The Texas GOP has some curious things to say about education (via TPM):
Controversial Theories – We support objective teaching and equal treatment of all sides of scientific theories. We believe theories such as life origins and environmental change should be taught as challengeable scientific theories subject to change as new data is produced. Teachers and students should be able to discuss the strengths and weaknesses of these theories openly and without fear of retribution or discrimination of any kind.
Early Childhood Development – We believe that parents are best suited to train their children in their early development and oppose mandatory pre-school and Kindergarten. We urge Congress to repeal government-sponsored programs that deal with early childhood development.
Knowledge-Based Education – We oppose the teaching of Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) (values clarification), critical thinking skills and similar programs that are simply a relabeling of Outcome-Based Education (OBE) (mastery learning) which focus on behavior modification and have the purpose of challenging the student’s fixed beliefs and undermining parental authority.
On the one hand, evolution and global warming are to be critically assessed, on the other, they don't want to challenge the student's fixed beliefs. Let's hope they don't believe in evolution or anthropogenic climate change.
A belief also not to be challenged, apparently:
We affirm that the practice of homosexuality tears at the fabric of society and contributes to the breakdown of the family unit. Homosexual behavior is contrary to the fundamental, unchanging truths that have been ordained by God, recognized by our country’s founders, and shared by the majority of Texans. Homosexuality must not be presented as an acceptable “alternative” lifestyle, in public policy, nor should “family” be redefined to include homosexual “couples.” We believe there should be no granting of special legal entitlements or creation of special status for homosexual behavior, regardless of state of origin. Additionally, we oppose any criminal or civil penalties against those who oppose homosexuality out of faith, conviction or belief in traditional values.
Ah, "objective teaching and equal treatment of all sides of scientific theories."
Jonah Goldberg is determined to outdo himself in the category of dumb:
I find Darwin fish offensive. First, there’s the smugness. The
undeniable message: Those Jesus fish people are less evolved, less
sophisticated than we Darwin fishers.
The hypocrisy is even more glaring. Darwin fish are often stuck next to
bumper stickers promoting tolerance or admonishing that "hate is not a
family value." But the whole point of the Darwin fish is intolerance;
similar mockery of a cherished symbol would rightly be condemned as
bigoted if aimed at blacks or women or, yes, Muslims.
He’s right about the undeniable message. But I don’t think it’s saying what he thinks it is. For evolutionists, the fish represents the connection between life in the sea and mammalian life. According to their story, God ordered the fish to rise up from the sea and walk on earth, so that, eventually, the fish would become man (without the God part). This is an alternative to the literal creationism of some Christians which has a couple of different stories each involving a sea. I would even venture to guess that many Darwin fish cars are owned by Christians–many of whom are dedicated evolutionists.
The ridiculous thing about Goldberg’s remark is the charge of hypocrisy. The point, obviously, of the Darwin fish is to insist on scientific evidence over the unsupported factual assertions of a religious text. The evolutionists, in other words, challenge fact with fact–the literal creation story (which for some reason very many Christians believe isn’t true at all). Many Christians do believe this story, however. They believe it with such a vengeance they think it ought to be taught as fact in science classes in place of or at least alongside of the evolution "story." In some places, they have even succeeded in undermining the teaching of evolution on the grounds that it’s just a "theory." That view, of course, is absolutely preposterous–and ignorant and intolerant of basic scientific knowledge.
Here’s the really dumb thing. To believe in the literal truth of Genesis in the face of overwhelming scientific evidence is not the same as being black, female or Muslim–unless being those things involves embracing obviously false assertions about reality. To believe in the literal truth of Genesis (and the sometimes consequent belief in the immorality and falsity of evolution) is not even the same thing as being Christian.