The "Louisiana Science Education Act" mandated the removal of science from Science classes

April 26, 2011

I feel like I should pass along info about this event:

Thursday, April 28th 11:00am - 4:00pm LA State Capitol This is a rally at the Louisiana State Capitol in support of SB 70, a bill sponsored by Senator Karen Carter Peterson to repeal the creationist Louisiana Science Education Act, which was passed in 2008. Come show your support! Visit for more information about this effort. Click here for more information about this event.

If you've read for long, you understand that I'm not particularly interested in politics. And I'm especially uninterested in your politics. But we should agree that it's shameful that a high school student feels the need to petition his state legislature so that his science class can be free to teach, uhm, actual science.

For those who have forgotten science, it's the process by which facts are revealed to humanity. Someone has an idea, and then looks to verify that idea through observation, measurement, and study of the properties of things from sub-atomic particles to the movement of galaxies.

Little by little, science finds that theories start to align, and different methods of research, computation, and study point to a particular solution. Such solutions become accepted as fact.

Here is an example of something that is not science: a guy, thousands of years ago, has an idea about how something came about. He wasn't a bad guy, and for his time, his ideas made a lot of sense. He assumed it to be fact and wrote it in a book.

For thousands of years, humans assume that his book is correct, and as science starts to suggest that perhaps another answer is the correct one, the humans cling to the original book as if their lives depended on it.

That example is actually referred to as "faith."

I have no problem with those who blindly hold to their faith and deny facts as presented by science. Those people are wrong, but we're all wrong in many ways, on many topics, large and small. My problem is setting school curricula that force students to swallow matters of faith under the guise of Science class. If you want your child to be taught religion at school, there is no shortage of private schools whose mission includes such instruction.

But think about this: our creator -- whoever you believe that to be -- empowered us with minds like no other creatures. Minds that can think and reason and learn from those who foraged through the forest of knowledge that came before us. Did the creator give us those minds so that we could blindly hold on to a notion that was presented thousands of years ago? Or was the intention that we grow our collective knowledge and become a better informed species?