Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Thought Police Strike In California

The Washington Post has this story about a new lawsuit in California over a high school elective philosophy class in which intelligent design is taught as one of several philosophies. Here is the introduction in the syllabus:

Philosophy is a class about ideas and theories. It is about beliefs. It is addressing the question, what do you think and why. It is about a search for wisdom and truth. This class will discuss various views on the origin of life, in order to gain a better and broader understanding of the views that are held by society. This class is not meant to guide you into a certain belief, but to allow you to search, become aware of the differences, and gain a better understanding of world views on origins.

Remember how the big problem in Dover was that ID was being presented as science? Here is part of what the plaintiffs say:

Because the teacher has no scientific training, students are not provided with any critical analysis of this presentation.

I do not know enough details to take a strong opinion at this point, but this is an elective course, and the objective of the course is to give students a "better and broader understanding of the views that are held by society." Last time I checked there was something in the First Amendment about free speech. But hey, I hear the Constitution is a living document, so maybe free speech no longer means that people can discuss and debate controversial issues and learn about beliefs that are different than one's own.

The full syllabus is here.

As I have noted previously, examining worldviews can be very enlightening.

Hat tip to the Evo News blog, which has posts here and here.

5 Comments:

At January 11, 2006 7:55 PM, Blogger stewie said...

Most of us specified college, not high school.

You know that the class description is one thing, and its practice and execution is another. The class is not a broad spectrum of differing philosophies - it focuses on ID and anti-evolutionary ideas in particular. High school students are not at the point yet to deal with that sort of thing in a responsible manner.

Again, conflating issues, obscuring what people say - STRAW MAN!

College philosophy classes is where it deserves to be, if anywhere.

 
At January 12, 2006 1:54 AM, Blogger Vargas said...

Is this a joke? High school students most surely are able to handle it, as well as many other concepts and issues, as they often have to do in this day and age. How condescending and insulting to today's students! Once again, the narrow-mindedness and viciousness of Darwinists only brings more light and attention to the issues surrounding the questionable theories of evolution and the challenges to it that design makes.

Keep it up.

 
At January 12, 2006 10:23 AM, Anonymous Steve said...

Stewie,

You call "Straw Man, Straw Man". You are guilty of your own accusations.

"You know that the class description is one thing, and its practice and execution is another. The class is not a broad spectrum of differing philosophies - it focuses on ID and anti-evolutionary ideas in particular."

So you have already taken the class? Why don't you contact the instructor to see if you could lecture the class? I'm sure you could balance the spectrum better than anyone.

"High school students are not at the point yet to deal with that sort of thing in a responsible manner."

Responsible manner? What are they going to do? Kill their parents? Blow up the Smithsonian? Believe in God?(your real fear) Maybe they might determine that I.D. is full of crap. If it's so full of holes like you say then you win!

Lighten up Stewie, you don't know everything!

 
At January 12, 2006 12:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"High school students are not at the point yet to deal with that sort of thing in a responsible manner."

Casual sex, abortion, homosexuality, yes. Philosophy that might involve the dreaded G-word, no no no! :rolleyes:

 
At January 26, 2006 8:14 PM, Blogger stewie said...

For God's sake Steve, I believe in God myself, and you know this... stop misrepresenting my views to suit your own opionion. That, my friend, is the very definition of the term straw man.

What they could do is throw out good science in favor of an unfounded, unscientific, unsound religious viewpoint, impeding all aspects of scientific progress.

The actual course description told us as much - one doesn't need to contact the teacher directly, an unreasonable expectation to say the least. Claiming "This is the course the Lord wanted me to teach" doesn't help things either.

Anonymous: As for "homosexuality" - there is no choice involved. People either are or aren't, and you'll have to deal with them no matter what they are. Your supposition of anything otherwise is offensive to myself as a human being (and a straight person) and indicates your provincial, bigoted, and completely backward worldview. YOU have no place in our schools.

 

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