back to article Darwin Mr Popular again in Kansas

The battle for the hearts and minds of American school children took another turn this week. The infamous Kansas school board that voted to banish Darwin from the science curriculum has welcomed him back with open arms, spurning instead the language of intelligent design. The school board has voted, 6-4, to remove the language …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    they're here in the UK too

  2. Jack Ballans

    We want our kids to be stupid too

    So 4000 uneducated parents signed a petition to demand that their children be as badly educated as they were.

    Science is science and God is Religious Education...maybe they could teach ID in RE. Far out idea, I know.

  3. Lloyd

    A vote for Darwin

    Is a vote for common sense.

    Even the rednecks are starting to realise it, albeit slowly.

  4. regadpellagru

    poor Kansas kids

    Poor Kansas kids will learn politics the hard way:

    Darwin, then that stupidity of ID, then Darwin again. Sad.

    Maybe one day, some Voltaire follower will teach them that

    in fact, the justification behind ID is the tightness of the brain

    of those clerical twats, who can't figure out anything random


    On a larger note, that devious idea of ID is in fact something

    the catholics are also adopting, making a nice bed for them

    as well as any sects, as is rightly pointed out in this article.

    Rael and all of the other crazy cultists will have an easy

    time recruiting. Even sader ...

    Thanks Bush, your minions and Benito (from the 40s in Italy) 16 !

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Taken from ""

    "intelligent designr is a small band of people, passionately dedicated to removing science from science classes and replacing it with something else that we haven't quite figured out yet, but we can make it sound impressive nonetheless. "

    "removing science from science" says all you need to know.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What does this mean for us Pastafarians?!

    Being a Pastafarian this obviously throws a spanner in the works...

    One wonders if the beer volcano is still there?!? Are the "I'd really rather you didn'ts" fake..?


  7. Paul

    I get the feeling that the good old british sense of humor is behind this site, not ID.

  8. James

    But are they teaching the third option...

    ... of Pastafarianism

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Morality? In the science classroom?

    "ID supporters say the changes undermine families who reject the morality of materialism."

    What has morality got to do with the state of current scientific thinking? Surely this just proves the ID suporters are trying to impose their religion on all walks of life? Hooray for the separation of Church and State.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Intelligent Design belongs in Sunday School, Not Public Schools

    Teaching Darwinism assists in teaching the scientific method which provides actual social benefits by producing a populace capable of analytical thought. Teaching intelligent design, while it may reinforce one's faith, fails to teach analytical reasoning. Our public schools fail enough in their duty to produce a populace capable of functioning competently and competitively in our society, let alone in the even more competitive world society. Why handicap them further by requiring a curriculum that discourages reasoning and analysis in favor of a sophistry that seeks only to shield fundamentalist religious faith. True, devout faith requires no such shield.

    Teach our children math, reading, writing, and science in our public schools. Teach religion in our homes and churches.

  11. Neil


    Jack is right, Science is Science...."God's" and religion's are just for the hard of thinking, lets not confuse the two.

    You only have to look around the world today to see how this hard of thinking manifests itself in death and destruction, Do we really need more of this !

    It's more education, not indoctrination, that backward countries need to lift themselves out of their self inflicted morass.

    Archibald (UK)

  12. carey pridgeon

    avoiding another sputnik

    America's last major push against creationism started when Sputnik flew overhead, causing the government to realise that they had let the teaching of science slide, and putting them behind in scientific advances.

    If ID is allowed to get a significant foothold, then the future for america is bleak. A refusal to accept Darwin leads inexorably to a rejection of the scientific method, which in turn leads people to reject the kind of education required to make further advances.

    It is to be hoped that ID fails, not because religion should be rejected, but because the active seeking of blissful ignorance is bad for a population that wants to be competitive in the future.

    The main hurdle to be overcome is that a lot of people have garnered significant power over segments of the US population through pushing science as the enemy. This in itself is a hypocrytical aproach, since those very same people use the products of science, the internet, mobile phones, cars, electricity and so on, whilst simultaniously renouncing the very sector of society responsible for such advances.

  13. Tony Tronson

    God the Creator needs no support.

    He will do according to His will. As it is written.

    Amos 8:11-13

    11-Behold, the days come, saith the Lord GOD, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD:

    12-And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the LORD, and shall not find it.

    13-In that day shall the fair virgins and young men faint for thirst.

    Tony Tronson

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The theory of evolution

    Just want to point out that the theory of evolution is just that, a theory.

    Unfortunately, we preach it as fact, which is incredibly arrogant (especially when you look back and see what secular scientists have preached as fact in the past!).

  15. Greg Nelson

    The Trouble With Darwinianism

    According to the tenants of Intelligent Design the trouble with Darwinianism is the Devil is in the details. No doubt he's cavorting with innumerable angels on the head of a pin. The trouble for Intelligent Design advocates is Science is the bastard offspring of Christianity and, as are many bastards, science may be patricidal.

    "In the beginning the Word... " John 1:1. The Word is, (no, not grease), the word is Logos. Logos encapsulates an idea of God like reasoning. A transcendent reasoning that was irrefutable. From Logos Christianity came to counting the number of angels on a pin. Clarity of thought demanded rigor, elegance and robustness. So thinkers like Plato and Aristotle found a prominent place in the Church. And reasoning along the lines of a tautology like that expressed in the Elements of Euclid was bundled into the education of the top clerics. Patriarchical religions like Judaism, Islam and Christianity have always been a pissing match driven by the ravaging effects of severe testosterone poisoning. Christianity inadvertently married Greek tautological thought to my God is smarter than your God arguments and from that marriage out popped Science. While testosterone remains the most inimical pollutant threatening the biosphere, Intelligent Design advocates have Christianity itself to blame for the inception of Science in the Western World.

    Religion is a balm for the mind and a way to resolve conflicts. Civilization can be marked by the first burial rite. The conflict between the idea of immortality and the reality death can't be resolved. Conflicts that can't be resolved are commonly known as neuroses. Interpersonal conflicts in a tribe are resolved by the decree of a higher authority. Religions resolve neuroses. In the west as else where Christianity failed as an intertribal conflict resolution mechanism and so we had the Reformation. We tell one another stories. When we share in the belief system of one another's stories we form bonds. When an outsider challenges our shared delusions we attack. Beneath our stories is a torn mind. Of course we have the dawn of Science as a religion to look forward to.

  16. Chris

    Dear Tony,

    "Father Zeus has lopped the crowns of a thousand cities, true, and Zeus will lop still more--his power is too great."

    Homer, the Iliad.

    Look! More bronze age mythology for you to enjoy! You'd better start running!

  17. Felix Mayer

    Actually the Intelligent Designer was the FSM


  18. Clive Galway

    RE: Greg Nelson's post

    "Religion is [...] a way to resolve conflicts"

    Or start them.

    To my mind, no-one is mad enough to push "The Button" unless they :

    a) Are not of sound mind


    b) Are under the impression that they will be rewarded in the afterlife by their creator for smiting the unbelievers.

    And most countries with a nuclear capability have processes in place to make sure that people falling under (a) do not have access to said button - Except the USA of course :P

  19. Andrew

    Doing Away with Methaphysical Uncertainites

    To paraphrase the English philosopher Roger Scruton, if you want to do away with mataphysical uncertainties (that is to say you would like not to think), then you can adopt the religious (god forfend) stance.

  20. Mike Green

    Theory has a different meaning in science.

    In science, Theory means the best explanation we have for the observable events. Hence Theory of Relativity, Quantum theory et al. They have all been agreed on by a large majority of scientists that this is how the universe works given the observable data. If we find new data which suggests otherwise, the scientists will at first check the findings, over and over (Science isn't usually quick to change an idea) but it will accept them eventually if the new data stands up and start looking for explanations for the new data.

    Thus there is no real disagreement amongst the large majority of scientists that Evolution is how we all got here. The few which disagree are usually part of some religious backed organisations. Even today scientists are finding evolution in action. Bacteria are evolving to overcome anti-bacterial agents, animals are adapting to the changing climate (though a lot aren't quick enough). The evidence is overwhelmingly in favour of it at this time. If we found a moon which had 'GOD WAS HERE' in 100 mile high letters, then they might start thinking different, but ID is going to have to do better than just saying 'There's some controversy among scientists' because there really isn't. As soon as you say 'God did it' the brain shuts down. A thousand years ago we had no idea how electricity worked, but we didn't just say magic. We figured it out.

  21. Mike Stillion

    ID and God are NOT NOT NOT linked

    What's really fascinating: When Creationism was the established belief system, those that supported it fought HARD against those that believed in the new science of Darwinism, but creationism was eventually replaced by Darwinism anyway. Now Darwinism is the entrenched belief, the "common wisdom", and those who believe in Darwinism are fighting to prevent the next thing from replacing their beliefs! Whether it's I.D., which DOES explain what Darwinism does NOT explain, or some other idea, Darwinism WILL be replaced. To believe otherwise is to believe that we have all knowledge and wisdom right now, and that we cannot have any new wisdom or knowledge in the future.

    In other words, those who believe Darwinism and who are actively fighting (not just trying to refute, make no mistake) any new opinions to the contrary are progress-deficient. What are they going to do when they realize "the world isn't flat"?

  22. abdulghani

    darwins theory exposed


    darwins theory is just a theory not the fact.

    to prove his theory he has added missing links which is just an amagination.

    Darwin himself wrote in letter to his friend that theory of evolution helps him in classifying animals,birds etc..

    I hope everyone knows when did this idea came to Darwin.....

    it was when he saw two birds one with small beak and the other with the larger one, he concluded by observing the difference in beaks length that gradually the size of the beak has reduced in n number of years similarly man may have been evolved from apes.

    Lets see ... if this was true then the man should have developed on his body in so many years.

    come on , ponder over it,

    you will see the light og Lord the only Creator of Heavens and earth to whom we are certain to return.

    see His signs ponder over it and get guided to the true path of Monotheism.

  23. James Kirk

    Thou shalt not teach the children there is a ... intelligence?

    For a generation and more now some people who call themselves educators and scientists, have simply been ignoring or trying hard to explain away the mounting evidence against fables and theories built on Darwin's 19th century hypothesis. Rightly stated, there is a battle for the hearts and minds of children and adults alike. How willing are most of us the review what we have been taught as facts for years by the education community and listen to all the facts and arguments? Can we even get hold of the information we need, when "science teachers will no longer have to say that the central ideas of evolution are controversial in scientific circles".

    I wonder, are they even allowed to say that the central ideas evolution are controversial? Even the fact that there is controversy is being denied.

    Hopefully with all this forward and backward, some of these children would wizen up and realize that someone is trying to prevent them from receiving any information that might make them doubt Darwinism, and the reasons various forms of evolution has such a religious following. Hopefully this would prove to be very educational to some.

    In my opinion Darwinism is just another cult religion and wonderful crutch for various religious sects that fervently tries to uphold as "scientific" fact that there is no god, especially a God that claims creation as His. Yes, lawmakers, lawyers and educators, more than scientists are fighting for the minds and hearts of yet another generation posing to be objective and without any religious bias.

    For those convinced by scientific process that there must be design and intelligence involved, but still refuse to believe in the creator God, some other god, or anything else that would label them as religious crackpots,... well theres always the possibility of aliens, right?

  24. Graham Marsden

    Believe what you like but...

    ... to quote Philip K Dick: Reality is that which, when we cease to believe in it, still exists.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    To the person who said god can do whatever he wants:

    If this is true, obviously he wants evolution taught in the schools. If that's what the LORD wants, don't get in his way.

    To the person who said evolution is "just a theory":

    Gravity is "just a theory" too. Understand how scientists use terms before you bandy their words about. Evolution is a fact and all of the scientists who debate it are debating the specifics of how it happens, not the fact that it happens. The fossil record supports this with plenty of intermediary forms between different types of creatures, and you can pick up your science news headlines on any given day and find a steady stream of new discoveries that support the theory.

    To the person who says there is controversy over evolution:

    The problem is, the controversy is between scientists who clearly understand their evidence and religious folk who think science is Satanic and are trained to be willfully ignorant of anything which challenges their beliefs. You cannot have a debate between people who use skepticism and methodical planning to challenge their assumptions and people who use bronze age self-contradictory mythology to make all decisions for them.

  26. Ian Damage

    Religious Idiots?

    Its not just the Theory of Evolution and Darwinism that the religious nutbags want to demolish, but also basic spelling and grammar.

    Have a look for yourself on this very page. The ones with the worst spelling, punctuation and grammar skills, happen to also be the ones who are throwing their weight behind ID and Religion.

  27. Aubry Thonon


    Put simply:

    I'll allow the Church's right to teach ID in schools the day the Church agrees to teach Evolution in churches/synagogues/whatever.

    What was that? No, I didn't think they'd agree to it.

    Sorry, but I find that most religions are too dogmatic for my taste. I'll put my faith (I choose my words correclty) in science over theology any day... at least science prompts you to argue with it, not accept it blindly.

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    And there I was thinking that the good old US would slowly fade back to the Dark Ages and the technology they are developing to take over the world by force and fear would slowly get forgotten.

    For a moment there was some slight hope for peace on the planet.


  29. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Just a Theory

    There is gravity. Newton gave us a theory of gravity. This theory matches what we observe, both historically and in the present.

    Life has evolved; plants and animals in the past were different. Darwin gave us a theory which matches what we observe, both historically and present.

  30. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Well done, Ian Damage...

    I'm glad that someone else gets as depressed as I do about the extent to which correspondents (here, and elsewhere) lack basic spelling and grammar skills. If such writers had spent more time learning these skills at school, they might be more credible now. It's rather embarrassing when even journalists writing in mainstream daily newspapers demonstrate that they fail to understand even the basic rules. My pet hates are the use of "may" (permissive) when the writer means "might" (probabilistic), and the mismatching of singular nouns with plural forms of verb ("The team are...", "A newly-wed couple have...") and vice versa.

    Writing is supposed to convey precise meaning: improperly constructed, it doesn't.

  31. Lars

    factual error

    'The explanation of the "nature of science" has also been reworded. It is now described as the pursuit of rational explanations for things that happen in the Universe.'

    Not so. The new standards say nothing about "rational explanations". The wording is "natural explanations". Check it.

    The difference is significant.


  32. Lars

    speling & gramer of relijus peepl

    "Have a look for yourself on this very page. The ones with the worst spelling, punctuation and grammar skills, happen to also be the ones who are throwing their weight behind ID and Religion."

    Or at least, the ones who appear to have the worst spelling, punctuation and grammar skills also want to appear to be proponents of ID or religion.

  33. David Cantrell

    If I was intelligently designed ...

    ... then how come I turned out as an overweight geek who's going grey in his early thirties instead of as an Adonis?

    And how come my eyes are backwards, and I've got an appendix? Seems to me that if I really was designed, then the designer was either a retard or an utter bastard.

  34. Richard Russell

    Dotted tees and crossed eyes

    To the anonymous grammar critic: everyone has their favourite grammar peeve. Mine is the use of "less" for countable nouns.

    Yes, indeed, writing should express clear meaning but unfortunately language is not as precise as we imagine. The modal system, for example, is very fluid and has modified its meanings in recent years. "May" does indeed express probability, as does "might" (with little or no distinction). The act of requesting is a use that is made of that meaning, and both words can be used that way. Might I suggest you confer with a recent grammar book on the matter?

    Words such as "couple", though grammatically singular, can be thought of as referring to two people, just as "family can be singular or plural. I wouldn't get too worried about it if I were you.

    Judging by the name, Abdulghani may not (sic) be a native English speaker (apologies if that is not the case), but I would be far, far more concerned with the silliness he/she expresses, very clearly, despite the quality of the language.

  35. Leigh Anthony

    Cos we live in a material world...

    Life started as a random biochemical chain-reaction (we don't know how), but it has continued for millions of years. One of the more recent developments in this chain reaction is the human type of biochemical formation.

    This is fact and therefore there is no place for God or his morality in a scientific world or in the what we teach our children.

    Our brains and thus thoughts are just a part of this random biochemistry and its reactions with other equally random human-type biochemical formations.

    Our thoughts of what we want for dinner, our work, our love or hate, thoughts about children, partners, enemies are all just random bits of this vast, random, chain-reaction. It isn't possible to create meaning out of them any more than it is possible to create meaning out of random numbers.

    The acting out of our (random) thoughts is also just part of this chain reaction. Do I buy chocolate or vanilla ice-cream? Do I eat at McD or BK? Do I have sex or not? Do I gun down my classmates at school or not? Do I instigate genocide or get myself a drink?

    Certainly the human-type biochemical chain-reactions often destroy each other (or themselves), slightly before they would naturally terminate, but this doesn't matter - they are just a chance association of atoms with no more value than a rock. Those that are destroyed are obviously not "the fittest" and those that do the destroying are also naturally terminated within a few years anyway.

    In fact, the whole bio-chemical chain-reaction we call life will definitely terminate when the universe cools down (subject to the laws of thermodynamics), but probably long before then, as it destroys the local planetary environment which sustains it.

    Some parts of the biochemical chain-reaction react strongly against other parts of the chain-reaction who say that the origins of the chain-reaction are not what is currently believed. This was declared heresy and to protect critical thinking, politicians were called upon to suppress it. The State intervened to do so and replaced Science in its rightful place as Supreme Authority and there was great rejoicing.

    Actually, given that the whole event was just a random part of the random chain-reaction, it doesn't mean anything. In fact, given that everything we think and do is a result of a random process, absolutely nothing matters.

    ...which leads to the natural conclusion that its very important for our children to know this.

  36. Richard Russell

    or maybe not so

    I rather fear that Greg Nelson has a point, at least where evolution theory is concerned. A definite air of sanctity hangs over popular pronouncements on evolution, the ghost of Objective Truth lurks behind it, taken directly from Christianity. When people say, "evolution is a fact" they invest far more emotional imput than when they say, "conservation of energy is a fact", for example.

    It is unfortunate that when Darwin proposed his theory in public it happened in the context of a debate with the Church, a debate in which T.H. Huxley used Darwin as a platform for his own atheism (Darwin was not an atheist). Ever since, evoluton theory has been saddled with this anti-Church association, and atheists have used evolution theory to fight their battles, just as Huxley did.

    This is sad, because it is perfectly possible to be sceptical of evolution theory - especially of the overly preachy form in which we generally learn it - without invoking gods of any kind.

    To be clear about theory - there are facts, such as things-falling-down, and there is theory, such as the force of gravity, curved space, or graviton particles, offered to explain the fact. In biology, the fact is the diversity of living forms. Darwin's theory is really two theories, one on top of the other. One is that these forms evolved gradually over millions of years - this was already accepted when Darwin came along and did not necessarily contradict a God-driven world. The other is that of "natural selection", by which Darwin meant no active selection whatsoever: what happens happens. His genius lay in seeing that this action, combined with constant random variation, really could account for evolutionary change.

    On this point I must bow to the scientists. However, the populist version of evolution theory - "evolutionism" - has invested these theories with an implausible value, even moral worth, which they do not support. Thus the circular reasoning involved in concluding that our existing qualities have 'evolutionary value', and the intellectual dubiousness of sociobiology, not to mention the reification of "natural selection" and notions of evolutionary advance.

    Scientific theories get superseded when more information and better understanding make the old ones implausible. No doubt this will eventually happen to Darwinism, but not just yet. Nevertheless, we must maintain scientific detachment and look for weaknesses in the theory, aware that such a stance does NOT imply any support for ID or for any other form of supernatural activity.

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