Ready for biology class to teach your kids that evolution is a failed, disproven theory, so God must have done it? Well, if you’re in Texas, you’re one step closer, as a proposed online biology textbook explicitly teaches Intelligent Design.
Via Mother Jones:
The textbook’s “Origin of Life” chapter details lab experiments that have failed to create life from inorganic materials, concluding that there is a huge gap between “life” and “non-life” … But from there it makes the considerable leap that biological explanations for the origin of life are discredited. “[T]he legitimate scientific hypothesis,” it argues, is that “life on Earth is the result of intelligent causes.”
The notes to teachers accompanying the chapter leave little doubt that pushing a belief in God is the ultimate goal:
[A]t the end of the instructional unit on the Origin of Life students should go home with the understanding that a new paradigm of explaining life’s origins is emerging from the failed attempts of naturalistic scenarios. This new way of thinking is predicated on the hypothesis that intelligent input is necessary for life’s origins.
The sample textbook is written by a new business from New Mexico called International Databases LLC (or, as a commenter pointed out, “ID”.). The Texas Freedom Network has been looking into the unknown group, and found the following information:
In a story published Saturday, the International Business Times reports International Databases is, in fact, a one-man operation. That man, Stephen Sample, says he has a degree in evolutionary biology and has “taught at the high school and junior college levels for 15 years.”
Though not quoted in the story, Sample defends the argument developed in his materials that posits intelligent design as the default position, or “null hypothesis.” Sample believes that means the burden of proof lies with contemporary biological science to prove there is not an intelligence behind the creation of life.
From the article:
Sample says it isn’t stealth creationism — he says the intelligent agency might just as well be aliens. But he emphasizes that he wants students to learn to think critically, and that unlike the physical sciences, there aren’t any experiments you can do to demonstrate evolutionary theory.
The Texas Freedom Network also points out that this type of proposed book is the end result of the schoolboard voting in 2009 to open the door to questioning evolution in the classroom, despite a federal court ruling declaring creationism “not a science.”
Photo: Quickview fact sheet for class materials - click to see larger
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