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Saturday, July 9, 2011

No intelligent design in science classes

So now two state representatives want creationism, aka intelligent design, taught in New Hampshire classrooms alongside evolution (July 3: “Creationism in schools is a bad idea”).

It is perfectly reasonable for public school classes on philosophy, history, comparative religion or literature to include the whole range of creation stories from cultures around the globe. These stories are interesting, imaginative and show the differences – and similarities – of human societies.

But none of these creation myths have a place in science classrooms because they are not science.

Here’s what is:

Geology shows that fossils are of different ages. Paleontology shows a fossil sequence, the range of species representing changes through time. Taxonomy shows biological relationships among species.

Evolution is the explanation that links it all together. Creationism is the practice of squeezing one’s eyes shut and wailing “Does not! Does not!”

Noel Ward