Friday, October 24, 2014

Teaching Origins Objectively - A TOS Schoolhouse Crew Review

In September I learned that New Liberty Videos would be sending various Crew members one of a selection of videos they produce. 

The videos we had to consider were Anthem for a Nation, The Forbidden Book, Mysteries of the Dead Sea Scrolls, A Nation Adrift, Teaching Origins Objectively, and Warriors of Honor. After looking over the descriptions and discussing the choices with my son, we decided to request to receive Teaching Origins Objectively. We were selected for the review and this is the movie we received.
I had read, from the above-linked site for the movie, that this is a documentary covering the highlights of 20 hours of testimony that took place in May of 2005, before the Kansas State Board of Education, where 23 witnesses gave testimony over a four-day period. The hearings were on science standards designed to promote the teaching of evolution and origins objectively.

I had been told that these videos are for a general audience. Some of the material will be over the heads of younger ones and some of the videos might have subjects you are not ready to discuss with your younger ones. I opted to try watching this with my son. So, at the time I had set aside, we sat down to watch the documentary.

I won't go through the content in any sort of outline format -- I wasn't taking notes while I was watching it. What I want to do is discuss some of the salient points I took away from watching the video.

The experts giving testimony, some representing the evolutionary perspective and some representing the intelligent design perspective, took turns giving a talk to present their perspective, to present information for consideration, and to counter comments they received from Board members in argument of their perspective.

I found it really offensive the way at least one certain member of the Kansas Board of Education spoke of any religious perspective dismissively, as if any testimony given by anyone believing in intelligent design might be discounted automatically as without merit for lack of proof. What this man repeatedly failed to recognize is that there is no proof for evolution, either, particularly evidence based on the scientific method (which requires OBSERVATION as a key requirement). A person cannot observe anything related to something that did or did not happen long before they were born. And when there is not even any written documentation of a person alive who might have observed something, any conclusions about what happened are mere conjecture or theory, not fact.

The "Scientific Community" that wants to teach evolution theory (as fact), in absence of teaching intelligent design as a theory, is being closed minded and non-scientific. To take a hypothesis as a fact without proof (scientific proof, which includes being able to repeat steps in an experiment and being able to replicate the same result) is unscientific enough as it is. I get so frustrated with the way these scientists then, blind to their hypocrisy,  then dismiss the other scientists for believing a different theory for its lack of scientific evidence.

Teaching Origins Objectively goes through scientist after scientist after scientist who calmly present information rationally and reasonably that show the intricacies of natural design and argue for the reasonableness of the conclusion that such a design couldn't just happen out of nothing. There were so many presentations given, so much material to think about, that I definitely want to give the documentary another viewing, and to take notes. To sit through the documentary in one sitting was too long for me, and not surprisingly for my son also. I lost him after about an hour and a quarter. So next time I'll watch for an hour one day and watch the remainder a second day. I might be able to interest my husband and/or my daughter in watching it with me, but it is hard to say. Not many of us have much time to spare for such cerebral viewing.

This is clearly a valuable documentary for viewing in a family and at a time where the evolution/design issue burbles to the top and becomes a hot topic needing attention. It is good for such materials to be available, because it is good for our students to be equipped to know how to participate in civil, but firm discussion with those in the scientific community who will be convinced that there is no other viable option than evolution. And how can our students become prepared for such discussions if we do not prepare them. And how can we prepare them if we do not prepare ourselves.

Now I don't mean to in any way suggest that I will ever be as able to conduct such a discussion in the way the experts in this documentary conversed, but it is such a valuable thing to have this DVD as a tool to equip myself and my son. I don't know if he will go to college, but if he does he will most probably attend a state school, a liberal hot-bed of argument by intelligentsia convinced of their own correctness, unaccustomed to being crossed by anyone with an opposing view who is prepared to defend their position. I want my son to be prepared if he goes to a public college.

I highly recommend Teaching Origins Objectively  for your teaching preparation and presentation to your children to prepare them to make their own decision as to whether evolution is its own conclusion and the end of the conversation, or whether they will believe God's word and his fingerprint in the world around them.

Teaching Origins Objectively sells for $19.95. If you are interested in reading other reviews of Teaching Origins Objectively or any of the other movies by New Liberty Videos  that were reviewed by the Schoolhouse Review Crew, please click on the button below.

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