Author: Jonathan Witt
An NAS Scientist Breaks Ranks: Urges Kansas to Teach the Controversy over Neo-Darwinism
National Academy of Sciences member Philip Skell has written an open letter to Kansas urging the state to teach the scientific controversy over Neo-Darwinism. As the letter makes clear, he believes the weaknesses in the theory are substantial and relevant. NAS members are elected in recognition of their distinguished and continuing achievements in original research; election to the Academy is considered one of the highest honors accorded a scientist.
A Blogger Asks: Is Intelligent Design Science?
Discovery Institute isn’t calling for states to mandate the teaching of intelligent design in the science classes of our public education system, but neither should a biology teacher be forbidden to discuss it if she so chooses. One blogger’s intellectual journey through the writings of Discovery Institute senior fellow Stephen Meyer offers an engaging explanation of why:
Kansas Scarecrow Beginning to Show its Straw
An essay of mine ran in today’s Kansas City Star. It begins: It seems the Darwinists in Kansas are living in the past. Not the past of, say, the fossil record. The history written there tells of the abrupt appearance of major animal forms, nothing like the gradually branching tree of life that Darwin envisioned. The past that some evolutionists are living in, rather, is the Kansas science curriculum battle of 1999.
A Textbook Case of Junk Science
According to a recent Prentice Hall biology textbook, a few centuries ago ‘very light-skinned’ people, shipwrecked on a tropical island, became “dark-skinned” after “many years under the tropical sun.” But as Pamela R. Winnick at the Weekly Standard explains, this is nonsense, one of many examples of junk science in our high school science textbooks: There’s lots that’s puzzling about the science textbooks used in American classrooms. A sloppy way with facts, a preference for the politically correct over the scientifically sound, and sheer faddism characterize their content. It’s as if their authors had decided above all not to expose students to the intellectual rigor that is the lifeblood of science.
Evolution: A Word We Can All Love
According to Neo-Darwinism, once the first lusty cell leapt onto the stage of the world, purely impersonal, material processes reigned — a blind watchmaker and less than blind. It was a mindless mechanism. This is quite different from the teleological evolution that some, including the Catholic Church, have considered a possibility. Darwininian evolution possesses no distant goal nor is man the twinkle in the eye of any god.