Here's DefCon's problem of the week: The state of Kansas has curriculum standards that "call for students to learn about the best evidence for modern evolutionary theory but also to learn about areas where scientists are raising scientific criticisms of the theory." Is that a crime? Maybe. DefCon and another group with a euphonious name, Kansas Citizens for Science, are propagandizing voters to kick conservatives and moderates off the Kansas Board of Education next Tuesday.
The Kansas board had acted moderately: It has just wanted schools to "teach the debate" about evolution. It's strange: Science is all about asking questions, so how is a group "for science" when it wants to cut off even the tiniest amount of question-asking? The attempt to scare voters into purging the Kansas Board of Education only makes sense in Bernaysian terms. "We have no being in the air to watch over us," he told me, so we need "human gods" to preserve us from "chaos."
Bernays saw Judaism and Christianity as potent lies that had to be fought by PR folks such as himself who would "make the public believe that human gods are watching over us." Today, those "human gods" are the scientific establishment. Questions about Darwinism suggest the possibility that some "being in the air" might be involved -- and if we fall for such a myth, according to Bernays, we end up in chaos.
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