1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

General News Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controversial

Discussion in 'Current Events, World News, & LGBT News' started by GeeLee, Mar 17, 2016.

  1. GeeLee

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2013
    Messages:
    1,442
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Somewhere
    Gender:
    Male
    Sexual Orientation:
    Gay
    Out Status:
    Not out at all
    It's only controversial if your answer to every science question is "God did it" or you've taken Motorhead's song of the same name literally.
     
    #1 GeeLee, Mar 17, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2016
  2. Austin

    Full Member

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2008
    Messages:
    3,172
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    Gender:
    Male
    Gender Pronoun:
    He
    Sexual Orientation:
    Gay
    Out Status:
    Out to everyone
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    But it has been directly observed via fossils... Anyway, science always teaches what we know now. We will never know everything. A science book should teach information based on the scientific consensus of the time, which is that natural selection explains the diversity of life. No need for disclaimers.
     
    #2 Austin, Mar 17, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2016
  3. Argentwing

    Full Member

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2012
    Messages:
    6,682
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Southern FL
    Gender:
    Male
    Gender Pronoun:
    He
    Sexual Orientation:
    Bisexual
    Out Status:
    Some people
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    ... which were placed there by God/Satan to test our faith in the Bible!

    There is no pleasing some people. The ones who say "it's only a theory" fail to realize that the concept of cells making up living things is also a theory, and we can see them live and in action with a microscope. The theory of relativity is "just a theory" but has also been proven time and time again for decades in tons of experiments.

    I don't think the disclaimer is a fully honest admonition for the students to think critically about the issue. To me it seems more aimed at getting them to doubt science in general where it defies religion than the specific facts in question.
     
    #3 Argentwing, Mar 17, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2016
  4. BradThePug

    Full Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2011
    Messages:
    6,536
    Likes Received:
    271
    Location:
    Northeast Ohio
    Gender:
    Genderqueer
    Gender Pronoun:
    He
    Sexual Orientation:
    Bisexual
    Out Status:
    Out to everyone
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    I can't say I'm surprised. It is Alabama after all.
     
  5. Austin

    Full Member

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2008
    Messages:
    3,172
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    Gender:
    Male
    Gender Pronoun:
    He
    Sexual Orientation:
    Gay
    Out Status:
    Out to everyone
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    Funny thing.... My 4th grade teacher at a Lutheran school used to say fossils were put there by God to "make things interesting" for us. I guess people actually believe that. I mean, it is possible, but logic tells me a God worth worshiping would not play petty tricks on his creation.
     
  6. Eye Shine

    Full Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2013
    Messages:
    228
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Southern California
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    That's unnecessary. It's a theory not a law. Although I do believe with the theory of evolution.
     
  7. baconpox

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2014
    Messages:
    964
    Likes Received:
    1
    Gender:
    Male (trans*)
    Gender Pronoun:
    He
    Sexual Orientation:
    Bisexual
    Out Status:
    Out to everyone
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    I don't see anything wrong with that. While I am of the belief that evolution is real and should be taught in schools, what hurt can disclaiming do? It's better for kids to come into their own opinions and if they want to believe in creationism, that's their life.
     
  8. Summer Rose

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2013
    Messages:
    236
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    A field
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    In science, a "theory" is an idea with weight to it; evolution is something that can be observed, "god" is not. There's nothing "controversial" about science, unless you're using religion to control and sway uninformed masses.'

    Alabama is a joke, and a bad one at that.
     
  9. Kira

    Full Member

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2014
    Messages:
    1,623
    Likes Received:
    16
    Location:
    Georgia
    Gender:
    Female
    Gender Pronoun:
    She
    Sexual Orientation:
    Lesbian
    Out Status:
    Some people
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    Disclaimer: God is controversial, and has literally no supporting scientific evidence whatsoever
    If we're talking about scientific thinking however, it's supposed to be a science book anyway.

    ...But the fundies would flip their shit if they saw that, wouldn't they? :lol:
     
  10. YermanTom

    Full Member

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2014
    Messages:
    731
    Likes Received:
    36
    Location:
    Co Wicklow Ireland
    Gender:
    Male
    Gender Pronoun:
    He
    Sexual Orientation:
    Gay
    Out Status:
    Out to everyone
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    WTF. :roflmao:


    I think deluded theme park owners (Ken Ham et al) have too much time on their hands!
     
  11. BisexualQueen

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2015
    Messages:
    71
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Virginia
    Gender:
    Female
    Sexual Orientation:
    Bisexual
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    Okay so my opinion is not the popular one, but I like the disclaimer that evolution (in a large scale) has not been directly observed. I don't agree that it should be labeled controversial, but as someone who believes in God and creationism it's nice to know that people still recognize other's religions as possibilities.
     
  12. SHIELDAgentAlex

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2015
    Messages:
    136
    Likes Received:
    1
    Location:
    Saint Louis, Missouri
    Gender:
    Male
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    I see no issue here. It's a controversial topic, after all.
     
  13. greatwhale

    Full Member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2013
    Messages:
    6,582
    Likes Received:
    411
    Location:
    Montreal
    Gender:
    Male
    Gender Pronoun:
    He
    Sexual Orientation:
    Gay
    Out Status:
    Out to everyone
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    The controversy has nothing to do with the validity of the science...it is a direct attack on the validity of science.
     
    #13 greatwhale, Mar 18, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2016
  14. Chiroptera

    Admin Team Full Member

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2014
    Messages:
    2,348
    Likes Received:
    1,181
    Location:
    Brazil
    Gender:
    Male
    Sexual Orientation:
    Bisexual
    Out Status:
    Out to everyone
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    I know you aren't speaking against evolution, but please allow me to answer to your post to deconstruct some misconceptions.
    Introduction:

    First of all, evolution isn't a matter of belief or not. It is there, and it has numerous proofs. Fossils are just a popular example, but we have many others (genetic and morfologic comparisons, the artificial selection to create new dog breeds, etc.).

    Evolution is the pillar of all biology, and it is a really solid pillar. Everything we know about biology today makes sense only because of evolution. If someone presents proof that evolution is a lie, that would change everything. And, contrary to what some think, the scientists aren't trying to protect evolution at all costs. If someone disproves evolution, that person would, at the very least, receive a prize and, probably, a large amount of money (that is unlikely, though, considering what we know about evolution). So this conspiration theory that the scientists are trying to hide the flaws in evolution is simply ridiculous.

    The Golden Question
    About theories: If evolution is that solid, then why it isn't the "Law of Evolution", like the Laws of Newton? Why is it still a theory?

    Colloquially, the word "theory" is used banally. Like: "Hmm, i have the theory that the person who killed the lady was the butler!" . "Theory", normally, is used to say something without any basis, a guess.

    Scientifically, theory is a really strong confirmation of an hypothesis.

    How this works (simplification)

    When you try to explain something, you create an hypothesis, and, necessarily, it can be tested (if i say that there is an invisible and undetectable box around the moon, that isn't an hypotesis, as it can't be tested).

    We then submit that hypotesis to tests, trying to "break it". If that hypotesis continues to explain the phenomena we are studying, even after the tests, then we can call that a theory.

    When Darwin suggested evolution, it was an hypothesis. Only after the proofs that we acquired it was elevated to "theory". So it isn't something like: "Oh, let's create something random and call it a theory". There is a process involved, with lots of research.

    Why it isn't called Law of Evolution?

    Pratically: Laws are like generalizations. Chemistry, physics and maths are exact sciences. Biology isn't. Even if evolution is a fact, we avoid to call it a "law", because it may have exceptions, or details that vary.

    Historically: In the past, many scientists tried to find new laws, to explain nature in a inquestionable way. After some time, we realized that nature isn't an exact science, like i said, and thus, it isn't really accurate to create immutable explanations, as we are always discovering new things to improve them. Thus, the term "law" is something that is hard to be applied, because science isn't immutable.

    And, even in exact sciences, we don't see many people using the term "law" to describe new ideas, nowadays, for the reasons i mentioned. Thus, we have hypotesis that, after being explained and proved, become "theories". Almost all so-called laws we have were created in the past.

    Flawed Laws

    It is important to remember, also, that laws aren't infallible. For example, the "Law of use and disuse", of Lamarck, was already disproved.

    Ok, so what we have today, in evolution?


    Basically, we have the fact of evolution (the living beings change with time), that has been observed (indirectly, or in some bacterias, like i said) and proven. And we have the evolution theories, that try to explain how evolution works.

    In resume: We know that living things change with time. We have theories that explain how that occurs. We have natural selection, genetic drift, epigenetics, etc., that explain why and how life changes.

    If i drop a pen, it will fall (considering that i'm on Earth). We have many theories involved on the phenomena, that explain why and how it falls. It is the same principle.

    It is only controversial if we simply ignore everything that has been studied and proved (and that, of course, would be absurd). Evolution is there, and to ignore it, we need to ignore everything else we know about biology.
     
  15. HM03

    Full Member

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2013
    Messages:
    2,471
    Likes Received:
    473
    Location:
    Pergatory
    Gender:
    Male
    Gender Pronoun:
    He
    Sexual Orientation:
    Gay
    Out Status:
    Some people
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    Thank you! Definitely couldn't of said it better myself :slight_smile:
     
  16. Chiroptera

    Admin Team Full Member

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2014
    Messages:
    2,348
    Likes Received:
    1,181
    Location:
    Brazil
    Gender:
    Male
    Sexual Orientation:
    Bisexual
    Out Status:
    Out to everyone
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    ^

    My pleasure :slight_smile:
     
  17. Euler

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2015
    Messages:
    1,061
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    Northern Europe
    Gender:
    Male
    Gender Pronoun:
    He
    Sexual Orientation:
    Questioning
    Out Status:
    A few people
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    It's controversial only in the same sense as the Obama's country of birth is controversial. Those who claim that evolution is not true have no scientific evidence to back up their claim just as the birthers have absolutely zero evidence to about Obama being born outside the US.

    ---------- Post added 18th Mar 2016 at 11:41 PM ----------

    We haven't directly observed black holes either but they are considered a fact none-the-less. Sometimes strong indirect evidence is as good as direct evidence.

    ---------- Post added 18th Mar 2016 at 11:46 PM ----------

    About scientific laws. They are just theories too that are considered to be sufficiently strong and exploratory to be called laws. The Newtonian Law of Motion is not actually true. It's just a very close approximation of the nature in speeds much lower than the speed of light. The current scientific consensus is that the special and general theories of relativity are the "true" description of the motion in the universe although those too break down at the quantum level.
     
  18. Libertino

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2016
    Messages:
    1,195
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    This Side of the Enlightenment
    Gender:
    Male
    Gender Pronoun:
    He
    Sexual Orientation:
    Other
    Out Status:
    Some people
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    Any time I hear that argument, I think "man, you're really reaching". If your faith is so threatened by science that you have to come up with "God is tricking us" to explain the existence of fossils, maybe you need to re-examine the purpose of your faith and what it actually claims as fact.

    As per the OP, I don't find anything terribly wrong with a disclaimer, it doesn't hurt anything, though it just doesn't seem entirely necessary to me. IIRC, my 8th grade science teacher gave a disclaimer before we studied evolution. It was more along the lines of "everyone has different beliefs about how the world came to be, etc." This is a hell of a lot better than insisting creationism be taught in science class. If this is what it takes to placate fundies, consider it a good thing.
     
    #18 Libertino, Mar 18, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2016
  19. Tritri

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2014
    Messages:
    319
    Likes Received:
    9
    Location:
    Nebraska, USA
    Gender:
    Male
    Gender Pronoun:
    He
    Sexual Orientation:
    Gay
    Out Status:
    Some people
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    Evolution is controversial among the general public, but not the scientific community. I'd like science students to be aware of the fact that there are people out there who do not accept evolution, but they should not be given equal credibility.
     
  20. blindstorm

    Regular Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2016
    Messages:
    22
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Arkansas
    Gender:
    Male (trans*)
    Sexual Orientation:
    Gay
    Out Status:
    Some people
    Re: Alabama biology textbooks will include a disclaimer saying evolution is controver

    I couldn't agree more. I attend a college that's directly across the street from a Baptist-affiliated private university that refuses to teach evolution in their biology classes. You can actually graduate from there with a degree in biology without ever being taught about evolution. The biology instructors on my campus make sure to note that there are people who don't believe in the theory, but that doesn't affect its validity.

    I suppose its controversial to students and their parents, particularly where I live (Southern US). But it's important that people who want to enter biological fields be aware of this. I can't imagine learning from a program that cuts something as fundamental as evolution out of the curriculum.
     
    #20 blindstorm, Mar 18, 2016
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2016