Wednesday, June 27, 2012

“Many miles away Something crawls to the surface Of a dark Scottish loch” -Sting

This is almost painful to read. The Scotland Herald has a story on the arrival of school children from the great state of Louisiana who are being taught that the actual existence of the Loch Ness Monster is proof that evolution has never happened. Rachel Loxton reports:
Thousands of children in the southern state will receive publicly-funded vouchers for the next school year to attend private schools where Scotland's most famous mythological beast will be taught as a real living creature.

These private schools follow a fundamentalist curriculum including the Accelerated Christian Education (ACE) programme to teach controversial religious beliefs aimed at disproving evolution and proving creationism.
and a bit later:
One ACE textbook – Biology 1099, Accelerated Christian Education Inc – reads: "Are dinosaurs alive today? Scientists are becoming more convinced of their existence. Have you heard of the 'Loch Ness Monster' in Scotland? 'Nessie' for short has been recorded on sonar from a small submarine, described by eyewitnesses, and photographed by others. Nessie appears to be a plesiosaur."
The bit about the private schools getting vouchers is true. That is here. Salon.com did a piece on the ACE textbooks. They fill in the remainder of the above quote:
“Could a fish have developed into a dinosaur? As astonishing as it may seem, many evolutionists theorize that fish evolved into amphibians and amphibians into reptiles. This gradual change from fish to reptiles has no scientific basis. No transitional fossils have been or ever will be discovered because God created each type of fish, amphibian, and reptile as separate, unique animals. Any similarities that exist among them are due to the fact that one Master Craftsmen fashioned them all.”
I have written on the apologia textbooks before but these books seem to be every bit as bad. It is nothing short of astounding that the authors of the ACE textbooks, in their zeal to disprove evolution, have settled upon an animal for which No Credible Evidence Exists. It is not just bad science, it is cryptozoology of the worst sort. What is next? Evolution can't be true because of if it were, how would it produce the regular octopus and the Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus? Humans could not have evolved from lower ape forms because Bigfoot still roams the earth?

The second quote is just standard young earth creationist nonsense, continually perpetrated by Answers in Genesis and the like and has been rebutted so many times that the arguments can now reasonably be classified as lies.

Karl Giberson once said:
“Ken Ham and his Creation Museum in Petersburg, KY are becoming less relevant, as they speak for - and to - an increasingly smaller band of hyper-conservative biblical literalists. Ham's followers, ironically, are what (we've been warned about): a cult, with their own separate science.”
I have resisted calling young earth creationism a cult. Stories like this one make it increasingly difficult to do so.

3 comments:

  1. Wow, is right. I thought little could shock me but that is a doozy. I just grabbed the 1995 A Beka Book version of "Biology: God's Living Creation" and took a look. It is a Christian school textbook sometimes used for homeschoolers as well. Chapter 15 is entitle "Why I except the Genesis Record" and is about evolution. There is a note under the title: "The body of this chapter is the personal tesimony of Dr. John Raymond Hand, a physics teacher in Indiana. Although it was first published in booklet form in 1959, his essay, which has been newly edited for this volume, is still helpful to today's students of biology." The chapter is what you expect it might be and I don't think that the new edits did anything more than change some grammar and a few other cosmetic additions. The best they could do for their section on evolution is to have a physics teacher's writing from 1959 included? If this is what our children are being brought up to understand as good science they will vote for school board members who know absolutely nothing about science.

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  2. Yup. That A Beka book is the kind of thing that likely educated people like McLeroy and Jack Wu. We just start the cycle all over again.

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