Or something like that.
An intrepid blogger has asked Texas State Board of Education Chairman Don McLeroy about the Bryan dentist’s statement that he didn’t know of a fellow board member who has ever advocated teaching creationism/”intelligent design” in science classrooms. As TFN Insider has pointed out, McLeroy and fellow creationists on the board have done precisely that in past voter guides from the Free Market Foundation Texas affiliate of Focus on the Family. McLeroy’s response when asked about that apparent contradiction?
Good question. I had forgotten about those voter guides when I made my statement. My mistake. It is true, however, that I have never stated that I want to teach Creationism or Intelligent Design nor do I want to. Voter guides leave little wiggle room sometimes; they will put you in a box and you have to choose which box in which best represents your views.
2 thoughts on “A Nondenial Denial”
Now that they are out of the closet, what should their strategy be? They haven’t lost their power, and it may not make that much difference in the next election. Future candidates are going to be asked if they believe in God because it is now on the table and both extremes will have a litmus test, but so will Texas. Texas doesn’t elect atheists. Could scientists or educators that say evolution doesn’t conflict with their faith be more than lukewarm and unconvincing Christians to most of the electorate? Could they be rabid and vitriolic enough in their determination to put down the Christians to win the support of the atheist/”progressives”?
The fundamentists should not focus on a short term issues that can be easily reversed in the next election. They should try to see ahead to the end game, and forge a minimalist compromise like that of the founding fathers, that allows the disparate sides to live together, by accepting checks on each others power. The fundies have shown the progressives that there is some merit to F.A. Hayek’s thesis in “The Road to Serfdom”, that in a centrally planned and authoritarian system, “the worst will rise to the top.” And the fundies should fear the reverse, and forge a persuasive scientifically grounded argument for school choice and local control. Local teachers will be allowed to choose text books that they think will be the most productive and challenging.
Human “altruism” evolved in settings on the scale of a village, tribe, extended family and even smaller group. Larger collectives such as religions and nation states may exploit some of these features of human nature and identity to achieve mass control and cohesion branding themselves as human and those they disagree with or don’t understand as “others” or the enemy. The dangers of human altruism and identification with the collective are perhaps as great or greater than the benefits. So, we have found checks and balances and “individual rights” to be necessary and perhaps unfortunately inadequate to the task. For every Denmark and Sweden that feel complacent about central planning there are counter examples of National Socialism, International Socialism and numerous petty dictatorships and oligarchies with thugs daemonizing western “exploitation” just to maintain a monopoly on exploitation for themselves. Too many mandates, and the individuals and cultures no longer have the freedom to survive. Yes, with freedom there may be lack of uniformity and conformity, people may make decisions that would not have made us happy. Some may find a chemically induced “high” may be no more a waste of time than a high induced by music or a movie or gambling. The “dumb” jock may be perfectly happy with early access to better genes (agile cheerleaders), and his beer and Sunday football. Who is to say that he isn’t the winner instead of the better compensated white collar manager of supply chains with only 1.7 children. The blue collar worker may regret not having studied instead of having “fun”, but with 45 years of life expectency left, he still isn’t willing or interested in the study of supply chain management or intelligent drug design. We are more than willing to impose on youth, choices we still would not make for ourselves. Less central planning and more choice could be the compromise.
Divide and conquer under the mask of “less central planning” appears to be your mandate, yawn.