While I have not yet heard of any states putting evolution to a vote yet, I have learned that the State of Wyoming (which didn’t even exist when we first formed the United States in the 1700s) announced that it has voted to reject these K-12 standards, because the U.S. wants the state to teach about global warming.
Here’s why it doesn’t like this curriculum: Wyoming, which produces 40% of the nation’s coal, could be viewed as a major, although indirect, contributor to global warming, since its product — coal for power plants — is a factor in carbon dioxide production, which does help deplete the ozone layer.
A step backward for education
As a scientist myself, I would find myself agreeing with critics of the Wyoming decision. Not to approve the K-12 curriculum is simple foolishness. Like them, I think this is really a step backward for education.
Putting myself in their shoes, I can understand Wyoming’s thinking. But as a businessperson, or as a state getting a major share of its business from coal, I may not like the concept of global warming, but it is a reality. To assume otherwise is like denying the earth is round. Rejecting a science curriculum that is only stating the facts is tantamount to sticking your head in the sand.
Some people in Wyoming, of course, still want to insist that global warming is only a theory, not a proven fact. However, as each day goes by, and the climate change becomes more and more obvious with the destructive weather patterns being experienced all over this country, it seems absurd to ignore both the news stories and a growing body of scientific evidence.
Ben’s Gulf Stream experience
About 300 years ago, I was one of the first scientists to actually chart the unusual phenomenon known as the Gulf Stream, which is also part of the weather ecosystem. So, drawing on my own scientific knowledge, I am more aware than most of the interconnectedness of all these factors, such as the role carbon dioxide plays in global warming, and ultimately, the changes in weather all around us.
I certainly hope that cooler heads will prevail in the State of Wyoming, and the leaders will finally come to their senses. If they wanted to, they could actually get “ahead of the curve,” as you 21st century folks say, by planning now for a switch away from fossil fuel sources, and along with it, an intentional decision to move forward in attracting new and different revenue-producing industries to their state.
Your humble servant,