The Fine Line Between Completely Nuts and Deeply Conservative Keeps Getting Harder to Distinguish

Educators in Kentucky have rolled out a new set of science standards.

Nearly two dozen parents, teachers, scientists and advocacy groups commented at the state Department of Education hearing on the Next Generation Science Standards. The broad set of guidelines will revamp content in grades K-12 and help meet requirements from a 2009 law that called for improving education.

“Students in the commonwealth both need and deserve 21st-century science education grounded in inquiry, rich in content and internationally benchmarked,” said Blaine Ferrell, a representative from the Kentucky Academy of Sciences, a science advocacy group that endorses the standards.

Seems reasonable right?

No so much.  Opponents of the science standards have apparently lost their fucking minds:

The critics included parent Valerie O’Rear, who said the standards promote an “atheistic world view” and a political agenda that pushes government control.

Matt Singleton, a Baptist minister declared:

“Outsiders are telling public school families that we must follow the rich man’s elitist religion of evolution, that we no longer have what the Kentucky Constitution says is the right to worship almighty God,” Singleton said. “Instead, this fascist method teaches that our children are the property of the state.”.

There’s no end to the crazy:

At one point, opponent Dena Stewart-Gore of Louisville also suggested that the standards will marginalize students with religious beliefs, leading to ridicule and physiological harm in the classroom, and create difficulties for students with learning disabilities.

“The way socialism works is it takes anybody that doesn’t fit the mold and discards them,” she said, adding that “we are even talking genocide and murder here, folks.”

Superficially these objections are completely nuts.  But, they make sense in context of right wing Christian rhetoric that teaches that the Holocaust was the direct result of teaching evolution and the natural outcome of accepting the concept of evolution leads to atheism, which leads to the Gulag Archipelago and Stalin’s decades long reign of brutality, oppression, murder and organized terrorism of the Soviet populace.  The connection between the scientific theory of evolution and the Holocaust and the worst excesses of the Soviet Union may not seem obvious.  It goes something like this:

Evolution teaches that the whole universe is just a giant accident, that people evolved by sheer happenstance.  Which means, we’re nothing but animals.  Since there is no god, there’s no morality and since we’re just animals there’s no reason for us to be moral.  So all sorts of horrible things happen because there’ s no God and no morality.  The Holocaust, genocide, the murder of “socially undesirable” persons are the obvious outcomes of a universe with no god and no morality.

So when these otherwise normal seeming persons stand up in public and announce that new science standards for the state of Kentucky will lead to genocide and murder, they aren’t just crazy, they’re responding to a narrative about evolution, morality and science which says science is dangerous because it denies God.  But, without knowing that background, it’s pretty to easy to read or hear such statements and conclude there is no dividing line because fundamentalist and crazy.

  1. #1 by Nathan Erkkila on July 30, 2013 - 5:45 pm

    Alright. I’m not really surprised, but at the same time, I am. There is something about evolution that you need to understand. There is no opposing or competing theory, there is no doubt about it’s validity, there is no argument and there is no evidence whatsoever that even questions the theory of evolution. Any argument creationists have made are not only 100% wrong, but they have been strengthening the theory with further research proving just how correct evolution is. And yet these ass clowns are robbing their children of an education that gears them towards college and hopefully a ticket out of their god forsaken state. Seriously, Kentucky.

  2. #2 by cav on July 30, 2013 - 6:44 pm

    I’ve said this before: Evolution does not in any way deny the existence of God. Science, in it’s quest for verifiable fact, only sidesteps the theological.

    Those feeling threatened by science, and particularly evolution, have only to approach the notion that we are made in God’s image by remembering that the taste buds are no less vital, no less an image of man, than is any individual man simply a mini-replica of some bearded dude up on a cloud. No an element, not a system, not a gas giant nor a molecule can be separate from this totality which has been named God. All including sanity and insanity, are aspects of this Gargantuan Entity – good, bad and indifferent.

    Get of over that little bit of nonsense, and begin evolving in God’s continuously evolving reality.

  3. #3 by cav on July 30, 2013 - 7:06 pm

    One would hope that someday (soon) they would find our just how stupid they sound.

    They’re deeply spiritual – and still deluded.

  4. #4 by cav on July 31, 2013 - 9:40 am

    One of the sad truths of evolution is that the most evil sociopathic fucks on the planet continue to fail upward.

    But that has been the case even in a milieu where the concept of a Heavenly Father is operant.

  5. #5 by Wow! on August 1, 2013 - 9:19 am

    Amazingly, the dividing line between the obama 20% and their support of obama’s nazi style fascism and whack job progressives is now indistinguishable.

    The center cannot hold..and it is ALWAYS the stupid weak minded progressives who create the conditions in history that allows fascist horror to be ushered into to their lands.

    At that point, their dumb asses are disposed of by the psychopaths they have unleashed, like used banana peels..

  6. #6 by Just Wow! on August 1, 2013 - 10:56 am

    Just Wow!, Could you say that again Wow?

    Just would add that “progressivism” requires the destruction of the institutions which brought the nation to where it is…discuss the destruction of Western social institutions and the fabric of western society in general.

    Wow Just Wow..Wow!

  7. #7 by cav on August 1, 2013 - 11:04 am

    Practicing actual Christian values is really a problem for so many of the ‘righteous’.

    • #8 by brewski on August 1, 2013 - 1:04 pm

      That’s in the Bible.

  8. #9 by cav on August 1, 2013 - 1:52 pm

    God and the devil v Job – to be precise.

  9. #10 by Larry Bergan on August 2, 2013 - 7:03 pm

    And yet liberals get blamed for turning the word “conservative” into a pejorative.

    Frank Lunz better get on the stick and figure out another term for them.

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