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Adventures of a stay-at-home, skeptical, homeschooling dad (etc.)


Evolution in Kansas

Dear Scientific Illiterates,

This is not the first time this has been said, and it won't be the last, but the more times this is repeated the better:

Contrary to what you may have heard from your local Scientific Illiterate Leader, evolution is regarded as a theory by scientists, and there is no problem in "questioning" or "scrutinizing" it by scientific means.

I know this might not jibe with what you were told, but it is the truth. We'll say it one more time: Evolution is a theory which can be questioned.

Now, what you may not know (but should know if you have an opinion on the whole evolution/creationism issue) is that "theory" does not mean "guess".

The idea that the Earth goes around the sun is a theory. It is called heliocentrism (more or less). There is no way to "prove" that the Earth goes around the sun rather than the other way around. There is a good amount of evidence, and it makes for very good math, but it is still "just" a theory. (Note: scientific illiterates once tried to fight heliocentrism just as their modern counterparts now fight evolution, for the same reasons.)

If you decide that all science textbooks need to say that heliocentrism is "a theory" that "can be questioned", you better have a good reason why such a note is necessary or you might just be called, I don't know, a scientific illiterate.


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