Should the Public Schools Teach Creation?
by John D. Morris, Ph.D.
Many today claim that only evolution should be taught in the public, tax-supported schools of our land. Let us look at their reasoning and formulate a response.
The basic assumption of modern evolutionary theory is that no Supernatural Being has ever been involved in this universe. The basic definition of science even has been changed to imply Naturalism. If there is no Creator, there is no creation, and teaching creation is folly. Furthermore, the claim that creation is religious implies that teaching it would violate the "establishment clause" in the Constitution. Beyond that, the claim that creation ideas have been disproved by science implies it would be a waste of valuable classroom time to teach it.
On the other hand, many modern educators believe that the inclusion of creation in the public school curriculum is both proper and advantageous, for the following reasons:
The assumption of no supernatural input into the universe is unscientific. At best, it is unfounded, impossible of proof, and religious to the extreme.
The claim that belief in creation is religious, is, of course, true, but no more religious than belief in evolution. Both are based on similar, but opposite religious assumptions. The two concepts are on equal religious footing, and to mandate the teaching of only one (i.e., evolution), while censoring the other, "establishes" a state religion, and certainly prohibits the "free exercise" of the religious practice held by creationists. To make matters worse, "free speech" is frequently abridged in such onesided forums.
Keep in mind that this is not a small minority whose rights have been denied. A recent national poll revealed that eighty-five percent of the American people want creation taught in the public schools, either exclusively or along with evolution. The rights of the majority have clearly been usurped.
The claim that only evolution is scientific is patently false. In fact, many scientists now hold that creation is much more scientific than evolution. Evolution flies in the face of established scientific law, including the second law of thermodynamics, the law of cause and effect, and the law of biogenesis, as well as not being harmonious with observed data. Fossil gaps are real, there are limits on genetic variability, favorable mutations are essentially non-existent, etc. The flaws in the concept of evolution are seldom admitted, let alone taught in public education. This situation has the flavor of brainwashing students in only one school of thought, and an unscientific one, at that. On the other hand, the true facts of science fit quite well into a creation model.
By incorporating both views of the unobserved past into the curriculum, teachers can employ a proven teaching method. Students allowed to study the pros and cons of conflicting models are much more likely to grasp the material, develop love for science, and learn critical decision making skills. Brainwashing does none of this.
In summary, we have found evolution and exclusive evolutionary teaching to be unscientific, unconstitutional, religious, frequently dishonest, unpopular, and undesirable. The time has come for better teaching on origins.
* Dr. John Morris is the President of ICR.
Cite this article: John D. Morris, Ph.D. 1991. Should the Public Schools Teach Creation?. Acts & Facts. 20 (4).