Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Reprimand the Creationists!

According to the NCSE, the Tennessee Senate has passed SB 893, which encourages teachers to present the "scientific strengths and scientific weaknesses" of "controversial" topics such as "biological evolution, the chemical origins of life, global warming, and human cloning."  This is thinly veiled legislation to promote the teaching of "alternative theories" like Creationism and Intelligent Design.  We will talk about the demerits of pseudoscience later.  For now, let's consider what would happen if a national REPRIMAND/Inequality law existed?  

Promoting religious beliefs in public schools is a clear violation of the Separation of Church and State, and you would think this would be enough of an argument to stop proponents of teaching religious dogma in public schools.  Even the briefest perusal of the principles of Intelligent Design make it clear that this is merely pseudoscientific wool on the wolf, but direct appeals to the public under the guise of science continue to lend legitimacy to anti-science legislation like the "monkey bill" in Tennessee.   

When a law inserts issues that belong in the church into the public schools, only a small portion of the public (namely, school children) are being subjected to this invasive legislation.  The REPRIMAND/Inequality law would require that Tennessee SB 893 have an equivalent provision in exchange.  For example, all houses of worship in Tennessee must give up their non-profit and tax-exempt (i.e. 501c3) status and be subject to all state laws regulating businesses.   

We can't reason with people who, by their very nature, do not want to listen to it.  Our political climate is about at the point where we can't stop people from promoting invasive or repressive laws by writing petitions and op-eds either.  The only solution seems to be to strike back in kind and use their own kinds of laws against them.  Please share with your lawmakers that "an eye for an eye" is likely to be the only way to stop the Conservative warpath to social ruin.

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