Creationist fifth grade science textbook used in Louisiana public school

On Buzzfeed, Andrew Kaczynski reproduces pages from About Science 5, a fifth grade science textbook used in some Louisiana public schools, which teaches Biblical creationism alongside of evolution as the origin of life. As the publisher's page says, "Science 5 focuses on man's use of God’s creation and design."

Here Is What Louisiana Schoolchildren Learn About Evolution


  1. Wow. Not only is that an egregious violation of the First Amendment, it’s also factually incorrect. The Earth is billions of years old, not millions. Evolution is not deterministic; it has no “highest level”, and man is no more or less evolved than any other species.

      1. I had the same reaction, but I decided the authors of this textbook probably don’t know any evolutionary biologists in their right minds, certainly not ones willing to talk to them at length and help them in their project.

        1. Pretty clearly this was written by creationists who were happy to use a straw-man version of science in their textbook rather than any attempt to accurately portray evolution.  They certainly didn’t want any help from any evolutionary biologists.

          1. Is it wrong, that even with the factual inaccuracies on the science side of the chart, I still find that the science side makes the religious side look ridiculous?

            I find it amusing that their own straw-man still defeats their arguments…

            I also cry that this “textbook” is allowed in public schools.

        1. We also throw the best parties, although I’m sure you could find a bonobo or two who would disagree.

          1. The awesomeness of beards is equally and oppositely canceled out by the hideousness of back hair. If you were a goat, however…

          2. @boingboing-7eb3c8be3d411e8ebfab08eba5f49632:disqus 

            The awesomeness of beards is equally and oppositely canceled out by the hideousness of back hair.

            Not if you do it right!

    1. Technically, both are correct. The Earth is thousands of years old, and is millions of years old. It’s just that it’s quite a lot of millions of years old, and one heck of a lot of thousands of years old.

  2. Except for the last item on the evolutionist list, not a bad description of the science. The text above the table is mighty sexist, though. 

    Edit: just clicked through — it’s pretty egregiously creationist, all right. I was hoping the relatively fair comparison on the page shown here was what was in the rest of the book. Someone should write a book like that.

  3. They are just competing beliefs you see. Science is like any other religion. It’s a lot like sports, you pick your team and just go with it.

    1. I like how they spelled it out too.  Team 1 is team God, you want to be on Team God right?  Team 2 thinks the Earth was exploded into existence, that sounds pretty dumb right? 

      1. We’re afraid that if we don’t force this belief on you while you’re young, you might some day see how stupid it sounds. AND WE CAN’T HAVE THAT!

    2. @dolo54 – I see your sarcasm and raise you some of my ‘beliefs’…  What I love/hate about Creationists is how they cherry-pick the science that is convenient for them.  There’s a ton of science that went into the stuff that makes our life easier (or not), such as cellphones, TV, cars, and processed cheese spread. Why can Creationists accept certain aspects of science (fact) and not others?

  4. Is there any evidence this book is being used in public schools?  There are plenty of home-school textbooks that say this kind of stuff.

    1. The schools using this superstitious garbage get state education funding. This is one of the ways the Xtianists have been trying to circumvent the First Amendment of late.

    2. I was under the impression that textbooks used in public schools might at most have a page or two “some people believe in Intelligent Design” blurb, but nothing like this. 

      Ugh, how awful.

  5. I like how they neglected the whole “mankind and dinosaur roamed the Earth together” point. Maintaining the suspension of disbelief is important for any decent work of fiction.

    Edit: Oh, the scan in the article covers it. Gutsy!

    1. Also important to any decent work of fiction is a component with visceral appeal. As I’m fond of saying, there are few images that accomplish that better than that of Jesus saddling up and riding a triceratops.

    2. I like how they neglected the whole “mankind and dinosaur roamed the Earth together” point.

      If I was a creationist that would be my lead-in, just because the idea of a dude riding a dinosaur sounds so flippin’ awesome.

        1. They always seem to emphasize the most judgmental and/or boring parts of the Bible too. Like, how many people realize that the book of Revelations has an epic battle sequence that includes a pair of humungous warring dragons? They should go all Peter Jackson on that shit.

  6. Misleading title again, Cory.  These are in private schools receiving some state funding, not public schools.  I know that doesn’t exactly make it better, but at least try to get your facts straight.

    1. The fact that it’s used in a private school (even if receiving some state funding), not a public one, makes it a LOT better IMO.

      Not nearly so riled up now.

          1. Except, if they’re receiving state funding, they still shouldn’t be peddling this crap.

            In fact when I think about it I’m not sure that even private schools that are completely privately funded but still regarded as “educational institutions” and allowed to teach children should be able to peddle this sort of crap without some kind of warning to parents. Just like with cigarettes schools that use this material in their curriculum should have large warnings on the side that say, “Getting an education here may be hazardous to your brain”.

        1. Devil’s advocate: I’m not sure what kind of private school this is but it would seem possible that it’s a Christian/Catholic school.

          Would like more info about which private schools are using these and/or where @John Roberson got his info.

          1.  To be honest, I’d be surprised if it was being used in a Catholic school. Whatever one may think about the activities of the church itself, and its officials, Catholic schools tend to be pretty darned good, including fairly solid science classes.

            My guess, these are used in schools attached to evangelical christian churches.

          2. Catholics do not insist on biblical literalism, therefore they accept evolution, the fact that the earth is billions of years old and the big bang. Only some protestants believe in literalism.

          3. I was going off the fact that the Buzzfeed article Cory links to says “fifth graders in some state sponsored schools,” and links to this article:

            That being said, there just really doesn’t seem to be much to go on either way.  I’d be interested to see where Buzzfeed got their info.

            Edited to add: Also agree that I’d like more info on which schools are using this. I actually do personally lean towards a young earth view, but recognize that it’s absolutely the minority, and don’t think schools should be teaching that in a science classroom.

          4. “I actually do personally lean towards a young earth view, but recognize that it’s absolutely the minority,”

            That’s a polite way to say it.

          5. ” I actually do personally lean towards a young earth view…”

            Translation:  I actually do personally lean away from accepted scientific facts based on empirical evidence, critical thinking skills and rationality. 

            And, no you don’t get any points because you “don’t think schools should be teaching that in a science classroom.”

            If you people weren’t so dangerous to young minds, your feeble attempt at convincing those of us living in the reality-based world that you are one of the “reasonable believers” would be hilarious. 

        2. Also keeping in mind that some states, like Indiana, consider a home-school legally to be an unaccredited private school. So, whether it’s an academy, the basement of a church, or the living room, they’re all private schools. 

          Still *supposed* to teach State Standards though, but that doesn’t mean one can’t add things. 
          For some parents, this means adding in additional languages or sciences, for others….Jesus astride his trusty triceratops

    2. Weeeell…  You kind of have to look at what’s going on in NOLA to get a real view on it.  True, they’re private schools but it’s also true that the government is trying to dismantle the public school system (and are unfortunately succeeding at it) and replace it part & parcel with a private charter system that doesn’t have the same level of oversight.

      “Charter schools are publicly funded, independently-operated public schools… ”

      “Charter schools are governed independently by a board of directors and are free from many laws and regulations governing traditional schools…”

      “…charter schools are free to use a wide variety of educational resources and are not required to use state-approved textbooks”

      1. Thank you for reminding me both why I continue to oppose the charter school program in my community, and also why the state chose to withhold $3.4 million in educational funding from my city after local legislators voted against an unneeded charter school.

        After all with publicly accountable oversight kids might be in danger of actually learning something.

  7. It is an important skill that kids learn to to distinguish viewpoints – and also what science really is and what it isn’t. So the excercises found in the book have some merit – but only if the conclusion is that creationism is not science. If you try to label creationism as science or if you teach it in place of science, you’re a quack.

    1. I agree with you, Christian. It doesn’t look like the point of the lesson is evolution or creation. The point of the lesson is to develop critical thinking skills that allow you to identify that writers have biases that are revealed in their work. As adults most of us take this for granted, but a fifth grader may not have enough experience questioning authority to call bullshit when bullshit should be called. I certainly didn’t have any lessons in grade school that said, “You know what? Some of the stuff written in these textbooks is wrong, or is opinion disguised as fact. The sooner you learn that, the better the rest of your education will be.” So I applaud them for teaching that lesson, either directly or indirectly.

      1. As someone who grew up in the “heart of the heart of Dixie” I actually thought the text book was not so horrible. I went to a public middle school where they started the day with a Bible passage over the school intercom, and had a local reverend pray before all the football games. 

        I never saw a book like this, but the text itself seems to attempt some neutrality, and it seems like the text gives a Science teacher forced by a school board to teach Creationism as “real science” cover. The teacher could point to this page and say this is what I taught and it would satisfy the Creationist. Yet it also sparks a conversation about what is science that the teacher can speak to. 

        1. “Yet it also sparks a conversation about what is science that the teacher can speak to.”

          Are you shitting us?

          No teacher will be allowed to do this, certainly not in the schools that publish this trash.

    2. Recognizing different points of view may be a good exercise, but when it comes to creationism, a more appropriate exercise would be telling right and wrong viewpoints apart by evaluating evidence.

    3. Yes, I wish I had this sort of critical thinking taught when I was at school. It’s too easy to arrive at the conclusion (while at school) that whatever is in a textbook must be true.
      I think overall this book is likely to do a lot of good.

  8. Do all Creationists agree that the Earth is only 6000-10000 years old? I had heard of “Young Earth Creationists,” which implies that there are other subgroups among them.

    1.  Many people believe that God created the heaven’s and the Earth, but are OK with God having created the Big Bang.  Creationism covers a lot more than just a literal reading of Genesis.

      1. But I wonder about them. Doesn’t the Big Bang destroy the idea of a seven day creation? And if one part of the Bible is not literally true, then…gasp, who knows what other parts are off kilter. Like, maybe, it could be the whole thing? Maybe there are a lot of ex-religious among us? At any rate, at least you know where the literal loonies are coming from even if they are a living embodiment of the Handmaid’s Tale.

        1. I think you are misunderstanding creationism. It just means God created creation, not that the Bible is an accurate description of it.  The Young Earth Creationists are ones who did some dubious math (or let someone else do the math) based on the Bible that gives them the age. It’s the same math people keep using to predict the end of the world.

          But as long as you believe that existence was created by something you are a creationist.

          1. So you can both be a creationist and believe in evolution and sound science  (believing in a ‘divine clockmaker’ type scenario)?

            I would not use “creationism” to describe a viewpoint that accepts a wholly mechanistic theory of the development of the universe from a big bang, through the formation of the solar system from coalescing dust and gas, all the way through continuous evolution of life forms constantly adapting to and in turn changing ecological niches, but that holds that God’s role was to establish the rules of physics and light the fuse.

          2.  So now we are in a definitional discussion.  You attach one definition to the word, I attach a different one, we talk past each other.

            For me the reason why clockmaker includes creationism is the root word, create.  If you believe existence was created by something or someone with intent or consciousness I think that makes you a creationist.  If you believe existence came into being or always existed or whatever by happenstance than you are not a creationist because it was not created.

            I can see your view as well based on current politics as people call themselves creationists are really Young Earth, Literal Bible Reading creationists. 

            I choose not to give them the power to rewrite the definition.

          3. “You attach one definition to the word, I attach a different one, we talk past each other.”

            Your personal definition is not the one used by the Creationist movement who wishes to wedge themselves into public, secular schools. Your opinion is misinformed, the definition in place runs counter.

          4.  CW — What the heck do I care what the Creationist movement thinks the definition of a word is?  How are they an authoritative source on vocabulary given that they’re wrong about just about everything? They want to claim the absolute “truth” of how existence came to be, and
            part of that is be claiming that they have an absolute hold on the word
            “creationism.”  By granting them that hold on the word you are giving
            them power, power they use to do more harm.

            Creationism as a concept existed long before the movement you’re talking about, long before Scopes. The Catholic Church is creationist, but does not believe the world was created in six days, or that the Earth is only a few thousand years old.  The Anglican Church is creationist, but doesn’t believe in the six day, thousand years old thing.  Hinduism has it’s own creation myths (though they don’t agree on any particular one). Those are current religions who are not part of the movement. But there are many others over time, from the Norse to the Greeks to the Mayans to the etc., etc., etc., etc.

            Diversity of thought, of ideology, of belief are all anathema to these people. They need things to be binary — good v. evil, black v. white, Creation v. Evolution, etc. — in order to maintain their world view of being the good side standing with God against the evil.

            Ensuring that they do not own the word “creationism” means they have to face that there are other ideas on how creation, that they don’t get that binary view, that they are being challenged on all sides. It means not only Evolutionists are competing for their minds, but also all the other types of thoughts for how existence came to be.

            That makes them weaker and less authoritative to their followers and converts.  And that’s why I don’t let them — or us — grant them the power to define our vocabulary.

          5. “I think you are misunderstanding creationism. It just means God created creation, not that the Bible is an accurate description of it.”

            This is 100% untrue. Creationism necessarily implies biblical literalism. One can believe in God’s creation and evolution, but Creationists are fully against science.

          6. The word creationism means that existence was created through force of will or intent, and not through happenstance.  That’s all it is.  There is a group of people who call themselves Creationists who are fully against science (except for things engineered through principled discovered in science), believe literally in the word by word creation story told in Genesis, and that the world is only a few thousand years old.

            Those people are wrong about everything so why would you let them decide what the definition of creationism is?  Why give them the power?

            Here are links to some extremely varied sources, some crowd-sourced, some academic, some odd.

            Wikipedia, but some people don’t like it as a real source:

            So I’ll bring one from the right, Conservapedia:

            Don’t want crowd sourced? Here’s Standford University’s philosophy department:

            And another source:

            And a dictionary definition from Merriam Webster:

    2. Yes, for example I was raised as a Jehovah’s Witness, I made my mind up about that point of view and all religions by the age of 12.

      A witness will never categorically state that the earth is 10-6000 years old. What they say is that a day unto God is as a 1000 years, in other words an indeterminate period of time.

      Nice get out clause eh?  

      1. That’s how I was taught in Bible School as well.  That the story was thought to dumb early primitive people who didn’t have concepts like “big numbers” and God had to dumb it down for them so they would get it.

        On the other hand, this “use common sense” approach to bible stories ended up making me an atheist in the long run, so maybe it was counterproductive.  Those people who think the Bible is the literal word and there are no contradictions, not even the ones you point out, they at least seem to keep their faith. 

    3. I’ve read of a Christian geologist who believed in an earth that was billions of years old, but thought that life did not evolve. And I had a Christian friend who was a genetic engineer who believed that life evolved but that the earth wasn’t necessarily billions of years old.

      I think it’s just a matter of getting the Christian geologists and biologists talking to each other, and we’ll have made a big leap forward.

      1. I’ve read of a Christian geologist who believed in an earth that was billions of years old, but thought that life did not evolve.

        “What the…? Those damn kids must have been sneaking fossils under my sedimentary layers again!”

      2. I am a geologist; most others I’ve known are atheists (in practice, anyway – there are always people who hold on to their religion for whatever reasons but don’t actually believe it, of course). I have met at least one devoutly Christian one, however. He kept his mouth shut and nobody has any idea, for the most part. I honestly don’t know how far his beliefs went, but I got the feeling that they were contradictory enough to warrant extreme ridicule from his peers if it was known at large (hence keeping his mouth shut about it). 

        I have also met a biologist who was a devout Christian, and I gleaned a little bit more of the mindset from her. In a nutshell: cognitive dissonance in the extreme. She seemed accepting of my explanation of what I was researching at the time, which happens to be something contentious to young earth creationists involving things on a millions-and-billions-of-years scale, but I was also hopelessly, unrequitedly in love with her and was suffering from some cognitive dissonance of my own there so I may have misinterpreted any disagreements she may have had ;)

        My personal experience aside, I too have read of geologists and biologists specifically like the ones you describe. As good as their work within their specific sub-fields may be, I find myself unable to respect them and if I was studying something similar I would be loathe to cite their work. If they have that level of cognitive dissonance going, I really don’t trust their ability as a scientist.

      1. That’s a great example of antimetabole, but not necessarily a good argument.

        The Bible makes straightforward statements about God creating Earth, and about what Heaven is like. It seems fair to interpret the Bible literally or metaphorically, but I don’t see anything on either side demanding that some of it *must* be taken literally or some of it must be taken metaphorically. (Except that some parts taken literally contradict other parts.)

        1. Not sure about that – the bible is a book of wisdom which is best taught through metaphor (albeit using pragmatic examples). You don’t need to look at separate passages to see the contradictions – contradictions of fact/science but not of wisdom.

          For example simply look at genesis: notice how plants were created before our sun was – how can anyone think this is fact when photosynthesis is as clear as gravity now but was magic back then.

    1.  Wow.  I noticed a lot of “scientists believe” and nothing like “the evidence shows”.  Also interesting was “Some scientists believe that the earth’s crust is not one solid sheet of rock.”  I did not realize that this is a fringe belief …

  9. Forget about the problem with evolution here, they’re totally misrepresenting the scientific method in a science class.  In science it doesn’t matter what you believe going in to an experiment, but what the data from the experiment say.

  10. Seems like clear cut violation of separation of church and state.  They’re not even putting up a flimsy pretense of objectivity like the ID folks do.  If they don’t fix it, I think colleges should start requiring supplementary science classes for applicants coming from states that teach this shit in public schools.  Teaching iron age superstition instead of science in schools (or, more likely, the atitudes that led them to do it) probably has a lot to do with why all those shiftless, lazy, ignorant red states are leeching federal tax money from the rest of us. (Texas is the exception, but that place is just weird.)

  11. As a Neopagan parent of three children, who believes very firmly in science thank you, I certainly wouldn’t want my kids being taught this sort of garbage in their schooling. I’d be down at the board of education raising a stink, and possibly filing a lawsuit over custodial interference and violation of separation of church and state. Now, if this is in a private, religiously based school, that’s another thing entirely. However, religiously based schools should not et a single penny of funding from the state or from the federal government, and I include schools based on my religion as well as any other in that declaration. Oh, and I’m a homeschooler, but I’m careful to keep my religious beliefs stated as beliefs, and scientific facts stated as scientific facts, and not muddy the waters between the two when I’m speaking with my children. Also, I don’t use textbooks. We’re unschoolers, and learn by doing and experiencing. I’ve taught my kids how to do their own research, and reason for themselves, which the exercise presented here certainly isn’t doing.

  12. Deduction: If man was created  in god’s image, this means that god has a penis. …Seriously, why would god have a penis though? To masturbate? To pee? Does he get erections? Men do. Or is he, well impotent?

    Questions for christians to ponder.

    1. Is not a penis an example of intelligent design? Seems God was so fond of squirting semen and urine out of the same hole that he decided he would saddle anything with a Y chromosome with it. I am surprised Evangelicals do not have have a specific hymn to sing the praises of that double-duty genius move.

    2. Obviously, to impregnate unwitting virgins with babies that he needs to sacrifice in order to convince himself not to damn all his human creations rather than just the ones who fail to take it on faith that he exists.

        1. I suppose King Arthur drew the long straw in order to go searching for the Holy Grail instead of that.

    3. I was taught during my Christian upbringing that it’s not about God’s literal, physical image, especially since God doesn’t have a body.

      When Moses saw God on the mountain, God was described in abstracts such as goodness and love. And those characteristics are supposedly the aspects of God that we resemble, if you believe that sort of thing…

      1. Lol

        Ok. I guess that’s one way to evade the conundrum. Immediately creating the wonderful contradictions that Christianity is famous for. Man made from goodness and love. Eats the forbidden fruit. Because the devil. The devil? When did this one enter the scene?

        What were they thinking!??

        1. I took issue with the fact that the forbidden fruit story and original sin indicate that God set man up to fail.

          If God is omniscient, he knows what’s going to happen. He creates man with the “free will” to choose one of two options, all while not being well informed because man had no knowledge of good and evil prior to eating the fruit.

          So God dropped a rat he created in a maze he created and then blames the rat for going after the cheese.

          And letting the serpent into the garden to tempt man was like letting a pedophile near your kids. God is a bad parent who punishes his children for the nature that he gave them.

          I’m much happier since I opted out of that guilt trip.

          1.  HELL yeah! :)

            I was about 11 when I realized that all of this just didn’t make any sense at all. Yet I needed until about 18-20 to get rid entirely of the residual fear. Like that saying something blasphemous might be still somehow detrimental to me going forward.

            The more I looked at this world as objectively as I could, the less room there was anywhere for this naive concept of a mythical creator god. Let alone this ridiculous Genesis.

            There was more than just the fear of being blasphemous. As a teen I lived in fear of going against morality, of doing something ‘wrong’! Only later when I developed my own ethics, learning to make my own decisions every day did I free myself of this straight-jacket.

          2. I’m confused by the implication of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. God warns them not to eat from it, they do and suddenly gain knowledge (morality). 

            If they didn’t know right from wrong before, then how would they know that it’s evil to ignore God’s warning? What good is a warning given to people who don’t know the difference between good and evil?

          3. Eating the fruit… It’s just a way to explain original sin. Christianity needs original sin otherwise it is utterly useless – it’s like an invention that solves no problem, so invent the problem too! Sounds suspiciously/ironically like Apple

        1. Exactly. God’s goodness passed before Moses. He mentions his face and hand, but those can be metaphorical references. A hand is an agent of action and a face is a representation of identity. Presence doesn’t require a physical body for an omnipotent being.

      2.  I’ve always thought that “in His image,” made most sense if it meant “endowed with free will,” considering how much physical variation there is between individuals.  Because how incredibly boring would predestination BE for the Almighty?  The universe as a giant trick question just looks much more interesting than “I know the elect before they’re even born.”

        1. Free will is meaningless, in my opinion, if you don’t also have the power to change the options. God has that. Man doesn’t.

          The false dichotomy of heaven and hell is a perfect example of this. Who would actually choose hell if they knew it was real and what it entailed? That’s not a real choice.

          True free will would involve being able to say to God, “nah, neither heaven or hell look good to me, I’m gonna hang out over here in my own place for all eternity, thanks.”

          1. Free will works just like free speech.
            It only means you make the choice – it doesn’t guarantee that the universe has to care what you’ve chosen and give you carte blanche to do whatever the fuck you want forever without any consequences at all.

          2. I agree that free will is just like free speech. Even with free speech, you can still only say things that you’re capable of physically saying. It’s the illusion of infinite freedom within a box.

            It’s like that ST:TNG episode where Data fights a holodeck Professor Moriarty and in the end traps him in a computer simulation of the universe so that he can have the illusion of traveling anywhere, but he’s still ultimately trapped in a box.

            “Any customer can have a car painted any color that he wants so long as it is black.”

          3. That’s not at all how that episode ended. Moriarty is given the promise that if they ever discover how to bring him into the real world they would reactivate his program. He continues to exist within the computer only as inert data – he doesn’t have an actual existence in terms of thinking or experiencing once they deactivated the simulation.

          4. Apparently, I was confusing the beginning of the first Moriarty episode in Season 2 (Elementary, Dear Data) with the ending of the 2nd Moriarty episode in Season 6 (Ship in a Bottle). 

            In the end of Ship in a Bottle, “Moriarty and the Countess Regina Bartholomew would spend the rest of their lives inside a memory module, unaware of their situation, for as far as they were concerned they had left the Enterprise to live their lives in the real world.”


          5. I have always thought of heaven and hell as metaphorical representations of the extremes of darkness and light. I guess that we do choose darkness, sometimes consciously, sometimes unconsciously. But it is necessary. Without it, you can never find balance. Heaven is something  that every man would choose when given the choice, but maybe this isn’t the right choice. The right choice is in between the two extremes. 

      3. When Moses saw God on the mountain, God was described in abstracts such as goodness and love.

        How do you get from “burning bush” to “goodness and love”?

        1. While I try to avoid getting good love from people with burning bushes, in Moses’ defense, the burning bush event happened earlier when God was volunteering Moses to lead the people out of Egypt. The whole hiding Moses in a rock crevice while God passed by happened on a different mountain after they were already out of Egypt.

    4. All interesting questions, but let me ask you this:

      Is there any man who doesn’t believe he has the penis of a god?

    1. My hypothesis is that people get tripped up on the word hypothesis. It’s long, it’s Greek and requires good enunciation.

  13. Louisiana has the 47th highest literacy rate (out of 50 states) and ranks 50th in education levels, measured by percentage of adults with high school and post-secondary completion.  I know, you’re all shocked.

  14. Staggering, the sophistry on that one page.  Scientists look for what they “believe,” whereas Christians are taught to be “discerning”…?  It’s like a looking-glass world.  This is purest language-evil.

  15. We had private Xian schools, and a separate publicly funded Catholic system as well where I grew up (outcome of a big fuss about 100 years ago).

    In high school, we knew the Catholic and Xian school kids as ‘teen parents’, mostly because of their amazing ability to have sex despite having been told it was a sin and not to learn anything because it was bad.

    Some of them are likely grandparents by now, which boggles my aging mind.

    1. Generally the situation unfolds along these lines:

      Catholic schools: “Sex is sinful. So are condoms.”
      Catholic teens: “Well, better one sin than two, right?”

  16. Honestly, I’m less offended by the state-funded religious education (which is PLENTY noxious, don’t get me wrong), than I am by the egregious mis-education involved. It’s incredible how many factual errors are packed into that single loosely spaced page. I mean, “Humans are the highest animal”? When I was 10, I was able to understand that humans were animals simply by dint of biological fact, and also definitions of words, evolution nothing, and by the time I was 12, I was able to understand that evolution has been happening as long as there was life, so nothing is “more” evolved than anything else, once again, definitionally. Hell, they even get the Creationistey bits badly wrong, because they seem eager to deny anything that isn’t Young Earth creationism.

    Here’s a Pro Tip: If you have to lie egregiously to argue to a draw, you actually just lost. Here’s another: If you have literally no idea what a “competing” viewpoint (or viewpoints) actually say, you have no business trying to “Teach the controversy”. Some book once said, “By their fruits you shall know them”, so we can be pretty sure that Creationists -and perhaps Christians as a whole- are dishonest idiots with outsize political power based on page alone.

  17. Hey, Louisiana, thanks for helping the world grade America on a curve! The gender usage is what you’d expect, too. Men judge, men believe, men write. Women, not so much, apparently.

  18. I think you are all being unfair to the unnamed fifth grader that wrote this. I mean, sure, there are some pretty basic errors, but for a 10 year old to even attempt to write a science textbook is laudable and we should….


    FOR fifth graders?

    get the fuck out of here!

    1. Hey, none of this controversy would have happened in the first place if you busybodies hadn’t eaten that damn apple.

  19. This should outrage people far more than it seems to. 
    Trying to set scientific thought back to the dark ages… using public tax dollars no less.

    Fuck. That.

  20. Even in the “evolutionist” column, three out of the five statements are absurdly wrong. Wait until those kids grow up and can’t become physicians or serve in any profession with a science requirement. They are using tax dollars to destroy their own childrens’ futures.

  21. I’ve always found it interesting that the forbidden fruit was from the tree of knowledge.   To me this is religion plainly stating that we should remain ignorant or we are sinning.   Science = Sin, Ignorance = Good.  The masses are easier to control if they are ignorant.  To me religion is primarily about control.

    1. It’s not the tree of all knowledge, but the tree of knowledge of good and evil. I don’t understand why anyone would hold them responsible for disobeying God’s command not to eat the fruit, if they lacked knowledge of good and evil before that.

      Still, I’m skeptical of authorities who try to hide knowledge of any kind. Nolan’s Batman, Starfleet’s Prime Directive, Jack Nicholson in A Few Good Men. “You want the truth? You can’t handle the truth!”

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