of Americans who are creationist".

so if we don't teach religion in schools and we don't teach science in
schools what are we left with? Baskeball? I know that level of ignorance
would suit fundamentalists very well.

>Even fundamentalist Christian schools "have taught evolution". Up till this
>Kansas Board's decision, AFAIK, they have been *required* to teach
>evolution if they are to receive government funding and accreditation.

fundamentalist Christians schools by definition cannot receive government
funding and may teach (or conceal) anything they like. I own a natural
sciences book written specifically for Christian schools. There's very
little science information in it, but *lots* of Bible quotes to pad it out.

>SB>even though their philosophical foundation can hardly be called
>I don't know the what the "philosophical foundation" of "Catholic schools"
>in America is these days.

take a wild guess. It's not "materialist/naturalist"

>many Christian faculty are theistic evolutionists and teach some form of
>evolution with varying degrees of enthusiasm.

good for them! there are few things worse than ignorance. That's one of the
reasons I stay in this debate.

>SB>And why don't you ever answer my questions?
>Since I have answered many of Susan's "questions" in the past, and in fact
>am answering some of them now, I presume this is just hyperbole?

actually you've ignored several of my letters. I knew you didn't have
answers to most of my questions and knew you would ignore them. I was
needling you.

>Maybe what Susan really means that I don't *always* answer *every*
>questions she asks?

ignore all you can't answer :-)

Peace is not the absence of conflict--it is the presence of justice.
--Martin Luther King, Jr.
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