Thursday, February 07, 2008

AIBS argues for Non-Neutrality on Evolution

The American Insitute of Biological Sciences has a released a policy statement harshly condemning the actions of the Texas Education Agency with regard to the resigning of Christine Comer. They write:

According to a memo from TEA officials calling for Comer’s dismissal that was obtained by The Austin American-Statesman through the Texas Public Information Act, “Ms. Comer’s e-mail implies endorsement of the speaker and implies that TEA endorses the speaker’s position on a subject on which the agency must remain neutral.”

This is the rejoinder to that decision by AIBS president and SUNY Stony Brook professor Douglas Futuyma:

When it comes to science education, we absolutely cannot remain neutral on evolution. Evolution is the unifying principle of modern biology. Within biological science, the reality of evolution is not controversial. Creationism and its thinly veiled relative, ‘intelligent design,’ continue to pose a real threat to science education and the public understanding of science throughout the United States. It is the responsibility of science educators at all levels to stay well-informed, and to inform their students on the major principles in every area of science. With biology, evolution is the leading principle. We must remain vigilant.

He is correct. "Neutrality" in this instance was simply appeasement to the creation camp.

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