The Suitcase Lady

Galileo

September 7, 2010, 10:19 pm

I’m going to put a sign on my refrigerator that says, “Remember Galileo.” I am struggling to keep my current frustration in perspective.

Carl Hiassen, Florida’s satirical writer, stated in a recent Smithsonian magazine essay that, “the human race is actually de-evolving, that we are moving backward on the evolutionary scale… slipping backward into the primal ooze.”

I agree. An uncomfortable percentage of the populace is embracing superstition, ideologues and junk science with alarming frequency. Take evolution, for example. Whether we humans believe in it or not, evolution rolls merrily along unaffected by our  thoughts on the subject. I wish all doctors would use the word “evolve” when telling patients why the antibiotic they are begging for no longer works. “The microbes have evolved to be resistant.” Physicians are missing a teaching moment.

There’s a high probability that future generations will look back on our current denial of global warming with amazement. Does the ice of Greenland have to melt and inundate New Jersey before we get it? Do we even know that New Jersey is a state in America?

It’s not a punishable offense to deny the knowledge the world’s greatest thinkers have gained for us. But it is downright unenlightened to say nothing of arrogant.

Science writer  K.C. Cole states, “We don’t even know what it is possible to know.”  I would add that tossing away our hard won accumulated knowledge no matter how small that body of knowledge might be isn’t the brightest action.

Students and teachers are heading back to school this week. I believe it would behoove us on the teaching end of the equation to remember that we should not teach our students what to think but rather how to think.


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