An Easy Decision for the Texas School Board

Nope, they should not have any trouble rejecting this proposal:

A bid by the Dallas-based Institute for Creation Research to train future science teachers was flatly rejected by Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board members Wednesday.

Here is a sampling of what you would get from ICR:

The purpose of ICRGS is (1) to prepare science teachers and other individuals to understand the universe within the integrating framework of a biblical perspective using proven scientific data, and (2) to prepare students for leadership in science education. A clear distinction is drawn between scientific creationism and biblical creationism, but it is the position of the Institute that the two are compatible and that all genuine facts of science support the Bible.
The programs and curricula of the Graduate School, while similar in factual content to those of other graduate colleges, are distinctive in one major respect. ICR bases its educational philosophy on the foundational truth of a personal Creator-God and His authoritative and unique revelation of truth in the Bible.

The first two goals of their distance education program are:

# create a network of science teachers who desire to teach scientific truths about biblical creation;
# learn the most effective ways to teach scientific truths about biblical creation;

Excellent goals! Ones that any decent science teacher can already handle just fine.
If someone really wants a course like this as part of their educational credentials then they should certainly be allowed to do so. But they should not expect it to qualify them to teach real science.

On a related note, John Freshwater can keep his bible on his desk. However, it sounds like some of his teaching points and methods are well aligned with ICR.

Update: Greg Laden has a related petition you should go sign.

Darwin Junkies Rejoice

Anyone else with even a passing interest in science and evolution can also rejoice: The Complete Works of Charles Darwin are now available online:

This site contains Darwin’s complete publications, thousands of handwritten manuscripts and the largest Darwin bibliography and manuscript catalogue ever published; [Click to enlarge] also hundreds of supplementary works: biographies, obituaries, reviews, reference works and more

Via The Wired Campus.

A Quick Fix for Obesity?

The genetic basis of human weight control is complex. New research suggests that as many as 6000 genes may be involved in determining body weight.

“Our results suggest that each newly discovered gene is just one of the many thousands that influence body weight, so a quick fix to the obesity problem is unlikely.”

The idea that we as individuals, families and society can screw up our bodies and then go down to a Doc and get a quick fix is one of the major issues with rising health care costs.
Take care of yourself in the first place and most of you will not need a quick fix for obesity…be it a pill or bariatric surgery.
Don’t get me wrong. I do not object to the research. Rather, I object to the idea that a magic pill or a genetic modification that will help you lose weight is the fix that is needed.
A long term solution is needed and that will mean dismantling a good part of the culture of obesity that we live in.

I’m overweight. I’ve already taken a short walk and I’ll be on my erg in about 2 hours. Have you exercised today?