“… the book doesn’t only promote stupidity, it demands it.”

That’s from a thorough dismantling of the creationist/anti-evolution book Explore Evolution. The book has been mentioned here at FCS before, and has been dissected elswhere for good measure. The main thing to take away from all of this is that we all need to be aware that the book is out there and we need to watch for it being jammed into any Florida classrooms. Pay attention to any “supplemental” textbook purchases or donations going on in your school districts. From the most recent article: “The leading lights of the Intelligent Design Movement, the Discovery Institute, have written this textbook on evolution, and they are doing everything they can to make sure it gets into schools.”

Meanwhile, in Texas:

The Texas Education Agency on Tuesday released to the public an early recommendation for the state’s new science curriculum that would excise ideas “based upon purported forces outside of nature” from what Texas students are taught in biology classes.

The recommendation, which covers many courses, also removes language in the current curriculum requiring that students be taught the “strengths and weaknesses” of all scientific theories. Several State Board of Education members have said they support that language. Critics of the teaching of intelligent design and creationism — ideas that hold that the universe was created by a higher power — say such language has been used to undermine the theory of evolution.

About Brandon Haught

Communications Director for Florida Citizens for Science.
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24 Responses to “… the book doesn’t only promote stupidity, it demands it.”

  1. Wolfhound says:

    Yes, a wonderful smackdown of this crapola. 🙂

    And good on Texas for finally doing something right!

  2. PatrickHenry says:

    Texas still has a long way to go. There’s a board of creationists that need to approve this stuff.

  3. Karl says:

    The one thing that I find troubling in the Texas article is that one comment by a board member about how he had to consult with those of his political affiliation before making a decision. Bringing partisanship into this debate would just further polarize each side instead of sending a decisive message that any creationism-derived crap masquerading as scientific material will not be allowed nor tolerated in the science curriculum…

  4. S.Scott says:

    I’ve been wondering lately, who these school board members are going to vote for, for president.

    Are they going to do the right thing by their teachers and students and vote for Obama? This is the candidate that the NEA is supporting.


    Are they going to remain faithful to their church, and undercut good education?

    I would really love for reporters to ask the question.

  5. chipfle says:

    That the teachers union, or any union, endorses him is one of the best reasons I can think of to vote against him. We need much less, not more, government, regulation, socialism.

  6. PatrickHenry says:

    Oh goodie, a food fight!

  7. S.Scott says:

    @chipfle – I wasn’t asking YOU who you were going to vote for – unless you are a school board member of course.

  8. ABO says:

    Doesn’t voting for Obama who is a savage by evolutionary terms and closer to the lower animals, seem a little unsettling for the pro evolutionist. To be under the authority of a lower life form doesn’t sound like any kind of advancement to me.

  9. S.Scott says:

    Brandon – are idiots allowed to spew their vile bigotry on this blog?
    I am not easily offended, but ABO has gone too far. IMO

  10. Wolfhound says:

    Gosh, ABO weighs in with how he really feels, although he ought to just go ahead and admit that he really can’t stand Obama because he’s a filthy son of Ham! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Curse_of_Ham

  11. Nah, S. Scott, maybe Brandon should let the comment stay so everyone else can see the hatred driving ABO’s heart.

  12. Wolfhound says:

    Who knew that that fine, upstanding, Christian gentlemen’s club, the KKK, credited Darwin for propping up their racism. And here I thought it was the Bible! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Curse_of_Ham

  13. Wolfhound says:

    Phooey, my comments, with Wiki links, appear to have been lost in the ether.

  14. ABO says:

    Brandon-wouldn’t you think that those who proclaim to be followers of Darwinian theory should have some knowledge of what they claim to believe.
    As for myself, I happen to believe all men are created equal. My view of course is completely unscientific and is rejected by all including Darwin himself.

    Darwin, on the future of Negroes and Australian Aborigines-
    “At some future period, not very distant as measured by centuries, the civilized races of man will almost certainly exterminate, and replace, the savage races throughout the world. At the same time the anthropomorphous apes, as Professor Schaaffhausen has remarked, will no doubt be exterminated. The break between man and his nearest allies will then be wider, for it will intervene between man in a more civilized state, as we may hope, even than the Caucasian, and some ape as low as a baboon, instead of as now between the Negro or Australian and the gorilla”

    You can spin the question however you choose but my Obama question isn’t racist or bigoted it’s reasonable.

  15. Wolfhound says:

    Your dishonesty is unsuprising, Oh Liar for Jesus. Stop getting your “information” from asshats like Ken Ham. Have a quote from Darwin. And then reflect upon how the wonderful Christians used the “Curse of Ham” to justify racism and slavery of other races.

    “On the 19th of August we finally left the shores of Brazil. I thank God, I shall never again visit a slave country. To this day, if I hear a distant scream, it recalls with painful vividness my feelings, when passing a house near Pernambuco, I heard the most pitiable moans, and could not but suspect that some poor slave was being tortured, yet knew that I was as powerless as a child even to remonstrate. I suspected that these moans were from a tortured slave, for I was told that this was the case in another instance. Near Rio de Janeiro I lived opposite to an old lady, who kept screws to crush the fingers of her female slaves. I have staid in a house where a young household mulatto, daily and hourly, was reviled, beaten, and persecuted enough to break the spirit of the lowest animal. I have seen a little boy, six or seven years old, struck thrice with a horsewhip (before I could interfere) on his naked head, for having handed me a glass of water not quite clean; I saw his father tremble at a mere glance from his master’s eye. These latter cruelties were witnessed by me in a Spanish colony, in which it has always been said, that slaves are better treated than by the Portuguese, English, or other European nations. I have seen at Rio de Janeiro a powerful negro afraid to ward off a blow directed, as he thought, at his face. I was present when a kind-hearted man was on the point of separating for ever the men, women and little children of a large number of families who had long lived together. I will not even allude to the many heart-sickening atrocities which I authentically heard of; – nor would I have mentioned the above revolting details, had I not met with several people, so blinded by the constitutional gaiety of the negro, as to speak of slavery as a tolerable evil. Such people have generally visited the houses of the upper classes, where the domestic slaves are usually well treated; and they have not, like myself, lived amongst the lower classes. Such enquirers will ask slaves about their condition; they forget that the slave must indeed be dull, who does not calculate on the chance of his answer reaching his master’s ears.

    It is argued that self-interest will prevent excessive cruelty; as if self-interest protected our domestic animals, which are far less likely than degraded slaves, to stir up the rage of their savage masters. It is an argument long since protested against with noble feelings, and strikingly exemplified, by the ever illustrious Humboldt. It is often attempted to palliate slavery by comparing the state of slaves with our poorer countrymen: if the misery of our poor be caused not by the laws of nature, but by our institutions, great is our sin; but how this bears on slavery, I cannot see; as well might the use of the thumbscrew be defended in one land, by showing that men in another land suffer from some dreadful disease. Those who look tenderly at the slave-owner and with cold heart at the slave, never seem to put themselves into the position of the latter; – what a cheerless prospect, with not even a hope of change! Picture to yourself the chance, ever hanging over you, of your wife and your little children – those objects which nature urges even the slave to call his own – being torn from you and sold like beast to the first bidder! And these deeds are done and palliated by men, who profess to love their neighbors as themselves, who believe in God, and pray that his Will be done on earth! It makes one’s blood boil, yet heart tremble, to think that we Englishmen and our American descendants, with their boastful cry of liberty, have been and are so guilty: but it is consolation to reflect, that we at least have made a greater sacrifice, than ever made by any nation, to expiate our sin.”

  16. Wolfhound says:

    Gosh, a quick Google of ABO’s Darwin quote reveals nothing but religiously motivated attacks on Darwin and ToE with the exception of this article printed in New Scientist. How…predictable. Bad people will use any means to justify their policies. So, it’s unsurprising that racists latched upon the infant science of ToE to lend their bigotry the appearance of credibility. ‘Cause racism, bigotry, and slavery never existed prior to Darwin publishing his book. 😉

    “Darwin’s ideas have been invoked as justification for all sorts of policies, including some very unpleasant ones. But evolutionary theory is a descriptive science. It cannot tell us what is right and wrong.

    Rather than attack evolution directly, some try to tar it by association. The claim is often made that the theory of evolution leads inevitably to eugenics and to atrocities like those perpetrated by Hitler. These claims are irrelevant to the reality of evolution and are also largely untrue.

    Let’s start with Darwin himself, who is often accused of being a racist and a eugenicist. Yet Darwin went very much against the ideas of his time by dismissing some of the perceived differences between races. For instance: “…this fact can only be accounted for by the various races having similar inventive or mental powers.”

    The following passage is often quoted by those who accuse him of supporting eugenics: “It is surprising how soon a want of care, or care wrongly directed, leads to the degeneration of a domestic race; but excepting in the case of man himself, hardly any one is so ignorant as to allow his worst animals to breed.”

    The next few paragraphs are often left out: “…If we were to intentionally neglect the weak and the helpless, it could only be for a contingent benefit, with overwhelming present evil. Hence we must bear without complaining the undoubtedly bad effects of the weak surviving and propagating their kind…”

    Eugenical Christians
    There is no doubt that some of those who supported eugenics cited Darwin’s theory of evolution as inspiration or justification, but then evolution has been invoked to support all kinds of notions and schemes, from communism to capitalism.

    Biology tells us what is, not what ought to be. It is descriptive, not prescriptive or normative. It can inform our decisions by telling us what the likely outcome of different actions will be, but not which of these outcomes are ethical or desirable.

    In retrospect, it is clear that many of the eugenic policies implemented in the early 20th century were based as much if not more on racial and social prejudices than on any understanding of genetics and evolution. Some may have used evolutionary theory as an excuse, but that does not make it the cause.

    What’s more, many of the most enthusiastic promoters of the eugenics movement in the US, which led to policies such as compulsory sterilisation, were evangelical Christians. As Mary Teats explained in her book The Way of God in Marriage: “The great and rapidly increasing army of idiots, insane, imbeciles, blind, deaf-mutes, epileptics, paralytics, the murderers, thieves, drunkards and moral perverts are very poor material with which to ‘subdue the world’, and usher in the glad day when ‘all shall know the Lord’.”

    As for the Holocaust, the murder of able-bodied and able-minded people solely on the basis of their religion can hardly be called eugenics. It is incredible to blame Darwin while overlooking the role of Christianity in fostering anti-Semitism over the centuries.

    In 1543, for instance, Martin Luther wrote a booklet called On the Jews and Their Lies calling, among other things, for Jews to be expelled or forced to do manual labour, and their synagogues and schools burned. The booklet was displayed at Nazi rallies. And this is how Hitler described his motivations in Mein Kampf, in which there is no mention of Darwin or the theory of evolution: “Hence today I believe that I am acting in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator: by defending myself against the Jew, I am fighting for the work of the Lord.”

    Read all the myths in our Evolution Special”

  17. PatrickHenry says:

    That “extermination” quote is a classic demonstration of the technique of quote-mining. I’ve dealt with that specific item at my own place: WorldNetDaily — Worthless Creationist Rag!

  18. Noodlicious says:

    I agree S.Scott!
    I’m not even going to comment on the ignorantly formulated slime oozing from it. No doubt, in its rabid desperation for attention, its regurgitating what its sleazy masters have been brainwashing into it. Either that or it has run out of medication! Ritalin maybe?

    Honestly, its crap is frighteningly similar to the type of rabid extremist religious spew that emanates from those who wallowing in elation at the thought of taking innocent lives in the name of their narrow, twisted and hateful interpretations of their preferred delusions.

    I have come across some vile, low life troll dribble on the interwebs, but that cretin drools and froths with the best of them.

    Anyway, here’s something posted by Sean Caroll on his blog, “Cosmic Variance”, to help clear its foul putrid stench from the air.

    When it comes to science eduction….

    “61 Nobel Laureates can’t be wrong
    Sixty one Nobel Laureates have just released an open letter endorsing Barack Obama for president of the United States.”


  19. Noodlicious says:

    Ummm…err…*goes back to read all the posts that majikly appeared after S.Scotts comment* @
    September 27th, 2008 at 11:45 pm
    “Brandon – are idiots allowed to spew their vile bigotry on this blog?!”

    Have no idea why they didn’t load…busy maybe :p)

  20. Noodlicious says:

    Cheryl Shepherd-Adams Says:
    “Nah, S. Scott, maybe Brandon should let the comment stay so everyone else can see the hatred driving ABO’s heart.”

    Yep! I meant to say that too! 🙂

  21. ABO says:


    You attempt to defend the sacred evolutionary doctrine as non racist, is futile. The teaching of lower human species by evolutionist has quite a history. The quote that was pointed out has nothing to do with Ken Ham but is rather from Darwin himself.

    You would think finding human similarities in the negro would not be worth mentioning if he was considered completely human, buts that’s not the case.

    From the Decent of Man, Chapter One, “I am also assured by the keepers in the Zoological Gardens that these animals never move or erect their ears; so that they are in an equally rudimentary condition with those of man, as far as function is concerned. Why these animals,as well as the progenitors of man, should have lost the power of erecting their ears, we can not say. It may be, though I am not satified with this view, that owing to their arboreal habits and great strength they were but little exposed to danger, and so during a lengthened period moved their ears but little, and thus gradually lost the power of moving them. This would be a parallel case with that of those large and heavy birds, which, from inhabiting oceanic islands, have not been exposed to the attacks of beasts of prey, and have
    consequently lost the power of using their wings for flight. The inability to move the ears in man and several apes is, however, partly compensated by the freedom with which they can move the head in a
    horizontal plane, so as to catch sounds from all directions. It has been asserted that the ear of man alone possesses a lobule; but “a rudiment of it is found in the gorilla”;*(4) and, as I hear from Prof.
    Preyer, it is not rarely absent in the negro.”

    The teaching that there are lower forms of human comes from so called scientific evidences. The only thing new about the teaching of lower human variety is that today’s evolutionist are trying to pretend the concept didn’t exist. Bad for funding!

    ‘A Civic Biology’ is the science book sited in the Scopes Monkey Trial, page 196
    The Races of Man- At the present time there exist upon the earth five races or varieties of man, each very different from the other in instincts, social customs, and to an extent, in structure. These are the Ethiopian or negro type, originating in Africa; the Malay or brown race, from the islands of the Pacific; the American Indian; the Mongolian or yellow race, including the natives of China, Japan, and the Eskimos; and finally, the highest type of all, the Caucasians, represented by the civilized white inhabitants of Europe and America.

    Stating with the lowest form of human and ending with the ‘highest type of all’ surly has racism as it’s message. There’s nothing about Christians here, it’s all you baby.

  22. S.Scott says:

    Again … I think that this filth should be banned – but I’ll play for a moment.

    The reason that the Christian organization – the KKK – has a major problem with ToE is because the ToE explains that we are all equal to each other. Not the other way around.

    I’m guessing that ABO is a member.

  23. PatrickHenry says:

    S.Scott Says:

    Again … I think that this filth should be banned – but I’ll play for a moment.

    I wouldn’t permit anything like that at my blog. But then, it’s a good example of creationist thinking, so maybe it serves a purpose.

  24. Brandon Haught says:

    I’ve been away from the computer all weekend, and so didn’t see this garbage.

    ABO is now banned.
    FYI, skepticism was banned last week, too.

    I will leave these examples of ABO’s garbage here with the understanding that FCS (and all of you other regular commentors) don’t endorse these asinine ideas. These will serve as an example of how to get banned from here.

    I am now closing this thread.

Comments are closed.