How is it these days that the news out of Texas always seems bad? The state leads the nation in percentage of citizens who lack all health insurance. Texas is the place where people like George W. Bush and Rick Perry can actually aspire to be governor. Texas is the state that dispatched conservative kamikaze Ted Cruz to the U. S. Senate.
Now Texas wants to mix in a little creationism with its biology.
Texas panel seeks creationist biology text book
According to the New York Times this morning, a Texas panel tasked with selecting a new biology textbook to be used by high school students for the next decade is packed a little too tightly with individuals who question both evolution and climate change and prefer a little “Book of Job” with their science.
At least six members of the 28-member board reject evolution and probably think Darwin was a minion of the devil. In fact, Michael L. Williams, commissioner of the Texas Education Agency, and a Rick Perry appointee, makes the final decision on which individuals sit on the panel.
(If the words “Rick Perry” and “education” in the same sentence cause you serious anxiety it would not be without justification.)
Here’s what we have so far: An august body chosen to pick the best textbook available, but leaning far right. As in don’t teach evolution—except as a theory. As in don’t teach climate change unless Big Oil companies say so. Allow students to use their “critical thinking skills,” as one member put it, to come to some understanding of how the world was created. Maybe ignore the fossil record while you’re at it, since another panelist insists that the “fossil record can be interpreted in other ways than evolutionary with equal justification.”
Actually … the hell with it, let’s ignore science entirely.
A sample biology textbook for Texas’ creationist crowd
I hereby recommend that the Texas panel should chuck all the textbooks they have seen and go with a biology curriculum that reads something like this:
- Chapter 1: God Sees the Light
- Chapter 2: On the second day God creates the heavens—and fakes out future scientists by messing with the speed of light, which only “in theory” travels 186,000 miles per second—so that those distant stars, well, at least on those stars there are no gay people.
- Chapter 3: God creates land and sea on the third day. Eventually, it rains like hell for 40 days and 40 nights and some guy in an ark sails around with every plant and animal in existence aboard and the rain covers the land, including Mount Everest, meaning, if we employ our “critical thinking skills” that during this wet period rain poured down at the rate of 8,708.7 inches per day, which would dampen ones underwear.
- Chapter 4: God creates stars and moons and various and sundry celestial bodies.
- Chapter 5: God creates “whales” and “winged fowl” “and every creature that moveth” (including gerbils, just because He was messing around).
- Chapter 6: God creates Adam and Eve; and later come the gay people, so that they can threaten the traditional marriage, although technically, Adam was bonking Eve without the benefit of a marriage license, since there were—as yet—no actual ministers.
- Chapter 7: God kicks back in his lounge chair—because creating all those whales and dinosaurs and Sasquatch in one day was quite hard.
Carrying this logic even farther, it is clear the Texas board in charge of picking history, nutrition, and sexual education text books needs to get its act together and align curriculum with the Bible.
Bible-based history curriculum
You know that part where kids learn that Abraham Lincoln was a good president because signed the Emancipation Proclamation? None of that now, not down in Texas! The Bible (Leviticus 25:44) clearly gives slavery God’s seal of approval:
“Both thy bondmen, and thy bondmaids, which thou shalt have, shall be of the heathen that are round about you; of them shall ye buy bondmen and bondmaids.”
And how about our Puritan ancestors, blamed unfairly all these years for hanging a few witches? Exodus 22:18 puts it perfectly: “Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live.”
In other words, good job Salem, Massachusetts judges!
Bible-based nutrition curriculum
Really, you can just see kids using their “critical thinking skills” left and right (well, mostly right) if we adopt the right textbooks.
“Mr. Johnson,” a boy asks his ninth grade health teacher, “what is the average lifespan for human beings?”
“Today, the average American lives to be about 80,” he responds, “but if we follow the diet set forth in the Bible [low on bats and weasels, high on grasshoppers; Leviticus 11:19, 11:22, 11:29] then we might live longer.”
“So, Mr. Johnson,” the young man inquires, “how long could I live if I cut out the Big Macs and stayed away from fried ravens [Leviticus 11:15]?”
“Well, you might end up like Adam, who begot Seth when he was already 130 years old and stayed virile for the next eight centuries, before meeting an untimely death at the age of only 930. [See Genesis 5:3-4).”
Bible-based sexual education curriculum
A girl now wonders: “Speaking of children, Mr. Johnson, what if one of my friends has sex before marriage?”
“Well, young lady, we want you to think critically about science and health and history, and the Bible, as I hope you know, is crystal clear on that topic. If your friend gets married and her husband discovers she’s not a virgin…”
“Of course,” the girl responds. “It’s in Deuteronomy 22:20. The men of the town will have to gather and stone her!”
Education—only in Texas.