Monday, April 23, 2012

The "Monkey Trial" is Back

The Tennessee legislature, over the objections of the scientific community, Monday passed the "Monkey Bill," reminiscent of the Scopes Monkey Trial of 1925. The "Monkey Bill" protects the rights of public school teachers who want to put ''creation science'' and challenges to climate change in the classroom as subjects for debate.

We offer assistance in keeping sound science education in Tennessee and other locations, using our expertise on hierarchies.

Our research has shown that when science teachers and scientists suggest that non-Christian creation stories be added to the science curriculum, creationists back away from their demands to include their creation story. This strategy works because people who place themselves or their beliefs on top of a hierarchy cannot tolerate others as equals.

Here's some examples of creation stories from Tennessee's residents :

American Indians – Chickasaw, Quapaw, Shawnee, Koasati, Yuchi, and Cherokee tribes – have inhabited Tennessee for thousands of years, and their creation stories have been told on what is now Tennessee soil long before the first white settlers brought the Christian story less than three hundred years ago.

The Muslim creation story from the Quran has many of the same components as the Christian version. A class discussion that encourages students to compare and contrast the two interpretations could be a stimulating exercise in critical thinking.

If Creationists support the inclusion of all creation stories equally, then their claims of providing "critical thinking," and "discussions of strengths and weaknesses" are true. If Creationists push for the Christian creation story as the only alternative to evolution, they expose to a wide audience their real motives of building a hierarchy with only themselves on top.