White House Petition: A Creationist Scheme?

Is the White House petition to ban creationism and intelligent design just a creationist scheme?

That’s the question asked recently by the ever-vigilant Sensuous Curmudgeon.

Here’s an update for those just joining us: Two weeks ago, someone filed a petition with the White House to ban creationism and intelligent design in the US.  These petitions need 100,000 signatures in 30 days in order to guarantee consideration by the Obama administration.  So far, this petition has 39,080 signatures, with 60,920 more needed by July 15.

The Sensuous Curmudgeon‘s blog is a must-read for anyone who follows creationism issues.  The Curmudgeon tracks and ruthlessly pillories creationism wherever and whenever it raises its head.  Yet the Curmudgeon opposes this petition.  The Curmudgeon argues that such things are not only useless to stop creationism or intelligent design, they actually help creationists paint themselves as victims.

We agree.

The Curmudgeon, however, goes one step further.  This petition is such a bad idea for those who support evolution education, the Curmudgeon believes, that it smells like the work of a creationist provocateur.

As the Curmudgeon puts it,

We suspect that it’s really something concocted by a small group of “clever” creationists — possibly in some dingy Seattle “think tank” — who want to demonstrate how “intolerant” we “Darwinists” really are, and how we want to suppress their glorious insights about creation science and intelligent design, and how we’ll resort to governmental force to maintain our “atheistic monopoly” on public education.

What do you think?  Is this petition just a creationist scheme?

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5 Comments

  1. Your last question uses the term “creationist” to refer to the supposed conspirators who advocate “creation science and intelligent design” (according to the Sensuous Curmudgeon).

    However, you have previously defined a creationist as someone who advocates (1.) a young earth/cosmos and (2.) uncommon descent. How then can ID proponents be termed creationist if some don’t believe point 1 and/or point 2?

    Also, what on the Sensuous Curmudgeon is a “must read” i.e. what post(s) have you found erudite?

    Reply
    • I think the Sensuous Curmudgeon is indeed a must-read for anyone interested in creation-evolution issues. That does not mean that I agree with everything the Curmudgeon says. His tone often shocks me with its unnecessary hostility toward creationists. But it is always worth reading, just as I read the BioLogos Forum, Ken Ham’s Answers in Genesis blog, the National Center for Science Education’s blog, Jerry Coyne’s Why Evolution Is True, and so on. All of these–including the Sensuous Curmudgeon–are must reads, I believe.

      Reply
      • Despite the tone, I find little of substantive value on the Sensuous Curmudgeon. Granted, I didn’t browse extensively. Was wondering what you found worthwhile.

      • Sorry, I missed that part of the question. One of the things I really find worthwhile on that blog is his thorough coverage of local newspaper editorials and letters to the editor. He includes letters from around the USA that include arguments in favor of various creationist ideas and policies.

  2. mlshatto

     /  June 29, 2013

    Your description of the petition is not quite accurate. I followed the link and note that the petition title asks for a ban of teaching “in the Science Classroom.” The text of the petition is broader, asking simply for a ban of teaching of creationism. But neither goes so far as to request the White House “to ban creationism and intelligent design in the U.S.” The latter, of course, would be a horrible overreach of the government in restricting free speech rights, and most likely unconstitutional. Even the petition as it stands is nonsensical, as it is the states’ prerogative to establish curriculum standards for public schools.

    It may or may not be a creationist scheme. If it is serious, then in my opinion, it is the work of someone who is not particularly well informed about what can and cannot be accomplished by White House decree.

    Reply

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