Evolution in the Florida news

Two stories featuring good ol’ evolution popped up in the Florida news.

First, a bill in the state legislature right now that would remove state government from the textbook selection process motivated a group to take to the streets to voice their opposition. AWAKE Volusia rallies against possible textbook changes

What your children read and learn in textbooks could change beginning July 1 if new legislation is passed.

And that concerns members of AWAKE Volusia, a grassroots group that is fighting not to give local school districts the right to change the information in textbooks — including religion-related changes.

AWAKE Volusia argues that the new legislation would allow each district to insert ideological and political views into public schools. This could eliminate textbooks that teach about Islam, evolution, or anything that someone believes isn’t true.

“If you’re not being taught that evolution exists … maybe your parents aren’t going to teach you,” Averetts said. “And then you go to college and take a college course, and they go over this … and people already know what they’re talking about, and you’re sitting there lost, looking at the person next to you.”

Next, there is a story in the Florida Times-Union reporting on a panel discussion at the University of North Florida devoted to evolution and religion. Not much rancor at Jacksonville meeting on evolution vs. creation.

More than 500 peopled filled the University of North Florida’s Andrew Robinson Theater Tuesday to tackle a topic known more for its conflicts and controversies than for its tendency to unite people of diverse views.

Yet the panel of speakers — theologians, scientists, doctors, historians and educators — discussed their different views about religion, science and the origin of humanity with very little conflict or controversy. No one was dogmatic or belligerent, even when they were passionate.

Chris Sanders, an IT contractor, said he would have preferred more scientific discussion about the origins of life and less religious and philosophical discussion.

“I think the goal should have been truth, but it came out like a lot of propaganda,” he said.

There was a letter to the editor published about the panel. I love this comment:

Public opinion decides questions of social mores but not questions of science.

About Brandon Haught

Communications Director for Florida Citizens for Science.
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2 Responses to Evolution in the Florida news

  1. Ivorygirl says:

    Not much rancor at Jacksonville meeting on evolution vs. creationism, what a waste of time for the panel and the attendees. Even Chris would for once agree with me there is no sitting on the accomadationist fence, you either follow the science or you accept the religious explanation.

  2. Chris says:

    I probably could agree with you on that. Actually the only real difference between our views is where observable testable science ends and faith begins.

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