The debate is raging right now over weather or not the concept of “Intelligent Design” (formerly known in its more controversial and religiously-based form as “creationism”) should be taught in science classes around the nation. My knee-jerk reaction is to shout at the top of my lungs how ridiculously stupid an idea that is. It’s like reverting back to the idea that the word is flat simply because we believe it to be so, even though there is a preponderance of evidence to the contrary. How freaking stupid!
But I try not to react that way. At least, not in public. It still makes me really, really angry, though. So angry, in fact, that I began to wonder what it is about this debate that makes me so insanely pissed? And this morning, I figured it out.
People who support intelligent design say that it ought to be taught to our nation’s children because it is a widely recognized theory. However, it is a theory recognized only by people of certain religious sects and is has no scientific basis. It exists solely on the strength of its believers’ faith.
Supporters say that teaching “Intelligent Design” is simply teaching another theory. It is not part of any agenda to indoctrinate our nation’s children into a set of religious beliefs. (Here’s the part where I get pissed.) It just so happens that this theory comes from religion and is solely supported by religious faith. Face it, people who are atheist, for example, don’t believe it. People who are Shinto don’t believe it. People who belong to any of hundreds of other religions don’t believe it. Other faiths have their own ideas about creation and, though many of them are similar, they are by no means all the same. And unfortunately for them, they have not declared their “beliefs” to be “theories.” If they had, perhaps their beliefs could be taught in school as well. (Because apparently all you have to do to transition between “belief” and “theory” is say it. “I now declare my beliefs to be a theory. Therefore, I no longer believe Elvis was abducted by aliens. I theorize it. Therefore, it ought to be taught in schools.”)
But that’s the thing…they're not. No one’s interested in pushing the Native American creation story into mainstream American school curricula. Nobody has suggested it. Why? My guess is that it’s because they (and by “they” I mean the creationists) don’t believe it. So here we are…creationists can push their beliefs (that not everybody else believes), I mean theories, into the mainstream curriculum but nobody else can. And why? Simply because there are more of them. More Christians. Pardon my Freedom-eeze (get it? "Pardon my French?") but what a crock of shit.
Coming soon: Jesus walks on water in Physics class.
P.S. Don’t they already teach classes that cover “Intelligent Design?” I thought they called them "Anthropology" classes. Oh yeah….and they’re electives.