Wow. I have really been amazed that the professional environmental, health, science, economics, math and basic academic community are not going nuts on the President's intelligent design push. I really thought that we would just let all the lunacy on evolution end up letting the religious right fall on own swords but the silence from basic 8th grade science teachers is spooky. (The press condeming the President of the United States is REALLY nice.)
Anyway...I am all for finding middle ground and making progress based on sound science and good risk communicaiton strategy but for all my friends in professional "make nice nice groups and agencies", I have one thing to say. Your loosing. Dick Cheney "Big time" loosing.
As many of the huge common-ground groups, non-political education, "conservation", win-win efforts working to greenwash bad corporate images (WAL-MART NFWF DEAL) and funding from big conservative leaning donors peal away from the more poltical and advocacy focused groups the movements voice has been weakened. (See TNC statement on the Presidents position on intelligent design. Of course ... there is none)
Chasing the dollars to design non-contraversial programs, we have taken away the voice of reason and neutered our capacity to speak out. It is so bad that now only the "fringe groups" can step into the fight to defend the march of human knowledge and science.
The "mainstream" groups focus on details of "sound management". No politics just science. Surprise... there is now a carefully crafted campaign and a strategic attack against the idea of sound management and respect for science. You (we) are loosing ground in the fight on the basic concepts of science. Science now fights the industries it created. There is a concentrated effort to discredit science. Science and logic are loosing (see the Luntz memo that is "winning". The culture war is making us defend the very concept of evolution.
What can you do? You say..." I work for an agency. I work for a big company. I work for a nonpolitical group." This is now slipping into a fuzzy area where "intelligent design debate" and the attacks on science and logic are not poltical... they are logical. There is a right and a wrong. This is not poltitics. It is education. If you have one stand up and say so. Don't be neutral on your entire education.
For those of us that remember high school, we need to tell everyone that we see what is going on here. The president is saying 2 + 2 = 5. If you disagree with him you are "being political". It's bullshit. There are no WMD. There is global warming. "Intelligent design" is not a valid theory along side evolution.
The GOP henchmen messing with the truth are wrong and dangerous. Calling them on this is not political but it is the best kind of advocacy. It is not prohibited by any law. All you cowards with high school diplomas better start thinking and speaking outloud or there is a whole lot more problems with this society than the evolution debate.