The New York Times got the preview story wrong, and the Washington Post editorial writer probably was too rushed to question the charges of "creationism" coming from the National Center for Science Education, the Darwin-only lobby. So this week's important decisions by the Texas Board of Education (TBOE) on how to teach evolution were predicated in the media by the big question of whether teachers should provide both "strengths and weaknesses" of Darwin's theory. Those words might sound benign, readers were told, but they really are "code words" (take the press' word for it) for creationism and religion.Boy, it sure would be nice if he had provided the links to those editorials. You know, like most people do in blogs. So...I have to go get them myself. The NYT headline was "Defeat and Some Success for Texas Evolution Foes" while the WaPo's headline read: "Texas education board approves science standards", which is closer to the mark but not quite correct. It is possible that the "critical evaluation" language might allow for some creationism in the schools but the reverse is equally true—that teachers will simply say that, under critical evaluation, the theories of modern science hold up and that, under critical evaluation, the tenets of ID and creationism, do not. I am, perhaps being overly optimistic in this approach but, like Kenneth Miller, think that students ought to critically examine all scientific theories. Creationism tends to creep in when teachers and students DON'T critically examine all theories. Then Chapman writes this:
Once again the NCSE was too-smart-by-half. It ran blogs making fun of religion, while organizing public speakers who gave fulsome testimony to their Christian faith and how compatible it is with "evolution" (meaning Darwinian evolution). To the purists like Richard Dawkins and P.Z. Myers it probably makes them look like toadies.Not quite. The NCSE's Josh Rosenau live-blogged the meetings from his own site. In fact, from the NCSE page, you find this:
Detailed, candid, and often uninhibited running commentary on the proceedings is available on a number of blogs: Texas Citizens for Science's Steven Schafersman is blogging and posting photographs on the Houston Chronicle's Evo.Sphere blog, the Texas Freedom Network is blogging on its TFN Insider blog, and NCSE's Joshua Rosenau is blogging on his personal blog, Thoughts from Kansas (hosted by ScienceBlogs). For those wanting to get their information from the horse's mouth, minutes and audio recordings of the board meeting will be available on the Texas Education Agency's website. NCSE's previous reports on events in Texas are available on-line, and of course NCSE will continue to monitor the situation as well as to assist those defending the teaching of evolution in the Lone Star State.The NCSE didn't run a blog about the meetings. Even Josh Rosenau's blog is hosted by someone else. That some of the writers of these blogs do not support religion has nothing to do with the NCSE. Eugenie Scott's testimony was perfectly appropriate at the hearings, as was Josh Rosenau's.
Additionally, Chapman throws a nasty, veiled insult about Christians that support evolution that is mean-spirited and offensive. Once again, the DI bloviates and, once again, doesn't get it quite right. And they want us to take them seriously?