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Idiocy and Firing Michael Reiss

I realize that journalists write confused stories and that headline writers produce stupid headlines to go with them, but I would think that academic or scientific organizations, irrespective of subject, should be able to be more sensible.

It may not be so. “Firing” is, of course, my own overblown headline, provided you regard essentially forcing someone to resign as substantially different from firing them. In this case, I think the difference is entirely in framing.

Reiss advocated responding in a reasonable and rational manner to the objections of children in school who are creationists. He didn’t advocate teaching creationism as equally scientific as the theory of evolution. His view is actually mainstream in his views.

As an advocate of the theory of evolution I hope that the folks on our side will be clear here on what we do advocate (sound science in the science classroom) and what we don’t (suppression of all discussion).

I’d commend to you Nick Matzke’s post on the Panda’s Thumb, which covers the scientific and educational point of view. Supplement this with and Doug’s post at MetaCatholic which deals with the religious aspects more fully.

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One Comment

  1. In law, English law at least, forcing someone to resign is considered equivalent to firing them. Actually even making an employee’s life difficult can be construed as “constructive dismissal” in courts. Often employees are offered the opportunity to resign before being formally fired, which many take as that makes it easier for them to get another job. But legally and morally they have still been fired. Reiss probably could have fought on, but as a Christian probably preferred to go quietly.

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