Summary Judgment in California Creationist Lawsuit: Bottom Line, and What’s Next (in 3 parts)

| 22 Comments

At ‘The Questionable Authority’, Mike Dunford reports on the California Creationist Lawsuit.

Several Christian schools are suing the University of California for unfairly and unconstitutionally refusing to accept a number of courses taught at Christian schools as meeting UC’s admissions criteria.

According to Inside Higher Ed the judge has made his ruling and granted partial summary judgment in favor of the UC system. Mike promises two more postings to discuss particular aspects of the ruling.

One of the posts will focus on Judge Otero’s discovery of various typical Creationist argument techniques (most notably strawmen and quote mining) in the Christian School’s claims. The second will focus on the valuable, but accidental, contribution made by Mike Behe - on behalf of the side of good science.

Part 2 has been added

and Part 3 Summary Judgment in California Creationist Case: Behe Shoots, Scores, We Get Point (Part 3 of 3)

22 Comments

Great. It looks like another trial is almost inevitable. Behe will once again be put on the stand. Now, will he still claim not to have had enough time to read those fifty papers, or will he now claim that he has read them and that he is stil not convinced? Either way, all of the creationist “textbooks” in question will be entered as evidence. Then, the fireworks will start all over again. Wonder if Billy D. will chicken out again, or will he want to attend this Waterloo?

When the creationists lose again, as they inevitably will, and all their dirty laundry is once again displayed for all to see, no doubt they will start whining about being expelled again. Now I ask you, how can you be expelled when you weren’t even admitted?

Why don’t these good little boys and girls just go to Bob Jones University? If the textbooks were good enough for them, why not just get an entire “degree” there? What do you think would happen if they were enrolled in a real biology class?

“I put down GODDIDIT and you marked it wrong. See you in court, sucker”.

The parents, the christian school, and Behe are all guilty of destroying the education of the children involved. Imagine how many children might be going to this ‘school’ and learning this nonsense? All of them are now faced with the obvious bad choice of their parents, they’ve crippled their chances at furthering their education.

Yeah, but they’re going to Heaven.

With a bunch of other ignoramuses.

I’d love to have a day occupying the mind of Mike Behe - glancing at some of the links to the content of the books, I was stunned to see that the ‘science’ in them was …shock, horror… completely compatible with the Genesis account of creation. [/sarcasm]

Given that the guy has an extensive biology education, and is on record as dismissing the idea as ‘silly’ when asked if the bible should be used as a scientific book, what precisely goes on in his mind that is causing him to think that long-debunked creationist nonsense is worth studying in a biology class? Also, why does his expert report include Physics, given that as far as I know, he has no expertise in Physics?

Just Bob:

Yeah, but they’re going to Heaven.

With a bunch of other ignoramuses.

Also known as Hell.

Rob:

Given that the guy has an extensive biology education, and is on record as dismissing the idea as ‘silly’ when asked if the bible should be used as a scientific book, what precisely goes on in his mind that is causing him to think that long-debunked creationist nonsense is worth studying in a biology class?

Behe’s stated position is that adherence to Young Earth Creationism illustrates “the breadth of freedom available to a Christian interpreting the physical evidence of nature”. In other words, while he does not draw those same conclusions, he thinks it is perfectly OK from a scientific standpoint if someone else does.

His only crucial threshold with regard to the acceptability of scientific conclusions seems to be that “osmosing alien, materialistic presumptions” is dangerous for one’s faith, and thus it is generally advisable to reject anything that smells of materialism, no matter how evidence-supported it is. Everything else goes, including the Biblical literalism in these textbooks. They ruin your education, but save your soul.

They ruin your education, but save your soul.

Is the former a pre-requisite for the latter?

what precisely goes on in his [Behe’s] mind that is causing him to think that long-debunked creationist nonsense is worth studying in a biology class?

Sorry, you are being naive.

1. IIRC, Behe was paid $20,000 for his expert testimony. I guess that a new car or a few vacations at warm tropical beaches during the cold of the winter were going through his mind.

2. Are you sure he even has a mind? He claimed once that the Designer might be dead. Minds die too.

From the decision:

Biology for Christian Schools declares on the very first page:

(1) ‘Whatever the Bible says is so; whatever man says may or may not be so’ is the only position a Christian can take…

(2) If scientific conclusions contradict the Word of God, the conclusions are wrong, no matter how many scientific facts may appear to back them.

(3) Christians must disregard scientific hypotheses or theories that contradict the Bible.

It is of course encouraging that UC found Chemistry for Christians and Physics for Christians to be acceptable textbooks.

I have not seen the syllabi of the courses that were rejected, so I cannot comment on whether the decision was correct, but the views of the peanut gallery are of no consequence to me; this is an internal matter.

Seems that you have a lot to say about what you believe to be ‘an internal matter’. Ah, the smell of defeat.

Robert O’Brien:

I have not seen the syllabi of the courses that were rejected, so I cannot comment on whether the decision was correct, but the views of the peanut gallery are of no consequence to me; this is an internal matter.

I am part of the UC system, so, if I had “a lot” to say, it would be warranted.

I have not seen the syllabi of the courses that were rejected, so I cannot comment on whether the decision was correct, but the views of the peanut gallery are of no consequence to me; this is an internal matter.

funny, but if you look at the actual decision, the UC WANTED the issue of the texts and materials for the courses, and the individual courses themselves to be reviewed at trial (no summary judgement). It was the issue of whether they could decided on ANY course as being being worthy of transfer credit that they wanted summary judgement on. IOW, they wanted to preserve the ability to make choices on accepting courses as an internal matter. It’s the individual courses and texts themselves they wish to debate on at trial.

glad to see you actually agree with the summary judgement, then, even if you are confused (what’s new) about it.

I am part of the UC system, so, if I had “a lot” to say, it would be warranted.

what? as a fucking part-time student? as an athletic supporter?

LOL

yeah, you get a BIG say.

moron.

“The decision” was meant to refer to the decision to reject the courses, not the judge’s recent decision.

I am part of the UC system, so, if I had “a lot” to say, it would be warranted.

I prefer quality over quantity but since you are part of the UC system, what do you believe you have to say that is warranted?

Not much, although page 40 of the ruling makes me suspicious of one of the textbooks; from my quick perusal, it appeared to claim that strict literalism trumps all else.

Robert O’Brien:

I have not seen the syllabi of the courses that were rejected, so I cannot comment on whether the decision was correct, but the views of the peanut gallery are of no consequence to me; this is an internal matter.

An internal matter? What, another internal matter like Gonzalez’s tenure application, that the DI tried to get quite heavily involved with?

page 40 of the ruling makes me suspicious of one of the textbooks; from my quick perusal, it appeared to claim that strict literalism trumps all else.

But of course it trumps all else. Why, if (my interpretation of) every single word of Genesis is in any way faulty, the entire bible becomes suspect, and along with it my ticket to eternal life! This CANNOT BE! Therefore my interpretation can’t be wrong. Therefore reality is wrong!

Ah, I feel better now. For a minute there, I felt the ground shifting underfoot.

this is an internal matter.

If it ever was, the plaintiffs have made it a public matter by suing.

page 40 of the ruling makes me suspicious of one of the textbooks

It took you that long? Read Ayala’s expert report (at NCSE) and you’ll see there’s more than just a suspicion of Biblical literalism, it permeates those texts. They’re quite unashamed about their view that accepting the Bible as literally true and twisting evidence to fit it is acceptable as scientific practice.

Read Behe’s expert report on the same books, for contrast, and see how little the Christian Schools got for their $20,000. I think the Christian schools ought to consider suing Behe to get their money back, though Biblical literalists aren’t likely to be open-minded enough to read Ayala’s report and contrast the two.

Ah, I feel better now. For a minute there, I felt the ground shifting underfoot.

Plate tech tonics are proved!!111!!!

Henry

Great. It looks like another trial is almost inevitable. :d

What you’ve said makes lots of sense. I just pray others feel the same way.

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This page contains a single entry by PvM published on April 1, 2008 11:29 AM.

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