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April 3rd, 2012
12:52 PM ET

New York pulls plans to ban words from standardized tests

NYC had initially sought to keep words like "dinosaur" and "Halloween" off standardized school tests.

By Brian Vitagliano, CNN

New York (CNN) - One week after New York's Department of Education drew controversy with a request to ban 50 words and references from the city's standardized tests – including “dinosaur,” “birthday” and "religion" – the department announced Tuesday that it is abandoning the plan.

"After reconsidering our message to test publishers and the reaction from parents, we will revise our guidance and eliminate the list of words to avoid on tests,” New York Chief Academic Officer Shael Polakow-Suransky said in a statement.

“We will continue to advise companies to be sensitive to student backgrounds and avoid unnecessary distractions that could invalidate test scores and give an inaccurate assessment of how students are doing," the statement continued.

The list of words New York hoped to ban from tests was made public when the city’s education department released this year’s "request for proposal" for test publishers across the country. The city is looking for vendors to revamp math and English tests for its students.

The list of words, which included “divorce,” “Halloween,” “Christmas” and “television,” attracted considerable criticism, with many alleging it was political correctness gone too far.

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

In its request for proposal, the NYC Department of Education explained that it wanted to avoid certain words if "the topic is controversial among the adult population and might not be acceptable in a state-mandated testing situation; the topic has been overused in standardized tests or textbooks and is thus overly familiar and/or boring to students; the topic appears biased against (or toward) some group of people."

Matthew Mittenthal, a spokesman for the NYC Department of Education, said last week that this is the fifth year his agency has created such a list. The request for proposal said certain words "could evoke unpleasant emotions in the students."

Apparently, many of the words on New York’s list were avoided because of faith-based concerns.

For instance, the use of the word "birthday" or the phrase "birthday celebrations" may offend Jehovah's Witnesses, who do not celebrate birthdays. A representative for the Jehovah's Witnesses declined to comment on the use of the word "birthday."

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The Department of Education would not go on the record to explain the specific reasons for each word, leaving many to draw their own conclusions.

"Halloween" may suggest paganism; "divorce" may conjure up uneasy feelings for children in the midst of split within their family. The term "rock 'n' roll" was also on the "avoid" list.

The New York Post speculated that the "dinosaurs" could "call to mind evolution, which might upset fundamentalists."

Stanford University professor Sam Wineburg, director of Stanford’s History Education Group, welcomed Tuesday’s announcement.

“It is a courageous move,” he said. “Any time educators reverse a decision that was public, which received air time in the press, it's an act of courage and to recover a position of common sense."

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: New York • Schools

soundoff (580 Responses)
  1. Jay

    @James...thanks for joining the fray. These dudes are either the worst scientists or the most stubborn jerks I've encountered in a while. Jumping to conclusions and standing on a tiny island of information to support thier positions. I love debate, but these guys just hide their heads under the guise of mud slinging when challenged so that is a warning that they really don't have a leg to stand on...they just yell a bunch and expect everyone to follow.

    April 5, 2012 at 3:58 pm |
  2. chubby rain

    "By the way when you quoted some of Krebs work and so on you really should have given credit to the author...it's plagarism otherwise."

    This shows that you have no idea what you are talking about. The Kreb's cycle, also known as the citric acid cycle, refers to a series of enzyme-mediated reactions through which eukaryotic cells produce the vast majority of energy. It will be in any biology textbook and is considered common knowledge.

    April 5, 2012 at 11:25 am |
    • Jay

      Chub...you have no problem with literacy but it's your mind that is unable to comprehend. If you had read anything on any of my references you would have seen that all of it was based on solid facts and even gives creedance to evolutionary viewpoints at some points...jeeze dude your biased mindset is your worst enemy. No wonder evolution is slowly dying as a concept.

      April 5, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
  3. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer really changes things

    April 5, 2012 at 6:55 am |
    • Jesus

      Prayer doesn’t not; you are so full of crap and lies. You have NO proof it changes anything! A great example of prayer proven not to work is the Christians in jail because prayer didn't work and their children died. For example: Susan Grady, who relied on prayer to heal her son. Nine-year-old Aaron Grady died and Susan Grady was arrested.

      An article in the Journal of Pediatrics examined the deaths of 172 children from families who relied upon faith healing from 1975 to 1995. They concluded that four out of five ill children, who died under the care of faith healers or being left to prayer only, would most likely have survived if they had received medical care.

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs!".

      April 5, 2012 at 10:42 am |
    • Jay

      Jesus...two words...FAIL TROLL!!!!!

      April 5, 2012 at 5:56 pm |
  4. Charles Lee Ray

    Dr. Pepper is neither root beer, nor cola. No one knows for sure what it is. We only allow agnostic beverages in this house.

    April 4, 2012 at 11:21 pm |
    • Nonimus

      Nice one, lol.

      April 6, 2012 at 1:36 pm |
  5. chubby rain

    "Well then Chubby, maybe you would like to enlighten us believers on the "snapshots" you conveiniently skipped over (in true evolutionist fashion)? You know the ones that look an awful lot like intelligent design? Not the more simple ones that look like what I cooked for breakfast in bacon fat?"

    "Snapshots" like the TTSP and Kreb's cycle that I mentioned in previous posts? Or fossils? Reading comprehension doesn't seem to be your strong point. You also didn't provide any of this "research" that supports intelligent design.

    April 4, 2012 at 5:40 pm |
    • Jay

      Let's see, let's set the stage a bit and provide you a refernce to show that evolutionists don't hold the trump card on the way things work or how they are made...Life exhibits both abstract language, signs, and symbols in order to produce self-replicating organisms. (Voie, 2006) Natural structures have been found that contain many parts arranged in intricate patterns that perform a specific function (e.g. complex and specified information), often taking the form of machines. The irreducibly complex molecular machine, the bacterial flagellum, is a prime example, as are some macromorphological structures. (Behe, 1996; Minnich & Meyer, 2004; Minnich, 2005; Becker & Lönnig, 2005) The simplest-known self-reproducing cell serves as another example. (Peterson & Fraser, 2001) The specified complexity of proteins and protein-protein bonds are other examples. (Axe, 2000; Axe, 2004; Behe & Snoke, 2004)

      Reference: http://www.caseyluskin.com/id.htm

      April 4, 2012 at 6:09 pm |
    • Jay

      Similar parts are commonly found in widely different organisms. Many genes and functional parts not distributed in a manner predicted by ancestry, and are often found in clearly unrelated organisms. (Davison, 2005) This includes the various genes that control eye development, limb development, and even wing development across the various animal phyla (such as chickens and insects). (Quiring et. al., 1994; Nelson & Wells, 2003; Lönnig, 2004) For example, Lönnig (2004) states "No theorist in evolutionary biology will ever derive chicken and insects from a winged common ancestor, and yet, clearly related sequences are specifically expressed in wing buds and imaginal disks." Yet this observation is easily accounted for by common design. The "root" of the tree of life is another prime example. (Doolittle, 1999)

      April 4, 2012 at 6:11 pm |
    • Jay

      Increased knowledge of genetics has created a strong trend towards functionality for "junk-DNA." Examples include recently discovered surprised functionality in some pseudogenes, microRNAs, introns, LINE and ALU elements. (Hirotsune et. al., 2003; Gibbs, 2003; Hakimi et. al. 2003; Morrish, 2002)

      April 4, 2012 at 6:12 pm |
    • Jay

      By the way when you quoted some of Krebs work and so on you really should have given credit to the author...it's plagarism otherwise.

      April 4, 2012 at 6:26 pm |
    • Nonimus

      I haven't looked at all your references, yet, but didn't Ken Miller refute the irreducible complexity of the bacterial flagellum (Behe, 1996) in the 2005 Kitzmiller v Dover trial.

      April 4, 2012 at 6:37 pm |
    • Nonimus

      @Jay
      "By the way when you quoted some of Krebs work and so on you really should have given credit to the author...it's plagarism otherwise."

      Not sure about @chubby rain's citations but you appear to be copying verbatim from Casey Luskins site without citation.

      "Life exhibits both abstract language, signs, and symbols in order to produce self-replicating organisms. (Voie, 2006) Natural structures have been found that contain many parts arranged in intricate patterns that perform a specific function (e.g. complex and specified information), often taking the form of machines. The irreducibly complex molecular machine, the bacterial flagellum, is a prime example, as are some macromorphological structures. (Behe, 1996; Minnich & Meyer, 2004; Minnich, 2005; Becker & Lönnig, 2005) The simplest-known self-reproducing cell serves as another example. (Peterson & Fraser, 2001) The specified complexity of proteins and protein-protein bonds are other examples. (Axe, 2000; Axe, 2004; Behe & Snoke, 2004)"
      (http://www.caseyluskin.com/id.htm, access on 4/4/2012)

      April 4, 2012 at 6:42 pm |
    • Jay

      Blah, blah...point is you nor anybody else has knows down to the gnats butt what it all means and for you evolutionist to go scurrying around claiming you got all the answers to the whole think is quite off balance and completely close minded. I really don't have any more time for this...but liked the debate none the less.

      April 4, 2012 at 6:44 pm |
    • Nonimus

      oops... my bad, didn't see the reference:

      "Reference: http://www.caseyluskin.com/id.htm"

      April 4, 2012 at 6:44 pm |
    • Nonimus

      @Jay
      I don't think scientists ever said that they "got all the answers." Everything in science is open to revision if the evidence supports it.

      April 4, 2012 at 6:49 pm |
    • Otto

      Hey Chubby,

      Do the research, collect the evidence, prove 'intelligent design', publish your findings and have them peer reviewed and collect your Nobel Prize. Until that happens shut it, you have nothing.

      April 4, 2012 at 9:11 pm |
    • Otto

      Sorry Chubby,

      Previous post should have been directed at Jay.

      April 4, 2012 at 9:30 pm |
    • Otto

      "Intelligent Design" Helping Stupid People Feel Smart Since 1987

      April 4, 2012 at 9:35 pm |
    • James

      @Otto You realize that your "you have have nothing unless you prove it in a laboratory" is a double standard, and quite unscientific, right? The evolutionary theory is no more than that. A theory. More precisely, it's a theory with gaping holes in it that fails to account for the evidence. If you wish to continue on in faith that your theory will eventually discover answers that make sense, that is fine. It's very irrational of you, however, to deny another person the right to recognize and admit that Intelligent Design, as a theory, does fit those facts that Evolution fails to explain..

      April 4, 2012 at 9:47 pm |
    • AGuest9

      "Evolutionists"? Is that like "Atheists"? Are you people so warped that you think that EVERYTHING has to be a religion?

      April 5, 2012 at 9:16 am |
    • AGuest9

      Absolutely, Otto.

      April 5, 2012 at 9:17 am |
    • chubby rain

      "The irreducibly complex molecular machine, the bacterial flagellum, is a prime example, as are some macromorphological structures." Did you read anything I posted previously? The flagellum is not irreducibly complex, if you take 10 or so of the proteins in the base, they form the type 3 secretory protein, a molecular syringe. Irreducibly complex implies that the components do not have function, and this is clearly not the case.

      "The simplest-known self-reproducing cell serves as another example. (Peterson & Fraser, 2001) The specified complexity of proteins and protein-protein bonds are other examples. (Axe, 2000; Axe, 2004; Behe & Snoke, 2004)". This is an example of intelligent design advocates randomly throwing out certain biological phenomena to support their views without actually conducting any scientific research to prove their views. I will repeat this: there is no scientific evidence that supports intelligent design.

      April 5, 2012 at 11:14 am |
    • chubby rain

      "Similar parts are commonly found in widely different organisms. Many genes and functional parts not distributed in a manner predicted by ancestry, and are often found in clearly unrelated organisms. (Davison, 2005) This includes the various genes that control eye development, limb development, and even wing development across the various animal phyla (such as chickens and insects). (Quiring et. al., 1994; Nelson & Wells, 2003; Lönnig, 2004) For example, Lönnig (2004) states "No theorist in evolutionary biology will ever derive chicken and insects from a winged common ancestor, and yet, clearly related sequences are specifically expressed in wing buds and imaginal disks."

      If you open up an intro biology text book, you will find this under the term "convergent evolution". It explains how similar structures can develop separately given certain environmental pressures.

      April 5, 2012 at 11:20 am |
    • HellBent

      "The evolutionary theory is no more than that. A theory. More precisely, it's a theory with gaping holes in it that fails to account for the evidence."

      replace 'evolutionary' with 'gravitational' and you have an equally valid argument. Why don't the fundidiots ever complain that gravity doesn't exist – its just god pulling us closer together, isn't it?

      April 5, 2012 at 11:31 am |
    • HellBent

      Here's a good critique of Albert Voie's 2006 article to which Jay refers (Note, if you're trying to publish a paper on why evolution fails, the fact that you have to get it published in a journal about fractals doesn't say much for your credability) http://scienceblogs.com/goodmath/2006/07/peer_reviewed_bad_id_math.php

      April 5, 2012 at 11:41 am |
    • Nonimus

      @James,
      "The evolutionary theory is no more than that. A theory."
      Actually, in science there is nothing higher than a theory: http://ncse.com/evolution/education/definitions-fact-theory-law-scientific-work

      "If you wish to continue on in faith that your theory will eventually discover answers that make sense, that is fine."
      It already does answer questions.
      Look into how Tiktaalik was found, such a fossils approximate location was predicted by evolution and geology and then confirmed when Tiktaalik was found.
      Look into how Dr. Lenski's long term e. coli experiment cofirmed, in real-time, in docu.mented laboratory experiments, that evolution happens.
      Look into how an 'apparent mystery' of human evolution, how with 46 Chromosomes humans evolved from a common ancestor with great apes, who have 48 Chromosomes, was answered when it was discovered that Human Chromosome-2 is a fusion of two other Chromosomes which were hom.ologous with 2 Chimpanzee Chromosomes, now called Chimpanzee Chromsomes 2a and 2b.
      Many, many, other examples... biogeography and marsupials, nylon-eating bacteria, examples of differenct stages of evolving eye balls, etc., etc., etc.

      "It's very irrational of you, however, to deny another person the right to recognize and admit that Intelligent Design, as a theory, does fit those facts that Evolution fails to explain.."
      In the scientific meaning ID is not a theory, as there is no evidence to support its conclusions and there has been no hypothesis presented which can be tested, or at least none that has been tested and verified independently that I am aware of.
      People are free to think what they want, but if the facts and evidence don't support their opinion, then they should be prepared to be considered *wrong* on the subject.
      Intelligent Design is not science, as was shown in the Kitzmiller v. Dover trial in 2005, it is a rehash of Creationism and ultimatly is no more than a religious viewpoint.

      April 5, 2012 at 11:47 am |
    • HellBent

      Also, Axe works for the Biologic Institute, in which "Scientists affiliated with Biologic Institute are working from the idea that life appears to have been designed because it really was designed." So, he's not exactly object. For a critique of his 2004 paper, see http://aghunt.wordpress.com/2008/12/26/axe-2004-and-the-evolution-of-enzyme-function/

      I'm also not sure if Luskin either didn't understand Peterson and Fraser, 2001 or deliberately misrepresented the results. But nothing in the paper even remotely supports ID. You can read it for yourself here: http://genomebiology.com/2001/2/2/comment/2002/

      What's readily evident is that there are extremely few scientists that arrive at conclusoins that even remotely support ID. Luskin has to try and pull evidence from other sources where he must greatly misrepresent those sources findings and conclusions. A small handful of papers isn't even a drop in an ocean of sound evidence clearly supporting evolutionary principles.

      For an refutation of all of Luskin's article, see: http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/The_Positive_Case_for_Design

      April 5, 2012 at 12:11 pm |
    • Jay

      Reference: http://www.evolutionnews.org/2008/01/the_facts_about_intelligent_de004737.html

      By the way what are you refering to with TTCP? Do you mean T3SS?

      April 5, 2012 at 3:19 pm |
    • Jay

      As I stated days ago on this blog...I don't mind evolution being taught as just another THEORY...it definitly needs more work before it's a PROVEN fact.

      April 5, 2012 at 3:21 pm |
    • Jay

      @Otto...blah, blah, blah...mud sling...blah, blah, blah, throw sticks...you look talk like the apes you say you are from. You guys are too stubborn to even call yourselves scientific. Open minds and eyes will overcome the stupidity you espouse. Great way to show the world how evolutionists are a bunch of uncivilized jack bags that make preposterous statements from singular observations which they quickly take out of context to suit their own designs. May flagella infest your hind quarters and give you dysentery.

      April 5, 2012 at 3:31 pm |
    • Nonimus

      @Jay,
      "Reference: http://www.evolutionnews.org/2008/01/the_facts_about_intelligent_de004737.html"

      Your Luskin article seems misti.tled as there don't seem to be any "facts about intelligent design," but only suppositions about the National Academies of Science booklet.

      Luskin says towards the end, "each section of this rebuttal has discussed scientific evidence supporting intelligent design and challenging evolution." But where is the scientific evidence supporting anything? Everything he talks about appears to be supposed evidence against evolution, not evidence for ID.

      Even with a lead-in like, "... proponents of intelligent design have done experimental tests on the bacterial flagellum showing it is irreducibly complex, indicating that it is derived from an intelligent cause:" which seems very promising, all one gets upon reading is:

      "In all irreducibly complex systems in which the cause of the system is known by experience or observation, intelligent design or engineering played a role [in] the origin of the system. . . . Although some may argue this is a merely an argument from ignorance, we regard it as an inference to the best explanation . . . given what we know about the powers of intelligence as opposed to strictly natural or material causes."

      I see no experiment, no data, no evidence supporting ID. All it seems to say is that 'everything that we know to be built by an intelligence', becuse it is known to be built "by experience or observation," was in fact 'built by an intelligence.' (paraphrased, obviously)

      It is true however, that some may argue it is "merely an argument from ignorance" because it really is an argument from ignorance, regardless of whether or not they choose to "regard it as an inference."

      Here's a thought for an ID experiment, given a set of images, in a double blind experiment, determine which image were designed by human intelligence and which were not designed. And, I would go further and say that each designed image must not have been designed intentionally to appear non-designed or random. The catch, of course, is that many of the images will be of things like Jesus on toast, the Virgin Mary on the underpass, etc. If ID can objectivly indentify which are designed and which aren't, then perhaps they can start speaking scientifically.

      April 5, 2012 at 6:28 pm |
    • Nonimus

      @Jay,
      Perhaps, Behe himself on the so-called *scientific theory of Intelligent Design* can clarify things. The following is an excerpt of the court transcript of Prof. Michael Behe (A) being cross examined by the defense attourney ROBERT J. MUISE, ESQ. (Q) in the Kitzmiller v Dover trial in 2005:

      Q And using your definition, intelligent design is a
      scientific theory, correct?

      A Yes.

      Q Under that same definition astrology is a
      scientific theory under your definition, correct?

      A Under my definition, a scientific theory is a
      proposed explanation which focuses or points to physical,
      observable data and logical inferences. There are many
      things throughout the history of science which we now think
      to be incorrect which nonetheless would fit that - which
      would fit that definition. Yes, astrology is in fact one,
      and so is the ether theory of the propagation of light, and
      many other - many other theories as well.

      (hosted at http://www.aclupa.org/downloads/Day11PMSession.pdf)

      April 6, 2012 at 2:31 pm |
    • Nonimus

      Nuts...
      In my previous posting the questioner (Q) is ERIC J. ROTHSCHILD, ESQ. for the Plantiff not Mr. Muise. The one answering (A) is still Behe though.

      April 6, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
  6. HeavenSent

    They can add the following two words to their list: POLITICS AND POLITICIANS.

    April 4, 2012 at 2:13 pm |
    • Jay

      It's obvious your only defense is deridding some real research into the lies evolution throws at our society. You evolutionists are the fantasy story writters of history in HUGE EPIC proportions. It seems you evolutionists have to keep piliing more goofy ideas over each new lies just to cover up weak brainless theorys.

      April 4, 2012 at 3:22 pm |
  7. Jay

    In 2006 Evolutionists once again jumped to their bag of tricks to claim that experts believed that the dolphin's ancestor was a dog-like creature which roamed the earth many millions of years ago. And now the extraordinary discovery of a bottlenosed dolphin with an extra set of flippers has provided living proof of the theory. At first glance it looks like any other of its kind. But closer inspection reveals a rogue set of rear fins. Each the size of a human hand, the fins are thought to be the remains of a pair of hind legs, adding to evidence that dolphins once walked on all fours.

    This is nonsense, folks. First, evolutionists tell us that land animals evolved from sea creatures. Now they are trying a new approach, claiming sea creatures evolved from land animals. Dog are still dogs, but they claim that some of the dogs long ago evolved into dolphins. These "scientists" claim the dolphin evolved from the dog while the rest of the dogs didn't evolved into anything. They simply remained dogs.

    These "scientists" are not scientists. No scientific evidence exists for these evolutionary theories. This article is an attempt to brainwash the naive. Don't be fooled by these claims. Evolutionists typically use words like "may have evolved" or ""probably evolved" because they lack scientific proof. The lies are obvious here and go all the way back to evolutionists claims regarding Cro-Magnon man. Cro-Magnon man is not the evolutionary ancestor of human beings living today, as evolutionists suppose. The differences between the fossils and modern Europeans are no greater than that between an Eskimo and an African or between a pigmy and a European. More lies, more fantasies, more science proving evolutionists wrong.

    Intelligent design is more likely because it doesn't run a fantastically unwinnable lottery of mistakes that evolutionists claim is at work even today...hogwash!

    God created many species of dolphins. This is simply one species that is very rare.

    April 4, 2012 at 1:49 pm |
    • Jack

      "This article is an attempt to brainwash the naive." This article was not about evolution. It is obvious that your reading comprehension is horrible, be it evolution or news articles.

      April 4, 2012 at 3:08 pm |
    • Matt

      It's funny that you mention "lack of proof" and "brainwash" when attacking the evolutionists but then you talk about God.

      April 4, 2012 at 3:14 pm |
    • chubby rain

      A couple points to make:
      1) There are hundreds of thousands of dogs. A very small subset of these dogs can evolve in a novel direction while the other 99% of the dogs remain dogs (this is called divergent evolution). An analogy would be a family moves from New York to San Francisco, what happens to the people of New York? (Yeah, your point is that stupid.)
      2) There is an incredible amount of scientific evidence supporting evolution. The fossil record shows increasing levels of complexity, there are many physiological similarities between related species, and small scale adaptations have been observed. This does not even touch the surface of the most significant evidence supporting evolution: genetics. Many of the differences between animals are superficial - we have similar cellular mechanisms to roundworms, mice, and fruit flies. That is why research on these animals is used to produce the medicines we have today.
      3) There never has been and never will be scientific evidence of intelligent design. One would have to show that there is no way a structure could form through an intermediate by disproving every other conceivable method. Obviously, intelligent design supporters can't do this and then throw out a bunch things and say "You can't explain that." Sad thing is, scientists normally can. The flagella, the flagship of intelligent design, has a precursor in bacteria. Called the type 3 secretory apparatus, it injects proteins into adjacent cells. If the flagella was irreducibly complex, we would not have found a precursor like this.

      April 4, 2012 at 3:22 pm |
    • Jay

      It's obvious your only defense is deridding some real research into the lies evolution throws at our society. You evolutionists are the fantasy story writters of history in HUGE EPIC proportions. It seems you evolutionists have to keep piliing more goofy ideas over each new lies just to cover up weak brainless theorys.

      April 4, 2012 at 3:23 pm |
    • chubby rain

      Care to share any of this real research, Jay?

      April 4, 2012 at 3:26 pm |
    • Jay

      Chubby, you have to know that a chemical precursor protien does not an evolutionary chain make....any good scientist would know that.

      April 4, 2012 at 3:27 pm |
    • Matt

      There is more secientific evidence supporting evolution than there is supporting God's existance. Pretty sure there is no evidence of the latter.

      April 4, 2012 at 3:33 pm |
    • chubby rain

      The type 3 secretory protein is homlogous (stupid filter) to 1/3 of the proteins in the flagella. It demonstrates that novel functions can be produced by adapting previously existing components that had different functions. Another example is the Krebs cycle, the main "engine" of eukaryotes like human. Each of it's components has a different function in cells and through opportunism and evolution, eventually became a critical element of eukaryotic cells. This disproves the notion that these complex biological systems are irreducibly complex.
      As for your "evolutionary chain", we have snapshots of significant events but God didn't provide any home videos. Intelligent design has nothing, absolutely nothing.

      April 4, 2012 at 3:47 pm |
    • Nonimus

      @Jay,
      "In 2006 Evolutionists once again jumped to their bag of tricks to claim that experts believed that the dolphin's ancestor was a dog-like creature which roamed the earth many millions of years ago. ..."
      Although, I don't disagree that scientists have made this claim, it seems plausible, you need to cite where exactly anyone is making the claim. Otherwise, you can just be making it up.

      "This is nonsense, folks. First, evolutionists tell us that land animals evolved from sea creatures. Now they are trying a new approach, claiming sea creatures evolved from land animals. "
      Essentially, with the minor correction of "sea mammals" instead of "sea creatures," both are true. First, all land vertebrates, tetrapods, evolved from sea creatures, or amphibians. This is evidenced by fossils such as Tiktaalik, Second, sea mammals like whales and dolphins evolved from land vertebrates, tetrapods. This is evidenced by fossils such as Ambulocetus. So the evolution went something like fish -> amphibians -> land vertebrates -> mammals -> sea mammals, excepting of course a multi.tude of branchings not shown.

      "Dog are still dogs, but they claim that some of the dogs long ago evolved into dolphins. These 'scientists' claim the dolphin evolved from the dog while the rest of the dogs didn't evolved into anything. They simply remained dogs."
      First I doubt any scientist is saying that dolphins evolved from dogs, but that dolphins and dogs have a common ancestor. Second, the idea that the entire population, say of dogs, evolves together, is a misunderstanding of evolution. If this were the case then since the British colonized America, then there would be no more British today.

      Hope that helps

      April 4, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
    • Jay

      Well then Chubby, maybe you would like to enlighten us believers on the "snapshots" you conveiniently skipped over (in true evolutionist fashion)? You know the ones that look an awful lot like intelligent design? Not the more simple ones that look like what I cooked for breakfast in bacon fat?

      April 4, 2012 at 4:35 pm |
    • Jay

      On second thought, I don't want any evolutinist opinion...it would undoubtedly be rife with more fanstasy than solid science.

      April 4, 2012 at 5:01 pm |
    • Nonimus

      @Jay,
      "On second thought, I don't want any evolutinist opinion...it would undoubtedly be rife with more fanstasy than solid science."
      I'm not sure what you would consider "solid science," but you seem to be the one that is not presenting any evidence. Do you have any evidence to support your claims of Intelligent Design?

      April 4, 2012 at 6:22 pm |
    • James

      @matt
      If a person doesn't want to believe in the existence of God, they don't have to. That is well within your rights. However, it is very inaccurate to claim that there is no evidence for His existence. There are mountains of it, all ignored as a matter of convenience, and (ironically) faith. Historical, Archaeological, Geological, Social, Psychological and probably lots of other *.ogical evidence is there for anyone who doesn't mind seeing it. There are plenty of books written on the subject. Anyone who wanted to know, could.

      April 4, 2012 at 9:56 pm |
    • Nonimus

      @James,
      "However, it is very inaccurate to claim that there is no evidence for His existence. There are mountains of it..."
      I'm not sure what your definition of evidence is but in an objective repeatable sense, there is nothing that necessarily points to existence of a god or gods. Mind you, there is nothing that absolutely excludes a god or gods, but that is not the same as positive, or affirmative, evidence.

      April 5, 2012 at 11:59 am |
    • Jay

      @James...thanks for joining the fray. These dudes are either the worst scientists or the most stubborn jerks I've encountered in a while. Jumping to conclusions and standing on a tiny island of information to support thier positions. I love debate, but these guys just hide their heads under the guise of mud slinging when challenged so that is a warning that they really don't have a leg to stand on...they just yell a bunch and expect everyone to follow.

      April 5, 2012 at 3:44 pm |
    • Jay

      @Nonimous...will you stop quoting what we write and then make another stupid statement like "what do you mean...blah" you are an idiot.

      April 5, 2012 at 4:52 pm |
    • Nonimus

      @Jay,
      "will you stop quoting what we write and then make another stupid statement like 'what do you mean...blah' you are an idiot."
      Probably not, no.

      If ID proponents continue to misrepresent established science, ...

      for example, "Now they are trying a new approach, claiming sea creatures evolved from land animals",

      ... and make up things as they go along,

      for example "irreducible complexity"

      "Biochemistry professor Michael Behe, the originator of the term irreducible complexity, defines an irreducibly complex system as one 'composed of several well-matched, interacting parts that contribute to the basic function, wherein the removal of any one of the parts causes the system to effectively cease functioning'" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irreducible_complexity)

      " The 'leap' required by going from one functional sub-part to the entire functional system is indicative of the degree of irreducible complexity in a system." (http://www.discovery.org/a/4405, @Jay's reference to Luskin.)

      ... then I will most likely continue you say things like, "What the #@*% do you mean?"

      April 6, 2012 at 11:50 am |
  8. Christianity is not healthy for children and other living things

    Christianity takes people away from actually working on real solutions to their problems.
    Prayer has been shown to have no discernible effect towards what was prayed for.
    Christianity makes you frothy like Rick Santorum. Just go to http://santorum.com to find out more.
    Christianity prevents you from getting badly needed exercise.
    Christianity makes you fat.
    Christianity wears out your clothes prematurely.
    Christianity contributes to global warming through excess CO2 emissions.
    Christianity fucks up your knees and your neck and your back.
    Christianity can cause heart attacks, especially among the elderly.
    Christianity reveals how stupid you are to the world.
    Christianity exposes your backside to pervert priests.
    Christianity makes you think doilies are exciting.
    Christianity makes you secretively flatulent and embarrassed about it.
    Christianity makes your kids avoid spending time with you.
    Christianity gives you knobbly knees.
    Christianity makes you frothy like Rick Santorum. Just google him to find out.
    Christianity dulls your senses.
    Christianity makes you post really stupid shit.
    Christianity makes you hoard cats.
    Christianity makes you smell like shitty kitty litter and leads you on to harder drugs.
    Christianity wastes time.

    April 4, 2012 at 10:00 am |
    • boocat

      Hey!!! No need to include cats...my cat is definitely an atheist...the rest of the post is pretty funny...

      April 4, 2012 at 11:32 am |
    • Nonimus

      Cats are fine, but hoarding of cats is a serious problem (unlike hoarding dogs, but that's another story. : )

      Christianity kills!
      Every Christian that ever lived has died or will die, case close ; )

      April 4, 2012 at 4:43 pm |
    • Nonimus

      ...d

      April 4, 2012 at 4:44 pm |
  9. Rational Libertarian

    Oldspeak is coming to its end. We need some Winston Smiths now!

    April 4, 2012 at 8:31 am |
  10. s

    Man people need to get a life, my god what a bunch of winers, don't like the word then don't read it!!! and shut the F^%$& up

    April 4, 2012 at 7:54 am |
  11. Rational Libertarian

    Airstrip One is just 'round the corner.

    April 4, 2012 at 5:54 am |
    • Nonimus

      Why worry about Big Brother, when we seem to be giving it away to the likes of Google, Facebook, and every store that has a so-called "customer loyalty" program.

      April 4, 2012 at 10:20 am |
  12. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things .

    April 4, 2012 at 5:30 am |
    • Jesus

      Prayer doesn’t not; you are so full of crap and lies. You have NO proof it changes anything! A great example of prayer proven not to work is the Christians in jail because prayer didn't work and their children died. For example: Susan Grady, who relied on prayer to heal her son. Nine-year-old Aaron Grady died and Susan Grady was arrested.

      An article in the Journal of Pediatrics examined the deaths of 172 children from families who relied upon faith healing from 1975 to 1995. They concluded that four out of five ill children, who died under the care of faith healers or being left to prayer only, would most likely have survived if they had received medical care.

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs!`

      April 4, 2012 at 8:17 am |
    • just sayin

      yes it do

      April 4, 2012 at 8:20 am |
    • Jesus

      "yes it do"

      more lies and desperation, especially since you use different handles to post. What an idiot.

      April 4, 2012 at 8:22 am |
    • nope

      nope

      April 4, 2012 at 8:30 am |
    • Jesus

      "nope

      nope"

      Exactly this original poster is full of crap, thanks for agreeing with me!

      April 4, 2012 at 8:31 am |
    • Prayer changes things

      Do not let your children grow up to be like it that takes the Lord Jesus' name in vain. A mind is a terrible thing to waste

      April 4, 2012 at 8:39 am |
    • nope

      nope
      pigs will fly before anyone agrees with you.

      April 4, 2012 at 8:40 am |
    • Jesus

      "Do not let your children grow up to be like it that takes the Lord Jesus' name in vain. A mind is a terrible thing to waste"

      That's why you go against the bible and spread lies not backed up with facts. What a hypocrite.

      April 4, 2012 at 8:40 am |
    • nope

      nope!

      April 4, 2012 at 8:41 am |
    • Jesus

      "nope"

      nope is a dope.

      April 4, 2012 at 8:42 am |
    • nope

      nope.

      April 4, 2012 at 9:06 am |
    • Jack

      Fighting spam with spam. It is sad the Jesus even bothers to reply to this troll. Get a life and quit feeding the trolls.

      April 4, 2012 at 10:49 am |
    • lol

      I DONT UNDERSTAND EVOLUTION, AND I HAVE TO PROTECT MY KIDS FROM UNDERSTANDING IT TOO

      April 4, 2012 at 9:27 pm |
  13. GoDucks73

    To be truely safe, how about eliminating all words?

    April 4, 2012 at 2:53 am |
    • Charles Lee Ray

      Let's start with all religious texts first. Then we'll go from there if necessary.

      April 4, 2012 at 5:03 am |
    • Emitr

      Charles Lee Ray, good suggestion. A problem I see with it, though, is that if we don't eliminate all words, then someone will write another religious text with the words we have. Even if we had only one word, someone would write a religious text with it. So, instead, let's take another approach: let's take out from the human genome the genes that enable religious thoughts and feelings. But I wonder, if we did that, what would be left of our capacities for abstraction, imagination, fear, longing, self-consciousness, etc. Hmmm. Maybe it's just better to put up with religion, and enjoy life in spite of it for the short time the brains we have work.

      April 4, 2012 at 10:08 pm |
  14. Emitr

    One of the great skills in life is to be able to empathize with an interlocutor and answer in terms of another's perspective. The ability to answer questions that derive from a different point of view is invaluable. All those tests I took, for which I had to get into the skin, into the perspective, of the person asking the questions, taught me more than facts–they taught how to interpret information from the perspective of someone other than myself. You can't put a price of tuition on that, New York.

    April 4, 2012 at 1:32 am |
  15. CanadaGuy

    Oldthinkers unbellyfeel Newspeak!

    April 3, 2012 at 11:56 pm |
  16. Michael

    Even if you don't believe in birthdays, Halloween, and dinosaurs, you should at least know what they are. That's part of being an educated person.

    April 3, 2012 at 11:32 pm |
    • HEAVENBENT

      I like dinosaurs.

      April 4, 2012 at 12:03 am |
    • Harris

      Exactly! You might have to host TODAY someday!

      April 4, 2012 at 1:23 pm |
  17. GI JEW

    sounds alot like communism to me.

    April 3, 2012 at 11:28 pm |
    • Nonimus

      Sorry, but I don't understand what a state-run economic system like communism has to do with the choice of words used on one English test in NY.

      April 4, 2012 at 10:23 am |
  18. JJ

    I guess they thought it would be nice to test their intellect only by avoiding emotion.

    April 3, 2012 at 10:34 pm |
    • AGuest9

      So, what would be left? House? "Oh, my parents lost their house when I was young." OK, friend? "My friend died of cancer in grade school." Alright then, tree? "When I was 5, my kitty got stuck in a tree, and I broke my arm climbing up to get her and now I have a fear of heights." It will eventually reach the point where every word will offend/scare someone.

      April 4, 2012 at 9:55 am |
  19. Josie

    Hey look there is someone out there with a bit of backbone and common sense...now can we see more of that?

    April 3, 2012 at 10:16 pm |
  20. A known Filipino

    Ah the religious blog. A battleground between the online loser atheist community and the online looser religious community.

    April 3, 2012 at 9:20 pm |
    • Religion Blows

      You spelled loser correctly the first time, but then you fucked the pooch the second time around. Great job, numbnuts.

      April 3, 2012 at 11:11 pm |
    • Nonimus

      ... and other hangers on that don't have anything of any worth to add.

      April 4, 2012 at 10:28 am |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.