Tuesday, August 29, 2006

When science meets ignorance

This is an article published in the last issue of the Ovi magazine - Ovi lehti

125 years after Darwin's death, his theory - actually the only theory that has been proven correct with experiments - is causing problems once again. This turn to religion in the last few years and especially in USA proves that in the country of science, in the century of science, science is not taught or at least is taught as one side!

There is another side which believes that humanity came from the rib of a man, but the weirdest part is that Darwin doesn't discard the existence of a god in the sense that there maybe a god who sends the hurricanes to punish people and show them that he's angry, like they used to believe thousands of years ago.

However, 68 scientific academies all around the world felt obliged to publish a common announcement which we at the Ovi magazine feel that everybody should read and be aware of the threat of any kind of fanatics:

TWAS Endorses Statement on Teaching of Evolution
21 June 2006. TWAS and 66 other science academies worldwide endorsed a statement urging parents and teachers to provide children with the facts about the origins and the evolution of life on Earth. The statement was drafted by a group of members of the Inter Academy Panel on International Issues. It points out that "within science courses taught in certain public systems of education, scientific evidence, data, and testable theories about the origins and evolution of life on Earth are being concealed, denied, or confused with theories not testable by science" and that "knowledge of the natural world in which they live empowers people to meet human needs and protect the planet."

The IAP statement highlights that "evidence-based facts about the origins and evolution of the Earth and of life on this planet have been established by numerous observations and independently derived experimental results from a multitude of scientific disciplines," and that "even if there are still many open questions about the precise details of evolutionary change, scientific evidence has never contradicted these results."

In listing the facts, the statement indicates that the Earth formed approximately 4.5 billion years ago and that life appeared on the planet at least 2.5 billion years ago.
On evolution, it states: "Since its first appearance on Earth, life has taken many forms, all of which continue to evolve, in ways which paleontology and the modern biological and biochemical sciences are describing and independently confirming with increasing precision." The statement continues: "Commonalities in the structure of the genetic code of all organisms living today, including humans, clearly indicate their common primordial origin."

The statement acknowledges that "human understanding of value and purpose are outside of natural science's scope" and that "a number of components -- scientific, social, philosophical, religious, cultural and political -- contribute to it." It adds: "These different fields owe each other mutual consideration, while being fully aware of their own areas of action and their limitations."

By Thanos Kalamidas

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