Roger Olson adds important nuance to a raging debate, which the media does not understand because they have an agenda and also because they don't know the meaning of the word "nuance." For Olson, this is not about evolution, which he accepts, but about something more subtle and ignored in the discussion-- the insertion of philosophy into the discussion under the guise of science.
Another Round in the Old "Evolution vs. Creation" Debate
Of course, anti-evolutionist Christians and advocates of "intelligent design theory" (not all of who reject evolution) have tussled quite publicly with members of groups like the Texas Freedom Network over whether that is science or philosophy and whether "alternative theories" of life's origins should be mentioned in science textbooks.
On and on the argument goes with the "creationists" (as the media labels all the critics) and the "scientists" (how's that for stacking the deck) calling each other names like "ignorant" and "atheists."
Now I want science textbooks to stick to science. So do many others involved on the "creationist" side of this debate. Neither I nor they are anti-evolutionists. The issue for some of us is not whether life forms evolve; the issue is whether science, as science, can state that all life began with chemical interactions.
The issue is, for some of us, that some scientists like to smuggle philosophy, metaphysical beliefs, into science. The classic case of this, of course, was scientist Carl Sagan's opening statement in his book and film series, read and shown in thousands of public school classrooms, that "The cosmos is all there is, all there ever was, and all there ever will be." Few people realized that, at that moment, he was speaking as a philosopher, out of his own life and world view, and not as a scientist. Science cannot establish that metaphysical belief as fact.
The media seem to think that it's all about some people attempting to impose their literalistic interpretations of Genesis on everyone else. I'm sure that is the case in some cases. But I suspect most critics of public school science textbook are worried about a deeper issue-- ethics.
The entire post can be read here.
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