teaching evolution controversy debate on CNN

Here’s a five-minute debate:

I don’t have time to comment now, so I’ll just post the clip for now.

One Comment

  1. Kevin Currie
    Posted July 10, 2008 at 10:04 am | Permalink

    Miss Yost brings up WHAT SOUNDS LIKE a good point when she mentions that, “throughout history, science has has been challenged…” I am suprised, though, that her interlocutor (whose name I didn’t quite catch completely) did not pick up on why it fails in the context of the debate over what to teach in schools.

    Yes, scienctific theories – even firmly established ones – have been challenged throughout history. Indeed, it is no exagerration to say that science could not survive without challenging its theories: in a real sense, science has to challenge its theories to not only find out what is incorrect, but to get closer to what is correct.

    But what Miss Yost is not taking into account is that these theories are not best challenged IN SCHOOLS, but in labaratories, academies, and journals. The Wedge strategy – curiously similar to the strategy employed by the Holocaust denying IHR 15 years earlier – tries to do it the other way around. They try and convince the general public (a much less skeptical bunch, as they tend to lack the specialized knowledge) and then use that to infiltrate the popular press in order to claim that a “controversy” is afoot.

    But scientific theories are best challenged not by students in high school, but by scientists in laboratories. We would not, after all, expect high school students to be the deciders of whether Francis Bacon actually authored some Shakespeare plays, whether the Holocaust actually occured, whether global warming is scientifically accurate. Likewise, Miss Yost’s unrealistic assertion that the we “challenge science” in the classroom first, and the laboratories later, can be easily dismissed as backwards.

    And I did not think much of Miss Yost’s interlocutor. The badgering about whether Miss Yost is a young earth creationist seemed cocky and is, quite honestly, irrelevant. (Even if she were a YEC, she can still be expected to seperate personal beliefs from professionally-held positions.)

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