I propose that a way forward may be to teach evolution as a sensitive issue.
A teacher who approaches evolution in this way is respectful of their students’ beliefs and attentive to their emotional states, rather than dismissing them as “silly”, “ignorant” or “causing problems”. Such teachers would employ teaching approaches that embrace diversity, address classroom bias, and hold in conscious awareness the individual experiences of students. These techniques are commonly used when teaching sensitive issues such as sex, pornography, ethnicity, religion, death studies, terrorism, and others.
Teachers would still cover the full range of content when teaching evolution. However, when, for example, teaching about how humans and other mammals share a common ancestor, they would not actively seek to establish agreement among all students. When running a group exercise about the age of the Earth, they might use clicker technology that anonymises responses.
Michael Reiss, “Evolution: as a religious professor of science education, we need to rethink how we teach it” at The Conversation
In 2008, Reiss ended up resigning from a Royal Society post because of an earlier effort to make Darwinism sound reasonable. Or something.
By and large, the Darwinians are not interested in sounding reasonable; they are interested in enforcing their view. And, as everyone knows, the school textbook is the last stronghold of simple-minded Darwinism.
In any event, the critical question is not whether we are nice to doubters so much as whether there is reason to doubt. Contrary to what we hear in pop science media, quite a few scientists think there is.
At least he sounds like a decent man, trying to be civilized. Lot of good that will do him, sadly.
See also: Michael Reiss: Sinner in the hands of an angry god
David Tyler On Michael Reiss, The Anglican Cleric Somehow Dumped For Insufficient Darwinism
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