Keep non-science out of classroom
Regarding Philip Darling's recent letter to the editor, "Oppose teaching of evolution," I was baffled that anyone could take a stand against a textbook. His position is one typical of a creationist who believes in the "intelligent design" theory. This position is ill informed of how the scientific method works and is just a way to try to get religion back into schools.
So, I have decided to take Mr. Darling's criticisms and turn them around. Instead of debating something that is accepted by the scientific community (such as evolution -- which can be seen in bacterial resistances to antibiotics and other examples) let's look at something the religious community believes is true, the Christian Bible.
Let's start with Mr. Darling's first sentence regarding characters from the Bible. He states, "Christians claim Jesus as savior. Why would they deny him as creator, proclaimed in John 1:1-14?" Can anyone provide contemporary proof that the Christ character in the Bible was an actual person? If so, please provide any sources of the Christ character's life. Christ was supposedly crucified in AD 33, yet the earliest books of the New Testament (First Thessalonians or Galatians) were written between AD 49 and AD 51. So you can't truly call the Bible a contemporary source. Even the book of Josephus is not a true contemporary source.
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His second sentence -- "A true Christian believes the Bible. He does not pick and choose" -- is a favorite of mine. Picking and choosing is exactly what all Christians do. For example, Deuteronomy 21:18-21, which basically says that if a man has a stubborn and rebellious son, the men of the town get to haul the kid off and stone him to death. I don't remember the last time there was a good stoning in South Carolina, but if it was filled with "true Christians," wouldn't there be at least one case a year?
How about Exodus 35:2, which states: "'For six days work may be done, but on the seventh day there is a sabbath of complete rest, holy to the Lord; whoever does any work on the sabbath day shall surely be put to death." How many people has Mr. Darling killed for working on the Sabbath? If he hasn't killed any, does that mean he is not a good Christian?
Evolution has been put to the test. It has been peer reviewed by countless institutions and is widely accepted by the scientific community. Attempting to get religion into schools through the use of "intelligent design" doesn't pass the test. Anyone who believes intelligent design is a true scientific theory does not understand what scientific theory is. When Mr. Darling decides to scrutinize a textbook, perhaps he should scrutinize what he wants to replace it with.
I congratulate the Board of Education, and I am proud they decided to keep mysticism and non-science out of the classroom.
State doesn't affect vocabulary
I saw a video clip of Michelle Obama mispronouncing the word "Nevada." In covering for her mistake, she chose to blame her extended time in South Carolina. Was she trying to say that her level of intelligence was decreased by her visit to South Carolina or was she simply stating that we ignorant South Carolinians are unable to properly pronounce words in the English language?
Maybe Mrs. Obama should just skip South Carolina in the future to avoid and further dumbing down of her own vocabulary.
Columnist uses bad grammar
I read Andrew Dys' column often, and have always found him to be a fine writer of events and characters. So-o-o-o, it was to my dismay, and to the dismay of my sixth- and eighth-grade English classes at St. Anne Catholic School (who are diligently trying to speak and write with proper grammar) to see his misuse of the objective form "him" where he should have use the nominative form"he."
Check the column on Thursday, Jan. 31: "Him and eight others in the department ..." Ouch!