Thursday, May 18, 2006

Why we fight

Thanks to RBH for pointing out a speech in which Patricia Princehouse explains her work on behalf of Ohio Citizens for Science, the basis for her award for protecting the First Amendment:
People ask me, Why pour so much energy into protecting science education? Why not fight for literacy generally or any of a thousand other educational issues? I have two answers. One is easy: I know about evolution, so it makes sense that I would work on what I know best. The second is harder to grasp. And that is that freedom of religion is the bedrock foundation of liberty in this country. If we allow certain special-interest religious groups to co-opt the public school science classroom, to use it as a vehicle for converting children to religious views their parents don't hold, if we allow them to spout outright lies about the nature and content of science, what do we really have left? If you can lie about science and get away with it, you can lie about anything.
And if the Republican War on Science teaches us nothing else, you can indeed lie about science, and the Iraq war teaches us that you can indeed lie about anything.