Now that Twitter and Facebook have been invented, I don’t usually put up blog posts that simply link to someone else’s posts. (Although I wonder if that policy is a mistake.) But this morning I put up a link to a post at Jerry Coyne’s blog, and it was almost immediately deleted from Facebook. (The Twitter entry was fine, of course.) I wouldn’t even have known, except that someone commented that it had been “flagged as inappropriate by Facebook users.”
Of course, Facebook being Facebook, I have no idea whether this is a nefarious conspiracy or simple incompetence. Probably both. In any event, you should go check out the post, which comments on this YouTube video.
It’s a compilation of the answers given by contestants in the Miss USA contest to a simple question: “Should evolution be taught in schools?” Miss California, Alyssa Campanella, who eventually won the contest, gave a strong pro-science answer that will bring a smile to your face. At least, if you are finished crying and throwing objects at your computer monitor after seeing some of the other answers. Due to the vagaries of alphabetical order, Miss Alabama comes first, and it’s not pretty.
For the most part, the contestants are interested in being good politicians and keeping everybody happy, not in staking out courageous stances in the science/religion debates. But that’s exactly what’s so depressing: here we are, in the most advanced country in the world (albeit in its waning years), and it’s considered controversial whether we should teach science to our children. The question wasn’t even “should we teach creationism,” which is actually a harder issue (although still very easy). It was just whether we should teach straightforward science at all. Very sad indeed.