Friday, August 11, 2006

Suit against University of California to proceed

Earlier this week, a federal judge allowed a lawsuit brought by a Christian school against the University of California to proceed to trial. According to the AP, "students from Calvary Chapel Christian School [will be able] to pursue their claim that the public university system discriminated against them by setting admission rules that violate their freedom of speech and religion."

The alleged violations? According to a USA Today article,
"The university rejected some class credits because Calvary Chapel relies on textbooks from leading Christian publishers, Bob Jones University Press and A Beka Book. A biology book from Bob Jones University presents creationism and intelligent design alongside evolution. The introduction says, 'The people who have prepared this book have tried consistently to put the Word of God first and science second.'

UC says such books would be acceptable as supplementary reading but not as the main textbook.


Interestingly, the lead attorney for the Calvary Chapel students is Wendell Bird, the attorney who unsuccessfully argued Edwards v. Aguillard before the Supreme Court. In that case, the court found the practice of giving equal time to creationism in public schools to be unconstitutional.

4 Comments:

Blogger Sheikh Mahandi said...

So various children are educated from books that put "the Word of God first and science second", then their parents complain because a college which puts science first says their qualifications are not good enough?
Wake up people, if you want your free-speech, home schooling, whatever, and as a consequence find reputable colleges telling you it doesn't make the grade, then fix one or avoid the other, or as my mammy used to say - "You made your bed, now lie in it."

12:08 PM  
Anonymous The Mad Scotsman said...

What a waste of public money, having to defend frivolous lawsuits like that. I just hope the plaintifs have to pay the UC's costs.

The ineptitude of the plaintifs is stunning. The book boasts that scientific truths are distorted for religious purposes, and they want us to take them seriously?

I believe the majority of people of a religious persuasion understand the boundaries between science (the natural domain) and religion (the spiritual domain). When science intrudes in the spiritual domain, like when a scientist uses a new discovery to speculate beyond what was proven, they are rightly pushed back. When religion intrudes on the natural domain, like believing the sun rotates round the earth or that the earth was formed 5 thousand years ago, then science pushes back.

While it is the job of science to push back religion from the natural domain, it surprises me that religious leaders aren't more outspoken on the subject. I know that the pope has spoken in favour of evolution (and by extension, poured scorn on the creationists and their ilk in the ID movement). But that was just a blip on the radar screen. We don't hear from the majority of religious leaders that ID is a scam, and that's a great shame.

Oh well.

Does anyone from the Calvary Chapel Christian School want to defend why their non-science classes should be used for entry into the University of California?

Cheers, Neil.

12:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

One point that was ommited was that all of the students in the suit were admitted to colleges of their choice--including the Univ. of Calif. in at least some cases.

As a former UC Berekeley student (EECS), I am, in some ways, happy to see this suit move forward. I want to see the University nail shut the coffin lid that was put in place by Judge Jones in Kitzmiller v. Dover.

9:10 PM  
Anonymous Atheism Quotes said...

So much of the trouble with the way these Christians view freedom of religion is that they think they should be able to use the argument as a shield any time, any place.

This is a great case in point. They've decided to shun educated, scientific, intelligent schooling and replace it with superstition, then complain when educated, intelligent, scientific people say, "Um, no."

We just drove past the "7 Wonders" museum in Washington State on our way to Mount St. Helens, and looked it up when we got home. It's a museum dedicated to spreading the "truth" about the Mount St. Helens eruption, equating it to Noah's flood. Their motto? "Think about it. Lots of water, lots of mud."

So they're out there trying like hell to promote lies and misinformation as education. And so many people are buying it, it's scary.

6:02 PM  

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