|AN EVOLVING DEBATE
Can Evolution and Creationism Coexist
in the Science Classroom?
May 8, 1998
in this forum:
Why is the faith of one group given prominence over the other? Can science and religion coexist in people's minds? How does teaching creation or evolution help people? Why should a high school science class be burdened with teaching creationism? Which version of creation should be taught, if any? What academic credentials would qualify one to teach an unbiased Evolution vs. Creationism class in public school? Additional Comments... A question from H. Victor Youngmeyer of Toa Baja, Puerto Rico: No one saw God create life. No one has seen the spontaneous creation of life. Some scientists believe God created life. Some believe it began spontaneously. If the beliefs of both groups are based on faith, why is the faith of one group given prominence over the other?
Dr. Donald Kennedy, chair of the panel that authored the new guidelines, responds:
The fact that no one has see the creation of life does not mean that we cannot draw scientific inferences about it; we haven't seen the electron either, but physicists have derived a very thorough knowledge of its mass and its other properties. But the origin of life is certainly not as clearly understood by scientists as the evolution of life once it started; thus there is certainly room for religious explanations.
Dr. Carl Herbster, president of the American Association of Christian Schools, responds:
The experiment of the famous scientist, Louis Pasteur, disproved spontaneous generation. Non-life cannot beget life. The complexity and design of the universe demand an intelligent Designer--God. The evidence points to God as creator, but there is no evidence for spontaneous generation.