The battle for evolution in Scottish schools

Excellent article by my friend Jonny Scaramanga.

And rather disturbing that so much press coverage repeats one person’s description of the petition as atheist, when that person has been told often enough that our organisation is faith-neutral and, in its membership, faith-diverse., and all that the petition seeks is

official guidance to bar the presentation in Scottish publicly funded schools of separate creation and of Young Earth doctrines as viable alternatives to the established science of evolution, common descent, and deep time.

And that the person spreading this damaging misinformation about us is the Moderator-Elect of the free Church of Scotland, heir to the great Henry Drummond , who a century ago embraced evolution as evidence of God’s creativity, and warned against the God of the Gaps on whom today’s anti-evolutionists so heavily rely.

Leaving Fundamentalism

Tomorrow, the Scottish Parliament’s Petitions Committee will be hearing from members of the British Centre for Science Education (BCSE) and Scottish Secular Society (SSS). Earlier this year, the SSS started a petition urging the Scottish government issue guidance on the teaching of creationism in schools. In England and Wales, there is clear guidance that creationism and Intelligent Design are not valid scientific alternatives to the theory of evolution, and should not be taught as such. In Scotland, there is no equivalent document.

This is a problem, because as we’ve previously seen, there have been significant inroads by creationists in some Scottish schools. Fortunately in that case, there was a decisive win for science. But what that case showed was that creationism genuinely is an issue in Scotland, and it will continue to be so without clear guidance. So you might think that the SSS petition, backed by three…

View original post 1,339 more words

About Paul Braterman

Science writer, former chemistry professor; committee member British Centre for Science Education; board member and science adviser Scottish Secular Society; former member editorial board, Origins of Life, and associate, NASA Astrobiology Insitute; first popsci book, From Stars to Stalagmites 2012

Posted on November 10, 2014, in Accommodationism, Atheism, Creationism, Education, Religion, Scotland and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. Obviously, contradicting the facts is contradicting God. Believers ought to meditate this. If they don’t believe in God’s own creation, does not that make them atheists?

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    • An interesting idea. One 19th century (or older?) theological concept isthe two books, of Revelation and of Nature. And if you think they contradict each other, you’ve misinterpreted one OR the other. When I was a beiver, I regarded separate creationism and Young Earthism as blasphemous, since they would imply that God had lied in the Book of Nature; very much the same point that you are making.

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  1. Pingback: Keeping creationism out of Scottish schools; the long, long paper trail | Eat Your Brains Out; Exploring Science, Exposing Creationism

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