look at this *facepalm*
this is absolutely outrageous....
You've probably heard the news about the recently-enacted Tennessee law allowing public school teachers to deny human evolution, global warming, and also apparently whatever aspects of biology offend religious sensibilities. So, basically, not only will teachers be permitted to not teach anything about these scientific subjects, but will be permitted to lie to their students about them and/or teach religion in place of science. In other words, they've mandated statewide, taxpayer-funded child abuse in their schools. But you may not have heard of some of the other scientific facts Tennessee's children are no longer permitted to know about...
TOP 10 SCIENTIFIC FACTS TN SCHOOLS WILL NO LONGER TEACH
10. Procreating with siblings is a bad idea
The TN legislature thought general knowledge of this fact would unfairly stigmatize the majority of its members whose parents are siblings, and also limit families' options for making babies - something the Pro-Life community has decried as "stealth abortion." Focus on the Family TN spokesman Richard Puller had this to say: "There is ample biblical precedent for having children with siblings. How else did the children of Adam and Eve have children of their own?" The Tennessee Medical Association could not be reached for comment due to its physicians having been burned as witches.
9. Smoking causes cancer
The sponsor of the legislation in the TN House, Bill Dunn (R - Under Some Rock), opined on the lesser-known clause challenging anti-smoking education: "As the Good Book tells us in Numbers 29:36, a burnt offering has an aroma pleasing to the Lord - so how can it be that smoke, which is a product of burning something (until we in the TN legislature say otherwise), could possibly cause cancer?" Dunn went on to also question the existence of cancer, and support alternative theories to explain deaths associated with it. "We can't just dismiss demon possession as a possible cause. It's about time doctors and hospitals took that into account."
8. The human brain
Science has identified the brain as the seat of consciousness, but that theory has recently been challenged by cutting-edge research among Tennessee pastors and spiritual mediums. "We feel that the location of the human soul is in the descending colon," said Richard Smalls, spokesman for Fanatics and Fantasists Against Reality Tolerance - a trade association of preachers, haruspices, dowsers, and TV psychics. "This is the view that should be taught in schools, so FFART applauds this legislation as a crucial first step." However, opinion among the bill's supporters was not uniform on the question of what should be taught in place of scientific fact. Prominent Memphis evangelical leader Richard Payne has promoted the inner rectum as the location of the human soul, and insists both viewpoints should be taught. "But decent folk of both perspectives can agree: Thank God we have banished the brain from Tennessee education."
Scientists alarmed by the anti-climate science provisions of the bill inundated legislators with data showing consistent increases in average global temperatures since the Industrial Revolution. In response, the bill was amended to include temperature as a concept that would not be taught in Tennessee public schools. "They talk about increasing temperatures, but what is temperature? No one knows," said Richard Richard Richardson III, spokesman for the Tennessee Chamber of Commerce. When told that temperature is a measure proportional to the average kinetic energy of matter particles, Richardson forcefully reiterated "I said No one knows," and had reporters escorted from the conference room by armed security personnel. Champions of the addendum noted that it would save health insurance companies millions by refusing care to those with fevers, since there is no longer any legal basis to say they are sick.
6. The periodic table of elements
Few are aware of the recent controversy between chemists and Creationists over the question of how many elements there are, and what comprises them. Chemists contend that there are currently 118 known elements composed of atoms - nuclei of protons and neutrons surrounded by electrons - and theorize that many more probably exist under conditions that are difficult to reproduce. Some in religious conservative circles, however, favor a return to "traditional" chemistry with four elements - Earth, air, fire, and water - composed of four distinct types of aethers that represent the Father, the Son, the Holy Ghost, and the Republican Party. In the words of TN Senate co-sponsor Bo Watson (R - Primordial Ooze), "Students of our great state will now be taught the cutting-edge in Byzantine alchemy."
A recent power outage in Nashville has sparked discussion among prominent Tennesseeans about what kind of sinfulness the Lord was punishing by shutting off the city's electricity for 3 hours. Initial speculation held that it was the presence of Jews in the city, but eventually a consensus developed around a more basic problem: The very concept of electricity is blasphemous, and the Lord Our God was telling the people of Tennessee to stop attributing their ability to have light in the darkness to secular physics. "We have strayed, O Lord!" cried Pastor William William Williams III of the local Holy Hosannah Hallelujah Faith Ministries Incorporated, All Rights Reserved church. "We have given credit for our lamps and our TVs to a false idol! Let not our children be deceived as we have been deceived by Satan's minions Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison!"
The TN state legislature was swift to act in the aftermath of the outage, replacing education in electricity with lectures on the Light of God, and mandating that all secular power plants be replaced with Power of Prayer engines by the end of the decade - a date the legislature insisted was necessary, as the Day of Judgment is currently scheduled for 2020. However, at the insistence of oil and coal industry representatives, the date was pushed back to 2030. "We can expect that Christ would be delayed at Customs upon his return, so pushing back the date is reasonable," said Thomas Thomas Thomson III, spokesman for the Heartland Institute.
The religious community, meanwhile, has largely been accepting of the delay. "The Lord Our God is not a Communist, and does not go around making demands of private enterprise," said churchgoer Cletus Cletus McCletus III. "Santorum 2012!" he added.
A recent Heritage Foundation study found widespread opposition among true Americans to teaching mathematics in public schools. Spokesman Evan Evan Evanson III described the study: "What we found is that 100% of true American parents resented having their children coming home with all this secular brainwashing about 2 + 2 = 4. Well, excuse me Comrade, but 2 + 2 equals whatever the Lord Our God wishes it to equal at any given time. It may be that he wishes it to equal 3, or 5, or the color orange, and saying otherwise is rebellion against God. Parents want Satanic arithmetic kept out of schools."
The Tennessee legislature apparently agrees, as mathematics will no longer be taught in public schools in the state. Instead, math curricula will consist exclusively of reciting, reflecting upon, and learning how to practically apply the equation God + God = God. On state standardized tests, one third of a student's grade will based upon their answering every math-related question with suitably humble deference to God. Find x in the equation 2x - 3 = 5. The answer is: x = God. "Frankly, it's about time we did something like this," said Clark Clark Clarkson III, president of the Tennessee Evangelical Conference. "Math was invented by a lot of Greek faggots and dirty Arabs, and I just don't think it belongs in an American public school being taught to decent white Christian children."
Have you ever stumbled, dropped something, or felt the weight of something on aching muscles? Tennessee wants you to know that it feels your pain, and is finally doing something about it! "Last year I drunk-drove off a cliff and fractured a rib," said TN Republican Party Chair Eustace P. Poltypont, "And ever since then, I've been agonizing over what could possibly have caused such a catastrophe. It obviously wasn't my drinking - I'm drunk every day, but I've only ever driven off the road a few dozen times this year. And then it hit me: Gravity."
Following the completely unavoidable accident, Poltypont started an activist group seeking to end the ravages of gravity - Southern Patriots Against Newtonian Kruelty - that has blamed the phenomenon for countless deaths, equipment failures, and economic losses that have been incurred ever since it began being taught in schools. "Did you ever hear about people falling off ladders before Isaac Newton came along? Of course you haven't - no, no, shut up, I'm talking - no one has ever heard of such thing. So I've called together a diverse panel of experts from all the various Pentecostal churches of Tennessee, and we've come up with an explanation: Gravity is actually a demonic curse inflicted on the world by Isaac Newton himself, and perpetuated by people believing in it."
Upon receiving copies of the panel's report, the TN legislature convened an emergency session to discuss what to do about it and promptly banned gravity from public education, judicial proceedings, and aircraft maneuvers over Tennessee airspace. "No longer will this state be enslaved to an invisible force other than God - especially one as heathenous as to prove its own existence empirically," said state Senator Something Somethingson (R - Up His Own Ass). "I hereby declare Tennessee gravity-free!" The Senator then attempted to walk straight off the podium without using the stairs, and screamed in shock and outrage as the floor came rushing toward his face. Several prominent physicists have been arrested on suspicion of casting the gravitic hex on the Senator.
2. Earth is round
As an addendum to the clause banning gravity, the bill also stated that since a round Earth could no longer be theoretically justified, the planet was henceforth declared flat. Observers have noted that the legislation leaves open the possibility of investigating what shape the flat Earth takes - a square, a circle, an octagon, or something more complicated - but most expect an official ruling on the matter to declare in favor of a cross with a dollar sign at its center. The addendum makes it a capital offense to arrive in any location in Tennessee by having taken a route in the opposite direction.
1. Earth revolves around the Sun
As Lucifer means "Light Bearer," and the Sun is the brightest source of light in the sky, many Tennesseans are uneasy with the idea of a heliocentric solar system. They are also highly suspicious about the motives of Nicolaus Copernicus in having first advanced the idea - a man whom many highly-educated conservative scholars suspect was not even an American. Tennessee's academic community has been at a loss trying to come up with a theory explaining how the flat, cross-shaped Earth could move around a Sun made of burning coals without resorting to the banned theories of gravity or atomic elements. As a result, education officials have instead come to support the model advanced by both prominent religious activists and business associations - that the Sun moves around the flat Earth, and is a big lamp held up by non-union angels paid market wages: A sign from God as to what He considers the proper approach to economic policy.
i definitely think one side will win the culture wars, i just really hope that it's us (non crazy religious zealots). i try have faith in young people to correct the mistakes of previous generations while doing my part in the meantime. for now all we can do is try to keep the scales balanced.
I've actually discussed this with my father on several occasions. He just can't accept that the American sense of fair play doesn't extend beyond the realms of politics and civil rights. It doesn't extend to education. And when I'm actually very close to making my point, he just says we need to drop the subject. This is a guy who does believe in evolution and refutes creationism and he's OK with it being taught in our public schools because it "respects people's sacred beliefs". He says "Who are teachers to tell people that their beliefs are wrong?" They're teachers, that's who they are.
I'd ask him, straight up: WHERE is the evidence that supports creationism ... and since when does belief trump fact?
No he doesn't believe in creationism and admits that there isn't any evidence for it, but he still believes we should teach it alongside evolution in our public schools to be respectful of people's beliefs. He believes that since many creationists pay the taxes that support public schools, they should have a say on what the public schools teach. And like I said, when I'm about to make my point, he just drops the subject. I'm just gonna send this thing to him and see what happens.
On that basis, let's throw in alchemy and astrology. At the advanced levels, we could teach phlogiston chemistry and the ether theory of light ... cha, right.
If beliefs don't deserve respect, if they not only fail any objective or realistic test, but insult our intelligence in the bargain, I don't see that they deserve any form of respect ... and for myself, I don't respect them. As to the people who wish to believe them, they get precisely as much respect as they give me. If they want to whine and cry about not getting respect, I would strongly suggest they look at WHY they're not getting respect.
Did you write this yourself, Jessica? Whoever did is a first-class literary humorist. This sounds like an experienced regional journalist very fed up with churning out formulaic copy on the day-to-day business of state legislatures and getting a little of their own back. It stands with the likes of Twain or Thurber.
As Loren Miller mentioned, there is a definite POE factor here. I've been caught out on occasions. But the names and constituencies of the politicians themselves should put that to rest - they're not only funny, but show a consistency of style to the piece, that elevate it to ART. So there, I like it that much!
funny.. John Kerry (I guess atheist considering all that like to save the Earth from pollution and abuse.. are.. usually; naturalist atheists..)
well here you go:
"A sign from God as to what He considers the proper approach to economic policy."