Global warming advocates are joining evolution proponents to target conservative evangelical Christians for the recent introduction of a Kentucky legislative bill that involves both theories.
The state legislature was introduced in early February to the bill, which encourages teachers “to create and foster an environment within public elementary and secondary schools that promotes critical thinking skills, logical analysis, and open and objective discussion of the advantages and disadvantages of scientific theories being studied.”1
Theories discussed, according to the bill, can include “the study of evolution, the origins of life, global warming, and human cloning.”1
The New York Times reported on the bill’s introduction in a politically biased article titled “Darwin Foes Add Warming to Targets.”2 It mentioned the 2008 Louisiana law that protects teachers who promote critical thinking on those same issues,3 as well as the highly publicized Texas State Board of Education adoption of science curriculum standards that encourage students to analyze “all sides of scientific evidence.”4
The bill has yet to be voted on, but opponents are already denouncing evangelical Christians for opposing their views. Rather than presenting scientific data to support their position, global warming advocates resort to generalizations and unsupported speculation. According to the NYT article, there is already “wide agreement among scientists that global warming is occurring and that human activities are probably driving it” (emphasis added).2
The problem with that statement, however, is that not all scientists agree that climate change is driven by human activity, nor is there evidence that the reduction of man-caused carbon dioxide would influence it.5 And the recent information leak suggesting that climate researchers who support the man-made global warming theory had fudged data in their favor hasn’t helped their cause.6
A 2009 PEW survey found that based on the evidence they have seen, fewer Americans now think global warming is the serious problem Al Gore and his followers have played it up to be.7 In fact, many states received record amounts of snowfall in recent months.8
And before critics of the Kentucky bill cry “separation of church and state,” they should note that the text states that the bill “shall not be construed to promote any religious doctrine, promote discrimination for or against a particular set of religious beliefs, or promote discrimination for or against religion or nonreligion.”1
Despite the hue and cry, both Darwinian evolution and global warming are theories, not proven scientific fact, and as such should be open to examination. The Kentucky bill encourages what all good educators should do—teach students to critically evaluate the evidence for themselves.
- Kentucky Legislature House Bill 397, 10RS BR 1517, “AN ACT relating to science education and intellectual freedom,” posted on lrc.ky.gov.
- Kaufman, L. Darwin Foes Add Warming to Targets. The New York Times. Posted on nytimes.com March 3, 2010, accessed March 8, 2010.
- Dao, C. Louisiana the Only State to Promote Academic Freedom (So Far). ICR News. Posted on icr.org July 23, 2008, accessed March 8, 2010.
- Texas Education Agency Curriculum, Science TEKS (Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills), posted on ritter.tea.state.tx.us May 5, 2009. See Dao, C. Evolutionists, Atheists Admit Defeat in Texas. ICR News. Posted on icr.org April 3, 2009, accessed March 8, 2010.
- Vardiman, L. 2008. A New Theory of Climate Change. Acts & Facts. 37 (11): 10-12.
- Thomas, B. Leaked Emails May Show Global Warming Research Is a Fraud. ICR News. Posted on icr.org December 3, 2009, accessed March 8, 2010.
- Few Americans See Solid Evidence of Global Warming. The Pew Research Center for the People & the Press. Posted on people-press.org October 22, 2009, accessed March 8, 2010.
- 49 states dusted with snow; Hawaii’s the holdout. The Associated Press, February 12, 2010.
* Ms. Dao is Assistant Editor at the Institute for Creation Research.
Article posted on March 11, 2010.