I saw a report on one of the network news shows last night talking about Intelligent Design vs. Evolution in schools. They took a poll and the question was worded something like “Would you be mad if Evolution was taught to your children in school?” and similarly for ID. The results were interesting from 2 perspectives.
Something like 64% said they were fine with Evolution being taught and 74% were OK with ID. At first this suprised me (well, not suprised since this isn’t news … more frustration) but there’s another possible explanation than the obvious. I think people who believe in Evolution are also more likely to be open to other ideas. Most people understand that evolution is a theory, therefore not a proven fact. However, from the interactions I’ve seen the hard-core Creationists are very exclusive of other ideas. They’re sensitive enough about the scientific grounds for their ideas that they want to make sure everyone else knows all other ideas are “just theories” as well. It’s kind of like an inferiority complex. These are the same people so well-tuned to reality they’re claiming the existence of a “war against Christianity” in the US.
The next part is the obvious frustration that about 35% of people would be upset at Evolution being taught. Ok, I can totally buy the “it’s not a proven fact – make that clear” argument. But, being that it is considered the best theory we have on the subject by the overwhelming majority of scientists, I’d say it at least warrants mentioning. Kids of these parents are going to grow up intellectually stunted. Whole generations of Americans could lose an entire 35% of it’s population being eligible for the fields of geology, biology, etc, etc.
Maybe next kids will be taught that babies are delivered by storks and to “just ignore those feelings you get in your pants.” Teen pregnancy would soar to all-new highs. Oh, wait… that’s already happened…
Lastly, I know I said there were only 2 parts, but this just keeps popping up into my head. Evidence is pretty clear on the issue that the more industrialized (ie: modern) a society becomes the less influence religion holds. This is true pretty much everywhere but the US. I’m desperately craving theories about why this is. Is it at least partially due to religion being such big business here? Throughout the ages many religions have been guilty of making lots of money, but has modern capitalism turned religion into even more of a business venture? Therefore lots of effort is spent keeping people on board? I don’t know… but remember kids: “it’s just a theory.”