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Science is a theory…

That’s the way it was taught to me in high school. That theories are made to be proven and disproven. We disected frogs in biology. The point of that exercise was to prove the theory that frogs had guts. Check. And internal organs. Check. And features which were similiar between reptiles and humans. Check. And that formalgahyde was really gross-smelling. Well. That wasn’t necessarily something we set out to prove, but it was proven for me on that warm spring day when I came in from smelling flowers to smelling.. uh – formalgahyde.

Now, we could have just as easily set out to disprove these theories. Unfortunately we may have had a failed experiement because in the end we would have seen that there were internal organs (and that formalgahyde is really gross-smelling). But nevertheless it was a theory to be proven or disproven. What is science really but a collection of theories that were at once proven by someone who set out to find the ‘truth’?

But now we have various states, like Kansas, and more recently South Carolina who want to mandate that we teach alternate theories of evolution. All for it I am. (eww. That sounded very Yoda-ish. Is that a word? Yoda-ish? I digress).

http://headlines.agapepress.org/archive/8/262005f.asp Why wouldn’t we support this new and forward thinking proposal on broadening education? After all who is not for broadening education?

Unfortuately I’ve yet to meet the scientist who has found a valid methodoligy for proving or disproving the ‘theory’ of evolution. Therefore it must remain a disproven theory. Let’s put our best minds on this and let them have at it. After all, the interesting part of science (if there is an interesting part, I admittedly got a D in that Biology class) is that it is a challenge to FIRST find a theory to prove or disprove and THEN find a method to do so.

The problem with all that is – does this really need to be legislated? Sure there’s a perception that there’s only ‘one’ side being taught.. but this is a side that has a signficant amount of attempts at proving and disproving. The Adam and Eve pictures we studied in bible school didn’t even have paleolithic man skeleton-look-alike-people in it. And, in the images of Adam and Eve in their fig leaf garments, there were no dinosaurs in the background only lions and sheep (as if lion and sheep could stand that close together without one of them becoming suddenly hungry.. there’s an experiment to prove or disprove).

So while I’m an advocate for expanding education, I would caution those who would push to include religious elements into our state funded education programs. After all would they push as hard if we were legislating Muhammed’s version of evolution? Or what about alternate theories? Should we legislate the introduction of those too? Or better yet, what if a Spaghetti-Monster entity created the Universe – as some (I hope tongue-in-cheek) proclaim?

Surely we could check that one out? Would that be in the science room? or the lunch room?