CRAP! Suspicions confirmed. Nephew being taught junk "science".
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15-12-2012, 08:12 AM
CRAP! Suspicions confirmed. Nephew being taught junk "science".
A little back story. My sister is a christian. The schools in her area aren't the best. Her son [age 13] is very small for his age, and because of the rough area she's in, my sister was afraid of him going to public schools, so opted to pay for a private christian school. I didn't like the idea, but it isn't my call. Not my kids.

Lastnight, he came up to me to tell me that he scared his sister [age 7] with a short cartoon on his DS that was talking about the Mayans "end of the earth prediction", and was showing a meteor coming to earth to kill everyone [which isn't the point of this thread]. He showed me the video, and in it, it mentioned the theory of the event that killed off many species ~65 million years ago. I said, "that's probably how it happened, back then".

It was at this time that he said, "No it didn't. . . . . The earth is only 7,000 years old"!! Because he isn't MY son, and because my sister is more likely to believe YEC, it wasn't my place [I felt] to clear up the misconceptions. The only thing I COULD do was to say, "That isn't the case. There is nothing in the bible that states an age of the earth. The date you stated is just an interpretation based upon the list of geneology. It is okay to believe this now, but it isn't what is true, and you will learn more about that later".

That was a paraphrase, but generally what I had said. It really sucks because I know he is falling into the same trap I did. Believing absurd religious claims. . . and will have to face reality in the future. Again, not my son, so I feel my hands are tied here.
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15-12-2012, 09:28 PM
RE: CRAP! Suspicions confirmed. Nephew being taught junk "science".
(15-12-2012 08:12 AM)DeavonReye Wrote:  A little back story. My sister is a christian. The schools in her area aren't the best. Her son [age 13] is very small for his age, and because of the rough area she's in, my sister was afraid of him going to public schools, so opted to pay for a private christian school. I didn't like the idea, but it isn't my call. Not my kids.

Lastnight, he came up to me to tell me that he scared his sister [age 7] with a short cartoon on his DS that was talking about the Mayans "end of the earth prediction", and was showing a meteor coming to earth to kill everyone [which isn't the point of this thread]. He showed me the video, and in it, it mentioned the theory of the event that killed off many species ~65 million years ago. I said, "that's probably how it happened, back then".

It was at this time that he said, "No it didn't. . . . . The earth is only 7,000 years old"!! Because he isn't MY son, and because my sister is more likely to believe YEC, it wasn't my place [I felt] to clear up the misconceptions. The only thing I COULD do was to say, "That isn't the case. There is nothing in the bible that states an age of the earth. The date you stated is just an interpretation based upon the list of geneology. It is okay to believe this now, but it isn't what is true, and you will learn more about that later".

That was a paraphrase, but generally what I had said. It really sucks because I know he is falling into the same trap I did. Believing absurd religious claims. . . and will have to face reality in the future. Again, not my son, so I feel my hands are tied here.


No, your hands are not tied. If you tread carefully, you may be able to keep him in touch with reality.

Your sister may or may not have any problem with this - don't just assume that she does.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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16-12-2012, 07:26 AM
RE: CRAP! Suspicions confirmed. Nephew being taught junk "science".
(15-12-2012 09:28 PM)Chas Wrote:  No, your hands are not tied. If you tread carefully, you may be able to keep him in touch with reality.

Your sister may or may not have any problem with this - don't just assume that she does.


If the subject comes up, I am not going to lie. I will try to be subtle, and firm that there is absolutely no way the earth and universe are only 7,000 years old. It just really pisses me off that this school would totally disregard mainstream science [tested, retested, confirmed, factual] and teach "creation science" JUST because it agrees with biblical fiction.
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16-12-2012, 05:16 PM
RE: CRAP! Suspicions confirmed. Nephew being taught junk "science".
I disagree with Chas. Your hand are tied because he's not your kid.

We're not the world's police here. It's awful that kids are taught stupid false crap, and I think we all agree that this should stop. However, it isn't up to us to change minds by indoctrinating children... unless, of course, they're yours. My Christian parents have tried teaching my daughter their Christian lies, and I've done what I can to set her straight. But don't be like my parents. It doesn't matter if you carry the truth and your sister doesn't -- it's not your place to raise her kid, any more than it's any Christian's place to fill my kid's head with their beliefs.

My girlfriend is mad at me. Perhaps I shouldn't have tried cooking a stick in her non-stick pan.
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16-12-2012, 05:26 PM
RE: CRAP! Suspicions confirmed. Nephew being taught junk "science".
(16-12-2012 05:16 PM)Starcrash Wrote:  I disagree with Chas. Your hand are tied because he's not your kid.

We're not the world's police here. It's awful that kids are taught stupid false crap, and I think we all agree that this should stop. However, it isn't up to us to change minds by indoctrinating children... unless, of course, they're yours. My Christian parents have tried teaching my daughter their Christian lies, and I've done what I can to set her straight. But don't be like my parents. It doesn't matter if you carry the truth and your sister doesn't -- it's not your place to raise her kid, any more than it's any Christian's place to fill my kid's head with their beliefs.


His hands aren't tied unless and until his sister objects.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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16-12-2012, 05:54 PM
RE: CRAP! Suspicions confirmed. Nephew being taught junk "science".
Well, I stayed out of it with my niece. The consequence? We don't speak anymore.

She was raised catholic and she can't spend 10 minutes with me without talking about god. She is a young adult now, and she knows I am an atheist. I tolerated it for years but I got sick of listening to her over and over and over again. She insists that I need to be made to think about god as often as possible so he can find a way into my heart. Apparently she thinks that the word god alone is magically going to turn me into a christian. So when we are together she says god as often as possibly possible. Nuts.

It got to be so grinding on my nerves that I stay out of her life entirely. She says that I will still think of her and by association everytime I do I will think about god. She feels good about this, she did a good job she thinks.

I guess I am going to be transformed into a nun any minute now.

Other than an old aunt, my niece is the only family I have left. I regret not having spoken up when she was still open minded. She is an extremely talented young lady and works in web graphics. We could have done so much together...

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17-12-2012, 11:08 AM
RE: CRAP! Suspicions confirmed. Nephew being taught junk "science".
I won't raise the topic, . . . but, if something similar happens again, I won't lie to him. I won't linger on the topic, but will just say that . . . . I don't know, . . . that maybe he'll learn more about such things later. It is really a hard thing to get in to. If I came right out saying "your teachers are teaching you lies", . . . though truthful, it wouldn't be my place. It's truly a tough subject. All I can say is, my kids wouldn't be at that school.
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17-12-2012, 11:23 AM
RE: CRAP! Suspicions confirmed. Nephew being taught junk "science".
(17-12-2012 11:08 AM)DeavonReye Wrote:  I won't raise the topic, . . . but, if something similar happens again, I won't lie to him. I won't linger on the topic, but will just say that . . . . I don't know, . . . that maybe he'll learn more about such things later. It is really a hard thing to get in to. If I came right out saying "your teachers are teaching you lies", . . . though truthful, it wouldn't be my place. It's truly a tough subject. All I can say is, my kids wouldn't be at that school.


I wouldn't do it that way either. But - maybe a science kit as xmas present... things like that - not even touching evolution at all but teaching general logic.... That's how I would go about it if I had to do it over again. As logical thinkers, people do come to their own conclusions without any direct prodding.

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17-12-2012, 10:45 PM
RE: CRAP! Suspicions confirmed. Nephew being taught junk "science".
(16-12-2012 05:54 PM)Dom Wrote:  Well, I stayed out of it with my niece. The consequence? We don't speak anymore.

She was raised catholic and she can't spend 10 minutes with me without talking about god. She is a young adult now, and she knows I am an atheist. I tolerated it for years but I got sick of listening to her over and over and over again. She insists that I need to be made to think about god as often as possible so he can find a way into my heart. Apparently she thinks that the word god alone is magically going to turn me into a christian. So when we are together she says god as often as possibly possible. Nuts.

It got to be so grinding on my nerves that I stay out of her life entirely. She says that I will still think of her and by association everytime I do I will think about god. She feels good about this, she did a good job she thinks.

I guess I am going to be transformed into a nun any minute now.

Other than an old aunt, my niece is the only family I have left. I regret not having spoken up when she was still open minded. She is an extremely talented young lady and works in web graphics. We could have done so much together...

I think we all agree that we can influence young minds. It's for that reason that we have to be careful when speaking to children.

Kids can and sometimes do post on this forum. Whenever any child still living with their parents asks for advice, I'm always careful to remind everyone that our advice can do real damage to a situation that the child has little control over... I like the idea of an atheist debating their parents after he or she has moved out, but before that point it can cause so much trouble. And it was Seth of TheThinkingAtheist of all people who convinced me of this; he has said the same thing on his podcast numerous times.

It's unfortunate that you don't have the relationship with your niece that you want, but she probably would have paid for that in her relationship with her Catholic parents. If only every kid could be as lucky as I was to discover atheism after moving away from home...

My girlfriend is mad at me. Perhaps I shouldn't have tried cooking a stick in her non-stick pan.
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23-12-2012, 12:43 PM
RE: CRAP! Suspicions confirmed. Nephew being taught junk "science".
I have to say, I agree with Starcrash in this. While it is heinous child abuse to indoctrinate a child and to rob him of critical-thinking and a good education, to place a permanent wedge between the child and his parents will do as much if not more damage. Talk to mom.

That said, I don't lie. My niece is not being taught Creationism, but when she asked me about Noah's Ark and whether the otters and penguins went swimming, I answered with sterile truth of the fluid dynamics and chemistry involved.

I will say having kids helps. They don't let their cousin get away with any logical flaws. At 6 (my son) and 7 (my niece) they had an adorable debate about where heaven was. My son finished with a, "If you don't believe me, try nasa.org!"

Maybe you should borrow some kids, you can usually find some running around the aisles of Walmart. Wink
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