Once again I’ve read about Don McLeroy, idiot at large, subverting Texas state science standards for public schools with his own superstitious beliefs. For those not in the know, McLeroy is a creationist; he believes that the earth is about 6,000 years old, that snakes can talk, and that all species on the planet were within walking distance of Noah’s house. Does it get any dumber?
McLeroy is pushing for this “teach the controversy” bullshit regarding evolution; he wants the strengths and weaknesses taught in the classroom. This is religious-code for “poofgoddidit” as an alternative explanation. The problem is, of course, that there just aren’t any weaknesses to evolutionary theory as the best explanation for the diversity of life; in fact, the evidence is overwhelming from many fields outside of biology. According to Richard Dawkin’s site, McLeroy said that he thinks evolution is just an hypothesis; he must have missed that memo from about a century ago, the one that had biologists face-palming themselves with a big, noisy ‘duh!’.
Evolution is a fact; it is observable, can make predictions, and is of course testable. We use evolutionary theory for the creation of vaccines; we use it to treat cancer and HIV. Evolution works. QED.
Texas is a huge purchaser of school books, which is why this is such a big issue (other than the fact that a raving lunatic with no ability to understand science is head of a school board voting on science standards). Textbook manufacturers are likely to write their books based upon Texas standards, then other states will end up buy books which actually put evolutionary theory on the same level as wishful thinking. Sickening.
So I’d like to challenge good ol’ Don to cite a few of these weaknesses of evolutionary theory. Then I’d like to know why we don’t teach the strengths and weaknesses of the Standard Model from physics. Why not teach the controversy of Heliocentrism? And those damn Newtonians and their F=MA!