I think i would like to know what you mean by mocking. I can't watch the video right now. And i don't think it really is common at all for a science teacher to bring up god in class to say he doesn't exist. I think we should be mindful of the way we use the word 'common'. I think its rather uncommon considering how many schools there are in the country.
Heck i've gone to Catholic school all my life and i can't remember God ever being mentioned in science class.
Last edited by KimPossible; 01-29-2014 at 11:05 PM.
I also have never heard of any teacher mocking religious beliefs, not in my experience or anyone else's I know. I'm sure it happens but I don't think it's common.
And atheism is a lack of religion, not a type of it.
Note to self: Do not ever live anywhere Bonita has ever lived, and definitely never send kids to school any of those places.
Another note to self: And don't ever live or send kids to school in Louisiana.
David Letterman is retiring. Such great memories of watching him over the past thirty-two years!
That video is merely commentary and not very illuminating. I looked up the story. Interesting that the teacher in question disparaged Creationism and not Christianity, and is a practicing Christian himself.
Yeah i wish i could get more info on this actual case, its not easy to find. I'd love to know the actual context of the remark, especially seeing these comments from the teacher:
Teachers must challenge myths - jim corbett - Open Salon
I would love to know the context for certain.Every teacher in California (this was a federal case after all) now works with the knowledge that any student, at any time, and in violation of California law, can sneak a tape recorder into a classroom, record the teacher and use an out-of-context five second comment as a bludgeon to threaten, to intimidate and, ultimately, to destroy the teacher's career and good name.
Also thought this was interesting, from another article:
Supreme Court won't hear appeal of student's anti-Christian lawsuit - The Orange County Register
seems to go against this idea that mocking christianity is a 'common' problem.At the time of the appellate ruling, the legal experts also said the case likely would never be accepted by the Supreme Court because the underlying constitutional issues did not appear to be a systemic problem among teachers nationwide.
There is so much going on in this thread! Ack, how to focus?
1. Atheism is not a religion. Atheism is a lack of religion. As the old chestnut goes, atheism is a religion like bald is a hair color.
2. It's hard for me to believe that tons of Christians are being mocked for their beliefs at school. Don't like 80% of people identify as Christian? Presumably then somewhere close to 80% of teachers and school admin are Christian as well. I realize that of that 80% not all of them believe in a literal 7 day creation, but it seems really weird that lots of Christians are mocking lots of other Christians over stuff that is in the bible. Or are you arguing that the 20% of people who aren't Christians are just super busy mocking Christians all of the time? It's just hard to see such a vast majority as a persecuted minority group, you know?
3. Regardless, no I do not believe that a teacher should mock a student (atheist, Christian, Buddhist, or otherwise) for their beliefs. I do think that teachers can and should ask their students to apply critical thinking to their beliefs. Critical thinking is a hugely important skill that people learn in school, and should be turned on to most areas of life, even including religious beliefs. If your religion can't withstand some critical thought, the problem is with your religious beliefs, not with critical thinking. Having said that, I believe that the same standard should be applied to all belief systems, not just Christianity or Buddhism, or atheism, or whatever. In other words, no matter what the kids have been taught to believe, they should be encouraged to view those old beliefs with a critical and logical eye, including atheism. Maybe upon closer thought and inspection, atheism doesn't make sense to them either. The importance is not in turning kids away from what they believe, but again, in teaching them to apply logic and critical thinking skills to all important areas of their life. The students should be taught to use critical thinking and then encouraged to come to their own conclusions.
4. Teaching evolution as an accepted scientific theory is not promoting atheism or mocking Christianity. Calling it "just a theory" on the other hand is either dishonest, or else belies a lack of understanding about what the word "theory" means in scientific terms.
What is a Scientific Theory? | Definition of Theory | LiveScience
The Theory of Evolution does not speak to the existance of god, and there is no need for a teacher to assert or deny the existance of god in a science class. God is, by definition, supernatural, and thus falls outside of the realm of the things that science can study. Science is the study of the natural world. Science should be taught in science class.
-Alissa, mom to Tristan (5) and Reid (the baby!)
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I believe strongly that Atheism is a belief system and therefore a religion. Anything that applies to Separation of Church and State also applies to Atheism. For example, if a big bill board in the town center that said God loves you was not allowed, neither should a big bill that said there is no God. In that contexts, they are both equally a religion.
As I said earlier, I have no problem with Atheism being taught in schools. As I said before the problem lies in presentation and mocking all other beliefs. For example saying that it was hogwash or anyone who believed that way was ignorant or silly. The term Christian covers a large amount of very different beliefs. Just because something is not against one persons beliefs that calls themselves Christian does not mean that it is not against other peoples beliefs.
I do not have any statistics on how often teachers or professors mock students for believing in God and Creationism. All I have is what people I know have told me and experiences I have had. In my experience, a lot of people who are pro evolution have a very hard time not sneering at the idea of Creationism when someone asks them about it.