Should we be teaching evolution in school?
Should we be teaching evolution in school?
Before I expand on this I will start by defining evolution, evolution as put by scholars and educators it is the changes in the gene pool causing changing characteristics of many organisms over a long period of time. But even with such definitions there is still a heated debate of whether or not teaching evolution in schools should be done creating controversy that has even led to suing of people and changing of laws. Religious people are the ones who mostly do not support the evolution theory or some sections of it.
They claim that scientists are pagans or more of new breed of pagans they have even branded it “scientific pagans” others just do not believe it is good education. (Rodger W. B 2003) Religious parents believe that teaching this is corrupting their religious believes thus killing of religion as we know it they want their children to believe in a supreme being with a divine authority over everything even over creation as dictated in their religious books, in fact some extreme religious supporters want books on evolution to be eliminated from public schools libraries especially those on dinosaurs and evolution of man.
(Rodger W. B 2003) Some religious believers find the evolution of man repulsive to think they descended from apes and not created specially as said in their books. That man is not any different from animals and that he too is just another branch of the evolution tree. And its not only religious people who say that, it is said that around two thirds of Americans believe in creationism and that it should be taught alongside evolution if not on its own. This on the other hand does not go down well with the scholars and scientists or the learned people.
They believe it is a legitimate theory and it should be taught, they criticize that people question it and do not question the theories of physics and chemistry. A senior evolutionist said, “It should be taught like the other sciences, Physics and chemistry. ” (Rodger W. B 2003) Educationists argue that school has nothing to do with ones denomination and that being taught evolution does not mean you should change your beliefs and rather it is a good basis of formal education.
They believe that understanding the evolution theory is really critical in the twenty first century. They say evolution will help us in microbiological advancement and will go along way in combating the challenges doctors face today like emerging viruses and bacteria. They say if you do not teach this they will be no future scientists to deal with these things. Just like Louis Pasteur convinced people that diseases and infections were caused by germs in the: theory of Germs” rather than a magic spell or bad omen due to sins.
Scientists want to say that evolution is the cause of the diversity of species and the emerging of new ones and there is no better place to start teaching this than in schools and colleges to make them aware of this. Even the school boards support the teaching of evolution since it widens the scope of thinking of students and does not limit them to any beliefs or traditions. They also say that it helps in understanding the complex nature of science in a world rigged by religion and believes. (Karl W. G & Donald A. 2002)
They want students to know that nature runs by itself and does not need any divine intervention or supernatural being in helping it run, it is also a more practical and logical explanation of our existence here on earth. Their criticism as been felt with the claiming that the notion of “intelligent design” which says the universe is too complex to evolve on its own and that it must have been created by a higher being or power is an attempt to disband evolution as a theory and encourage people to believe in creationism in public institutions.
They also saying teaching of this to students shows them how life as they know it took shape and in what period of time. According to educationists the theory of evolution is a fundamental concept which is the basis of all of biology and that teaching it will increase the levels of science literacy badly needed in the dynamic economy which runs of mainly industries and scientific research. It is also a belief that teaching creationism and evolution side by side will ultimately confuse students across the board and will bring the countries gains back.
However even with this debates both the evolutionists and the conservatives have many challenges to take, for instance the believe that the higher a species in the evolution tree the value of their being alive is grater this commonly known as “social Darwinism” hinders them from making a solid argument on their side. (Rodger W. B 2003) On the other hand religious books also are contradicting they claim that the world was created on an average of six to seven days which is highly unlikely since there is evidence that evolution takes a long amount of time to occur and that it is a slow and patient process. (Karl W. G & Donald A.
2002) The evolutionists also claim that man is not at all different from the animals that he is just another species among the many species that exist on earth completely contradicting with religious and conservative believes that man is a special being in most cases created in the image of God and that man has a soul which animals do not have thus separating us completely from them, that God breathed life into us that is why we can do experiments on other animals and not our fellow humans a fact that scientist do not agree with but have to concur since it would be inhuman to do tests on humans like lab rats or guinea pigs.
(Karl W. G & Donald A. 2002) But the people who support the teaching of this theory wonder why people have no problem saying that man was created from the earth and given a breath of life but still do not believe that we may have descended from apes is it not reasonable more than the superstition. (Eugenie C S & Glenn B 2007) But those against it say that teaching it is wrong since they may call it a theory proven by dug up fossils and study of human genetics but it is still a hypothesis since no one can really prove it and there is no written record dating back that can be witness to it.
(Eugenie C S & Glenn B 2007) But this debate which has lasted over eighty years in America since the “monkey trial” in 1920s is hard to end because there is always contradiction to each sides believe and even when they come up with a break through like teaching them both the idea is thrown away with the notion that it will confuse the students even more leaving innocent students in the middle of the tusk getting mixed reactions.
If it was up to me l would support the teaching of both but who am I to say that it is what this debate has shown us that no matter what you think or believe because there is also another one who has his or her own belief who will probably against you. But what the government should do is to get the students involved since the once who will be adversely affected by these decisions because arguments at the top affect those at the bottom. (Karl W. G & Donald A. 2002) Even with this rift created by the two sides theft is still a lot to be answered an evolution and its up to ones decision whether to teach or be taught in schools.
University/College: University of California
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Date: 8 January 2017
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