Archive for religion

The jewel of the South: Florida

Posted in City with tags , , , on Wednesday, February 20 by City

south

I like to keep up to date on my favorite state of the union, Florida, and I thought I would pass some news. Plus I was just talking about Carl Hiaasen on Corey’s recent post, but here is an article he wrote for the Miami Herald about his home state. More specifically it is about how the state might be making the wrong move by adding evolution to their public school’s science curriculum.

In a move that could endanger Florida’s flaky backwater reputation, the state Board of Education is poised to endorse the teaching of evolution as a science. By accepting evolution as a proven science, our top educators would be sending a loud message to the rest of the nation: Stop making fun of us.

He goes on to say…

Nice try, pinheads, but there’s no sin in being a slightly backward state with extremely modest expectations for its young people. That’s been the guiding philosophy of our tightwad lawmakers for years… If snubbing is to be done, Florida should be the snubber, not the snubee. Keep your elite biotech payrolls up North and out West — we’ve got hundreds of thousands of low-paying, go-nowhere jobs that require little training and minimal education.

Low and behold, this Tuesday, Florida’s State Board of Education finally added the term “evolution” to their science curriculum, but not without requiring the term “theory” attached to it. A Reuter’s article on the decision read:

Bending to pressure from religious conservatives, the State Board of Education on a 4-3 vote included the “theory” language as part of a retooling of the state’s science standards for public school education. The panel includes the word “evolution” in state science standards for the first time, but it is relegated to a place among a host of ideas, including Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity. By contrast Isaac Newton’s law of gravity is taught as undisputed fact.

Some religious groups believe that evolution conflicts with the Biblical account of creation, though others contend there is no conflict. These contentions have driven debates in several states, including Kansas and Pennsylvania, as to how the subject should be taught in public schools.

The language in Florida was changed to refer to “The scientific theory of evolution.”

“Why are we even considering this?” said board member Roberto Martinez, who voted against the watered-down measure. “Sooner or later we’ll get there,” Martinez said. Backers of stronger evolutionary language called the vote a regrettable compromise that would nonetheless boost the instruction of evolution as a basic tenet of modern biology

So congratulations to Florida, I guess, on finally getting evolution in your classroom. The problem now, and with the article above, is that there is a difference between the observation that we see life evolve (a proven fact, see the entire field of biology) and the super scary Theory of Evolution which predicts, by natural selection, that all life came from one common ancestor. Unfortunately for the advancement of science, the religious fanatics have decided the latter Theory much too clever an idea for even an omnipotent God to have thought of. They then decide to use the layman’s use of the word theory – a speculation and not the scientific meaning – a testable model, capable of predicting future occurrence and being tested through experiment or otherwise falsified through observation.

Unless you are purposefully complicating the matter, it doesn’t have to be so hard. Look at the number of different types of dogs we have. Wolves were the first species of animal domesticated by humans over 15,000 years ago. We have documented their entire breeding history. Many dogs had many different uses and we bred them to range from Huskies to Chihuahuas. Case closed, no more confusion on that one. Of course, once you learn how it works and look at the evidence that stacks up in favor of the entire Theory of Evolution, the bible thumpers get worried that it disproves their entire religion. It must not be told to the children!

So these crazy southerner baptists or protestants or who ever they are have slaughtered on debates about this in the past (see Kansas) because they take advantage of how people confuse the definitions of words like theoretical, hypothesis, theory, theorem, laws, and fact. I have no problem with people wanting more evidence to prove that natural selection was the sole cause of humans developing from molecules in a puddle billions of years ago, that is why we have science, to answer questions and learn more about the world. But I just don’t understand why we let these people try to push their rhetoric to children in public schools. At this point even Catholics agree. George Coyne, the Vatican’s chief astronomer from 1978 – 2006, said “Intelligent design isn’t science even though it pretends to be. If you want to teach it in schools, intelligent design should be taught when religion or cultural history is taught, not science.”

I guess what it comes down to is politics as usual. These people have such a vested interest in making sure their religion stays relevant that they will try anything. I just don’t know why they have had such success in pushing their views in public schools. Could that happen in the Northwest? I doubt it, but why have these people taken such a stronghold in the South? I guess the simple answer is because no one there is stopping them. My point is, if I ever have kids and someone tries to get Intelligent Design taught in their science class I am going to the only reasonable thing I can think of… freak out and burn the school down.

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Meaning of Life (part 1)

Posted in CoJo with tags , on Tuesday, January 22 by Cojo

What is the meaning of life? Why am “I”, what a fucking insane concept the idea of “I” is on its own when you really think about it, but yea why am “I” on this flying piece of rock in the middle of space? You ever just sit and think about that? It really fucking trips me to just consider that idea. Is there actual meaning for my life? I can see why people don’t really like to think about shit like that, it is a hell of a lot more comforting to just turn on “Prison Break” and let your life piss away in state of relative indifference. Well for some reason instead of turning on the TV or other such activities that would possibly allow for me to actually “enjoy life” I find some sort of weird sadistic pleasure in thinking about shit I will never actually understand. So yea why are we here?

I will start off where most of the fucking retards on this planet turn, GOD. To me the concept of God is incredibly comforting, if I could believe in God I would probably get some fucking sleep once and a while. Yet, to believe in God I would pretty much have to retard my brain to a level that I have not yet been able to accomplish, no matter what mixture of chemicals I have swashed it with. I don’t have the time or the will to go over all the contradiction and pieces of illogical nonsense you could find in the predominantly accept religious story books. Yet without even cracking a book this little retardism jumps out at me: Why the fuck would God give a shit what you are doing? Do you really think there is some all powerful egomaniac up there keeping score of your life and documenting all your failures and short comings? I don’t mean that in the “he would probably have more important things to do” sense, but in the why the fuck would do you think God would think like a human being. I know we as human beings are inherently limited in our scope of thought, but really just think about the mindset of God for a bit…After attempting to get in the mindset of God for 20 minutes I have resigned myself to the fact that it is fucking impossible to even consider what God’s train of thought might be. That alone is good enough reason to completely discount the idea of interpreting or attempting to understand God’s intentions, but just for a little thought experiment I am going to go ahead and put myself in God’s shoes. I won’t write out a full dialogue of what I as God would be thinking (I just did that and it was really fucking stupid). So what I will just go ahead and paraphrase what I think God might be thinking: “I don’t give a shit what you do. I am God and I already fucking know what is going to happen because, guess what, I created the whole fucking thing.”

Just a side note but also isn’t God suppose to be perfect in all these religions. By definition anything created by something perfect is by nature of its creator perfect also. Therefore all of us apparent pieces of shit are also perfect. Well what is wrong with that idea, to be honest probably nothing. If there is a perfect God (a big IF) and he created us then we would all be perfect. Well then where does all this sinning and judgment come in? To the best of my knowledge that comes exclusively from human beings going ahead and taking the liberty to create a God entirely in their image. By that I of course mean one who is just as shitty, small minded, judgmental, and fucking stupid as they are. I assume everyone realizes that all these religions were created by people, normal humans just like you and I. Well not exactly like you and I due to the fact that 2000 years ago people were about 20 times more retarded than they are today. All I am trying to say is that the people who wrote the original religious texts probably fucked a few things up and maybe you shouldn’t be following them verbatim.

I will end on this note. I don’t think people who are religious are inherently terrible or stupid. I know some incredibly intelligent and logical people who use a religion as a vehicle for faith and by doing so better their lives. I very much respect and in some ways am envious of them for this “faith” they speak of, probably due to the fact that I was born without a trace of the faculty used to comprehend “faith”. After an attempt to save a little face with my Christian friend I should probably end by saying how pathetically disgusting I find 99% of the religious people in this world who use religion solely as a way to needlessly judge other people to make them feel slightly less shitty about their meaningless lives.

Well that is pretty much all I can think of to say about that for now. Oh I should probably point out that this post started out as an attempt to write about my friends and I going snowmobiling at a cabin this weekend. She got a little off the point….

To be continued….maybe