Yesterday, I felt like a real patriot. I called my state senator to voice my opinion on an upcoming issue. The seating of Don McLeroy as Chairman on the Board of Education has come under some controversy and I told my senator to vote against him. I doubt he will because the senator for our area is Republican like McLeroy and I would imagine they would have each others backs.
If you haven't heard of McLeroy, he's the guy who fights tooth and nail for keeping evolution out of biology text books and putting Creationism in. Now, I'm a Deist, which to me just means that if I had to bet on it, I'd probably say there's a "god" who may or may not have sparked the big bang. Whether or not there was a plan or design that he/she/it/they guided, I have no idea. So that being said, the idea of a Divine involvement in the how and why we're here isn't entirely foreign to me. But that's philosophy, not science. Science is the study of things we know, not the things that some people in the class may or may not believe. Science is falsifiable or can be tested. Creationism and Intelligent Design (which is essentially the same thing) don't qualify, and therefore don't belong in biology text books. I'm not picking on believers, I have no problem with them discussing it in philosophy class, but saying its science is a falsehood. Its not a political issue, its just a matter of one thing not being another. Religion isn't science, doesn't try to be, has never been, possibly never will be.
(Please don't mistake me for qualifying religion and science as Non-Overlapping Magisteria. I don't. I agree with Dawkins that god's existence is a scientific matter and just because we currently have no way of testing it, doesn't mean that we never will.)
I was thinking about school this morning, as well, because I was listening to the Bobby Bones show on the way to work and Bobby was talking about how he gave a speech at a graduation ceremony yesterday. It got me thinking about what I would say if I were to be asked to give such a speech, for some unforeseeable reason. What would I want/need to hear? I don't know, honestly, other than to tell them that life is short and better spent filled with love and lived to the fullest. What I think I really needed to hear (assuming that Young Taylor would've listened), I needed to hear much earlier than graduation. I would've told me that education is less about learning facts and formulas(though they are immensely important) and more about learning how to think. Logic, reason, and creativity are the most important things being developed in our schools. Hopefully, those things are being taught in school, while at home kids learn kindness, humility, and responsibility. I wish I'd taken my education more seriously, now. I hope I can convince Harper how important it is, and how lucky she is to be able to go to the schools she'll go to. About a year of substituting in these schools has left me impressed. Compared to the school I went to, these are like Hogwarts.
So, personal rants aside, I just want my daughter to have as thorough an education as possible without anyone pushing their agendas on her. Our forefathers understood the need for separation of Church and State, so what could be more patriotic or American, than insisting that we keep the science in science class and the theology in church?