Mormons on the side of science

July 20th, 2006

It seems the fight for science in education is not yet over. Utah is currently considering a bill that would basically require teachers to “disclaimer, disclaimer, disclaimer” when introducing evolution in science classes. This is a similar idea to the Dover, Pennsylvania case that was recently shot down by the legal system, and many other bills that states around the country are still considering. Does it never end?

Well, there’s no end in sight yet, bit it might be a changing playing field. In Utah the majority of people subscribe to the Mormon faith, the Church of Latter Day Saints, which doesn’t have much of a problem with science or even evolution for that matter. However, passage of this bill would send the message that Utah is pro-intelligent design. That would be a funny event because Mormon’s don’t believe in ID, they have different beliefs entirely. So, Mormon Senators are beginning to wake up to the idea that passing this bill might not be such a good idea… for their religion.

Now, another religiously based bill is also up for debate, which will promote prayer in schools. That’s something that a lot of religious people would like to see happen, but according to an article the NT Times the Mormon lawmakers are starting to realize that their religion is in a minority in this country, and that by allowing Mormon prayer in their schools they are promoting regional religous majorities having prayer in their schools. That wouldn’t do at all now, would it? Little Mormon Bobby going to school in a Protestant district, and having to say Protestant prayers?

University of Utah Professor Kirk Jowers had this to say:

“It was kind of a realization that if you push to have prayer in school, then outside of Utah, the prayer would not typically be a Mormon’s prayer, so is that road you want go down?”

These two bills go hand in hand in a way. Although, people say that the evolution bill is about science, not religion, it comes down to religion in the end. And, a minority religion may wind up on the side of science inadvertently by simply refusing to promote a view that goes against their religion (i.e. intelligent design). The more that these miorities in the national religious scene realize that the zealots within the majority Christian Right are going to eventually affect their freedoms to worship/believe as they like with sneaky tactics like playing on religious sentiment to get bills passed into laws, the sooner science as it is taught in schools will be free of the politics game.

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