4/14/2008

IN WHICH MY PULSE IS REQUICKENED

OK, with respect to the prior post, it turns out that the dog-and-pony show which is Don Patton WILL be at Bullard, after all....only it will not be in the theatre, but in the cafeteria, for three successive evenings, during STAR testing. My administrators, who seem equally appalled and frustrated by the whole thing, told me something different this morning but this seems to be along the lines of wishful thinking. They confirmed that Patton will be here on the 23rd through the 25th.

As one of my senior colleagues at CSU Fresno said in an e-mail, 'the plot thickens'. That colleague also forwarded a rather assertive reply from Sun Garden Church of Christ preacher Randall Jerrell that I won't quote without his permission, but essentially it boils down to the old charge that science educators are close-minded elitists with no stomach for honest debate.

As Mel Blanc once drawled, 'he don't know me very well, do he?'

8 comments:

R. Moore said...

I contacted CSUF and pointed out that the Patton lecture specifically violates CSU regulations on outside speakers. They hung up on me.

J said...

Somehow I get visions of Jesus driving the money changers from the temple. These guys could try anyone's patience.

Scott Hatfield . . . . said...

I contacted CSUF and pointed out that the Patton lecture specifically violates CSU regulations on outside speakers.

I really couldn't comment without knowing what portions you think are being violated, and I'm not sure we could know without a copy of their application.

Madhu said...

I've searched through the CSUF Academic Policy Manuals also, and can't find any specific regulations that might be violated. So I would appreciate hearing more about what r.moore thinks.

Meanwhile, I've also posted a copy of the invitation letter some of my colleagues received in the mail yesterday. And the gist of the response from the church elder to a colleagues query.

Stan said...

Personally, I think your situation is ideal. Keep cool, don't get mad, present your refutations in a manner that projects the confidence of intellect.

Take some pamphlets with you so you can hand them out showing the defects in ID as a science (the conclusion must be inferred, and cannot be empirically proven or falsified...stuff like that).

But most of all take good notes on points made during the speech, then refute them one by one, using reference papers if you can.

Expect jeering and be prepared to ignore it, staying focused on the issues. Maybe even practice that.

Good luck.

Oh yes, don't invoke Christians who accept evolution, that won't buy you anything with a creationist crowd.

Scott Hatfield . . . . said...

Actually, Stan, this is not an ID group. This is a YEC presentation, and I don't think there's any point in bringing up non-creationist views within Christianity, because they will discount those automatically as corrupt.

However,in this particular case a number of creationist organizations have problems with the Paluxy River tracks, among them ICR and Answers in Genesis, who have both rejected these arguments as bad for their cause. I imagine that someone will point that out if those arguments are used, and it will be interesting to see how Patton responds.

WATCHMAN ON THE WALL said...

CSUF doesn't allow outside speakers? I don't believe that because they freqeuntly have outside speakers. The truth is this is only being made an issue because of who is speaking.

Scott Hatfield . . . . said...

CSUF doesn't allow outside speakers? I don't believe that because they freqeuntly have outside speakers. The truth is this is only being made an issue because of who is speaking.

No one made that claim, watchman. Read r. moore's original post with greater care. Obviously outside speakers aren't prohibited, but there are guidelines to who can and can't speak that relate to the purpose of the visit and its consistency with the mission of the university.

And, for the record, I'm not persuaded that a clear case can be made on that point either way. The CSUF regulations appear vague and inconsistent to me, and in any case, what really matters is how the courts interpret the law, not what private citizens like myself think about their policies.