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Do many Americans take offence at evolutionary theory?

Do many Americans take offence at evolutionary theory?

Old Sep 19th, 2013, 08:31 AM
  #41  
 
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I think it's less remarkable that some random tourist might be a creationist, but rather he thought it was appropriate to be so flagrantly rude to that poor guide.
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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 08:37 AM
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Unfortunately a fairly large percentage of our population is incapable of understanding the difference between faith and science and have to decided to take a very literal view of the bible - which means throwing a good part of modern science out the window.

There are various theories about why this has happened - including some that focused on the need of a lot of people to avoid having to think/make decisions (which is a scary process involving taking a lot of personal responsibility in an increasingly complicated world) by adopting a very structured view of the universe - not to be confused with anything like actual facts.

IMHO this goes hand in hand with a tendency to denigrate education ( keeping people ill informed is to the benefit of a number of extremely large and profitable companies that want to keep their profits at the cost of the needs of the general population
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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 08:44 AM
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Unfortunately a fairly large percentage of our population is incapable of understanding the difference between faith and science and have to decided to take a very literal view of the bible - which means throwing a good part of modern science out the window.>

No it is not a large percentage but a sizable vocal minority - but in no way a large percentage or else we'd have Creationism taught in public schools and we do not - not legally allowed.
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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 08:50 AM
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Sorry -

This is a very vocal group - and I'm not sure how small they are. (These are many of the same people that like burning library books they disagree with).

However, in NYC the standard 2nd grade class trip is to the Museum of Natural History - filled with dinos - but also with a very strong section on evolution.

And there are religious schools where creationism is taught - versus evolution.
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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 09:43 AM
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flanneruk--although I'm sure you didn't mean to bash Scotland in one of your earlier comments, I read this morning in "The Enlightened Economy" (J. Mokyr) that Scotland's Enlightenment preceded England's, due in part to Scotland's affinity with and proximity to France and the United Provinces.
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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 10:13 AM
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Please, madam, tell me where they are burning books in Manhattan.

Is Savonarola living on the Upper East Side now?

I have never seen or heard of a book burning in my 35 years of living in the US.

More likely black Americans up in arms that To Kill a Mockingbird is read in 9th-grade American Lit. classes.

The Roman Catholic Church used to have a list of books that good Catholics weren't supposed to read.

The RC Church is NOT an American church.

Ignorance is universal.


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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 10:14 AM
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<i>Or of those Scottish workplaces where "what school did you go to?" (meaning "Pape or Prod?") </i>

Which leads to the classic line - "are you a Protestant Jew or a Catholic Jew".
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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 10:22 AM
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<i> I read this morning in "The Enlightened Economy" (J. Mokyr) that Scotland's Enlightenment preceded England's, </i>

Do any of the Scottish Enlightenment figures pre-date the likes of John Locke?
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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 10:24 AM
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To change the subject just slightly, I read very little humor in any of the posts above. It was always my understanding that the Scottish had a great sense of humor and the British also a good, albeit different one.

I am not going to point out the lack of people of different faiths and/or backgrounds among the posters on this thread, but that may be a reason for the missing humor. And I do not imply that Islamists have a sense of humor.

Let's be honest. The whole discussion is funny and can be parodied to no end. I, for one, consider myself a not fully evolved ground sloth at least in outlook, values and appreciation of what life has to offer our ilk.

Sloths, by definition, have no divine books, no prophets, no beliefs, no Darwins and hence no Dawkins. We are pyrrhonists who spend years to ponder the aesthetics of a single flower (my wife in my case)
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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 10:27 AM
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"although I'm sure you didn't mean to bash Scotland in one of your earlier comments"

Your certainly is sadly misplaced. Never waste a good opportunity to bash Scotland is always a good motto.

Only with the peace and financial stability of union were the Scots able to stop worrying about being pillaged by feuding barons, successfully invaded by a vengeful Stuart pretender or bankrupted by more absurd colonial competition with England.
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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 10:55 AM
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"I have never seen or heard of a book burning in my 35 years of living in the US."

I suppose you were traveling during this?

http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/...-florida_N.htm

And this wasn't burning but still banning, just yesterday in NC:

http://www.newsobserver.com/2013/09/...-randolph.html
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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 10:57 AM
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I don't care.
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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 11:21 AM
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anyways what is the difference in logic in believing in Creationism and believing in God?

None IMO - like believing in Santa Claus - was Santa Claus a product of Evolution or Creation - who cares - each idea is daft - one not more than the other IMO!

But heck when someone expresses a point of view about believing in Creationism he/she is made fun of here or held aghast - well the same to me with any believe in any God - and again the U K shines much more than the Colonies in the % of non-believers - and that is the key non-believers vs daft illogical irrational downright slow on the uptake believers.

For a believer to make fun or ridicule a Creationist for their beliefs is the ultimate hypocrisy IMO - both are 100% daft in light of evidence that everyone is now able to access and assess.
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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 01:35 PM
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I am sure their are PLENTY of creationists in the UK.>>

actually, thin, I agree with the vast majority of your post except this. In all my 57 years, I've only met one, who was my kids' babysitter for a while. Actually, she was a bit weird but for reasons other than religious ones.

She is truly the only one I have ever come across.

A few perhaps. Plenty? no - not unless they are keeping VERY quiet about it.
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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 01:49 PM
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Apropos of the words hypothesis and theory: the hypothesis is the "guess" and once it,s proven it becomes the "theory".
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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 01:58 PM
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An acquaintance of mine was home-schooled in a fundamentalist Christian household. Eventually, he went off to college, and had hoped to pursue a career in geology. You can imagine his shock when the geology professors there lied about the age of the earth! He promptly tranferred to a fundamentalist Christian school, where he heard no more heresies, and majored in business.
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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 02:13 PM
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I suggest you visit a middle-Eastern website and give the "L" view of Islamic fundamentalism. what am I thinking? The "L"s only demean Christian fundamentalism. They are too cowardly to stand up to the people who actually decapitate journalists, disfigure young girls and commit suicide bombings. Christians do really dangerous things like speak up to tour guides in Scotland.
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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 02:22 PM
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It's a puzzle to me how people can reject scientific evidence for evolution. By determining the number of mutations in genese, geneticists can calculate how long ago a given population migrated out of Africa to Mongolia or Madagascar or wherever.

If you reject evolution, you reject so much of scientific evidence. It just doesn't make sense.
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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 03:58 PM
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If you look at the Guardian poll of 2009, it looks like 17-20% of Britons believe in creationism. Highest numbers in Northern Ireland and London area.

I am also laughing at the Major University comment.

Everyone knows you can get into a school like Penn State, major in accounting, and take the required two theology, philosophy, or science courses and get your BA.

Writing that you went to a Major University means very little.


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Old Sep 19th, 2013, 04:06 PM
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In science a "theory" is the best information we have at the moment given the data available. It cannot be "proven" like an experiment - since it cannot be duplicated.

That doesn't mean it isn't true. And I don't think there is anyone who would suggest that - even in terms of human evolution we have all the details - because we don't. But what we do have is 1) a fairly detailed understanding of the process and 2) a whole hell of a lot of proof that the big picture is correct.

Anyone who chooses to disbelieve on the basis of their faith is free to do so. (But not to call it "science".)

Anyone who chooses to disbelieve on the basis of facts is free to go join the flat earth society (if they can get there without falling off).
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