Thursday, November 10, 2005

Idiots win in Kansas

Kansas State Board Votes to Teach Intelligent Design in Schools.

What freakin idiots.

I much more wise person than myself said once in a newsgroup I follow:

Unless you believe saber-tooth poodles were scampering around to avoid being stomped upon by brontosauruses, evolution is a fact, not a theory. Evolution wasn't invented by Darwin any more than gravity was invented by Sire Isaac Newton. Evolution, like gravity is fact and always has been. What Newton did was try to explain gravity. What Darwin did was try to explain evolution. Both scientists did a pretty good job but both scientists' observations and deductions were flawed.

"A body in motion tends to stay in motion and a body at rest tends to stay at rest." That's Newton's work, and pretty nifty in it elegant simplicity. Except of course, others have followed along in Newton's footsteps and noticed, among other things, that there is no such thing as a body "at rest". We live in a spinning planet that orbits a sun that migrates through a galaxy that wafts through an ever-expanding universe.

Somewhere in the middle of that celestial toilet swirl is Kansas where the State Board of Education is putting evolution on trial. If that board treated physics class the way they're trying to corrupt biology classes, the story of Joshua stopping the sun in the sky would get equal billing with Einstein’s theory of relativity. (and, most likely, the only way to end World War 2 that might have involved Hiroshima would have required Douglas MacArthur to march around the city blowing a ram's horn in hopes that the walls come tumblin down).

Geometry class escapes religious fundamentalist scrutiny, too, as a careful reading of Second Kings reveals. The circular alter in Solomon's temple, we're told is nine cubits in diameter and 27 cubits around the rim. Fine, except that makes Pi an even three-point-zero instead of that pesky ol' 3.1416 that's been vexing 8th grade geometry students since Pythagoras. Of course Pythagoras wasn't a born-again and besides, all he had about the hypotenuse was a "theory".

Why physics and geometry get a pass from folks who claim to read the Bible literally and Biology get subjected to full-blown monkey trial frenzy is beyond me. Nevertheless, the political climate in Kansas these days makes it apparent that science teachers will soon have to include the story of a naked lady and a talking snake into their science class curricula. And the sooner we accept it the better. It will give us more time in arithmetic class to compute how many angels can dance on the head of a pin.


Joe said...

Nice post. I actually just posted about the exact same topic.

If Kansas wants to be the laughingstock of the world and keep their kids from learning anything, I guess that's their prerogative.

Mike V. said...

well, great minds think alike and all that.
I will be linking your blog to mine.