Below is a portion of an email released by the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA), the largest professional organization in the country for science teachers, of which I am a proud member. It is addressing President Bush's recent statement and endorsement that Intelligent Design should be taught along with evolution in science classrooms. Of course, it is easy to dismiss this statement from a man whose administration simply ignores science when evidence and facts get in the way of its agenda, but on the other hand it is another slap in the face of science and science education. It gives credibilty to ID as a scientific theory to many Americans who are not following the story; ID is simply NOT a scientific concept. I was thrilled to learn that John Marburger, the President's science advisor, later followed the Bush statement with a clarifying statement that ID is not scientifically valid and does not belong in science classrooms. I only hope Marburger is not taken out back for a whooping by Rove, et. al. For more of my own thoughts, see previous posts from May. Here is the NSTA statement, with links to replies from numerous other science organizations that were sent out immediately after the Bush statement.
"President Bush ignited a media firestorm last week when he voiced his support for “Intelligent Design.” When asked by reporters whether he believed both evolution and intelligent design should be taught in schools, Bush replied that he did “so that people can understand what the debate is about.” The response from the scientific and education communities was immediate and fierce. Statements by NSTA, the American Physical Society (APS), American Geophysical Union (AGU), American Federation of Teachers (AFT), Americans United for the Separation of Church and State (AU), American Institute of Biological Sciences (AIBS), and others helped to shape the controversy for millions nationwide. A statement was also issued by the National Congress on Science Education (NCSE), which is comprised of representatives from NSTA Chapters and Associated Groups.
In a statement released on August 3, NSTA indicated that it was “stunned and disappointed” that President Bush is endorsing intelligent design—effectively opening the door for nonscientific ideas to be taught in the nation’s K-12 science classrooms.
"It is simply not fair to present pseudoscience to students in the science classroom," said NSTA President Mike Padilla. "Nonscientific viewpoints have little value in increasing students' knowledge of the natural world."
To read the NSTA statement, go to http://www.nsta.org/pressroom&news_story_ID=50794.
To read statements issued by other organizations, go to the following links:
To view the statement by the NCSE, visit http://science.nsta.org/nstaexpress/nstaexpress_2005_08_08_ncse.htm.
NSTA also contributed to numerous news articles, including the cover story in this week's issue of TIME magazine. To read a few of the many news articles generated from Bush’s comments, go to the NSTA News Digest at http://www.nsta.org/main/news/stories/education_story.php?news_story_ID=50796."