Thursday, August 18, 2005

Teaching the controversy - gravitation and the law of unintended consequences

The Onion | Evangelical Scientists Refute Gravity With New 'Intelligent Falling' Theory

We need to teach the all the controversies.
.... The ECFR [Evangelical Center For Faith-Based Reasoning], in conjunction with the Christian Coalition and other Christian conservative action groups, is calling for public-school curriculums to give equal time to the Intelligent Falling theory. They insist they are not asking that the theory of gravity be banned from schools, but only that students be offered both sides of the issue 'so they can make an informed decision.'

'We just want the best possible education for Kansas' kids,' Burdett said.

Proponents of Intelligent Falling assert that the different theories used by secular physicists to explain gravity are not internally consistent. Even critics of Intelligent Falling admit that Einstein's ideas about gravity are mathematically irreconcilable with quantum mechanics. This fact, Intelligent Falling proponents say, proves that gravity is a theory in crisis.
When I was a child, I was taught a bizarre alternate world history where the 'Children's Crusade' was a good thing. That's what the state schools (almost all Catholic) taught in Quebec in the 1960s until the mid 1970s.

As a strategy this was not overly successful. Within 10 years the Catholic church had been swept from power (Quebec had been a quasi-theocratic state) and church attendance plummeted.

Evangelicals should worry a bit about their successes in teaching religion in science classes. They may discover the law of unintended consequences.

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