Why do so many of these women say both evolution and the biblical creation story should be taught in schools? What's causing them to give the wrong answer? Probably just a desire to please, in many cases, but those who genuinely take this position need to be diagnosed. What's their problem?
#1 They don't understand the first amendment to the US constitution. Religion clearly can't be taught in public schools.
You might also add...
#2 They don't understand that the creation story is false, so it shouldn't be taught as a rival of evolution, which is true.
Then again, instead of adding #2, you might say--
#3 They think of evolution and the biblical creation story as being in competition, like the pro-choice and pro-life positions on abortion, which misleads them into thinking it's only fair for schools to teach both. The creation story is false, but it's not even in the truth business--it's not that kind of thing.
I think #3 is what ultra-liberal religious people believe. They think the creation story--the first chapter of Genesis--is a poetic vision of the world. The really, really important part of the vision is the repeated phrase "and God saw that it was good." The message is about the value of this world, not at all about how the universe and the various species came to be.
If you see the creation story that way, it's no more in competition with evolution than poetry about the civil war is in competition with a history book about the civil war. There's no debate between creation and evolution, no reason to cover both in a biology class.
But should biblical creation be kept out of school altogether? An ultra-liberal religious Miss USA contestant ought to smile wildly, gesticulate gracefully, and say something like this--
It's fine if it's in a book of poetry or mythology, but because of the first amendment, it can't be taught in the way it's taught in a religious setting. In that setting the creation story is taught as religion, which means, not necessarily as scientific or historical truth, but as something students are expected to cleave to as part of 'who they are' (as Jews, or Episcopalians, or whatever). So--evolution should be taught in science class, and the creation story possibly in some other class, but not as religion.Next up: the swimsuit competition.
I think you're right on #3 - the problem between religion and science isn't really a problem for most Christian denominations, I think.
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