Wednesday, March 29, 2006

What's Wrong with Questions in Science?

Dear Letters Editor,

In her editorial, "Did State Board of Education rule properly on evolution?"(Dispatch, February 27, 2006), State Board of Education member Martha Wise inadvertently reaffirmed the controversy over evolution in the state's science standards. Wise begins by stating that she is a creationist -- one who believes in a world created and ordered by God. She then defends evolution as a science that must be taught in schools because "Ohio's prosperity depends on a well-educated workforce that understands science..."

How can Wise claim to be both a believer in creationism and evolution? Logically one cannot rationally hold propositions A and not-A simultaneously true. Obviously the creationism/evolution debate rages within the mind of Wise. If she can wrestles with this, why does she not want Ohio students to wrestle also?

While understanding science is important for future generations, judges can't determine scientific truth. Scientific truth is found when science tests its own assumptions as new hypotheses and technologies call the prevailing set of ideas and assumption into question.

If the current scientific paradigm is believed false by educated folks such as Wise, the paradigm must be questioned and debated, and, if appropriate, a new paradigm -- one closer to the truth -- established. According to Thomas Kuhn, influential historian of science and philosopher, that's how real science works.
Jim Fedako

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