Inherit the (Dust in the ) Wind?

So the ACLU (that would be, the Anti-Christian Liberals Union) are representing a handful of parents upset because a Pennsylvania high school is actually allowing people to think by including the mention of “intelligent design” as part of the science curriculum.

Ironic, isn’t it? The ACLU claims (at least according to their name) to defend our civil rights, free speech being one of the big ones. Here, however, they are essentially arguing for censorship. Acknowledging “intelligent design” as a theory could apparently be damaging to young minds, and teenage students need to be protected from any notion that there may indeed be a God, or at least some kind of other-worldly intelligence. Children apparently have the Constitutional right to learn about alternative lifestyles, birth control and the right to an abortion. However, they need to be protected from the concept of “intelligent design.”

At first my assumption was that these parents and the ACLU are afraid of religion, because they are raising the mythological “Constitutional separation of church and state.” However, I don’t think it’s necessarily religion that they are afraid of; I think the key word here is intelligent. They are simply afraid that these High School students may learn to think on their own, and so the ACLU needs to protect their Constitutional right to ignorance. (What amendment was that?)

I could possibly agree, if the issue was teaching Creationism only; that would be just as improper as teaching solely Darwinism. The truth, as they say, will out; that is, if you give opposing viewpoints a chance. By avoiding confrontation, and presenting only one side of an issue, the truth doesn’t get a chance. That’s censorship.

Of course, what these people really may be afraid of is the radical right, and there they may actually have a point. The radical righters, who would also impose censorship if they had a chance, are often not the best people to represent intelligence.

What really cracked me up was a CNN story (which they attribute to Rueters), which stated, “They also argue that intelligent design is unscientific and has no place in a science curriculum.” So, now the courts are going to decided what is scientific? I’ve dealt with the courts enough to know they have a hard enough time trying to decide what the law is, much less what is “scientific.” (Is there a jury instruction for that?)

I am afraid that no matter which way the court rules on this case, truth will lose, because the real problem has nothing to do with the issues being debated. The real problem is one of categories. It seems that both sides, in true modern, rationalistic fashion, have taken for granted that science is something that must be kept separate from philosophy, so they are debating in which category ID should fall. It’s ridiculous. Science has always had a philosophical component, whether scientists care to admit it or not.

How you approach any study depends on your worldview, as does how data is interpreted. The fact that someone becomes a scientist is a result of their worldview. The fact that someone’s worldview doesn’t include a belief in God does not mean their approach to science is not tied to a philosophy. Again, the whole thing is ridiculous. However, a modernistic worldview (again, a philosophy) believes – wrongly – that you can isolate “science” from anything else.

In perhaps two or three generations, I expect that the impact of post-modernism and advances in scientific discovery will change how everyone views science. And, maybe by then someone will have figured out that freedom from religion is really not in the Bill of Rights, and that all of this arguing has just been a waste of time. Or, maybe not. But, by then we’ll probably all be dust in the wind, scientifically speaking.

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