happy Darwin Day!

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Today is Darwin Day--the 200th anniversary of Charles Darwin's birth and the 150th of the publishing of his opus On the Origin of Species. Freedom from Religion Foundation recently put up some "Praise Darwin" billboards, and--while I think the word "praise" is inappropriate--they're certainly getting some media attention:

20090212-praisedarwin.jpg

In some less-than-encouraging news, the American educational system is failing--under pressure from creationist IDiots--to foster basic scientific literacy. According to a recent Gallup poll, "only 39% of Americans say they 'believe in the theory of evolution':"

...among those with high-school educations or less who have an opinion on Darwin's theory, more say they do not believe in evolution than say they believe in it. For all other groups, and in particular those who have at least a college degree, belief is significantly higher than nonbelief.

Darwin's theory has been at the forefront of religious debate since he published On the Origin of Species 150 years ago. Even to this day, highly religious individuals claim that the theory of evolution contradicts the story of creation as outlined in the book of Genesis in the Bible.

Thus, it comes as no surprise to find that there is a strong relationship between church attendance and belief in evolution in the current data. Those who attend church most often are the least likely to say they believe in evolution.

I wonder how many people actually understand the word theory in this context, and realize that it doesn't mean guess or hunch. Do they know that gravity is also a theory? (Perhaps they believe in "intelligent falling" instead...)


links:
Scientific American
Wikipedia

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This page contains a single entry by cognitivedissident published on February 12, 2009 9:43 AM.

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