Where Did I Come From?
The age old debate is back in the news again, but with a new twist. Somehow, the term “Creationism” has been replaced with “Intelligent Design”. Why is that? Is it because learned, educated people even outside of the scientific community just cannot blindly believe in the biblical history anymore? Is it because the church (especially the Catholic church) is realizing that it is losing members who can no longer adhere to outdated moral policy? Is it because there is such a shortage of young people going into the priesthood? Is it politically driven by the Christian conservatives in an effort to overcome the constitutional directives concerning the division of church and state?
If it’s any or all of these things, do the creationists believe that by changing the terminology, people will not recognize that it is still the same thing? This is a very heavy subject indeed, and I think it warrants a few lines on my blog, as useless as my opinion may be.
I believe, historically, religious teaching and the institutions that it has produced have played a critical role in shaping the moral character of nations. I am not only speaking of Christianity nor am I only speaking of the US. Religious doctrine is global and much of it contains the same core values no matter which or where. It is these core values, such as Christianity’s Ten Commandments that are the corner stone of many of our modern laws.
Religion in general and the church specifically has also played a vital role in our
social structure. Historically it is the place where people meet for a common purpose (worship) and a hub for common caretaking (charity). It is a place one can go when all other avenues of help have been exhausted. For these reasons alone, we must value the contribution of the church, at least on the local levels.
Of course, religions have not always been tolerant towards each other. Indeed, many bloody wars have been fought based upon conflicting religious beliefs or, as in Iraq, based on someones distorted interpretation of doctrine.
Ok. So now we have come full circle and, instead of a battle to try to get evolutionary theory admitted into the classrooms, the battle is to get creationism admitted into the classrooms. Jeez, will this shit ever cease?
Religion is not science. Science is not based on theories. Theories are based on science. The scientific method is based on measurable data. It is based on data that can be reproduced in a controlled setting. Science is based on mathematics that can produce the same results every time.
The current debate is whether “intelligent design” should be taught, along with evolution in science classes. I say, absolutely not. It is not science. If school districts want to teach religion, they should set up a religious studies class just like you find in colleges and universities. Then parents can decide if they want their children to attend or not. In fact, for those parents who have to be dragged kicking and screaming into the scientific 21st century, let them also control if their children attend science classes during the evolution modules.
In any case, leave this up to the communities or at least the states. The federal government has no business sticking its nose into this very personal issue. They have plenty of other important matters to screw up as it is.