the Supreme Court has said you can't teach creationism in the public schools."
-Gerald R. Weber, ACLU director of Georgia, Creationism and Intelligent Design, Wikimedia Foundation, eM Publications, p. 889
court-ordered ban on the teaching of creationism in U.S. schools, about one in eight high-school biology teachers still teach it as valid science, a survey reveals."
-Bob Holmes, "Study: 16 Percent of U.S. Science Teachers Are Creationists," ABC News, May 21, 2008, retrieved June 26, 2013, [http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/story?id=4895114&page=1#.UcsysDu163M]
It is a common for scoffing evolutionists to say, "You can't teach creation in public schools, the Supreme Court said so!" I hear that all the time in emails and other comments I see. This statement is made out of pure ignorance of people who did not look carefully at what has happened in a number of state court cases. Most of the time, evolutionists will see an article with quotes like these and run with it because they are so desperate to say something nasty against anyone that believes in the Biblical account of creation, that they are will to accept ANYTHING, even a lie, so long as it denounces God's Word.
This article will be as much of a critique on Christians as it will be on unbelievers because I firmly believe that most Christians are not fighting on proper Biblical foundation, and are typically wasting everyone's time with useless efforts. It should also be noted that
Here's a basic overview of what Christian creationists usually do concerning the courts and education:
Let's say that no evolutionist ever raised a finger to fight against the laws forcing creation to be taught. The question then arises, what form of creation gets taught? Is it Christian Biblical creation? How about Hindu creation? How about scientology creation? If creation was being taught, but it was the scientology version, then the Christians would raise the same complaints that evolutionists are raising right now! The point I'm trying to make is that I believe that most evolutionists are more Constitutional, and Biblical, in the position to stop the forced teaching of creationism in public schools.
Personally, I'm one of those people that thinks we shouldn't teach origins at all. It's pointless. A student can learn all about animals, plants, cells, muscles, organs, bones, etc, and never once talk about evolution or creation. We should just teach science in public school science class, and leave origins out of it. Origins is an issue that should be left up to the parents, not the state, because it is a religious topic.
Before addressing what should or should not be taught in the public school system, we first need to ask, "Should we have a public school system paid for by tax dollars?" Property taxes are supposed to pay for education, but it is an unconstitutional tax because all constitutional taxes are supposed to be equally aportioned among the people paying them. For example, I've been paying property taxes for many years, and yet, I don't have a child in the public school system, which means the government has stolen thousands of dollars from me that I will never get back. When the government gets involved in taxation and education, it also means that the government gets to be the grand-decider of what is taught, instead of the parents, so it is best left to individual communities to fund and operate their own schools, rather than haveing the state being involved in any capacity.
Then, once we establish IF we should have public schools, what should be taught in them? Ultimately, the parents are the ones responsible for the education of their children, but because most parents have become indifferent on the issue, it is easier for them to just hand their children over to the state's discretion (treating it more like a day-care than a school), rather than spend the time/money to be involved. Since the parents should be the ultimate decider of their child's education, and all parents don't agree on everything, then the majority of a community can get together and settle the issue, or a family can decide to homeschool.
Having said that, there are four ways I can see Christians attempting to handle the creation/evolution controversy in public schools:
Again, which brand of creation? No matter which brand of creation is put into the schools, it's going to upset someone, and the Supreme Court will overrule it as an establishment of religion, which we will cover in more detail when we get to point #3.
This is an impossible task because, as I have taught in our Seminar series, evolution has been taught for thousands of years. Darwin just proposed a mechanism for how he thought it could work, but even Aristotle was teaching forms of evolution around 350 B.C.
Aristotle classified all living organisms hierarchicallyin his great scala naturae or Great Chain of Being, with plants at the bottom, moving through lesser animals, and on to humans at the pinnacle of creation, each becoming progressivly more perfect in form."
-IEP (Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy): Peer-Reviewed Academic Resource, "History of Evolution," Apr 14, 2001, retrieved June 26, 2013, [http://www.iep.utm.edu/evolutio/]
Even if evolution was banned from all public school systems in any format, the history of evolution, and people who believed in it, would still be taught. Not to mention, it's still taught on TV, in magazines, comic books, video games, movies, music, websites, etc, and most children spend MUCH more time focusing on those than they do on school. In the end, students would still learn about evolution one way or another, so it will not have any effect.
When an evolutionist says that the courts ruled creation can't be taught, most often, they point back to a court case in Louisiana: Edwards vs Aguillard 482 U.S. 578, 1987. Citizens in Louisiana got together and made a law that says if a teacher presents evolution in his classroom, he is then also required to present creation along with it. This is what some people call an "equal time" law, which is trying to force both creation and evolution to be taught. Before we go any further, let's look at the First Amendment:
|"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."|
"The justices of the U.S. Supreme Court have designated only three acts that violate the First Amendment in public schools: (1)
state-requiredprayer: Engel vs. Vitale, 370 U.S. 421 (1962); (2) state-requiredBible reading: School District of Abington Township, Pa. vs. Schempp, 374 U.S. 203 (1963); and (3) state-requiredon-premises religious training: McCollum vs. Board of Education, 333 U.S. 203 (1948)."
-John N. Moore, "Teaching about Origin Questions," Creation Research Society Quarterly, December, 1984, p. 119
You can't REQUIRE that teachers teach creation anymore than you can REQUIRE teachers to breathe. Christians, are you getting this yet? Do you realize that if a state law was passed REQUIRING teachers to breathe, that could easily be struck down by the Supreme Court? Of course, if we leave them alone, teachers will probably breathe anyway, but it can't be required protocol. Likewise, you don't see evolutionists trying to pass laws that REQUIRE teachers to teach evolution do you? Evolutionists understand this very well, and that they don't have to force their religion into the public school system, they just have to teach it as much as they can in other areas, and be vigilant on the look-out for any other religion trying to FORCE its way into schools unconstitutionally.
Even the late evolutionist Steven Gould, who was a major star in the evolutionism community, understood this, and said so after the Supreme Court ruling in 1987:
No statute exists in any state to bar instruction in 'creation science.' It could be taught before, and it can be taught now."
-Steven J. Gould, "The Verdict on Creationism," New York Times, July 19, 1987, p. 34; See also Wendell R. Bird, The Origin of Species Revisited: Science, Philosophical Library, 1989, p. 468, ISBN: 9780802225443
Despite that some evolutionists want to lie to people that creation cannot be taught, a number of other evolutionists understand full-well that teaching creation is perfectly acceptable if the teacher/community wants it taught. The problem is not the law; the problem is that Christians have allowed the pagan religion of evolutionism to be taught in their homes and communities without an appropriate response. What evolutionists seem to forget to mention is that up until about 40 years ago, a number of states banned the teaching of evolution in public school classrooms (last ban being overturned in 1968), but creation and the Bible have NEVER been banned teaching material in public schools.
- In 2002, Georgia's law of REQUIRING warning stickers against evolution on textbooks (Selman v. Cobb County School District, No. 1:02CV2325) was shot down. Parents and teachers can do it if they want, but it can't be a required law; that's unconstitutional.
- The same year, Ohio's proposed law of REQUIRING critical analysis of evolution in textbooks/classrooms was shot down. Parents and teachers can do it if they want, but it can't be a required law; that's unconstitutional.
- In 2004, Pennsylvania's school board made a REQUIREMENT to read a statement to 9th grade biology students about Intelligent Design, and it was shot down. (Tammy Kitzmiller, et al. v. Dover Area School District, 400 F. Supp. 2d 707, Docket no. 4cv2688) Parents and teacher can do it if they want, but it can't be a required law; that's unconstitutional.
|Any teacher can teach creation in the classroom if they choose to do so. It just can't be made a requirement by law.|
By attempting to FORCE the teaching of creation, that God created the world, Christians are then seeking to FORCE the teaching of Genesis, and that is anti-biblical. I challenge a Christian to show me where in the Bible God ever FORCED people to learn His Word. Where in the Bible did God ever command His sheep to use government-enforced statutes to FORCE the teaching of His Word by making everyone pay for it? If we did that, we would be no different than the evolutionary hypocrites who are seeking to plague our education with science falsely so called.
Most people don't seem to understand that just teaching in general automatically implies morals. For example, just teaching basic math sends a message to students that the world is built with careful order, and accomplishments come with delicate planning, and therefore, we too must have some order to our lives, and our accomplishments must maintain some delicate planning. (That's why, in most cases, those children very good at math tend to be calm and calculated.) It is not possible to create standards of morality without also building a reasoning structure for maintaing that moral foundation, which is automatically going to imply an "origins" type discussion to justify certain moral action. (e.g. Why should little Billy be calm and reasonable instead of pushing his classmates during recess? -- Answering with "Because I said," only works until they reach a certain age to think for themselves.)
(Read "Evolution Can't Justify Morals" here at creationliberty.com for more details)
Besides, with so many extremists in both creationism and evolutionism, there is no way we would ever extract both views from the public school.
Some of you might be thinking, "Okay Chris, what do you expect us to do? Sit around and do nothing?" No, I expect Christians to understand what's going on around them, stop to think about it, and do what is Biblical.
Did the twelve Apostles of Jesus Christ go around proposing legislation that would silence pagan religions? No, of course not. They taught the truth, and opposed lies because God hates liars.
These six [things] doth the LORD hate... a false witness that speaketh lies.
O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane [and] vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called:
-1 Timothy 6:20
Let's say your state passed a new law that said, "Textbooks must be up-to-date and factually accurate, and must not contain false or disproven information." Who could disagree with that? No one, neither creationist nor evolutionist, would openly come out and say they want to lie to students for any reason. If everyone is focused on teaching the truth, then let's make laws requiring LIES to be taken out of textbooks.
If we focus on lies in textbooks, then the real battle begins. Because most of evolutionism is based on lies, a law requiring factual accuracy in textbooks would automatically condemn most evolutionism from classroom curriculum, and any evolutionary resistance would require THEM to take the stand on trial to prove their lies to have scientific merit. This puts evolution on trial, and forces them to defend lies, but, if we are to enforce the law that "textbooks must be factually accurate," it requires Christians to be vigilant; constantly watching out for attempts to slip lies unawares into public school textbooks.
Last year (Apr 11, 2012), Tennesee passed a bill to protect teachers who "explore the scientific weaknesses of evolution." Now THAT is constitutional, and some evolutionists HATE it when the freedom of speech of the opposition is protected, but I still contend that this a waste of time. If we simply fight lies in textbooks, we don't have to point out the weaknesses in evolution, because after the lies are removed, there is nothing to support evolution anyway!
(See Wisconsine Administrative Code: PI 8.01(2)(h), adopted Oct 24, 2007, retrieved Feb 11, 2011, [http://www.stonebank.k12.wi.us/Portals/0/PDFdocs/Policies/361LibraryPolicies.pdf])
"Instructional materials should present the most current factual information accurately and objectively without editorial opinion or bias by the authors. Theories should be clearly distinguished from fact and presented in an objective educational manner."
-Texas State Board of Education Operating Rules, §2.9-Resolutions, (4)(A), amended Nov 20, 2009, retrieved Feb 11, 2011, [http://www.tea.state.tx.us/index4.aspx?id=3958]
"(1) In addition to relying on statements of publishers or manufacturers of instructional materials, the commissioner may conduct or cause to be conducted an independent investigation to determine the accuracy of state-adopted instructional materials.
(3) The commissioner may remove materials from the list of state-adopted materials if he or she finds that the content is in error and the publisher refuses to correct the error when notified by the department."
-Florida Code, Title XLVIII K-20 Education Code, Ch. 1006 Support for Learning, Part I Public K-12 Education Support for learning and Student Services (ss. 1006.02-1006.43), (F)(1)(3), 2009, retrieved Feb 11, 2011, [http://law.justia.com/florida/codes/2009/TitleXLVIII/chapter1006/1006_35.html]
As you can see, these laws do not mention any religious institution; neither creation nor evolution. If one were to disagree with these laws, that means they are trying to promote lies and deception. The goal of these laws is simply to improve education by requiring factual accuracy, and we don't need to FORCE everyone to learn Biblical creation, nor do we need to FORCE silence on evolutionism; we just need to get the lies out of our textbooks.
Though all these states have laws requiring factual accuracy in textbooks, many states don't. My wife and I currently live in Indiana, and as of right now, Indiana doesn't have a law requiring factual accuracy in textbooks, which means it is legal for evolutionary lies to be taught to students in public school classrooms, and if Indiana Christians want to fight a battle, a very simple one, getting the instructional materials code amended would be a breeze compared to trying to fight an impossible battle (as well as an unbiblical one) of forcing creation into the public school system.
God never forced people to learn His Word, He never told the Jews to force people to accept God's Word, He never gave Christians a commandment to force people to hear the Gospel, so we should not be trying to get the government to force people to learn the Bible. At one time in this country, God's Word was taught in community schools throughout the country, but today, in our wicked nation, we have abandoned God's Word, and I see very few Christians doing anything about it. We have freedom of speech to teach the truth of the Gospel to those who choose to listen, and we have the responsibility to make sure our government is clean of lies and corruption, and the best place to start is in the education system to keep the next generation from being deceived.
For ye were sometimes darkness, but now [are ye] light in the Lord: walk as children of light: (For the fruit of the Spirit [is] in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord. And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove [them]. For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret. But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light. Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.