The argument has been going on for years and years. Should schools be allowed to teach evolution without teaching creationism? The courts have ruled, the answer is no, the theory of creationism cannot be included in a public school’s academic curriculum. With the court’s decision, it has been made clear there is no place for faith based theories to be taught in our public schools. What if there was a different approach that took God out of the equation? Public high schools should allow a course in intelligent design to be included in the curriculum as a way of teaching both evolution and creationism without violating the separation of church and state. This is certainly easier said than done.
Evolution, creationism, and intelligent design are defined by Merriam-Webster as follows: 1) “Evolution: a theory that the various types of animals and plants have their origin in other preexisting types and that the distinguishable differences are due to modifications in successive generation.” 2) “Creationism: a doctrine or theory holding that matter, the various forms of life, and the world were created by God out of nothing and usually in the way described in Genesis.” and 3) “Intelligent Design: the theory that matter, the various forms of life, and the world were created by a designing intelligence” (Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary). As defined above, there are no religious references in the definition of intelligent design. Therefore, intelligent design be considered an alternate way of teaching creationism.
The theory of evolution is defined by Brandon Keim in Evolution Beats Intelligent Design in Florida as “the scientifically observed and accepted explanation for the development of life on Earth.” (Keim 380). The fact that evolution is based on science is the reason that it is allowed to be taught in schools. The essential belief of evolution is that living things have become what they are today by constantly evolving and adapting to the ever changing environment. There is proof of this evolution all around us. Man itself has evolved over thousands and thousands of years in direct relation to the changing environment surrounding them. There are facts and proof to back up the theory of evolution, but that does not mean that it is the only way that explains development of living things.
Some would believe that evolution is a theory that scientist made up to convince us that there is no God. To be a scientist does not necessarily mean that you cannot believe in God. Author Karl Giberson backs this by stating “…the majority of scientists are not hostile to religion and many of them are actually quite religious.” (Giberson, Say It Ain't So 359). Thus, believing that living creatures have evolved over time does not mean that you cannot also have religious beliefs. One theory does not necessarily have to be completely separate from the other.
Creationism is a religious based theory that God created heaven and earth in...