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Is this legal?

Posted on 09/28/2009 3:00:59 PM PDT by MNDude

My teenage nephew just got back to school this month with science teacher who is nicknamed "Mr. Evolution" because of his zeal for his beliefs.

Mr. E started class saying by saying "In this class, I intend to completely dismiss and disprove many religious myths".

I think this is going a little too far. Your opinions?


TOPICS: Miscellaneous; News/Current Events; Your Opinion/Questions
KEYWORDS: chat; creation; evolution; intelligentdesign; leftismoncampus; liberalfascism; science; scienceeducation
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1 posted on 09/28/2009 3:00:59 PM PDT by MNDude
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To: MNDude

“Is this legal?”

I believe so. It is also NOT the job that the man was hired to do any more than it is my Pastors’ job to disprove scientific beliefs.


2 posted on 09/28/2009 3:03:18 PM PDT by Grunthor (Gun toting, Bible thumping Flag waver. According to the left, I am a racist.)
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To: MNDude

It’s one thing to teach evolution. It’s another thing to tell your students that religion is a myth. Is it legal? Only one way to find out. Take it up to the Supreme Court.


3 posted on 09/28/2009 3:03:22 PM PDT by Brilliant
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To: MNDude

in what state does your nephew attend school?


4 posted on 09/28/2009 3:03:37 PM PDT by Harry Wurzbach
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To: MNDude

Not enough info, IMHO.

What exactly does he disprove? Adam and Eve?


5 posted on 09/28/2009 3:03:45 PM PDT by scottdeus12 (Jesus is real, whether you believe in Him or not.)
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To: MNDude

By referring to religion as myth even if he does believe that is harassment and he should lose his job.


6 posted on 09/28/2009 3:03:59 PM PDT by DHSMostWanted (MSNBC and CNN are not news channels, they are Propaganda.)
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To: MNDude

You could tell your son to bait the hell out of the teacher by asking him why he’s trying to foist his religious views (evolution takes more faith than creation) on his students...

Waiting for the zots...

Colonel, USAFR


7 posted on 09/28/2009 3:04:17 PM PDT by jagusafr (Kill the red lizard, Lord! - nod to C.S. Lewis)
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To: MNDude

I would think you might have grounds to complain. I would not have ever done that when I taught biology. And I didn’t give my opinion on the topic, just taught the material. Of course the kids are free to discuss and express their opinions, but any time a teacher does, I would think they are at risk. Make sure that’s really what the teacher said and go talk to the principal. If you don’t get satisfaction, kick it up a level higher. BTW it would probably help if you got more parents involved. Believe me, principals don’t like mad parents.


8 posted on 09/28/2009 3:04:36 PM PDT by brytlea (Jesus loves me, this I know.)
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To: GodGunsGuts

Loyal opposition submits this for your ping list.


9 posted on 09/28/2009 3:04:43 PM PDT by humblegunner
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To: MNDude
""In this class, I intend to completely dismiss and disprove many religious myths". "

Interesting. He's pigeon-holed himself here by overtly mentioning "religious myths". It could be problematic. He would have been wiser to use a phrase like, "were going to dispel objections to the theory of evolution", or something similar.

A public school may not proselytize, but the flip side of that coin is that it can campaign for atheism either. It's a principle that found in a 70's Supreme Court case called the "Lemon Test".

10 posted on 09/28/2009 3:08:23 PM PDT by OldDeckHand (No Socialized Medicine, No Way, No How, No Time)
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To: MNDude
How about "It's a really stupid thing to say" as he's just offending people.

There's good logical evidence against the "Bishop Usher" chronology of creation, but that's about as far as it goes.

11 posted on 09/28/2009 3:09:32 PM PDT by jimt
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To: MNDude

I would think this would fall under the “wall of separation between church and state” policy if it’s a public school. If you can’t promote religions you shouldn’t be able to attack it, either. I’d be interested in what an attorney has to say.
In any case, by saying what he did the teacher is showing how gullible or naive he is. You can’t “disprove” religious tenets in the laboratory. If you could, it would have been done by now. Instead, arguments for evolution are often weak and thin and only win the day because the proponent speaks more loudly and forcefully.
I’m guessing this teacher is a blow-hard who can easily be out-reasoned. This could be interesting.


12 posted on 09/28/2009 3:10:10 PM PDT by ElayneJ
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To: MNDude

I would definitely inform the School Board of this and your disapproval and your thoughts that its likely illegal. Then if they do not do something you can make a call to the ACLJ, American Center for Law & Justice.


13 posted on 09/28/2009 3:10:35 PM PDT by GeronL
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To: jagusafr
..."tell your son to bait the hell out of the teacher..."

That's what I'd do and then sit back and watch the sparks fly!
14 posted on 09/28/2009 3:10:52 PM PDT by The Louiswu (I live vicariously, through myself.)
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To: MNDude

At every turn your child should say God Bless you to him and mean it every time he leaves he should say God be with you or Gods speed ...Weather the teacher likes it or not let him chew on the Kindness and Goodness of Gods graces ...


15 posted on 09/28/2009 3:11:02 PM PDT by ATOMIC_PUNK (Screaming in Agony they ran to the Government But then Realized from whence the Agony came !)
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To: jagusafr
"Waiting for the zots..."

There not coming from me. There was a federal case, CF et. al v.Capistrano Unified School District, earlier this year that addressed a very similar circumstance. The teacher could very well be on some shaky ground here.

Here's the court's opinion in the earlier case.

16 posted on 09/28/2009 3:12:20 PM PDT by OldDeckHand (No Socialized Medicine, No Way, No How, No Time)
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To: MNDude

Why doesn’t he ask his teacher how all of the enzymes lined up in the perfect order to create an strand of DNA? My guess is he can’t answer that. The odds of something like that happening are astronomical....and then there is the age old big bang theory. Has anyone found the answer to the question “What Banged?” assuming that there was nothing before the bang. I need answers to these questions before I blindly believe his theory. At least belief in a higher does answer these questions.


17 posted on 09/28/2009 3:13:13 PM PDT by marstegreg
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To: MNDude

Seems like a fairly clear violation of the “...nor prohibiting the free exercise thereof” clause of Amendment 1.


18 posted on 09/28/2009 3:14:20 PM PDT by DuncanWaring (The Lord uses the good ones; the bad ones use the Lord.)
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To: MNDude
Mr. E started class saying by saying "In this class, I intend to completely dismiss and disprove many religious myths".

I think this is going a little too far. Your opinions?

It is entirely appropriate to teach science in a science course. That of course includes evolution.

However, the moment the teacher mentions "religious myths" of any sort, he has strayed into philosophy or perhaps theology. I doubt that either subject is appropriate for a general high school science course.

19 posted on 09/28/2009 3:15:52 PM PDT by Logophile
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To: MNDude

See #16...You need to find out more, but if what your nephew says is true, I say encourage his parents to go right for the jugular.


20 posted on 09/28/2009 3:16:44 PM PDT by GodGunsGuts
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To: MNDude

Write a nastygram and tel him to keep his religious beliefs to himself. It is NOT his job to tell students what is “true” or not true about their religious beliefs.


21 posted on 09/28/2009 3:17:14 PM PDT by Blood of Tyrants (The Second Amendment. Don't MAKE me use it.)
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To: MNDude

If this teacher is going to teach his students what the scientific method is and how it works, what a theory and a thesis are, the difference between a religious belief/article of faith and a scientific theory, how theories are tested and revised, and so on, I would want my child in that class. If he is just going to diss their parent’s religious beliefs, without providing students with the information they need to understand how science works, I would not be happy.


22 posted on 09/28/2009 3:17:45 PM PDT by La Lydia
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To: MNDude

I had a psychology professor who challenged religion at every turn...almost mocked it. Turns out he was also a minister - it was all an act to get us to argue with him.


23 posted on 09/28/2009 3:18:39 PM PDT by lacrew (The 274th trimester is a very late procedure)
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To: jagusafr
Horrible typo alert: It should have read...

They're not coming from me

I have got to start wearing my glasses, and stop trying to type so fast.

24 posted on 09/28/2009 3:19:10 PM PDT by OldDeckHand (No Socialized Medicine, No Way, No How, No Time)
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To: MNDude

I’m not at all religious and here’s my opinion:

The guy’s an idiot! He’s there to teach, not to indoctrinate. If he’s going to broach the subject of evolution he should give equal time to all theories about our origins. None of us knows with 100% certainty what the answer is to the beginning of humanity or the beginning of our planet or the universe. We make educated guesses and revise them based on new knowledge as it’s gleaned from research.

This teacher should get a serious talking-to by the principal and the members of the school board so he doesn’t try to force his worldview on kids who have been raised differently.


25 posted on 09/28/2009 3:20:25 PM PDT by Two Kids' Dad (((( I am a proud citizen of GlennBeckistan. ))))
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To: MNDude

Oh, no is he going to show that Athena did NOT spring fully armed from the head of Zeus? How will we stand it?


26 posted on 09/28/2009 3:20:27 PM PDT by arrogantsob
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To: marstegreg

“Why doesn’t he ask his teacher how all of the enzymes lined up in the perfect order to create an strand of DNA?”

-——I’ll take a stab in the dark to answer that question.
Does each enzyme have a “marker” to be able to tell what sequence or place that particular enzyme should be in the strand of DNA?
Correct me if i’m wrong


27 posted on 09/28/2009 3:21:32 PM PDT by 1FASTGLOCK45 (FreeRepublic: More fun than watching Dem'Rats drown like Turkeys in the rain! ! !)
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To: MNDude

As a high school Biology teacher in a public High School, I can tell you what I know. We are not to inject our personal opinion during class time. It is foremost unprofessional. As far as the legality, I am not sure. What state are you in, and is the system parent driven? If it is parent driven you could get something done. Have your son do research and provide an intelligent science based argument against evolution. The data is out there.


28 posted on 09/28/2009 3:21:38 PM PDT by aliquando (A Scout is T, L, H, F, C, K, O, C, T, B, C, and R.)
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To: MNDude

DO NOT SEND YOUR KIDS TO PUBLIC SCHOOL!


29 posted on 09/28/2009 3:21:55 PM PDT by Retired Greyhound
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To: Logophile
There was a good article about a week ago titled:

Exposed: The scientific impossibility of evolution
‘Nothing Created Everything’ a surefire way to debunk atheism

http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=110293

One of the quotes I found funny and so true;

“Time performs miracles. Time is the creator,” he said.

“You can say to them, ‘OK, there's nothing in your garage, could you believe in 10,000 years a Mercedes would evolve out of nothing? You'd say, No, that's ridiculous.’ ‘So, what about 100,000 years?’ ‘No, that's stupid.’ But if you start talking billions of years, they'll suddenly go glaze-eyed and, ‘Yeah, I could believe that, a Mercedes could evolve out of nothing over billions of year.’ So time is their miracle worker.”

30 posted on 09/28/2009 3:23:02 PM PDT by Rational Thought
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To: ElayneJ; All

Ask the teacher if the class can watch the South Park episodes on Evolution and Atheism. It will shut him up quick.


31 posted on 09/28/2009 3:23:18 PM PDT by arrogantsob
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To: MNDude
I don't think it's illegal to call religion a myth but I would certainly have concerns about his in tent to "disprove" them. I had a wonderful Physical Anthropology professor who gave ALL "Origin Myths" equal opportunity (including evolution theories). While her course focus was obviously on evolutionary theory, she didn't summarily dismiss and discredit cultural and religious beliefs that people held.

Her introduction was quite possibly the best I've ever heard. I went into the class with a closed mind and finished the course with an A!!

32 posted on 09/28/2009 3:24:24 PM PDT by TNdandelion (I'd rather have FedEx run my healthcare than USPS.)
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To: MNDude

Get wired up for surreptitious audio and video.
YouTube makes for a great place to expose dorks.


33 posted on 09/28/2009 3:24:25 PM PDT by frankenMonkey
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To: MNDude

It’s better than teaching them to be stupid.


34 posted on 09/28/2009 3:24:31 PM PDT by Filo (Darwin was right!)
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To: MNDude

My gut says this may be the violation of the establishment clause - “No state shall pass a law ... or the free exercise thereof.”

Here, the state has mandated that pupils attend a state school, which avowedly “intends to completely dismiss and disprove many religious myths.” The teacher intends to attack a faith based belief of a pupil as a “myth.”


35 posted on 09/28/2009 3:24:39 PM PDT by frithguild (Can I drill your head now?)
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To: MNDude

The teacher needs to be fired.

Public education denies that our children have souls. Public education is robbing our children of their faith and hope.


36 posted on 09/28/2009 3:24:46 PM PDT by abclily
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To: MNDude
It might be illegal. See the case Farnan v. Capistrano Valley School District. I suggest contacting Advocates for Faith & Freedom, who represented Chad Farnan in this case.
37 posted on 09/28/2009 3:24:54 PM PDT by vrwc1
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To: DHSMostWanted

“By referring to religion as myth”

Agreed. Clear 1st Amendment violation.


38 posted on 09/28/2009 3:25:27 PM PDT by combat_boots (The Lion of Judah cometh. Hallelujah. Gloria Patri, Filio et Spirito Sancto.)
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To: 1FASTGLOCK45

But when it happened for the very first time, there could not have been any markers. These are just questions that have plagued me, especially when I was questioning the existance of God (in my younger days).


39 posted on 09/28/2009 3:25:29 PM PDT by marstegreg
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To: MNDude
It is probably not legal coming under the aegis of the first amendment. However, I do know that it is impossible for a teacher to separate his beliefs from what he teaches. If someone has a certain worldview, a lot of what he presents has underlying assumptions and conviction of which the presenter himself is often unaware.

Also, this sounds like an introductory session. I would have serious misgivings about that teacher, but I would wait to see how the material is presented.

If this is a high school class (it may have been stated but I just got up a short time ago and the caffeine hasn't kicked in), the students do need to have their beliefs questioned and challenged. They need to know why their beliefs are true. This is inspection often comes during opposition and they have to search for supports to their faith. The students need to have an answer ready for those who question the faith. Peter says, "always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you,"

Christianity doesn't need to fear facts. All facts point to the Creator.

40 posted on 09/28/2009 3:26:15 PM PDT by Jemian
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To: Rational Thought

A Mercedes isn’t a life form and a garage isn’t a hospitable environment. The analogy doesn’t work.


41 posted on 09/28/2009 3:28:41 PM PDT by Two Kids' Dad (((( I am a proud citizen of GlennBeckistan. ))))
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To: MNDude

completely dismiss and disprove many religious myths...

And he will decide what those religious beliefs and myths are...


42 posted on 09/28/2009 3:29:15 PM PDT by Paisan
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To: Rational Thought
Exposed: The scientific impossibility of evolution

I tend not to get involved in creation vs. evolution debates here on Free Republic; nor would I recommend that students enter into such debates with their science teachers. Discussions of that sort usually generate more heat than light.

I would recommend a different approach. Evolution is a scientifically useful model of the origin of species. It is one of many scientifically useful models, none of which accounts for the existence or nonexistence of God. Indeed, science carefully avoids any consideration of teleological or supernatural explanations.

Therefore, anyone who cites science as somehow disproving religion is misusing science. He or she is ill-suited to work as a science teacher.

43 posted on 09/28/2009 3:44:27 PM PDT by Logophile
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To: MNDude
If he presents himself as a scientist, he ought to know better than to undertake to disprove something that has never been proved in a scientific sense in the first place.

Further, he'll be hard pressed to try to prove the non-existence of something. That's quite a logical flaw for a purported scientist.

BTW and FWIW, I do accept evolution as a virtual certainty but see little to gain and nothing positive about attacking peoples' religious beliefs.

44 posted on 09/28/2009 3:45:46 PM PDT by muir_redwoods (Buck Ofama!!)
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To: MNDude

to your nephew:

ask him to explain the striking convergence of species split by 125 of evolution and on entire different branches of the evolutionary tree. Namely placentals and marsupials which look almost exactly the same as one another.

http://txtwriter.com/Backgrounders/Evolution/EVpage14.html

If he can’t explain this you win.

If he explains it correctly he will say that the convergence is parallel evolution of species in similar environments which favor specific gene mutations.

Respond stating that the timeline for a specific mutation to occur in a given species and become accepted with it’s DNA is longer than the life time of a species (Very rare). That him believing that the random events occurred for too many to mention lifeforms to exhibit convergence at roughly the same point in the evolutionary timeline requires blind faith by him in a hypothesis that can not be tested nor proven. Then give him a stern glance and say when he chose to begin this course by stating he would disprove religious myths he opened the dialect to include religious debate. That you choose to believe that there is a guiding force behind the evolution of species while he believes in the option of countless random events occurring to make order out of chaos. Remind him that usually that is not the case, such as in entropy. Then tell him please not to mention religion again or you will be forced to inform his boss of the matter.


45 posted on 09/28/2009 3:48:26 PM PDT by ciwwaf
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To: ciwwaf

125 million years*


46 posted on 09/28/2009 3:49:02 PM PDT by ciwwaf
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To: Grunthor

I think evolution is a correct theory of the development of life and I frequently take issue with posters who want to teach intelligent design in the classroom. By the same token, this teacher has no business attacking religious beliefs in his classroom. It isn’t even a philosophy class. He’s off base and should be reined in.


47 posted on 09/28/2009 3:49:38 PM PDT by saganite (What would Sully do?)
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To: Logophile

Spot on.

I don’t even read the evolution threads, but your post is probably relevant to all of them also.


48 posted on 09/28/2009 3:50:29 PM PDT by Balding_Eagle (If America falls, darkness will cover the face of the earth for a thousand years.)
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To: MNDude
I dont for the life of me understand why evolution even needs to be taught to anything short of college level students.
49 posted on 09/28/2009 3:52:06 PM PDT by TexasFreeper2009 (Obama lied, the economy died)
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To: MNDude

I’d have an attorney contact the school. Try HSLDA. It’s their bread and butter. (HSLDA stands for Home School Legal Defense Association). They take cases in this area of law and do a masterful job. They are really good at what they do.


50 posted on 09/28/2009 3:54:24 PM PDT by Marie2 (The second mouse gets the cheese.)
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