I’ve written before on how the creationism and intelligent design movement, and the discussions surrounding it in the United States, is quite the alien concept to me. With the very few things that I do know about biology, evolution and the scientific method that these proposed “theories” have absolutely no scientific merit whatsoever.
So I’m still amazed at how effective they have been, and still are, at spreading their disinformation. They have been especially effective with creating arguments that sound convincing, but when you take a closer look you find out that it’s just not supported by anything in science. In almost every single case it’s an argument/question that has already been dealt with by scientists.
This is the reason the following post on SkepticTV caught my attention. It also shows why it is important that organisations like the NCSE exist, and how important they are with helping teachers and schools in countering the nonsense:
As promised this is where I found out about the paintings from my last post. Steven Newton of the NCSE gave a talk about the above topic and whilst it does focus on one scientific concept I think it’s fair to say it can be loosely ascribed to all topics if the science denialism really does spread laterally. It also shows that creationism is much more wide spread in the states than some of us (myself included) would have realised. I know that there are a few creationist churches within modest driving distance of where I live, although I’m not aware of any of their kids challenging their teachers the way some do in the states.
With that being said lets get back to buisness. This talk is from May and it’s focus is the following:
What challenges do biology teachers face from creationists? How do you respond to students asking the “10 questions”? What are the different flavors of creationist belief? NCSE programs and policy director Steve Newton explores this and other issues before an audience of high school teachers from across the country.
The talk is about an hour and a half long and it’s been broken into 3 seperate chunks, each of which are below. I found it very interestined, especially the bits relating to the fact that no one challenges things like mass = force x acceleration.
EnjoyTeaching evolution in a climate of science denial, Part 1Teaching evolution in a climate of science denial, Part 2Teaching evolution in a climate of science denial, Part 3 (last)
After reading this, and watching the presentation, suddenly the arguments don’t sound so convincing anymore. And the very real annoyance scientists have with creationists becomes very understandable: