1) Science and Religion - Citing Two of my Opponents, 2) Blogosphere in the Feast of Sts Simon and Jude 2015, 3) Homeschooling is Usually Not University Level AND Graphic Porn Does More than Expose to Ideas
When my own ma homeschooled me (not all the time, but when circumstances allowed), her idea was not to shield me from un-Christian ideas, but rather to provide antidotes. However, shielding from un-Christian ideas is actually a good idea for homeschooling Christian parents, if they can and want to. And they should want to if they are not able to provide antidotes.
Now, a homeschooling community has turned to an university in order to get a textbook which does not openly preach Big Bang Atheism. Or sth like that.
Sorry, to American Astronomical Society.
In other words, they want a textbook which gives all of the current cosmology except the overtly atheistic parts, like, say Big Bang Creating Matter Out of Itself, rather than God creating matter. That is overtly atheistic, insofar as you have to be atheist in order to even believe it. There are covertly atheistic parts, which they are not protesting against, like Heliocentrism, which you may believe even if a Christian, but cannot give a coherent proof of unless you are atheist ("there is no God who can turn the universe around Earth each day" is atheistic, but if had been true would prove one of its points, and "there are no angels that can move stars in the movements called parallax and aberration or planets in the movements around zodiac, often with retrogrades and other signs of spirograph patterns being involved" is also atheistic, or anangelistic, but if it were true it would also prove a point for Heliocentrism : however there are Christians who believe these points without these proofs). But where the atheism is open, where even believing it is obviously atheistic, no, there they do not want it.
They turned to American Astronomical Society. It is probably very expert at Heliocentric cosmology. They want everything they can get about that, except Big Bang overt Atheism. Is that any problem?
Of course not, they can get confronted with atheism later on in their lives. The age of seven to twelve is not really made for intellectual confrontations with beliefs other than your own, especially not in contexts where these other beliefs may be socially favoured and not believing them may expose one to bad manners. After all, seven to twelve is not just about getting from ignorance to some useful knowledge, it is also about acquiring good manners. And thus also about not getting them ruined by useless confrontation with bad manners. In other words, Christian children that age should not be forced to attend schools where majority are atheist. And, what is more, Atheist children that age should not be forced to attend schools where majority are Christians.
And if they are not being forced to "confront the other team", neither do they need an immediate intellectual preparation for such confrontation, by direct study of its tenets.
That is reasonable.
Now look at this:
- Agenda Quoted:
- To add to the polarization, a few scientists have spread an atheistic naturalistic worldview together with their teaching of science as if it was part of science itself. As a result many parents avoid materials they consider controversial and students later come to believe they must choose between science and their faith. The key to bridging this gap are professional astronomers who hold to a Christian worldview and who can speak both languages, understanding the complexities of both communities.
- Coyne's Comment A:
- This, of course, buttresses one of the main goals of Christian homeschooling: to avoid exposing children to anything that might damage their faith or make them question it.
- My comment
- So far, correct analysis, but why is that upsetting him?
Does he consider HE has the right to decide for THEIR children?
Does he imagine HIS recipe for them would not imply a school situation which would hurt them, like the Swedish one hurt me?
- Coyne's Comment B:
- In truth, I seriously doubt that in public secondary schools children are exposed to “atheistic worldviews” that supposedly make them choose between science and faith. The reason young people exposed to science leave their faith is, I suspect, mainly because science teaches them to question, to doubt, and to trust evidence. Taken seriously, the produces an erosion of faith.
- Not at all!
- The truth is that questioning has not hurt my faith.
But it is the atheistic "science" which has gone down before my questions.
Where Evolution and Heliocentrism are presented as hard and undoubtable facts, first of all, the child is deceived, second, this deception involves statements about truth which at some point at least contradict the real one.
- Coyne's Comment C:
- [Taken seriously, the produces an erosion of faith.] And that’s why people like this book’s authors are so desperate to get to the kids before they have that exposure. The book is, in fact, a form of brainwashing: imposing the parents’ religious views on the children. The abstract continues:
- Before we look
- why not guess what he would stamp as a kind of brainwashing? Large passages stating non-extancy of proofs for Heliocentrism? Even that would not be brainwashing, it would be exposing the brainwashing that goes on in schools run by science sectarians ultimately depending on atheism (as I just mentioned, as for showing, I'll do that another time, if you think there are MORE proofs for Heliocentrism than the false ones I mentioned)(or, actually, I did that another time already). But no, such doubts about Heliocentrism is NOT what he is quoting.
Here IS what he quoted after describing it as a form of brainwashing:
- Agenda Quoted:
- The role of science educators is to teach science, not to impose worldviews. Science is well received by Christians when it is presented not as a threat to faith, but rather as a complementary way to understand God, leading to a more integrated view of reality.
- Wait a minute!?
- Just mentioning that the science is a way of understanding God is somehow brainwashing them in Christianity?
Well, that pretty much says all that needs to be said about HIS definition of "brainwashing". He is acting like an Inquisitor for Atheism. But not just that, he is acting like an Inquisitor who cannot see the difference between seduction to heresy and brainwashing someone to heresy.
I will not say that brainwashing into Darwinism and Heliocentrism is done because there exist school manuals that present them. I would not even totally do it because very many (and not just one) media treat them as undoubted facts, not just when the media are on the topic, but even when that is off topic, except for the also near total lack of media that present the opposite view. My blogs are trying to supplement this lack.
Here is where Jerry Coyne made this blooper:
Why Evolution Is True : Accommodationism at the American Astronomical Society
Now, at University, even a Christian student totally SHOULD be able to confront Heliocentric and Darwinist ideas, though of course not fall for the suggestion of believing them, and if he feels he must shield himself from confronting them, he should do sth else.
Same thing in a way goes for ideas about how homosexuality affects lives.
But Fun Home apparently does not only present the biographical facts about Alison Bechdel, apparently she has included some graphic content which can be described as pornographic. Like two nude people in bed, presumably (the previews on Amazon give NOT that kind of detail, just innocent childhood pictures).
- Here is a quote with letters of protest by the students:
- “I feel as if I would have to compromise my personal Christian moral beliefs to read it,” Brian Grasso wrote on the Duke University Class of 2019 Facebook page, a closed group. He cited its “graphic visual depictions of sexuality,” as part of his reason. “Duke did not seem to have people like me in mind,” he added. “It was like Duke didn’t know we existed, which surprises me.” “There is so much pressure on Duke students, and they want so badly to fit in,” Grasso observed. “But at the end of the day, we don’t have to read the book.” Grasso was not alone in his protest. “The nature of ‘Fun Home’ means that content that I might have consented to read in print now violates my conscience due to its pornographic nature,” Jeffrey Wubbenhorst wrote in an email to The Chronicle.
- Did you get that?
- “graphic visual depictions of sexuality,” ... "content that I might have consented to read in print now violates my conscience due to its pornographic nature"
Jeffrey Wubbenhurst would have consented to read same things in print, but not when presented in pictures.
So, the problem for at least Jeffrey Wubbenhurst, probably Brian Grasso too, was not any idea presented. It was the problem of visual pornography.
Now, how do Coyne AND none lesser than Salman Rushdie take this?
- Coyne's Own Comment:
- This is pathetic. Those students are not only keeping themselves in the religious bubble in which they’ve been raised, but cutting themselves off from exposure to ideas that might help not only them, but society as well. I’m convinced that one of the reasons that gay rights, for instance, progressed so fast in this nation is that people not only listened to what gay people said, but got to know them, and saw (as they eventually will with atheists), that they were just normal people who deserved equal treatment. This, at least, is one of Steve Pinker’s theses, in The Better Angels of our Nature, for the moral progress we’ve seen over the last five centures. Exposure, exposure, exposure!
- "Your honour!"*
- Neither of those quoted were refusing to "get to know" Alison Bechdel in any work where she expressed same biography in words. Without the mentioned pictures.
They were protesting against an assignment roughly akin, though not fully equivalent to watching a porn movie.
- Salman Rushdie's Comment, Quoted by Coyne:
- “There was an episode a few months ago where (some incoming) students at Duke University refused to read Alison Bechdel’s book (‘Fun Home’) because it was written by a lesbian and offended their religious beliefs. I thought, ‘Maybe you should just not be at Duke. Maybe you should just step down and make room for people who actually want to learn something.'”
- Not wanting to watch porn pictures is "not wanting to learn" in your book?
Here is where Coyne quoted and himself commented Brian Grasso and Jeffrey Wubbenhurst:
Why Evolution Is True : More fragile student feelings: Christian students refuse to read Duke’s summer-assignment novel because (horrors) it deals with lesbians and other touchy subjects
[note dishonesty even in title]
Here is where Coyne quotes Rushdie:
Why Evolution Is True : Salman Rushdie, receiving Chicago Tribune literary award, decries college censorship
- Further Quote of Rushdie:
- “The university is the place where young people should be challenged every day, where everything they know should be put into question, so that they can think and learn and grow up,” he said. “And the idea that they should be protected from ideas that they might not like is the opposite of what a university should be. It’s ideas that should be protected, the discussion of ideas that should be given a safe place. The university should be a safe space for the life of the mind. That’s what it’s for.”
- I Wonder:
- How many University Sites here have exposed students to the challenge I give on Darwinism and Heliocentrism, or on popular conceptions about history?
IF they were indeed following the idea Rushdied appears to say, I should have a lot of readers by now. Students.
But perhaps, in his book, it is only traditional and religious ideas he thinks need to be challenged "every day". In that case, we are not dealing with a fresh challenge from a new angle every day, but with an attempt of anti-religious and anti-traditional ... what was the word Coyne used in that other context? Ah, yes : brainwashing.
Porn is by the way a way to abuse passions in order to, among other things, brainwash into shamelessness.
Hans Georg Lundahl
St Martin I, Pope and Martyr
* Not really. Just a cheap trick of rhetoric, taken up from videos by Kent Hovind, before he came to use these words in the proper context at a trial - or sham trial. Btw, Jerry Coyne has quoted a pretty disturbing view attributed to Kent Hovind, where I think that the proper view was expressed by William Lane Craig, or part of it at least. This has however been sent to Kent Hovind in a mail, I will see if he answers.