Opinion: Creationism has its place, but it’s not in a classroom

Kent Vashaw

Kevin Griffin

Kent VashawRepublican Chair of the Texas State Board of Education Barbara Cargill and other Texas Republicans demanded this week that CSCOPE, a curriculum used by most Texas public schools, be halted due to its perceived liberal slant.

Texas State Representative Steve Toth said there has been “…a decidedly liberal leaning agenda” in CSCOPE, according to the magazine World Net Daily.

Cargill’s statement was more specific:

“Our intent, as far as theories with the [curriculum standards], was to teach all sides of scientific explanations… But when I went on [to the CSCOPE website] last night, I couldn’t see anything that might be seen as another side to the theory of evolution,” Cargill said, according to the Texas Freedom Network.

Cargill went on to say that every lesson taught is “what the fossil record proves,” which is only one-sided. This push by Texas Republicans comes right after Arizona lawmakers introduced a bill that would require teachers to “teach the controversy,” or teach both evolution and creationism.

Cargill’s rhetoric, like the Arizona bill, may sound moderate, but sometimes there are not equivalently valid sides to scientific questions.

Most major scientific organizations have supported the theory of evolution, including over 70 academies of the science worldwide. They all have signed an IAP statement on the validity of evolution.

Almost all of the proponents of creationism derive it from a literalist biblical interpretation. Not that that’s a bad thing – this is a free country, and everyone is welcome to his or her own opinion.

But creationism isn’t science. It is theology, and belongs in theology classes. There’s no scientific evidence behind it, so it has no place in a science class.

When we allow scientific facts to become victims of politics, we disservice our youth. Those Texas and Arizona lawmakers need to do the right thing and abandon the war on evolution.

Vashaw, a sophomore creative writing and mathematics major from Apex, is an opinion writer.