Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Yup, They Asked It

Youtube has a video of the Miss America 2011 contestants in which they are asked whether or not evolution should be taught in public school. The results?

Some things that stood out in the answers:
  • Most contestants think that “all sides” should be taught, although I don't remember a single contestant using the phrase “intelligent design” in their answer.
  • Only three contestants that I heard seemed to understand the concept of “theory” or that evolution was rooted in science. Miss New Mexico stated that evolution was “based on science,” Miss South Dakota remarked that it was part of basic science and Miss California stated that it should be taught and that she was a science geek. Miss California is also the only contestant to mention human evolution, and did so in a positive way.
  • Almost all contestants equated evolution with a belief system and that all sides should be taught so people could decide “what to believe in.”
  • Only one contestant, Miss Alabama, came out against teaching evolution completely, stating that she didn't believe in it.
  • Miss Arkansas stated that she was never taught evolution.
Did the question make the slightest difference in the outcome? I doubt it, but it is something we will probably never know. What is clear is that public school science has a long, long way to go before it can turn out science-literate future Miss America contestants.

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