Science and our Future

NP: Creationism and the Future of America’s Children

By James W. Astrada

There has always been the argument of what type of education should be taught to children concerning the origin of the universe. Public schools have been at the center of this controversy especially when it comes to the science factor. Luckily in 1987, the Supreme Court stated that teaching the pseudo-biblical story in school as a sort of explanation alongside science (evolution) was deemed unconstitutional and violated the First Amendment. Some states however like Tennessee and Louisiana are passing laws that allow teachers to profess their religious beliefs on students; offering their “critique” on how the world might have formed despite evidence proving the opposite. Bill Nye, scientist and children’s TV personality has pleaded to parents who reject the theory of evolution, not to teach and impose their personal belief systems on their children. Nye points out some very realistic facts on why teaching children fairytale beliefs based on cultural upbringing may hinder the personal level of growth.

Creationism is an odd theory based on the premise that an invisible deity created the human being in its present form along with the universe within the last 10,000 years ago in seven days. The absurdity of this claim has been destroyed in many ways due to the fact that the earth itself is 4.6 billion years old. Fossil records have given rise to a plethora of evidence that species have evolved over millions of years and human have been around for at least 100,000 years on this planet alone. Nye pointed out last week in his video called Creationism is not appropriate for children; bare essential facts and concern for the future of child education: “I say to the grownups, ‘If you want to deny evolution and live in your world that’s completely inconsistent with everything we’ve observed in the universe that’s fine. But don’t make your kids do it.”

English: Artist's conception of the spiral str...

English: Artist’s conception of the spiral structure of the Milky Way with two major stellar arms and a central bar. “Using infrared images from NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope, scientists have discovered that the Milky Way’s elegant spiral structure is dominated by just two arms wrapping off the ends of a central bar of stars. Previously, our galaxy was thought to possess four major arms.” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Three major areas according to Nye would be affected by the rejected belief on evolution: intellectual capital, the general grasp of science, and innovation in the United States. Not allowing children in the most important stage of their life access to facts and evidence that disprove personal beliefs could be dangerous in the long run. Even Nye commented about keeping medieval superstitious nonsense in the technological world we reside in would severely hinder intellectual growth for the rest of society: “When you have a portion of the population that doesn’t believe in (evolution) it holds everybody back, really.”

According to a poll in May, over 46% percent of adults in the U.S. describe themselves as creationists for believing that a god/supreme being created humans in their present form. If people want to believe in their religion, the United States allows this as part of the constitution; however, it does not give the right to invent or deny that facts and evidence display the real world in a different light. The phrase “keep thy religion to thyself” should be mandatory along with the rest of the commandments religiously interjected upon society either indirectly or directly. Faith is a strange concept brought upon cultural upbringing and practice at a very young age; the time where our brains develop into the machines we will utilize in the future. Like any machine, if one neglects maintenance or feeds it’s the wrong information, the effect could be negative and dangerous for future generations. Nye pointed out realistically that “teaching children the building blocks of science is essential for the country’s future. We need them. We need scientifically literate voters and taxpayers for the future.”

This image was selected as a picture of the we...

This image was selected as a picture of the week on the Farsi Wikipedia for the 8th week, 2011. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

As science and technology shape our everyday lives through evolution from the first IBM computer to ultra-thin laptops, IPhone, tablets, 5G, A.I. etc… the same model must be applied to humanity. Humanity evolved over time as evidence shows; and with the proper education and an open mind to a larger world based on facts and discoveries, our society will be more evolved to help solve our current issues effectively. Yes in our human past, religion was necessary to control the bourgeois from realizing the pain and hardship of poverty, caste system placement and the lack of education. Now due to technology, education is available to everyone with the desire to know. For the poor, public school is their way out of poverty and the chances for a bright future. Nye makes a very important case that if these children receive the right education, they will be better prepared to take on pressing issues of the society they will become part of in the near future. When they are taught vigilance, logic, reasoning, and common sense, they will have the open minds to see the difference between fact and fiction.

The Creation of Adam

The Creation of Adam (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The belief system that Earth is the only place with life that a creator god fashioned when evidence of over 100 to 200 billion galaxies exist in this universe. The Milky Way galaxy alone contains over 200 to 400 billion stars. Our sun is a class G3 star which is a typical star found in a typical solar system. There are many solar systems outside our own such as the Gliese 581 system and Kepler 22b that have similar environments to our own with the right conditions for life. Over 50 billion planets alone in this galaxy we live in have the conditions for “life” out of 500 billion planets. It is shameful and absurd to think in the vastness and complexity of space, one creator god chose this average planet 5,000 years ago to create the first human male (and the first female through the “rib”) in the middle of a desert after the Earth itself went through 4.6. Billion years of species extinction, worldwide floods, meteor storms, magnetic reversal of the poles, worldwide fires, plate tectonics, volcanic eruptions, etc…

There is the point that only those with an understanding of science can make a difference in this technological world that exists on systems based the speed of light, radioactivity, biology, geology, chemistry and other vital sciences that provide our societies with jobs, inventions, and the affluence all humans desire. It is time to give our education system the chance it needs to create bright, insightful and innovated children to help humanity ascend into the next level.

References

Lily Kuo. “Bill Nye, The Science Guy, Says Creationism Is Not Appropriate For Children (VIDEO).” Huffington Post (August 2012).

Fraser Cain “How Many Galaxies in the Universe.” Universe Today (May 2009).

www.bbc.co.uk/sn/prehistoric_life/human/human_evolution/mother_of_man1.shtml

evolution.berkeley.edu/evolibrary/article/0_0_0/lines_01

Clara Moskowitz. “50 Billion Alien Planets May Inhabit Our Milky Way Galaxy.” Space.com (February 2011).

Sarah Crown. “Why Creationism is wrong.” The Guardian U.K. (May 2006).

© Copyright 2012. James Astrada.

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