Sunday, February 5, 2017

An Open Letter to American Creationists

Scopes Trial -- atheist Clarence Darrow & Christian William Jennings Bryan
To my Creationist friends – Young Earth Creationists (who believe that the Earth and the universe are only thousands of years old, not because the Bible told them so but because James Ussher, Church of Ireland Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland declared in 1654 that creation took place at nightfall on 22 October 4004BC, some 6021 years ago), “plain old” Creationists (who believe that the physical universe must have been the creation of a supernatural deity) and Intelligent Designers (plain old Creationists who understand that they have to strip religion and God out of the equation in order to pass Constitutional muster).

How long have you wanted to have YOUR story respected?  Surely since only a few years after Charles Darwin published his On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life (1859) and The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex (1871).  Surely since the awful Scopes Trial (1927), where the Christian prosecution prevailed, but not really.  We have been fighting Culture Wars (between fundamentalist Christians and seculars) for as long as we can remember.  And only one of the issues is the teaching of Darwinian Evolution in our public schools.  And wanting to challenge it on its own turf with the Biblical Creation story.  And being most recently slapped down by conservative Judge John E. Jones III, a George W Bush appointee, in Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District (2005).

Godless Darwinian Evolution has won in secular America’s courts, and what can you do?

While I have no standing in the secular scientific community, I have an idea that might please you and that might satisfy the secular world at the same time.  So, listen up.

I suggest that we grant to the religious community what they have demanded all these years: that public-school Biology classes open themselves to a co-equal teacher, a certified Christian Creationist.  That they share equal time with the Biology teacher teaching students in public schools’ Biology classes.

But my concession has a cost, a very reasonable cost, that the Creationist community must agree to.

As the scientific community will be allowing Religion in the Science class, it is only fair that the religious community should allow Science in the Religion class (Sunday School, the same age as the students in Biology class).  One year in public school, one year in Sunday School.

Some may protest: “but our Sunday School classes are private whereas the Biology class is in public school.”  First, private schools can do what they want and indeed do just that, as many Christian private schools do not touch Evolution.  Second, you may be right, but the Courts have ruled that your Creation story is not permitted in public schools, and I am offering you an end-run to get what you want, by playing with your opposition, the secular community.

Another demand but an easy one:  those who would have the Biblical story of Creation taught in the High School Biology class must for their medical needs choose only doctors trained at medical schools that do not teach, do not subscribe to, Darwinian Evolution.  This should not be a problem: you don’t believe in Godless Darwinian Evolution, why should you go to a doctor whose entire training is based on Darwinian Evolution?  Not a big deal, right?  The AMA will not certify medical practitioners who aren’t Evolutionists?  Who needs the AMA’s blessing?

This does not end the Culture Wars, it just makes them more fair.

Am I off-base?  Let me know.  If I am on-target, let me know.