So near, and yet…

There was due to be a vote before the Council of Europe on the very issue that we have beavering away at for the past few months – banning the teaching of creationism in Schools.

A French representative, Mnsr Guy Lengagne, tabled this thunderbolt for the consideration of the Council. This would have been binding on all member states, so it’s a big deal.

The document pulls no punches whatsoever – it is probably, since the Dover judgement in the US, the clearest statement so far of the threat posed by these relgiious fundamentalists to not only science education, but science as a whole. And in these technological times, anything which threatens science has a knock on effect on the economy and society at large.

Creationism in any of its forms, such as “intelligent design”, is not based on facts, does not use any scientific reasoning and its contents are pathetically inadequate for science classes

Which is pretty much the point – Intelligent Design is essentially “intellectual surrender”, the equivelant of shrugging your shoulders like a teenager and mumbling, rather than trying to answer the questions. To consider teaching this in Science Class is ridiculous, unless of course, you actually want to leave nice big gaps to fit your god in, or as the report puts it:

We are witnessing a growth of modes of thought which, the better to impose religious dogma, are attacking the very core of the knowledge that we have patiently built up on nature, evolution, our origins and our place in the universe.

There is a real risk of a serious confusion being introduced into our children’s minds between what has to do with convictions, beliefs and ideals and what has to do with science, and of the advent of an “all things are equal” attitude, which may seem appealing and tolerant but is actually disastrous.

So, what has happened – why is this timely and informative report no longer being put to the vote? That would be down to… the so called moderate christians.

The Vatican under John Paul II oversaw some pretty henious policies, but at leasy they were clear on the position of evolution.

Ratzinger/Benedict/Palpatine on the other hand has been murky and evasive on the issue – no surprise then that the world’s largest Papal fan club (also known as “poland”) lead the charge against this vote, resulting in, as Mnsr Lengagne put it “a perfect burial of a report”.

Really, this was more than we could have hoped for – the campaigns go on, and the struggle continues. it would have been nice to have such a stick, but we don’t really need it.