A recent Pennsylvania State study by two political scientists reveals that most US public high school teachers are either uncomfortable with teaching evolution or doubtful of its accuracy. Clearly teachers are not carrying the water for evolutionists and something must be done. In lamenting this state of affairs Nature blogger Adam Mann begins with yet another erroneous reference to the Scopes Monkey Trial:
Almost a century after the famed Scopes Monkey Trial, battles over teaching evolution versus creationism in US public schools persist - but they have shifted to individual classrooms where teachers have a vast influence over whether evolution is present, a new study finds.
Of course the Scopes Monkey Trial was not simply a battle over teaching evolution versus creationism. It was an ACLU-spearheaded advocacy for the religious thinking that is the heart of evolutionary thought, as made obvious in the famous grilling of William Jennings Bryan by Clarence Darrow on the Bible’s foolishness.
Next Mann erroneously equates intelligent design with creationism to present the usual black/white picture to the reader. There are the bad guys over there seeking to spread dangerous lies, and then there are evolutionists—the vanguard of scientific truth and justice. Mann quotes William Wallace of the National Association of Biology Teachers to elaborate on this dangerous state of affairs:
Since evolution is the fundamental concept unifying biology, it is surprising how many high school biology teachers are unaccepting or uneasy with it, says William Wallace, the Washington D.C. representative of the National Association of Biology Teachers. “It’s like a math teacher not believing in algebra,” he says. Better instruction during a prospective biology teacher's college training could help mitigate this fact, he says, a position the researchers advocate for as well.
Not believing that evolution is an undeniable fact is like not believing in algebra? Given evolution’s substantial failure and algebra’s foundational status, it would be difficult to imagine a less appropriate comparison. Algebra is a branch of mathematics, evolution is a religiously-driven theory that contradicts the empirical evidence. If evolutionists are concerned about the harmful effects of religion on science they should look closer to home.