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Thread: Science Textbooks in Texas

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by gethen
    Thirty-five years ago, long before the pope's 1996 statement, I was attending a Catholic highschool, and we were taught that the theory of evolution explained the origins of man. The Bible, we were told, gave the same story in a form that the people of its era could understand, but should not be taken literally. As a result, the first time I realized that some people actually took the Bible version literally was when I went off to college at a major university and ran into some fundamentalists. I thought they were joking. I still think they must be joking.
    I have found very few catholics in the industrial countries of North America(minus mexico) and Europe who would argue against this point of view. However, I have noticed a trend with people who argue creationism versus evolution. On an educational level people who support creationism are less educated on average. That does not mean that there aren't any highly educated proponents of creationism just fewer than are on the evolution stand. These are but 1 man's observations and therefore couyld be wrong but it is a pattern I have noticed.

  2. #32
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    Oh, I agree tuffel999. I wasn't implyng that there were more creationists at that university, just that I found it ironic that a center of learning was the first place I ran into any of them. I grew up in a very small town, and would normally expect the reverse to have happened. Had to hit the wider world to discover all the vagaries of human nature I guess.

  3. #33
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    I went to a Catholic high school around the same time as Gethen, around the cusp of the sixties, and evolution was presented in my biology classes without fanfare. It just was. Catholic college, too. No fuss.

    Betenoire brought up the Chihuahua/Great Dane. Hey, that was my example, many threads ago! :wink:

    Those interested should go back to read the excerpt from my book, Chihuahua Red. :roll:

  4. #34
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    Also, how do we define "microevolution" and "macroevolution"? I mean, specifically? What's the dividing line?
    Most creationists define microevolution as evolution within a kind. A kind is a notion based on the use of the word in the Noah flood story (God brings 2 of every animal, each accoriding to its "kind"). They claim evolution can happen within a kind but not from one kind to another. The problem is they can't offer a useful working deffinition of what constitutes a kind. Some creationists dump every single species of dinosaur in a single kind but require separate kinds for men and chimps. Obviously, kind mean whatever the creationist find it convienient for it to mean. Keep the number of kinds small enough to all fit in the ark, but make sure you don't suggest a relationship between men and monkies. :roll:

  5. #35
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    It's easy, really. God just used sub-space to make enough room for the animals. Each stall door was a portal do a large habitat that could contain the animal(s).

  6. #36
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  7. #37
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    Exactly. He reversed the polarity to lock the doors.

  8. #38
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    "...[4" tall] 210 million-year-old Morganucodon (or Morgie, for short) is no mere rodent, but the ancestor of today's more than 5,000 species of mammals, including humans..."
    http://www.smithsonianmag.si.edu/smi...ov03/mall.html

  9. #39
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    The human race is descended from rodents. That explains a lot.

  10. #40
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    Maybe, maybe not; article says "oldest known mammal".

  11. #41
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    I've followed this thread and wonder -- why is it that only in the US is this evolution thing an issue?

    I brought this up before, in another thread. But I don't see the biology students I met from countries that are ostensibly more "religious" -- a lot of them in the Middle East (where there are official state religions) but some from places like Mexico -- start carrying on about baises against religion. Nor did I see the students who weren't biology majors do it.

    I will say it again, for the benefit of those who don't get it: religion and science are two different things. They are two different tools. You would not use a srewdriver to hammer nails, nor would you use a hammer for brain surgery. Right tool for the right job.

    If I want to talk about morality, there is a place for faith in that. That is one reason most people on Earth have faiths and religions and such. (It is also a darn good tool for making your people different from other people and binding them together).

    But if I want to talk about how my body works and why, where the light in my watch comes from, and why Dolphins breathe air, then that is where science enters. No Gods allowed. He only muddles the problem and thus far has offered precious little in the way of useful, predictable, duplicable information.

    Darn it, I am one who does recognize the role of faith in people's lives. But if your faith is so strong, why do you need a scientist to validate it? Orthodox Jews are pretty religious people and folow scripture pretty closely, but they aren't complaining about the New York City schools' discussions of evolution.

  12. #42
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    ...Right tool for the right job...
    What tool explains consciousness?

  13. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Emspak
    I've followed this thread and wonder -- why is it that only in the US is this evolution thing an issue?
    It's appearing in the UK now too, there have been a few reports in the press. The latest - the Guardian newspaper is holding what it calls a 'one-day event' on 1st December in London called "Creationism: Science versus faith in schools". Speakers include Professor Steve Jones, Professor Russell Stannard and Tim Radford, who is the science editor of the Guardian.

    On a related note - we spent last Saturday afternoon at Down House in Kent, where Charles Darwin lived from 1842-82. He wrote On the origin of species there.

    It's so peaceful there, just outside a small village. Quiet, surrounded by woods and fields with sheep in them. Such a contrast to the arguments that have resulted from the publication of that book.

    Carolyn

  14. #44
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    I read a really good book The Bridge of Life by Somebody Sinnot. He reconciles Science with Religion. Science sometimes lacks beauty, while religionists pay pass too quickly over knowledge. Another good book is the Destiny of Man.

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