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  Topic: ID, anti-evolution and you, what brought you here?< Next Oldest | Next Newest >  
jeannot



Posts: 1200
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 16 2007,15:51   

Hi,

This thread may sound a bit like the recent "where are you from" thread, but I’d like it more focused on your relationship with ID and other forms or creationism/anti-evolutionism. In other words, why are we here to discuss such topics?
I heard that some of us are evolutionary biologists, so their conflict with IDC would be clear. However, many of us are not biologist, and I would be curious to know the reasons why they became interested in this political/cultural debate.

I am from France, where creationism has lost all credibility for over a century, but I often heard, from a distance, that it was a more (vaguely) threatening movement in the US. But I never paid much attention to it. Though I’ve always been sort of fascinated by such ignorance and blindness.
I specialized in evolutionary biology 2.5 yeas ago, when I began my master. At this time, I never heard of “Intelligent Design”. This was before a mail was delivered in a mailing list (of a local association of evolutionary biologist) which related the event of one of the few ID paper that was published in a Peer review journal-the one by Steven C Meyer, in the proc. Of Washington-and the reaction that followed in Nature and Science. I first got intrigued, but I didn’t go any deeper in the topic at that time, though I read part of the paper.
Then, there was this mess around those sticker that were to be put on biology textbooks, in Arkansas I believe (or was it somewhere else?), and that were supposed to aid student keep an open mind about what was just a theory, evolutionary theory of course. I heard the news in a discussion board, the ars technica discussion board for those of you who know the site. I was amazed to witness the heated discussion between creationists (that were in minority) and defendant of science. Hopefully, ars technica is populated with educated people.
Then I became interested in the debate. Mostly, I was just a lurker, because most of the time, I dare not post comment in English (and this is also very time consuming for me), by I found that witness creationist’s argument being debunk in public very entertaining. People often resort to links toward talk origins, I then discovered the panda’s thumb.
Then I just googled for a real discussion board (not a blog), where creationism could be discussed, but among educated people; and google returned antievolution.org, the critique resource. I first though it was a anti-evolution website.
When I registered to the board, the most prolific topic was featuring Ghost of Paley and his gut to gamete / geocentric theory.
Meanwhile, I began my PhD on evolutionary ecology in a species of aphid, and I followed kitzmiller vs dover with moderate attention.
I’ve found here a bunch of fine people (most of you), and a few amusing jerks (AFDave, JAD…). I particularly appreciate the (now defunct) AFDave CGH and the uncommonly dense discussion thread, particularly, the erudition of Zach, the fun tidbits reported form UD by Phonon, the hilarious dt parody by Richard, Arden, Steve and others. I wish I could participate a bit more, but I mostly don’t have the time nor the motivation to post in English.

What’s your story?

  
stevestory



Posts: 10127
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 16 2007,16:32   

I get a lot of entertainment here. Without posting a big biographical piece--I have to run in a second--it's morbidly entertaining to watch the clueless creationists get reamed by the experts. The creationists are like some jerk who keys your car, and kicks your dog, and tells lies about you at work. And then one day he shoves the guy ahead of him in line, and as the guy picks himself up, you see that it's Oscar de la Hoya, who proceeds to beat the annoying guy senseless. Putting Casey Luskin up against  Mark Chu-Carrol, or Davetard vs Jason Rosenhouse, is the intellectual version of annoying guy vs Oscar de la Hoya.

   
guthrie



Posts: 696
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 16 2007,17:51   

Who's Oscar de la Hoya?

  
C.J.O'Brien



Posts: 395
Joined: Aug. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 16 2007,18:04   

One of the all-time great middleweight boxers

--------------
The is the beauty of being me- anything that any man does I can understand.
--Joe G

  
"Rev Dr" Lenny Flank



Posts: 2560
Joined: Feb. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 16 2007,18:19   

As I'm sure everyone here knows, my opposition to creationism/ID is political in nature.  One of my best friends is from Iran -- his father was a military chief of staff under the Shah -- and he has seen firsthand what happens when religious nuts are allowed to gain political power.  I have no intention whatsoever of allowing that to happen here.

--------------
Editor, Red and Black Publishers
www.RedandBlackPublishers.com

  
argystokes



Posts: 766
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 16 2007,18:30   

Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ April 16 2007,16:19)
As I'm sure everyone here knows, my opposition to creationism/ID is political in nature.  One of my best friends is from Iran -- his father was a military chief of staff under the Shah -- and he has seen firsthand what happens when religious nuts are allowed to gain political power.  I have no intention whatsoever of allowing that to happen here.

You can read all about it in Lenny's new [a href="www.redandblackpublishers.com/deceptionbydesign.html" target="_blank"]book[/a]!

I came upon the issue in the summer of 05, when I was looking for experiments on the effectiveness of acupuncture. Teh Google led me to the skeptic's dictionary, which had all sorts of fun topics, including something or other written by Jason Rosenhouse. I began reading evolutionblog, panda's thumb, and pharyngula pretty regularly, and landed in this forum when making fun of UD became formalized.

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"Why waste time learning, when ignorance is instantaneous?" -Calvin

  
Albatrossity2



Posts: 2780
Joined: Mar. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: April 16 2007,20:56   

Well, I outed myself fairly recently here, so there is no need to give the biographical stuff again.

As for why I am here, it's because I learn a lot, and I need to know a lot as a professor of biology at a university in Kansas. I get lots of students with lots of backgrounds, and some of them are just plain confused by the stuff that they have "learned" in school (and Sunday school). The folks on this forum, especially Zach, phonon, Reciprocating Bill, Kristine, Arden, k.e., Richard, and all of the other usual suspects, have some good insights into the workings of the creationist mind, and I have benefitted greatly from listening in here!

--------------
Flesh of the sky, child of the sky, the mind
Has been obligated from the beginning
To create an ordered universe
As the only possible proof of its own inheritance.
                        - Pattiann Rogers

   
snoeman



Posts: 109
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 16 2007,20:58   

I'm just a "concerned parent."

I wasn't really aware of the whole ID thing until I heard about and started following the Dover trial.  Then I started reading the NCSE website, PT, etc. and landed here for the entertainment.

When they start going to school, I want my kids to learn science and about science: as much as they can get.  It's just so valuable in so many ways.

Having said that, I don't want it tainted with the vacuous, intellectually dishonest pseudoscience crap promoted by the likes of the DI, the rest of the liars for Jebus and others of that ilk.

Not that I'm bitter, you understand.   ;)

Hence, I keep an eye on where things are going.

  
J-Dog



Posts: 4402
Joined: Dec. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 16 2007,21:01   

Jeannot - Bon jour mes ami!  I hope I do not make the faux pas, and pardon moi, but I studied Espanol, not Francois in school, and I do not even write English all that well, so congratulations to you for even attempting, let alone writing your post.  Tres Bien, as I like to say.

Long, long ago, in a Galaxy far, far away, when I was your age, I studied Anthroplogy, and dug up Native American bundle burials, protested the war, drank beer and vino, and tried to get laid as often as possible....

Hmmm... come to think of it, not that much has changed,
but at least my vino does not have twist-off caps these days.

So, after 20+ years away from Anthro, stuck in the exciting world of business, I started googling Anthro articles on the internet a couple of years ago, just to stay in touch, and began to read about ID, and creationism.  

I was amazed, surprised and, in fact the trompe l'oeil of the creationists and IDists.  I reached the Science Blogs, Panda's, and of course after lurking here for a while, was hooked.  I came for the learning, stayed for the fun!
BTW - This should be our motto!

So bon jour, and bon chance to you.  Just remember that not everyone in America is as dumb as George Bush, or as dishonest as Hovind, Ham, and all your favorite IDists and creationists.  

Oh yes.  Merci for the wine and the cheese, and the Statue of Liberty!

--------------
Come on Tough Guy, do the little dance of ID impotence you do so well. - Louis to Joe G 2/10

Gullibility is not a virtue - Quidam on Dembski's belief in the Bible Code Faith Healers & ID 7/08

UD is an Unnatural Douchemagnet. - richardthughes 7/11

  
stevestory



Posts: 10127
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 16 2007,21:33   

Quote (guthrie @ April 16 2007,18:51)
Who's Oscar de la Hoya?

guthrie, they've got this thing called Google...

   
Fross



Posts: 71
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 16 2007,22:30   

growing up in a southern town, going to a S. Baptist church and private school, I had my share of creationist teachings.  Luckily my father, while very religious, majored in anthropology and biology and was public school biology teacher.  I grew up with evolution being as much a part of reality as the theory of gravity and I always thought of the creationism stuff as the extremist views that come with any religion. (even in a S. Baptist church you have your moderates who snicker at the home schoolers)  Even at the young age of 10, I was sometimes annoyed at how bad the creationist arguments were.  At that time, most of them were young earthers, so it was REALLY bad.  

When I got to college and had access to the internet, I ran into someone on a science site that was using all the same YEC arguments I heard as a kid.  We debated over email for years until we realized we were going in circles and we eventually stopped communicating, but I still posted on talk.origins and a few other evo/creation debate forums.  (i think one was carm.org??)  A link on talk.origins led me to the Pandasthumb and they kept referencing Uncommondescent and there seemed to be this feud between the two sites.    I goto PT for some great news tidbits and to get the latest news on the failings of the ID movement.  I goto UD for curiosity, amusement and at one time I had this naive hope that they want to pursue ID in a scientific manner. Since the Dover defeat, they've revealed themselves for what they truly are and that hope is no more.

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"For everything else, there's Mastertard"

   
Arden Chatfield



Posts: 6657
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 16 2007,22:46   

Quote (argystokes @ April 16 2007,18:30)
Quote ("Rev Dr" Lenny Flank @ April 16 2007,16:19)
As I'm sure everyone here knows, my opposition to creationism/ID is political in nature.  One of my best friends is from Iran -- his father was a military chief of staff under the Shah -- and he has seen firsthand what happens when religious nuts are allowed to gain political power.  I have no intention whatsoever of allowing that to happen here.

You can read all about it in Lenny's new <a href="www.redandblackpublishers.com/deceptionbydesign.html" target="_blank">book</a>!

You need to fix that link!

PS: I'm just here for the free coffee and 'cause my doctor says I need to stay out of the sun.

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"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
blipey



Posts: 2061
Joined: June 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 17 2007,00:12   

I was brought here by my home's proximity to the state of Kansas.  It was back in the days before the goofy "Evolution Hearings" by the Kansas Board of Education.  Both of parents are educators and I do a little bit of teaching (theatre) so I'm interested in such things.

While I live in Kansas City, MO, I am very close to Kansas and some of my classes were in Kansas.  So, when I heard about the hearings I decided I would attend.  Attending, I briefly chatted with some of the KCFS folk and found the Panda's Thumb.

From there, I got here and must echo stevestory's enjoyment of creationists getting worked over.  Not being a working (or lazy, for that matter) scientist, I also learn some stuff here--that's always good.

--------------
But I get the trick question- there isn't any such thing as one molecule of water. -JoeG

And scientists rarely test theories. -Gary Gaulin

   
creeky belly



Posts: 205
Joined: June 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 17 2007,02:11   

In high school, I went to youth group in Tacoma, WA, and most of the time I didn't have a problem.  Then they started showing the Hovind tapes, and at one point I just starting laughing. I couldn't help it, he started talking about the probabilities of prophecies.  Needless to say, this was not the "appropriate" response, and the rest of the discussion focused on me politely explaining most of the science/mathematical flaws.

Later, I was over at a get together and some of the parents happened to be there. They began to asked me all sorts of questions: "Why can't you teach creation in schools?" "What about the law of disorder that says evolution can't happen?" "Did you know Darwin recanted on his deathbed?"...etc. I explained what the scientific method was, why it was useful, and why it wasn't useful for creationism.  I got a couple head nods, but I knew they already made up their minds.

In 2002, I attended a talk at the University of Washington by someone from the DI (I want to say Stephen Meyer, I don't think it was an old person). I had no idea that I'd be paying so much attention to it a few years later, but I when one of my friends told me, "The devil is trying to lead you away from God" when I was discussing radiometric dating and wanted to send me some of Hovind's tapes, that's when I decided to see who else had to deal with this.

Most of my time here initially was spent arguing with Paley about geocentrism (remember that juicy thread?). Occasionally, I'll post when there's physics involved, but I enjoy lurking most of the time.

There's no way I would have taken as much interest in biology if it hadn't been at the center of most of it (I'm a physics man by trade), but it feels like a brain enema every time you guys take down an absurd claim.

  
bystander



Posts: 301
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 17 2007,06:53   

Luckily I live in a fairly secular area in Australia. I first got interested in the Talk.Origins site around 10 years ago. The main things there were talking about the aquatic ape and the "man as old as coal guy". There was also a discussion about ID and IC. I can't remember if Behe was the actual participant but the threads had reduced to mutual abuse so I could not pick up the gist of the arguments for and against. At the time I thought it was a shame because even through I was and am an atheist, I thought it would be powerful evidence for a god or an alien designer if IC could be proven.

A lost interest for years and got interested again when some guy on a left wing political blog in Australia started to carry on about ID and how it should be taught in schools. I googled some links and found PT. This was around the lead up to the Dover trial which was very entertaining (I still believe nobody on the ID side actually read the transcripts) and basically stayed for the  fun.

Michael

  
MidnightVoice



Posts: 380
Joined: Aug. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 17 2007,07:24   

Long, long ago, and far, far away (several decades and 4,500 miles, in London) I got a couple of degrees in biochemistry and became a scientist.  Then fate intruded and I ended up in America, where I was startled to find that people were very religious and Creationism was rampant.  As both of them tended to be associated with political parties slightly to the right of Attila the Hun, and as I had a daughter in school, I became interested and eventually wound up here.  It is fun and educational.

I rarely have enough expertise to post anything cogent on topic, but I like posting things that amuse or interest me.  And now Anne, Mollie and Kurt are all gone, we need a few intelligent voices around.

--------------
If I fly the coop some time
And take nothing but a grip
With the few good books that really count
It's a necessary trip

I'll be gone with the girl in the gold silk jacket
The girl with the pearl-driller's hands

  
guthrie



Posts: 696
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 17 2007,07:52   

Ahh, that makes sense then.
I have been a champion googler since ohhh, 1999, but there are times when I can't be bothered to do it.

I have no idea how I found the Pandas thumb 2.5 years ago, but then i found this place from it, and hung around.  It's kind of fun, but the repetitive stupidity of Creationists and ID'ers gets boring after a while.

  
Richardthughes



Posts: 10756
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 17 2007,10:41   

I followed a press release to the intelligent design network website.

I saw this graphic that has both 'religion' and 'naturalism' crossed out under a big scale. I remember reading the page and thought, "what a crock of disingenuous shit". The positive evidence paragraph, especially.

From there it was the Pandas Thumb, Pharyngula, Dispatches and then finally here, where I became the poster-child. I lure fundies here because I am teh_sexy_hawt_one.

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"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
C.J.O'Brien



Posts: 395
Joined: Aug. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 17 2007,12:36   

And not just fundies, you big, tard-cap wearin' lug.

Myself, I grew up in Kansas. That's reason enough right there. When the Kangaroo Kourt was happening in my native state (I'm in Cali now) I caught onto the forums at KCFS and kept abreast of events that way. I also met some good folks, and found out shooting down creationist nonsense is fun!

Jack Krebs of KCFS is also a PTer, so eventually I started hanging out at the Thumb (I even wrote an article). From there, it was just a matter of time before I came over to the Church Burnin' Ebola Boys for the lighter side of "The Controversy." (My entre to this board was the dubious move of luring Paley's Ghost to defend his "guts to gametes" nonsense.) Needless to say, the rest is history.

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The is the beauty of being me- anything that any man does I can understand.
--Joe G

  
Richardthughes



Posts: 10756
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 17 2007,12:59   

DUDE, BE A CHIC. I MEAN CHIC, BE A CHIC. IM CONFUSED. NOT SEXUALLY I KNEW I SHOULDN'T HAVE SNORTED DCA FOR RECREATIONAL USE.

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"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
Mr_Christopher



Posts: 1238
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 17 2007,13:18   

I subscribe(d) to Skeptical Inquirer and they had a few articles on the subject which indirectly lead me here.  I got booted by the small penised DT for "playing all nice" at UD which I thought was cool.  

I keep coming here for the free beer and fun!

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Uncommon Descent is a moral cesspool, a festering intellectual ghetto that intoxicates and degrades its inhabitants - Stephen Matheson

  
Stephen Elliott



Posts: 1754
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 17 2007,13:31   

I got here by reading the book The Case for a Creator by Lee Strobel.

That got me interested. I actually did try to "follow the evidence no matter where it leads" and came to the conclusion that ID is purposefully dishonest and full of crap.

It did take me a few months to realise this though and I came to PT as an ID suporter at first. Didn't take too long to see which side was being honest and who was spreading manure.

Sometimes it feels like banging your head against a brick wall when talking to consistent ID people. It is bleeding obvious who has the evidence, yet they refuse to look, ban anyone who makes rational arguments, then claim people are "scared" to debate them. The eejits are possibly insane.

EDIT: Something that I really like. Most pro-science blogs allow free commentry (including the other side) while #### near every ID blog censors. Unfortunately a lot of pro-ID types are too stupid to realise what this implies.

Downside is that when we have no/few creationists on here then personal/religious wars break out. Bit of a shame considering how many well educated/inteligent people post here and at PT.

  
Reciprocating Bill



Posts: 4265
Joined: Oct. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 17 2007,13:38   

This topic has fascinated me for decades. Science of the last several hundred years, and particularly the last 150, has enabled human beings to progressively situate themselves within the dual abyss of deep space and deep time, and evolutionary biology has enabled us to grasp the degree to which each one of us, and every extant organism, is packed with connected, contingent history. Yet many turn their backs on that landscape, and instead place upon their heads a shoebox, the interior surfaces of which are papered with biblical stories or other obviously, patently human fictions and inventions (new age mythologies, etc.). I have two 'born again,' OEC sibs who live within that small-box world and bring that reality home quite personally.  All well and good until the recent assault upon science education in my state (Ohio), which aroused me from my slumber on the issue. Doverloo terminated the assault on science education, but my fascination over the psychological dimension of these choices continues.

--------------
Myth: Something that never was true, and always will be.

"The truth will set you free. But not until it is finished with you."
- David Foster Wallace

"Here’s a clue. Snarky banalities are not a substitute for saying something intelligent. Write that down."
- Barry Arrington

  
lkeithlu



Posts: 321
Joined: Feb. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 17 2007,18:23   

I found talkorigins, then PT while reading up on the then looming Dover trial. I teach in a private Episcopal boarding school, in a tiny blue dot in a very red state (TN). I wanted to be ready in case the school received pressure from parents to teach ID/Creationism, so I set out to learn as much as I could. However, we haven't heard a peep out of our parents (maybe I was not giving them enough credit!;) but I stayed on because it was fun and helps me avoid real work. My husband is a primatologist, so I love running stuff past him.
I am especially interested in the involvement of the Templeton Foundation, as Templeton is a county native and I taught various members of his family. Of course, that's how I got banned at UD. Haven't managed to get back on yet. :p

  
phonon



Posts: 396
Joined: Nov. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 17 2007,18:42   

My evolution/creation interest built slowly. Every once and a while I'd be totally blown away by a friend or family member, who I thought I knew well, when they'd say something like, "I think that whole evolution thing is bunk, I mean how did all this life come from nothing on its own?" I would be all like "wow" and stuff. Then one day out of the blue, evolution came up in a convo between me and a certain family member. He took the creationism side. Again, I didn't think he really believed this stuff and just thought he wanted a lively debate, like we had in the past. As we continued the debate through email over the course of a few weeks, I began to realize he was serious. Well, in the middle of this email debate, I had to do a lot of googling and eventually I wound up on some message boards that were debating these things. I started debating people in the message boards thinking, "where the #### are all these nuts coming from?" I really didn't realize the pervasiveness of creationism in this country. My eyes were opened. Anyway, in the process I've learned quite a bit of biology, although it comes in the Cliff Claven trivia category of knowledge.

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With most men, unbelief in one thing springs from blind belief in another. - Georg Christoph Lichtenberg

To do just the opposite is also a form of imitation. - Georg Christoph Lichtenberg

  
ck1



Posts: 65
Joined: Oct. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 17 2007,19:21   

So a Kansas Konnection is a big draw.  For me too.

I have a PhD in bio and my husband is from Kansas.  When I heard about the BOE plans in 1999 I was amazed, and when I started reading about it, even more amazed that this issue is still alive for so many.  I have never met a creationist in person, but have always been interested in the intersection of science and religion so I followed the story to Talkorigins where I read all the articles, the Lilith debates, and then here where I encountered AFDave, and now to the Dawkins site where Dave is still holding forth and shows no signs of tapering off...

  
Kristine



Posts: 3061
Joined: Sep. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 17 2007,20:27   

Quote (Fross @ April 16 2007,21:30)
growing up in a southern town, going to a S. Baptist church and private school, I had my share of creationist teachings.  Luckily my father, while very religious, majored in anthropology and biology and was public school biology teacher.  I grew up with evolution being as much a part of reality as the theory of gravity and I always thought of the creationism stuff as the extremist views that come with any religion.
You don't know how jealous I am of you Fross!

I grew up in a northern small town (North St. Paul, Minnesota), went to a Lutheran church and public school, and had my share of creationist teachings, which I rejected at age nine. I went through my "ancient astronauts" phase (no laughing!;) :) until I rejected all truth claims and learned about the scientific method. I grew up feeling pretty alone in my interest in science and evolution, reading Gould and Sagan and debating my father, who was a biblical literalist (this was during the time of the Little Rock trial).

I drifted away from science in college, scared off by the math, I think, and got my degree in English Lit., whereupon I became a bohemian, working crap low-paying jobs, reading books, going to films, and trying to write. I took some computer programming languages (which I have not applied) and started belly dancing, then decided to get a life and make some money, landed some nice office positions that culminated in my museum job, and got my act together and entered grad school for Library and Info Science. I guess I never really shook the science bug and have some regrets about not going in that direction, but I was too dang restless anyway.

Je parle Francais aussi! (Did I spell that correctly?)

--------------
Which came first: the shimmy, or the hip?

AtBC Poet Laureate

"I happen to think that this prerequisite criterion of empirical evidence is itself not empirical." - Clive

"Damn you. This means a trip to the library. Again." -- fnxtr

  
Roland Anderson



Posts: 51
Joined: Sep. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 18 2007,05:07   

I read my friend's copy of "The Selfish Gene" back in 1993 or thenabouts and since then I've devoured everything I can find about evolutionary theory. I had heard of creationism I think at that time but I didn't take a serious interest in it until I took a trawl through the Skeptic's Dictionary (now I feel dirty - it should be Sceptic's - ugh!) and found the entry on Creationism. From there I found my way to the TalkOrigins archive and amused myself by reading the kooky feedback. From there it was but a short journey to talk.origins itself, and then to the Panda's Thumb, AFDave and richarddawkins.net.

The way that the creationists completely deny reality is a subject of some fascination to me. I think I would like to see if I could spend some time in a hospitable Bible belt town (perhaps on some sort of secondment or working holiday) and find out a bit more about what makes them tick. We really don't have people like this in the UK, and I haven't been anywhere in the US except DC, LA and San Francisco, which are not exactly hotbeds of fundamentalism (well, maybe excepting 1600 Pennsylvania Ave). My impression is that they are mostly perfectly nice people who just have a curious religious blind spot.

I've recovered from the time when I'd go all political firebrand on anyone who disagreed with me, so perhaps it would be possible to spend time in such a place and not explode.

Curiously, what I see of the way creationists defend their beliefs reminds me of how I used to defend my political beliefs in younger days. I was convinced I was right and I wouldn't even look at any evidence which seemed to contradict them. I would only notice evidence which seemed to support them. I think it was because I felt comfortable with their simplicity, and also because it was a way of feeling at home with my family, who shared similar beliefs. It was a difficult thing to give up and to see politics for the complicated, messy thing it is - but it can be done.

I think that most of us have believed like that in something - whether it's religion, a childcare method, a political doctrine, a sports team or crank medicine. I guess some of these beliefs do more harm than others.

  
Roland Anderson



Posts: 51
Joined: Sep. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 18 2007,05:11   

One other thing: as a layman, I sometimes hear creationist/ID arguments which I don't know how to refute. Keeping tabs here, on PT, talk.origins, richarddawkins and other places helps me to keep abreast with things so that should I ever run into a creo-kook I'll know what to say.

  
IanBrown_101



Posts: 927
Joined: April 2007

(Permalink) Posted: April 18 2007,06:47   

Well I first became aware of the ID/Creationism movement because of my studying politics. By reading the works of american political commentators, and browsing the web to research, I discovered that there was a strange movement who seemed to out and out reject science.

However I only really started getting interested when, in my love of all things totally insane, I discovered Crank.net, and began my browsing of the Talk.Origins website (although my internet supplied by the university wouldn't let me join the actual newsgroup, for some reason), and from there to Panda's Thumb, then on to here.

I've been browsing here for a few months now, without joining up, and decided that a lot of lurking might enable me to learn a few things, as well as discover the do's and don'ts of AtBC. I am, sadly only an interested layman, but one who is curious to learn more about ID before it sinks into the mire completely.

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I'm not the fastest or the baddest or the fatest.

You NEVER seem to address the fact that the grand majority of people supporting Darwinism in these on line forums and blogs are atheists. That doesn't seem to bother you guys in the least. - FtK

Roddenberry is my God.

   
guthrie



Posts: 696
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 18 2007,06:53   

Quote (IanBrown_101 @ April 18 2007,06:47)
as well as discover the do's and don'ts of AtBC.

Do's:  
Make fun of clueless creationists

Dont's:
Randomly insult people and use pages of swear words.

  
IanBrown_101



Posts: 927
Joined: April 2007

(Permalink) Posted: April 18 2007,06:55   

Quote (guthrie @ April 18 2007,06:53)
Quote (IanBrown_101 @ April 18 2007,06:47)
as well as discover the do's and don'ts of AtBC.

Do's:  
Make fun of clueless creationists

Dont's:
Randomly insult people and use pages of swear words.

I also noticed:

Don't:Try to engage a creationist in a real debate. They aren't interested

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I'm not the fastest or the baddest or the fatest.

You NEVER seem to address the fact that the grand majority of people supporting Darwinism in these on line forums and blogs are atheists. That doesn't seem to bother you guys in the least. - FtK

Roddenberry is my God.

   
JohnW



Posts: 2767
Joined: Aug. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 18 2007,12:09   

I've long been interested in what makes creationists tick, ever since I got to university in 1980 and was shocked to find out that some people still believed in Biblical literalism (hello, Mad Norman).  I discovered the forum while following the Dover DI Death March, lurked for a while, then joined the afdave pile-on.

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Math is just a language of reality. Its a waste of time to know it. - Robert Byers

There isn't any probability that the letter d is in the word "mathematics"...  The correct answer would be "not even 0" - JoeG

  
jeannot



Posts: 1200
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 18 2007,13:57   

Quote (stevestory @ April 16 2007,16:32)
I get a lot of entertainment here. Without posting a big biographical piece--I have to run in a second--....

So Steve, what's your story (steve, story, stevestory... hu huuu *cough*)?

It seems you have a good background in evolutionary biology. Are you a scientist?

  
stevestory



Posts: 10127
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 18 2007,14:11   

BA in physics. I do some engineering and programming these days. I have had several biology / geology / chemistry classes that relate to evolution, but not much formal training really.

If I had to do it all over again, I'd probably go into psychology and sociology. To me, those are the most interesting areas of science, and that's where I do most of my science reading these days.

   
JohnW



Posts: 2767
Joined: Aug. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 18 2007,14:15   

-oops - wrong thread

--------------
Math is just a language of reality. Its a waste of time to know it. - Robert Byers

There isn't any probability that the letter d is in the word "mathematics"...  The correct answer would be "not even 0" - JoeG

  
Ra-Úl



Posts: 93
Joined: June 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 18 2007,16:35   

I came to lurk in AtBC in the wake of Dover; I needed a tard-whuppin' fix and after Judge Jones issued his findings, it was slow going at PT (which I found googling ediacaran fauna), so I followed the afdave pile-on from there here and from here to the Dawkins forum. I really have to cut back on my tard-whuppin' watching and do the dishes more often. J-Dog's school life sounds like mine except he's a youngster, and except also that I'm Colombian and moved to the States at 12. I'm Presbyterian, raised and schooled in a religious home and a Presbyterian school in Bogota. I don't remember ever doubting evo and deep-time cosmology; I studied anthro 'cause of the Life magazine Epic of Man series in the early sixties (in the Spanish version; don't know the title in English and that's the closest translation). I may be what you call religious, but as I said, I read a lot of science as a kid and never doubted anything on religious grounds, had no friends that did so either and creationism was as rude a surprise to me in the US as the extent of racism. I am now a court intepreter.

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Beauty is that which makes us desperate. - P Valery

  
Richardthughes



Posts: 10756
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 18 2007,16:40   

Quote (Ra-Úl @ April 18 2007,16:35)
I am now a court intepreter.

HAHA.  DO YOU MAKE TH EKING LAUGH WITH YOU'RE STICK WITH BELLS AND YOUR SILLY DANCES?


THIS IS YOU:



LIBERAL WUSS! DO YOU HAVE SHOES THAT ARE ALL CURLY UP AT THE ENDS LIKE A TUKISHMANS SHOES.  



SHOULD HAVE WORKED FOR DELL!

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"Richardthughes, you magnificent bastard, I stand in awe of you..." : Arden Chatfield
"You magnificent bastard! " : Louis
"ATBC poster child", "I have to agree with Rich.." : DaveTard
"I bow to your superior skills" : deadman_932
"...it was Richardthughes making me lie in bed.." : Kristine

  
Ichthyic



Posts: 3325
Joined: May 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 18 2007,17:43   

Quote
what brought you here?


simple.

the link from PT.

what made me stay was the ability to engage by being able to create your own contributions, and the witty banter.

oh.. and my flamethrower and ebola bag.

still waiting on the t-shirt.

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"And the sea will grant each man new hope..."

-CC

  
Ra-Úl



Posts: 93
Joined: June 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 18 2007,18:11   

Quote (Richardthughes @ April 18 2007,16:40)
Quote (Ra-Úl @ April 18 2007,16:35)
I am now a court intepreter.

HAHA.  DO YOU MAKE TH EKING LAUGH WITH YOU'RE STICK WITH BELLS AND YOUR SILLY DANCES?


THIS IS YOU:



LIBERAL WUSS! DO YOU HAVE SHOES THAT ARE ALL CURLY UP AT THE ENDS LIKE A TUKISHMANS SHOES.  



SHOULD HAVE WORKED FOR DELL!

####! I knew I should have spell checked the #### thing! Englis is a language ful of spelling traps! And where did you find my picture, Dave Springer's wallet next to that picture of your wife dressed in a walsus suit begging Dave to father her pups? Watch out or I'll sic the one legged Cuban transvestite bank robber on you, or put the Mexican Midget Matadors on yr ass, pal!
(May I call you pal?)

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Beauty is that which makes us desperate. - P Valery

  
Ra-Úl



Posts: 93
Joined: June 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 18 2007,18:15   

Oh, and make that walrus suit. Sheesh.

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Beauty is that which makes us desperate. - P Valery

  
Steviepinhead



Posts: 532
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 18 2007,18:21   

I think I first arrived here from PT by way of the Bathroom Wall.  I was curious where the "bounced" posts went to and why.

Stuck around because you didn't have to toe the lines of "civility" and "objectivity" nearly to the same degree.  The links and images and personalities were much more vivid and beguiling.

Got hooked, mainlining davetard, of both varieties.

It's been downhill ever since, like a degenerating genome.

  
stevestory



Posts: 10127
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 18 2007,20:51   

Quote (Steviepinhead @ April 18 2007,19:21)
Stuck around because you didn't have to toe the lines of "civility" and "objectivity" nearly to the same degree.  The links and images and personalities were much more vivid and beguiling.

PT is for the dignified professionals. AtBC is for the flashy amateurs.

   
Freelurker



Posts: 80
Joined: Oct. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 18 2007,21:32   

Quote (J-Dog @ April 16 2007,22:01)
I came for the learning, stayed for the fun!

Me too. I’ve always had a broad range of interests, and this whole ID/Creationism issue touches many of them: politics, religion, science, math, history, and, sometimes, engineering. It’s great fun to hear from learned people from all of these fields with all of their colorful personalities.

As an engineer, I have found that the best way I can contribute to the debate is by countering the misrepresentations the ID/C folks make about the relevance of engineering to ID. Comparisons between engineering and ID actually undermine the ID position.

Engineers and scientists are natural (pun intended) allies in this debate. My appreciation of this began when I read the excellent article  “A Philosophical Premise of 'Naturalism'?” by Mark Isaak.

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Invoking intelligent design in science is like invoking gremlins in engineering. [after Mark Isaak.]
All models are wrong, some models are useful. - George E. P. Box

  
k.e



Posts: 1948
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 19 2007,01:56   

Quote (stevestory @ April 19 2007,04:51)
 
Quote (Steviepinhead @ April 18 2007,19:21)
Stuck around because you didn't have to toe the lines of "civility" and "objectivity" nearly to the same degree.  The links and images and personalities were much more vivid and beguiling.

PT is for the dignified professionals. AtBC is for the flashy amateurs.

WHO ARE YOU CALLING AN ASSEY HAMATEUR, HOMO?

YOU MUST BE TALKING ABOUT RICHARD T. HUGE WHO IS A FLASHY GIRLYBOY.

PS: Ra-Úl NANOOK WANTS HIS WALRUS OUTFIT BACK.

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The conservative has but little to fear from the man whose reason is the servant of his passions, but let him beware of him in whom reason has become the greatest and most terrible of the passions.These are the wreckers of outworn empires and civilisations, doubters, disintegrators, deicides.Haldane

   
guthrie



Posts: 696
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 19 2007,03:11   

Quote (Richardthughes @ April 18 2007,16:40)
Quote (Ra-Úl @ April 18 2007,16:35)
I am now a court intepreter.

HAHA.  DO YOU MAKE TH EKING LAUGH WITH YOU'RE STICK WITH BELLS AND YOUR SILLY DANCES?


THIS IS YOU:



LIBERAL WUSS! DO YOU HAVE SHOES THAT ARE ALL CURLY UP AT THE ENDS LIKE A TUKISHMANS SHOES.  



SHOULD HAVE WORKED FOR DELL!

Hey, thats rentaghost, isn't it?  
How dare you besmirch a ghost promoting childrens TV program to push your evil atheistic ways!

  
Ra-Úl



Posts: 93
Joined: June 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 19 2007,12:23   

Quote (k.e @ April 19 2007,01:56)
PS: Ra-Úl NANOOK WANTS HIS WALRUS OUTFIT BACK.

Tell nanook to take it up with Quinn. I think I gotta lay off the Dylan while at work. I should say that I stay tuned to AtBC beacuse ke, RTH, the Mistress of the divine shimmy and DM among others are always good for a laugh even in the absence of obvious tard-ness to incite them. That is, when they're not after my walrus collection. And leave my narwhal alone you preverted prevaricators. Rilly.

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Beauty is that which makes us desperate. - P Valery

  
Thought Provoker



Posts: 530
Joined: April 2007

(Permalink) Posted: April 21 2007,20:30   

Hi All,

I got introduced to ID and Panda's Thumb from the Dover trial.  I am not sure why an Electrical Engineer with a small company to run got hooked on this, but I did.

I have convinced myself the ID issue will be like the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand.  Is this the dawning of another Dark Age or a new age of enlightenment?

IMO, the DI people aren't stupid, they are desparate.

I agree the ignorant masses are still ignorant, but watch out when they start gathering torches and pitchforks.

Hopefully, this explains why I still keep an eye on the subject.

Provoking Thought

  
Chris Hyland



Posts: 705
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 21 2007,22:00   

Early 2005 I went to a seminar on simulating the signalling cascade that controls the bacterial flagellum. Searching for more information on google led me to an interview with Michael Behe, which mentiond his book called darwins black box. We had a copy of this in our library (thanks Andy MacIntosh), so I give it a read and wasn't very impressed. From that I found the Discovery Institue website and read a few articles and found we also had NFL in the library (in the history of Science section).

A few months later I was at the Royal society for a conference, and was talking to someone who worked there who mentioned they were going to publish pictures of a live giant squid. When I googled for that I found pharyngula, and then the Pandas Thumb.

Then a couple of months later the Dover trial started and my friends at work finally believed I hadn't made the whole thing up to make religious people sound stupid.

  
Robert O'Brien



Posts: 348
Joined: Aug. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,02:58   

I used to defend Bill Dembski, but since he flew off the rails I have become disillusioned with him. I think it is a shame he is wasting his talents.

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Caeli enarrant gloriam Dei

    
guthrie



Posts: 696
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,05:14   

I'm curious Robert, at which point do you think he flew off the rails?  I'm sure you appreciate that to most of us here he did so as soon as he started publishing on ID.

  
"Rev Dr" Lenny Flank



Posts: 2560
Joined: Feb. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,07:47   

I'm struck by how many of the people here first got interested in ID during the Dover trial or thereabouts.

The ironic thing is that ID was already, by that time, dead. It had already fatally floundered in Kansas, during the Kangaroo Kourt.  Indeed, it had already been crippled beyond repair in Ohio.

In my own DebunkCreation list, we've had lots of people suddenly flood in over the last few months -- I suspect it's because all the books about ID that were inspired by the Dover trial are only now just beginning to hit the bookstores (it takes over a year for a book to get into print once the manuscript has been submitted).

Alas, everyone who is only now entering the fight, is already too late.  ID is dead, dead, dead.  The fight is over.  Nothing left to do but sweep up and laugh at them.

But, if you stick around for a few years, ID will be back (as soon as they think up a shiny new name for their same old arguments).  As soon as the Republicrat Party gains political power again (and that could be a long while) the fundies will be back.

*Then* you'll get your chance to cross swords with them.

--------------
Editor, Red and Black Publishers
www.RedandBlackPublishers.com

  
k.e



Posts: 1948
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,08:56   

LETS HOPE YOU'RE A DISTANT MEMORY BY THEN FLANK -HOMO.

*ducks* snicker

--------------
The conservative has but little to fear from the man whose reason is the servant of his passions, but let him beware of him in whom reason has become the greatest and most terrible of the passions.These are the wreckers of outworn empires and civilisations, doubters, disintegrators, deicides.Haldane

   
Thought Provoker



Posts: 530
Joined: April 2007

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,11:47   

Hi Robert,

I suspect you ran into the same thing I did.  Dr. Dembski is very good at dropping pearls of "wisdom" that hint at a substantial argument.  For example, Dr. Dembski uses terms like "Telic Properties in Nature" in situations where he needs non-religious cover.  His fingerprints are all over something called "Endogenous Adaptive Mutagenesis" that could be considered an exploration of the possibility of intelligence being embodies an all of nature.

As an engineer, I have had to deal with many PhD types.  Practically all of them have trouble putting things into terms that can be understood by a layman.  For some, it is an honest inability and requires a lot of work to help them help you.  For others, it is because they, themselves, don't know what they are talking about.  For those like Dr. Dembski, it is cleverly intentional, IMO.  He is not dumb, but even he can't maintain the subterfuge for people determined to look for substance behind the fancy words.  However, it works very nicely on people who want to believe what he is saying is true.

Rather than tell IDers they don't know what they are talking about, I provoke them into thinking for themselves and ask them to explain to me their thoughts in their own words.

Very few ID proponents can do that.  Those that do distance themselves from Dr. Dembski with the possible exception of Salvador T. Cordova.

  
Thought Provoker



Posts: 530
Joined: April 2007

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,12:29   

Hi "Rev Dr" Lenny Flank,

Now that I am done embarrassing myself about my stereotypical bias about "PhD types" I wanted to respond to something you brought up.

I probably heard of ID prior to Dover.  I vaguely remember a Seattle-based think-tank arguing that the St. Helen's volcano aftermath provided scientific "proof" supporting a young earth.  I also heard about what was going on in Kansas.  Dover provided a one-stop-shop opportunity for evaluating the latest creation-science arguments.

Yes, Dover was an obvious loss from the start (I found the verdict anticlimactic), but what struck me was that with a difference cast of characters, the creationists could have won Dover.  I will spare you the details of why I think that (unless you are interested).

The other thing I noticed was the "Big Tent".  People who normally wouldn't give each other the time of day were coming together to fight a common enemy.  Why?  Because they are getting desparate.

G.W.Bush set a new standard for ignoring "reality-based thinking" along with a disregard of ethics in government.   It is my impression, the next time the pendulum swings right it will be too late to do anything about it.  We need to negotiate the peace treaty now, while we have the upper hand.  The alternative is to annihilate the enemy completely, which I doubt we can do.

  
The Wayward Hammer



Posts: 64
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,14:30   

I grew up reading Asimov's excellent non-fiction essays.  My mother was a microbiologist and I used to help her set up sensitivities in the lab and she would explain how resistance came to be in bacteria.  I remember not being smart enough to NOT argue with the creationists in high school.  Since then I have realized that there is no point in arguing with them - they come not from a place of logic.

I don't recall exactly how I got here - I think it was through crank.net.

I enjoy reading and learning here.  I will always stop and read a Zach posting.

  
"Rev Dr" Lenny Flank



Posts: 2560
Joined: Feb. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,15:17   

Quote (Thought Provoker @ April 22 2007,12:29)
Yes, Dover was an obvious loss from the start (I found the verdict anticlimactic), but what struck me was that with a difference cast of characters, the creationists could have won Dover.  I will spare you the details of why I think that (unless you are interested).

Yes, I am interested . . . . . .

--------------
Editor, Red and Black Publishers
www.RedandBlackPublishers.com

  
Thought Provoker



Posts: 530
Joined: April 2007

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,16:44   

Hi Lenny,
There were two main problems for the defendants in the Dover case.  One problem was that the book Of Pandas and People was obviously a creationist textbook.  The other problem was that the defendants were guilty as ####.  ;)

I believe the defense strategy was to present the Dover's school board's actions as stupid, not illegal.

A possible strategy is based around the Santorum Amendment.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Santorum_Amendment

"It is the sense of the Senate that- (1) good science education should prepare students to distinguish the data or testable theories of science from philosophical or religious claims that are made in the name of science; and (2) where biological evolution is taught, the curriculum should help students to understand why this subject generates so much continuing controversy, and should prepare the students to be informed participants in public discussions regarding the subject."

Senator Santorum was (is?) one of Pennsylvania’s senators.  It was entirely reasonable for Dover to respect the "sense of the Senate" and "prepare the students to be informed participants in public discussions regarding the subject."  Especially when that sense was articulated by a home state's Senator.  There is the added benefit of a controversy as to whether the amendment was binding or not.  Dover could decide to error on the side of caution and comply with the amendment.  Like it or not, Intelligent Design was/is arguably one of the more likely "evolution" subjects of which students would be unprepared "to be informed participants in public discussions."

This all combines for arguing a well-meaning board making available supplemental textbooks on the subject of ID for science students.  The purpose of these textbooks would be to understand the arguments being made, not to make the arguments themselves.

What got the Dover school board in trouble were their obvious motives and public pronouncements.  A more careful board wouldn't have distributed flyers explaining "their side" of the debate and wouldn't have got caught in their own lies.  They would have also agreed to the Science Teachers' suggested wording change in addition to agreeing to having the books in the library and optional.

The defendant’s lawyers needed to argue ID's science status was a moot point.  Per the Santorum Amendment, Students must be prepared to participate in discussions about evolution which, inevitably, includes unscientific arguments.  It is beyond a district court Judge's reach to question the "sense of the senate".

The non-activist Judge Jones might have been forced to reluctantly agree the Dover school board actions were misguided bit, lacking evidence to the contrary, weren't illegal.

I suspect there might be a lawyer or three that can explain the gaping holes in my thinking.

  
"Rev Dr" Lenny Flank



Posts: 2560
Joined: Feb. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,18:09   

Quote (Thought Provoker @ April 22 2007,16:44)
A possible strategy is based around the Santorum Amendment.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Santorum_Amendment

"It is the sense of the Senate that- (1) good science education should prepare students to distinguish the data or testable theories of science from philosophical or religious claims that are made in the name of science; and (2) where biological evolution is taught, the curriculum should help students to understand why this subject generates so much continuing controversy, and should prepare the students to be informed participants in public discussions regarding the subject."

Senator Santorum was (is?) one of Pennsylvania’s senators.  It was entirely reasonable for Dover to respect the "sense of the Senate" and "prepare the students to be informed participants in public discussions regarding the subject."  Especially when that sense was articulated by a home state's Senator.  There is the added benefit of a controversy as to whether the amendment was binding or not.  Dover could decide to error on the side of caution and comply with the amendment.  Like it or not, Intelligent Design was/is arguably one of the more likely "evolution" subjects of which students would be unprepared "to be informed participants in public discussions."

This all combines for arguing a well-meaning board making available supplemental textbooks on the subject of ID for science students.  The purpose of these textbooks would be to understand the arguments being made, not to make the arguments themselves.

Alas, all that stuff was argued in Georgia and Ohio, where it lost spectacularly.  And the reason is simple ---- the entire "controversy" that the Santorum Amendment wanted students to "understand" is based solely and only on fundamentalist religious opinions, which are, alas, illegal to teach in public schools.  And the Senate has no more right to require religious opinions be taught to students than does anyone else  -- it's just as illegal and unconstitutional for Santorum to demand that students be taught someone's religious opinions as it is for the Dover school board to demand it.

So none of that would have helped them in Dover, any more than it helped them anywhere else.  It is precisely why "teach the controversy" is currently just as dead, dead, dead as "teach ID's alternative theory" is.

Anti-evolutioners have an impossible task.  What they want to do is preach their religious opinions.  That is illegal.  And it's simply not possible to preach one's religious opinions while at the same time pretending that you're NOT teaching one's religious opinions.

It's why anti-evolutioners will never win in court.  Ever.

--------------
Editor, Red and Black Publishers
www.RedandBlackPublishers.com

  
Thought Provoker



Posts: 530
Joined: April 2007

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,19:00   

Hi Lenny,

While I hope you are right, I beg to differ with you.

I watched the Ohio situation pretty closely (since I live there).  I would be surprised to learn it reached the inside of a courtroom.  Maybe I am wrong and please let me know if I am.

For Georgia, I presume you are talking about the Cobb sticker case.  That was mostly decided on the second plank of the Lemon Test (religious motive).

I think we should count ourselves lucky Cobb settled the case (religious organizations were begging them to take their money and continue the appeals).

Were you aware that Justice Clarence Thomas feels it would be constitutional for states to declare a state-wide religion?  Scalia is a little less radical than that, but not much. This right-leaning Supreme Court just held up a federal law banning certain medical procedures regardless of the risk to a pregnant woman's health.

Why are you so certain they would refrain from deferring to the "sense of the senate" (like they did for Guantanamo prisoners) and reject an "explain (not teach) the controversy" argument in a school board case?

  
"Rev Dr" Lenny Flank



Posts: 2560
Joined: Feb. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,19:23   

Quote (Thought Provoker @ April 22 2007,19:00)
Were you aware that Justice Clarence Thomas feels it would be constitutional for states to declare a state-wide religion?  Scalia is a little less radical than that, but not much. This right-leaning Supreme Court just held up a federal law banning certain medical procedures regardless of the risk to a pregnant woman's health.

Why are you so certain they would refrain from deferring to the "sense of the senate" (like they did for Guantanamo prisoners) and reject an "explain (not teach) the controversy" argument in a school board case?

I am quite aware of the Supreme Court.  I'm also quite aware that the Republicrat Party has, in every case, rejected the social agenda of the fundies (they KNOW it would be political suicide to implement any of it) -- to the point where the fundies themselves are now griping about it.  And the current Supreme COurt does what the Republicrat bigwigs tell it to do.

The Supreme Court is not stupid.  They know that dismantling the separation of church and state will kill the Republicrat Party, dead.

The Republicrats can preach about it all they want.  But they won't do it.  They know better.

--------------
Editor, Red and Black Publishers
www.RedandBlackPublishers.com

  
"Rev Dr" Lenny Flank



Posts: 2560
Joined: Feb. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,19:26   

Quote (Thought Provoker @ April 22 2007,19:00)
I watched the Ohio situation pretty closely (since I live there).  I would be surprised to learn it reached the inside of a courtroom.  Maybe I am wrong and please let me know if I am.

It didn't.  The ID supporters knew it would never survive the inside of a courtroom.

--------------
Editor, Red and Black Publishers
www.RedandBlackPublishers.com

  
Chris Hyland



Posts: 705
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,20:02   

Quote
For Georgia, I presume you are talking about the Cobb sticker case.  That was mostly decided on the second plank of the Lemon Test (religious motive).

I think we should count ourselves lucky Cobb settled the case (religious organizations were begging them to take their money and continue the appeals).
That would have ended the same way as Dover. The only way they could get what they want is to prove that evolution is less supported than other scientific theories. In any of these cases you have to ask the question why does the overwhelming majority of the scientific community disagree, and the answer isn't that it's an atheist conspiracy. The best they could have got is a general 'this textbook contains science...' disclaimer.

  
Thought Provoker



Posts: 530
Joined: April 2007

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,20:35   

Hi Chris...
   
Quote
The only way they could get what they want is to prove that evolution is less supported than other scientific theories.

Sorry, but I have to disagree.  The courts can't protect against School Boards being stupid.  If they want to teach their students that there are only nine planets and Saturn is the only one with rings around it or that PI is exactly 22/7, there is nothing the courts could do about it as long is there is no evidence of religion.

I don't know why you guys are so certain we will always prevail.  Even at Dover, with all the coverage and evidence a large percentage of people voted to retain the old school board.  We may be right, but that doesn't mean we are popular.  And, bluntly, I don't trust the current Supreme Court one bit.

  
"Rev Dr" Lenny Flank



Posts: 2560
Joined: Feb. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,20:46   

Quote (Thought Provoker @ April 22 2007,20:35)
 The courts can't protect against School Boards being stupid.  If they want to teach their students that there are only nine planets and Saturn is the only one with rings around it or that PI is exactly 22/7, there is nothing the courts could do about it as long is there is no evidence of religion.

But it is precisely because of your last four words that anti-evolution will never win in court.  You're quite right that it's not illegal to be stupid.  It's not illegal to teach stupid science.  Nor will it ever be.

But alas for the IDers, ID was not rejected by the courts because it was bad science, because it was stupid, or even because it was wrong -- it was rejected by the courts precisely because it is religion.  Nothing more, nothing less, nothing else.

As I noted before, the only thing the anti-evolutioners want is to preach.  It is utterly completely impossible for them to preach without . . . well . . . preaching.  And preaching in schools is illegal.  Period.

The entire history of anti-evolutionism has been a desperate search for SOME legal wording that they think will allow them to preach while denying that they are preaching.  It is an impossible task.  (shrug)

It is why they will never win.

There is only ONE way that they can win -- if the Supreme Court utterly rejects separation of church and state.

And if that happens, "science education" will be the LEAST of our problems.  At that point, democracy itself is no longer existent -- it is replaced by theocracy.  "Science education" will very quickly fall to the very bottom of the long list of things we will lose.  All the people who will end up behind barbed wire won't give two hoots in #### whether evolution is being taught in school classrooms.  They will have far more immediate and pressing problems . . . .

And under those circumstances, we as a society are justified in using whatever means become necessary in order to overthrow theocracy and return to the rule of consitutional democracy.

That, indeed, is the one reason why I have hope.  No matter HOW all-powerful the fundies become, no matter HOW much social, political, military and police force they might have, they are not bulletproof.  If you shoot them, they die just like everyone else does.

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Editor, Red and Black Publishers
www.RedandBlackPublishers.com

  
"Rev Dr" Lenny Flank



Posts: 2560
Joined: Feb. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,20:56   

Quote (Thought Provoker @ April 22 2007,20:35)
 Even at Dover, with all the coverage and evidence a large percentage of people voted to retain the old school board.  We may be right, but that doesn't mean we are popular.  

Alas, there will ALWAYS be stupid people who believe idiotic things.   Decades of science education haven't changed that in the past, and won't change it in the future.  The idiots will always be with us.

But, as I noted before, even when it comes to idiotic things that people believe, the anti-evolutioners are second-rate at best.  A higher percentage of the US population believes that space aliens are kidnapping people from their beds, than believe that evolution is the work of the Devil.  About as many people still think that Saddam Hussein was behind the 9-11 attacks, as beleive in creationism  or ID.  DI's anti-evolution tomes sell fewer copies than do books about pyramid power or flying saucers or ESP.

It has, alas, NOT been "science education" that has kept creationism out of classrooms.  It has been a handful of lawyers and a smaller handful of Federal judges.  Indeed, that has been the ONLY thing that has kept creationism out of classrooms.

Constitutional law worked, just as it was intended to.  

If constitutional law STOPS working, then whether or not evolution (or any other pseudoscience) is taught in schools, will quickly become the LEAST of our problems.  We will quickly have far more important things on our minds.

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Editor, Red and Black Publishers
www.RedandBlackPublishers.com

  
Thought Provoker



Posts: 530
Joined: April 2007

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,21:04   

Hi Lenny,

Quote
A higher percentage of the US population believes that space aliens are kidnapping people from their beds, than believe that evolution is the work of the Devil.


I don't know if I believe this or not, but thanks for trying to cheer me up.

Going to bed now.

Good Night and God Bless :O

;)

  
"Rev Dr" Lenny Flank



Posts: 2560
Joined: Feb. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,21:10   

Quote (Thought Provoker @ April 22 2007,20:35)
 And, bluntly, I don't trust the current Supreme Court one bit.

Nor should you.

But I think we CAN trust the Republicrat Party's political self-interest.  And they know that it is in their political self-interest NOT to pass any of the fundie's social agenda.

Over the past six years, the Republicrats had total power under a virtual one-party state.  They controlled the White House, they controlled both branches of Congress, they controlled most of the Federal judiciary.  They could have literally passed anything they wanted to -- anything at all --- and nobody, not the Democans, not the Libertarians, NOBODY -- could have stopped them.

And yet, they didn't pass ANY of the fundie agenda -- to the point that Dobson is already bitching about it so much that he's threatening to leave the Republicrat Party.

And why did the Republicrats not pass any of it?  Because they DO NOT WANT TO.  They know that it would be political suicide, and the Republicrats are not about to commit political suicide just to keep the nutters happy.

Even in the recent Supreme Court decision that everyone is pissing their pants about, the Supreme Court didn't actually DO anything for the fundies.  They could, after all, have done just what the fundies have been demanding of them for decades --- they could have simply overturned Roe v Wade, and nobody could have stopped them.  Instead, they simply threw a sop to the fundies to smooth the ruffled fundie feathers, by banning a rarely-used procedure that was mostly a symbolic issue anyway.  That way, the fundies will calm down, they'll keep those votes and checks coming, the Republicrats can use it as a fundraising point, and nothing has really changed -- and the Republicrats won't be committing political suicide by imposing a policy that the public simply doesn't support.

In exactly the same way that the Republicrats keep introducing lots and lots of bills demanding that ID/creationism be taught, knowing full well that none of those bills will ever get out of committee (indeed, knowing full well that the Republicrats don't WANT them to get out of committee).

The Republicrats aren't stupid.  Even if the fundies are.

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Editor, Red and Black Publishers
www.RedandBlackPublishers.com

  
stevestory



Posts: 10127
Joined: Oct. 2005

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,22:07   

While I usually find Lenny obnoxious, I do wish to support his point here. The far right has pushed christianism, and the Republicans have pretended to support them, but push came to shove, and they didn't give a shit what the christianists said. A few political appointments here and there, some abstinence guys, but by and large, the GOP has used the christianists, and the christianists, starting with David Kuo's book, have started to realize that they've been played. It's falling down around them, though, this support for Bush, and the next few years are going to feature a reimagining of the Republican party, to a more centrist version, I think.

   
Robert O'Brien



Posts: 348
Joined: Aug. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 22 2007,23:20   

Quote (guthrie @ April 22 2007,05:14)
I'm curious Robert, at which point do you think he flew off the rails?  I'm sure you appreciate that to most of us here he did so as soon as he started publishing on ID.

Bill's "street theater" post was the beginning of the end for me. The faux pas since then, including the infamous flatulence animation, have only served to cement my disappointment and disillusionment with him.

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Caeli enarrant gloriam Dei

    
k.e



Posts: 1948
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 23 2007,00:09   

Quote (Robert O'Brien @ April 23 2007,07:20)
   
Quote (guthrie @ April 22 2007,05:14)
I'm curious Robert, at which point do you think he flew off the rails?  I'm sure you appreciate that to most of us here he did so as soon as he started publishing on ID.

Bill's "street theater" post was the beginning of the end for me. The faux pas since then, including the infamous flatulence animation, have only served to cement my disappointment and disillusionment with him.

FOX PAR- EH? ROUND THESE PARTS ONLY #### YANKEES TALK LIKE THAT. HOMO

P.S. DEMBSKI IS NOT A YANKEE..... ALTHOUGH HE LOOKS LIKE ONE....BUT HE'S A REAL MAN AND HE'S WELCOME ON MY SCURVY SLOOP ANY TIME.

P.P.S ARDEN IS A #### YANKEE TOO AND SO IS HIS BOYFRIEND RICHARD T HUGE.

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The conservative has but little to fear from the man whose reason is the servant of his passions, but let him beware of him in whom reason has become the greatest and most terrible of the passions.These are the wreckers of outworn empires and civilisations, doubters, disintegrators, deicides.Haldane

   
Chris Hyland



Posts: 705
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: April 23 2007,08:52   

Quote (Thought Provoker @ April 23 2007,01:35)
Hi Chris...
     
Quote
The only way they could get what they want is to prove that evolution is less supported than other scientific theories.

Sorry, but I have to disagree.  The courts can't protect against School Boards being stupid.  If they want to teach their students that there are only nine planets and Saturn is the only one with rings around it or that PI is exactly 22/7, there is nothing the courts could do about it as long is there is no evidence of religion.

I agree there are plenty of things that they could teach that would just make them look stupid, but when they start singling out evolution, it is virtually impossible to hide the religious motivations. If it went to court they would either have to admit that they were stupid in which case they'd get thrown out, or argue the case, which would mean using ID arguments. Of course the most likely third option is that you will have plenty of evidence of the board's religious motives.
 
Quote
I don't know why you guys are so certain we will always prevail.
There is always a chance that a case could be assigned a fundementalist judge who would side with antievolution but its pretty unlikely I would have thought.

  
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