Why, oh why, are the curricula of the schools the business of the courts? If Pennsylvania wants to mention creationism, or to require three years of French for graduation, it seems to me that these things are the business of parents in Pennsylvania.
Yes, I know: In practice, both freedom of expression and local government are regarded as ideals greatly to be avoided. The desire to centralize government, impose doctrine, and punish doubt is never far below the surface, anywhere. Thus our highly controlled media, our “hate-speech” laws, our political correctness and, now, Evolutionary Prohibition.
The Catholic Church once burned heretics. The Church of Evolution savages them in obscure journals and denies them tenure and publication. As a heretic I believe that I would prefer the latter, but the intolerance is the same.
I note that Compulsory Evolutionists are fellow travelers of the regnant cultural Marxism, though I don’t think they are aware of it. They display the same hermetic materialism, the same desire to suppress dissent by the application of centralized governmental power, the same weird hostility to religion. They do not say, “I think Christianity is nonsense and will therefore ignore it,” but rather “These ideas shall not be permitted.”
The justification often is pseudo-constitutional: “the separation of church and state.” Neither the phrase nor the idea is found in the Constitution. If, for example, it is unconstitutional to have a nativity scene on a town square, why did no one – certainly including the Founding Fathers – notice this until about 1950? One might point out, fruitlessly, that Creationism, communism, Christianity, and capitalism are all major intellectual currents and therefore ought to be explained to the young. Not likely. The free market of ideas applies only to one’s own ideas.
Now, what grave consequences are thought to await if children hear briefly in school an argument that they have heard a dozen times in the course of ordinary life? Will the foundations of civilization crack? Will the birds of the air plunge, appalled, to earth? Will the planets shudder in their orbits and fall inward in dismay? Surely everyone short of the anencephalic knows of Creationism.
Or is it thought that kids attracted to the sciences will abruptly change their course through life and enter the clergy? That applications to graduate school in biochemistry will cease? Children learn (or did) of the Greek gods and goddesses, and that ancient people believed the earth rode on the back of a giant turtle. I have not heard that they now sacrifice oxen to Athena.
One plausible explanation for this rigid evolutionary monotheism, though I think an incorrect one, is a fear that the children might come to believe in Creationism. Unlikely, but again, so what? A belief in Creationism does not prevent one from working in the sciences. A goodly number of scientists, including biochemists, are in fact Christian and, some of them are creationists. Others presumably are Buddhists or Hindus.
The only thing for which acceptance of creationism renders one unsuitable is evolutionism.
A more likely explanation is a fear that children might realize that a great deal of evolution, not having been established, must be accepted on faith, and that a fair amount of it doesn’t make a lot of sense. While creationism is unlikely to convert children into snake-handlers, it does suggest that Orthodox Evolution can be examined critically. Bad juju, that.
Now, an entertaining way to study the politics of this is to ask the evolutionists questions that a scientist would answer (since scientists are not ashamed not to know things), but that an ideologue can’t afford to. They are simple: