If you live in Ontario, you’ll have noticed the HUGE attention devote the absolutely dumb-assed proposal made yesterday by John Tory, leader of the Ontario Progressive Conservative party, who suggestedthat the mind-numbingly stupid idea of creationism should be taught along side the scientific fact of evolution in Ontario public schools. It’s all a part of Mr. Tory’s ridiculous idea of “faith-based schools”.
Now I wont go into the details, since they’re widely covered elsewhere, but I will say this: if you live in Ontario and can vote, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE vote for the Liberal member in your riding. Even if you don’t generally support the Liberals, just do so this time to avoid splitting the vote and getting this creationist (or, at the very least, creationist supporter) elected.
This isn’t even a religious issue. We all know that I am a dyed-in-the-wool atheist, but that is beside the point. Evolution is a scientific fact, and thus, should be taught this way in our schools, the same way we teach other facts, such as the fact that hydrogen is the lightest chemical element, or that time is a relativistic, rather than absolute quantity.
Let’s say it together:
Evolution is a fact; it is supported by a vast amount of evidence. All living things have evolved, over billions of years, from a single common ancestor. End of story.
We teach facts here in Ontario. We should not make ANY allowances for the deluded few who honestly believe that the 4.5 billion year old earth is, in reality, 6000 years old (or thereabouts), that the earth was once totally covered in water (despite the 8848 metre peak of Everest being far, far too high to cover with the available water on this planet or in its atmosphere), or that human beings once lived side by side with dinosaurs.
This is the 21st century, folks. Wake up, already. Yes, there are people who believe all of this crap. I have no problem telling our children that these idiots exist, so long as we preface that discussion with the statement that these beliefs are false; unfortunately, while we all (rightly) recognize that classical Greek mythology isn’t literally true, too many of us are deluded into thinking that the stories told by the Abrahamaic religions are. For this reason, if we’re going to teach our children that these creationist morons exist, we (unfortunately) also need to tell them that these beliefs are simply false. So teach creationism in religion class if you must, but make sure you also teach the FACT of evolution.
We don’t make allowances for those who believe the truth of The Protocols of the Elders of Zion; we don’t make allowances for those who believe that alchemy is true, or that the earth is flat, or that 2 + 2 = 5. All of these things are simply false (or, in the case of The Elders…, simple lies born of out and out hatred…born itself of religion, of course). We don’t teach our children these things, except as examples of the ridiculous things some people will believe.
Creationism deserves precisely the same treatment.
Please, oh please, don’t vote for John Tory. If you hate the Liberal health tax, so be it. That will cost you a couple hundred a year. Teaching creationism in schools will cost you your children’s intelligence. Vote strategically; do whatever you have to do to keep John “creationism” Tory out of our schools.