First, let’s make clear that the Texas Freedom Network doesn’t oppose the right of parents to educate their children at home. Nor does TFN oppose the right of private organizations to invite whomever they wish to speak to members at their convention. And finally, we realize that people choose to home-school their children for many different reasons, religious and otherwise.
So with that out of the way, we do think it’s interesting to see that one of the most prominent home-school lobby groups in Texas has invited Ken Ham to be the featured speaker at its state convention Aug. 1-3 in The Woodlands near Houston. Ham, a young-Earth creationist from Australia, founded the Christian ministry Answers in Genesis. The organization seeks “to train others to develop a biblical worldview” and “to expose the bankruptcy of evolutionary ideas, and its bedfellow, a ‘millions of years old earth’ (and even older universe).”
Check out this video of Ham attacking Bill Nye (“Bill Nye the Science Guy”), a science educator, engineer, comedian and popular television host. Nye has strongly criticized teaching creationism as science:
“If you want to deny evolution and live in your world that’s completely inconsistent with everything we observe in the universe, that’s fine. But don’t make your kids do it. Because we need them. We need scientifically literate voters and taxpayers for the future. We need engineers that can build stuff, solve problems.”
In his video (link above), Ham says this (and more) about Nye:
“Bill Nye also has an agenda to teach children not to believe in God, to teach them they are a result of evolutionary processes, that they came from slime over millions of years. In fact, Bill Nye really doesn’t understand science.”
So that’s who will be speaking at the Texas Home School Coalition’s convention. Of course, this isn’t too surprising. The organization and its leader, Tim Lambert, are prominent fixtures on the religious right in Texas. Sadly, their anti-science agenda will undermine the education of many home-schooled children.
Ironically, the Texas Home School Coalition’s convention will be occurring in the middle of a months-long debate at the Texas State Board of Education over what textbooks and other instructional materials should be used in the state’s public school science classrooms. The state board will take a final vote on those science materials in November. Stay tuned.
14 thoughts on “Texas Home School Coalition Convention to Feature Prominent Creationist Speaker”
The essence of all home schooling is religious indoctrination.
I think not. One thing most homeschoolers I know have going for them is the habit of critical thinking. Examining any and all assumptions (overt and implicit) in anything: science, literature etc. Neither creationism nor materialistic evolution successfully explain the origin of lving matter. A homeschooler I know can point out the flaws in each!
I do not say that public school kids are unthinking robots who blindly accept what they are told, but certainly that describes me at 17!
I know Ken Ham very well and we have spoken to each other several times over the years. I lived in the Cincinnati area for five years, very close to his Answers in Genesis ministry and notorious Creation Museum. Ken is an extremely aggressive and mean-spirited Young-Earth Creationist who has had frequent falling-outs with other Creationist organizations. AiG promotes the most extreme and literal six-day form of supernatural creation of the universe, Earth, and all species. Ken bitterly opposes modern science and scientists at mainstream secular universities and always talks about them in a derogatory and disparaging manner. He is really not a very nice guy.
As most readers here know, the great majority of parents who home-school their children do so for religious reasons, especially to shield them from modern biology, although that is hardly necessary in a state in which almost all evolution instruction in public schools is censored by avoidance, euphemism, or inadequate instruction. The goal of most Fundamentalist parents, however, is to shield their kids from the secular world with its drug and sex culture and especially to indoctrinate them into accepting the same superstitions and extreme religious beliefs as their parents, so it’s not just about evolution. Ken Ham fits right into this mindset since he is a moral authoritarian who acts, speaks, and looks like a backwoods Fundamentalist preacher, always telling people what they should think and believe about the many ideas and people he hates.
The statistics I have seen indicate that about 95% of home schooler parents are either fundamentalists, or followers of some other crazy delusion. “Prevent gov’t indoctrination,” ahem.
Ham in The Woodlands! I think he probably needs to have some fun while he’s there.
Creative fun. Preferably poked at him……
Rory Coker I guess my mom was in the other 5%
I worked for a homeschool program teaching science…i had a full class for physical science and chemistry…3 students in biology…
Rory is dead right…
A biochemistry professor from a private, christian university spoke with the principal…homeschool students outperform their public school counterparts everywhere except in science…parents are crippling their children…mentally, emotionally, academically with this refusal to allow them to learn and understand science
If their kids do better in reading comprehension and math etc. than public school students I wouldn’t worry about those kids much. They are perfectly able and IMO more than likely to abandon their parents beliefs as they grow older and read and learn more.
I didn’t home school, I quit school at 16 as I was learning nothing, the boredom turned into misbehavior so I joined the workforce at 16 at minimum wage.
My parents taught me to read and write before I even started school, and that allowed me to teach myself anything I was curious about which I did and still do. I’m now in early retirement at 54 from the last two high tech companies I founded.
I rebuild old trucks and farm tractors, repair computers, stereos and televisions as a hobby and will be learning and educating myself until I die.
Home schooling those kids to read and understand better than their counterparts might ironically turn out to be the best way possible to end religious fundamentalism they could have chosen. The only other ingredient required is curiosity.
Wow. Liberty University, Patrick Henry College, A Beka Books, and the Institute for Creation Research will all have booths there. $25 sounds like a pretty reasonable admission fee if one could stand to stay long enough.
Time again for the Frank Schaeffer video:
Tnx for posting THE video, Chas… I giggled all the way thru it, and felt the release of stress that laughing triggers.
Somebody has to say it- who better than Schaeffer?
I think there are three main reasons to homeschool:
1) the child can for some neutral reason not attend a school (e.g. disability or family constantly on the move)
2) the parents consider the quality of the available schools to be so abysmal that it would significantly diminish their children’s chances later in life
3) The parents believe that the schools indoctrinate their children into a belief system they vehemently oppose
The latter can be divided into
3a) the parents adhere to an ideology/faith objecting to objectively neutral elements of the curriculum (usually science)
3b) The school has been taken over by ideologues and ‘neutralist’ parents see no chance of a neutral schooling there
I know of a Jewish family that found all schools within reach in the hands of Christian fundamentalists that refused to teach neutrally and also egged the other kids on to make life hell for the ‘murderers of Christ’ whose parents also committed the deadly sin of being liberal. They moved to Canada in the 2nd Bush term. On trips back to the US they tend to get harassed by US custom officials (you know what they call US citizens with Canadian residence that are not polygamist Mormons, don’t you?).