What if US schools STOPPED teaching evolution?

Branch says lacking a knowledge of human evolution might make it harder for, say, doctors to understand superbugs, or for farmers to understand the nuances of agriculture.

I’m a little skeptical of that argument. There are great doctors in Texas, and certainly plenty of great farmers too. The internet wasn’t as ubiquitous when I was in high school, but it was still possible to read and explore on one’s own. Today, that’s even easier.


Well, yeah, but as my dad used to say … What if everybody did that?

THOUGHT EXPERIMENT

When Americans wake up tomorrow morning, the theory of evolution … and all subjects informed by, or that depend on, the theory of evolution … will simply disappear from all K-12 public and private schools in the US.

Only ID and Creation will be taught to kids up to age 18 in America.

What would happen?

After a few years, it starts vanishing from the universities, too.

Other than scholastic competition with the rest of the world…What would be impacted?

Studies of genetics, pharmaceuticals, biology, etc. etc. Please tell me.

 

https://www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2019/09/schools-still-dont-teach-evolution/598312/

There would still be home-schooling, private schools, trips to the Galapagos, libraries and the Internet. Completely suppressing the name “Darwin” would be impossible. Even explaining ID, you have to talk about what design you are referring to. Work with genetics could theoretically continue without any comment on evolution, but breeding animals and plants was one of the reasons the theory developed, so that would still be there in our cultural memory. I think this would be on par with China trying to keep the Tienanmen Square incident out of their schools, people would still know about it.

WHOOPS

@LAUSTEN EXPOSED A MASSIVE HOLE IN MY THOUGHT EXPERIMENT.

Sorry, I didn’t think this out when I posted it.

The excerpt I posted with the link was the whole reason I posted it. The author’s like, Well, they can get that info elsewhere… And I thought of my father’s warning.

So, to rephrase…

⊱⋅ ──────────── ⋅⊰

THOUGHT EXPERIMENT

When Americans wake up tomorrow morning, no one in our borders will remember Charles Darwin, his theory of evolution, or any of the sciences informed by it or depending on it.

No one here will see books or internet info about natural selection based on HIS theory.

All education, public, private and home, will only use ID or creationism.

What is our life like? What is our future like?

⊱⋅ ──────────── ⋅⊰

Since this IS a thought experiment, you have to work with me on this … like watching “Back to the Future” or something.

Please don’t be TOO literalistic.

My POINT: Creationists and ID proponents talk of Darwin’s theory as a “hoax,” and they think Creationism is fine. Or that ID can replace it. But are parts of ID based on a hoax…?

WHAT I’M TRYING TO FIND OUT IS, if Evolution REALLY is a “hoax,” then there would be little impact.

But if it’s true, then what would we NOT HAVE today and tomorrow?

What fields of study, what branches of science? What medicines would vanish? What foods, products, computer programs?

What things could we not find out any more about? Etc etc?

It’s a hypothetical situation to show why it matters if evolutionary theory matters or not.

 

 

The Field of Applied Behavior Analysis would not exist. Instead of developing the extensive understanding of the “rules” of behavior, Burrus Frederick Skinner would have been working on “A Composite Understanding of the Phylogeny of Organisms.”

 

Biology would pretty much fall apart. Someone said that without evolution nothing in biology makes sense.

Evolution would probably be “rediscovered” eventually, though.

Yes it would have been rediscovered sooner rather than later, I think.

It difficult to imagine how you could even proceed in biology without evolution slapping you in the face.

When Americans wake up tomorrow morning, no one in our borders will remember Charles Darwin, his theory of evolution, or any of the sciences informed by it or depending on it.
I think where you want to go with this requires the entire world having this amnesia, and the "rediscovering" theory is the most likely. Especially since we have data laying around, we have people who have spent their lives on this, so they would wake up really wondering what the hell it is they are supposed to do.
WHAT I’M TRYING TO FIND OUT IS, if Evolution REALLY is a “hoax,” then there would be little impact.

But if it’s true, then what would we NOT HAVE today and tomorrow?


Couldn’t you just look at the world of the 16th century for this? We’d have child kings because we’d believe being first born was special. We’d have blood letting and snake pits.

@lausten

Couldn’t you just look at the world of the 16th century for this?
LOL Right?

 

I think where you want to go with this requires the entire world having this amnesia, and the “rediscovering” theory is the most likely.
Yeah -- it's super thought experiment-y.

Here’s the thing, @timb @thatoneguy @citizenschallengev3

When creationists and ID proponents say that Darwin’s theory was “wrong,” and demand that evolution not be taught in schools, two questions pop into my mind:

A) If natural selection wasn’t really a thing, then X, X, X, and X wouldn’t work (and yet they clearly do), and

B) If this, and all following, generations of American kids never learned evolution, then X would result.

I’m trying to fill in those blanks, given the fact that science is a subject I don’t know much about.

In A: I assume that if the basic premise of evolution were wrong, then all the fields of study, discoveries and inventions based on it wouldn’t be here.

So, what specific fields of study, discoveries and inventions ARE based on evolutionary theory? Biology, medicine & pharmaceuticals, computer programs… I’m simply looking for a list of items more specific than that.

Would we not have certain vaccines? Would we not have certain medicines? Would we not have gone into space? Would we not understand certain birth defects?

Also, I assume that if ID were a sufficient basis for scientific understanding, and we simply accepted that X was “too complex” to be explained scientifically, then scientific experimentation and exploration would just halt at a certain point.

In B: I’m assuming it would matter if American kids just stopped learning about evolution. The rest of the world would speed ahead in all the above areas of study and leave Americans behind. In what ways would Americans lag behind?

>>>>

I’ve been looking for a list of items to fill in my X’s that’s more specific than “Biology!!”

That’s all.

 

 

 

@citizenschallengev3

It difficult to imagine how you could even proceed in biology without evolution slapping you in the face.
You'd think.

Yet there ARE scientists in the field of biology who also subscribe to ID. I’m trying to figure out how.

As an analogy, have you argued with an anti-vaxxer? They will tell you stories of nurses or doctors who were given only the briefest of introductions to the technology of vaccinations. If you asked your general practitioner how they work, they might not be able to explain it in detail. So, all sorts of medical advancements and day to day medical work continues along just fine without that knowledge, yet if vaccines aren’t doing what they say they are, that means a lot of other things are wrong. Not a foundational fact like evolution, but the same idea that you don’t need to know everything to use something. Anti-vaxxers exploit this division of labor (or knowledge in this case) and call it ignorance and then insert a whole new set of knowledge (lies). By pointing out the person giving the shot doesn’t have the knowledge, they claim they have found a lie that they are now fixing.

The Taliban has accomplished the same thing in recruiting people to their Caliphates. I think that’s a pretty good model for what would result. If I’m in my 20’s and I don’t know anyone who knows anything about evolution except some old people and those old people seem to have some control over my life and I don’t like what their doing, I would be tempted to follow the guy who says he has the answers, especially if he appears to be bringing clean water and basic infrastructure to my village.

What if US schools STOPPED teaching evolution?
We'd stop evolving......

Aww.

But you know, we probably aren’t evolving in ways that are most under the influence of typical natural contingencies for survival to reproduction. Our cultural and medical and technological and social systems are likely becoming a necessary aspect of our survival to reproduction. Thus, as a species, we might seem to be on a trajectory toward existential dependence on society.

However there are other things going on as well. Adjusting genes in human embryos is already occurring, I think, in an initial and limited way. Yet the impact on our evolution? Who can say?

In A: I assume that if the basic premise of evolution were wrong, then all the fields of study, discoveries and inventions based on it wouldn’t be here.

So, what specific fields of study, discoveries and inventions ARE based on evolutionary theory? Biology, medicine & pharmaceuticals, computer programs… I’m simply looking for a list of items more specific than that.


I don’t think evolution has led to any of the advances we take for granted today. At least not directly.

Medicine is the only field where it seems like there could be some overlapping with evolutionary theory but I’m not aware of any examples. We figured out germ theory and virtually all of anatomy without Darwin’s help. Same with drugs.

Evolution does explain things like why the body is shaped like it is, why sex exists, etc. but medicine itself didn’t advance from that knowledge.

As far as technology and engineering is concerned, I can’t see how evolution would apply there.

Without understanding plant genetics, we would not have solved the famines in Mexico, India and Africa in the 70s. There would be far fewer people on the planet, probably by half, which oddly enough might be better for the rest of the animals.

So Darwin’s “not-existing” is a good thing for him, cause if he had existed and hence overpopulated the world to the detriment of most all fellow life forms on Earth, PITA would be after him big time.

One thing that would happen if the theory of evolution were not taught in schools any more is that intelligent design would disappear as well. ID is a “negative argument”. It tries to explain “what is” by “what cannot be”, the same technique used in all forms of paranormal arguments. It “could not have been” a helicopter, therefore it “was” <insert crazy speculation>. Without evolution to challenge ID has no arguments whatsoever. The way to immediately stop an ID argument in its tracks is to accept that all of evolution is wrong and ask what evidence they then have for ID. Any time they mention evolution just tell them you’ve already accepted that is wrong, now you want the evidence that ID is right. With evolution gone there’s not a single argument left for ID.

@widdershins

ID is a “negative argument”. It tries to explain “what is” by “what cannot be”, the same technique used in all forms of paranormal arguments.
Damn. You're right. You have articulated a point that's been floating around in my mind for a long time.

 

Damn. You’re right. You have articulated a point that’s been floating around in my mind for a long time.
Lol, you've heard that before! You JUST posted the video I stole it from 2 days ago! I'm almost certain I heard that first in that Nova documentary. Well, at least the "negative argument" part. The part about explaining what is by what cannot be I learned from a very nice crazy lady on a UFO forum who insisted that lights in the sky had to be demons because here husband, who once saw a picture of a helicopter, said that the lights could not have been helicopters.
One thing that would happen if the theory of evolution were not taught in schools any more is that intelligent design would disappear as well.
Maybe in its current form, but the idea of an "unmoved mover" has been around for a long time. Are you seeing that as something different?