Michael Zimmerman Answers Why Battling Creationism Matters


Michael Zimmerman is the founder of the Clergy Letter Project, a project which supports the teaching of evolution in schools and opposes the teaching of creationism so his views on the matter are pretty obvious. However, many people might not know why. In a recent article in the Huffington Post, Zimmerman explores just why the battle against creationism is so important to him and others like him.

Many people, particularly in countries around the world where creationism isn’t an issue for their public schools just yet, may wonder why Zimmerman cares so much about the issue, and for him, much of the answer to that question is rooted in democracy.

Evolutionary theory hasn’t been presented to the world as some sort of unfounded gag. It comes with lots of data to back it up from various sciences from palaeontology to genomics. Creationism however depends on faith, which while isn’t a bad thing in itself, but when compared with evolution, Zimmerman says it encourages people to misunderstand real scientific investigation and rather embrace pseudoscience. That, he believes, is a problem when it comes to the voting public.

Zimmerman believes that those who promote the teaching of creationism are doing so for their own interests, simply because, as he says, “creationists believe that education is about teaching students what to think while those opposed to creationism believe that education is about teaching students how to think.”

In other words, do we want adults who have grown up to accept everything they are presented with because of faith, or do we want adults in this world who have grown up to question what they’re given and to think critically? For Zimmerman, the answer to that question is simple and he ends off his article by quoting the beloved late George Carlin:

“Don’t just teach your children to read…teach them to question what they read…teach them to question everything.”

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