Three Different Things that Look Similar

Here are three statements:

  • St. Anselm says that no one really disbelieves in God.
  • Stephen Hawking says that spacetime is smooth at the Big Bang.
  • PZ Myers says that “The only appropriate responses should involve some form of righteous fury, much butt-kicking, and the public firing and humiliation of some teachers”

All three are of the form “person X says Y“, but they’re really three different types of statement. See if you can figure it out before meeting me after the jump.

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Fundamentalist Education

Over at Pharyngula, PZ presents this appalling video:

and points out

The really awful pedagogy. Over and over again, the creationist says some stock phrase and then pauses, waiting for his kids to fill in the missing word. This is simply demanding rote learning. Similarly, he leads the kids in asking a good question — “how do you know?” — while training them to ignore any answers. Right there on the wall is a description of radiometric dating methods, for instance, and they turn their back on it.

This seems to be of a piece with other fundamentalist traits. The oft-repeated assertion that morality and human rights come from God. Appeals to the Bible. Attempts to disprove evolution by discrediting Charles Darwin (or Richard Dawkins, or PZ Myers, or whoever’s the antichrist this week).

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