Friday, August 29, 2008

The "Education Angle" of McCain's VP Choice

From Joanne Jacobs:

Sarah Palin, daughter of a science teacher and a school secretary, appears to be the only one of the four (VP and presidential candidates) educated at the local public schools.

How could the NEA be against her? :-)


KauaiMark said...

I think the GOP has a winner in Palin...and NOT just because she's a female.

Ellen K said...

Because she's conservative.
She could be the shining example of middle class values and attitudes-which for the most part she is-and the liberals wouldn't accept her. Their litmus test is one of adherence to the goals of world socialism in every facet.

Donalbain said...

Well, for one thing she has gone on record as wanting creationism taught in science classrooms. That is reason enough for this science teacher to think she is a loon who should not be given any sort of power at all.

Darren said...

When you consider that her opponent is the Messiah, I'm not sure that religious litmus tests are appropriate in this case. =)

Snark aside, I just came across this on Instapundit:
"Support for teaching creationism in public schools. Of course, if we got the federal government out of of the education business, as we should, this kind of thing wouldn't matter much."
I agree.

Did she get creationism taught in Alaska schools? Did she even try to, or is it just her *preference*? Or, are we just throwing whatever we can find at this woman, ignoring her very real accomplishments?

Darren said...

Here's an update to Instapundit's post:
UPDATE: Charles Johnson -- whose ongoing battle with the Discovery Institute proves he's no creationist -- says that claims that she supports creationism in schools are overblown:

Looks like Palin made an off-the-cuff statement during a debate on a hot topic, didn’t really expect the criticism she’d get, and then softened her position considerably in a follow-up interview. But to quote just the first part of her statements on creationism and ignore the second is misleading; because in the clarification she’s describing a position that doesn’t cause me (a staunch anti-creationist) any discomfort.
Perhaps you can rest easy now, Donalbain, and order up another pint.

Donalbain said...

Oh. I see. She said something and got criticised for it and she regrets the criticism. Sorry, that cuts no ice with me. She has stated that she wants creationism taught in science classes. As an educator, that not only angers me, but it tells me she is a loon.

Darren said...

With someone who believes in creationism on one side and the Messiah on the other, it's a good thing you're not voting in this election--you'd have no one to cast a ballot for.

Donalbain said...

Well, since Obama is not and has never claimed to be the Messiah, I fail to see your point. As far as I know, Obama has not suggested the state promoting a particular religion over others, and so in that regard I would have no problem voting for him on THAT issue.

Darren said...

Your blinders are showing.

In an interview Thursday, Palin said she meant only to say that discussion of alternative views should be allowed to arise in Alaska classrooms:

“I don’t think there should be a prohibition against debate if it comes up in class. It doesn’t have to be part of the curriculum.”

She added that, if elected, she would not push the state Board of Education to add such creation-based alternatives to the state’s required curriculum.

You'll search for any reason to attack a conservative. You're going to need a better one than this, science teacher.

allen (in Michigan) said...

> As an educator, that not only angers me, but it tells me she is a loon.

As an educator maybe you oughtn't to engage in the sort of name-calling you're privileged to witness quite often from your students. It makes distinguishing the one from the other difficult.

A belief that creationism ought to be taught in the public education system, far from being evidence of mental defect, is putting the public education system to one of the uses for which it exists: indoctrination. Creationists are even using the approved means, the political process, of imposing their views on innocent children.

Face it. As long as the public education system is part of the political process it'll always be an irresistible attraction for anyone who wants to assure the promulgation of their views. It's not a fault in the system. It's a feature of the system.

Donalbain said...

She backtracked when someone pointed out that she sounded like a loon. Big deal. She is on record as saying "teach them both". Hell, even saying allow the debate is kookiness. There is no debate. The debate ended about 100 years ago. All there is now is a continual reheating of the same, nonsensical, refuted points from the creationist ministers. No educator worthy of the name would allow a "debate" about geocentrism, or about wether there was a Holocaust. The "let them debate" strategy is just a rehash of the old "teach the controversy". As a science teacher, I just don't have the time in the curriculum to deal with all the nonsense that comes from creationists, and a thorough disection of the subject to show why it is not only false, but is not even science at all would take more than one of my very precious lessons that I need to use to cover the correct, factual parts of the syllabus.

Darren said...

Backtracked? or "clarified"? Perhaps she "misspoke".

There's a loon here, and it's not Sarah Palin.

allen (in Michigan) said...

Well maybe you ought take some of that deep, science-teacher insight and come up with a better way to appeal to the public then to dismiss creationists as mentally ill and an unimpressed public as stupid.

Or are you so wrapped up in the search for evidence of your own cleverness that you can't be bothered with more worthwhile means of communicating your point of view to the public.

It's self-involved, name-callers who give the creationists credibility.

When someone who's unfamiliar with the issues decides to take a look what do they see? On the one side there are prayerful supporters of a balanced approach to a controversy. On the other side there are bug-eye, near-hysterical name-callers.

Jinkies, I wonder who gets credibility despite the hollowness of the arguments they put forth?

Donalbain said...

I communicate my point fo view in many different ways. On political blogs, I tend to be rather more forthright. In a science classroom, I am rather more tactful.
The fact that creationists get their credibility from being called names sums them up perfectly. They dont have any actual evidence, so they whine and play the martyr.

Someone who is interested in science should not learn science from a political blog, they should go to a scientific website or, even better, a class.

rightwingprof said...

I fail to see why creationism gets liberals' panties in such a wad, yet equally preposterous, non-factual nonsense like post-modernism, or claiming that Stalin didn't really murder millions of people doesn't bother them at all. And this is why, despite my firm position that creationism has absolutely no place in a science class, I do not take these hypocritical loons seriously.

allen (in Michigan) said...

Forthright? Rationalize much?

It's name-calling and not particularly clever name-calling at that.

> The fact that creationists get their credibility from being called names sums them up perfectly.

Knock, knock, knock. Earth to donal.

In the political process you don't make a gift of credibility to your opponents which is what you and your self-involved fellows do when you enjoy the hearty good fun of a curled-lip sneer.

The creationists understand the credibility-sapping quality of name-calling which is why they always appear well-mannered and try to, you should pardon the expression, ape science. They look good by comparison to their over-wrought opponents who are quite willing to label everyone who doesn't agree with them on the subject as stupid.

Maybe you ought to decide which is important to you: the warm, but cheaply-earned gratification you get from calling creationists loons or the possibility that you might make some contribution to stopping their poltical momentum.

Donalbain said...

Creationism "gets my panties in a twist" because it is not science, and worse, it is a lie. I am not, however, aware of any attempts to teach that Stalin did not have people murdered. Maybe that is because I am a science teacher and that is where my attention is mostly focussed, or maybe it is because that doesnt happen.

As for stopping their momentum, that is not done on blogs, and so I have no problem calling an idiot an idiot or a loon a loon.

Mrs. C said...

Politely as I can, so I can have some credibility :]

I'm a parent. I pay taxes. These are my children going to school.

I understand if the school board votes a certain way. I vote for the school board. I can opt my children out of science class altogether if I have a religious objection to it, just as I have done with "health" class.

But keep sticking stuff like this in enough classes, and don't wonder why people like me homeschool. I don't even see where the debate should be. If I pay taxes and want to be involved, why the hate?

PS. Please don't wonder why people like me don't join the PTA and aren't "supportive of public education" when we're marginalized, either. We're not the Taliban. Most of us just want a seat at the table we're paying for anyway.