Wednesday, March 24, 2004

Evolution

Should public schools in the US teach creationism in addition to or in place of evolution? As a scientist I have to say "no," though I'm preaching to the choir in this weblog.

Often in the news we hear of states and school districts that try to pass laws to teach creationism in schools? We should fight these attempts but we need to do so in a careful manner. Scientists should not impose the truth on school-age children, that will make us no better than the creationists who wish to impose their version of the truth. Instead we need to explain the reasoning behind evolution, the same holds for any scientific principle we teach. For example, I can't expect students to trust me when it comes to the Church-Turing thesis but instead I need to lay out a careful argument why the thesis must hold.

One should not force students to accept evolution, rather lay out the arguments and let the students learn to believe evolution on their own. Only then will they become true believers.

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