America is the land of opportunity, but opportunity is fading, because the value of science, knowledge, education and innovation is being undermined.
The U.S. is behind several other nations in math and science, and some suspect this is due to the complete misunderstanding many people have about science itself. Science is a process to reveal truth, which in the scientific community is called theory. One such theory is that of evolution. Evolution is more than “just” a theory, because the “just” a theory statement, does not occur in Science. The idea that something is just a hunch or guess is the everyday definition of theory, not the scientific definition.
The theory of evolution, for example, is so well supported by evidence, it is simply regarded as truth in science. Therefore, it is natural to speak of the evolution of stars in astrophysics, the evolution of microbes in epidemiology, and so on. In considering the age of the cosmos, and of earth, millions and billions of years must be considered.
In worldwide postings, according to the PISA exams, the United States ranked fourteenth in reading, seventeenth in science and a dismal twenty fifth in math. The U.S. is also producing fewer college graduates, and that results in far fewer innovations in technological fields. The race for clean energy is one America should take pride in helping to innovate.
In the modern age of global warming, overpopulation and global mental despair over planetary degradation and war, the time is right for people to find healing, belonging, and wholeness. Science, and most of all our biological origins offer this. When we realize the grandeur of evolution, we realize we are kin to the cosmos. Once the greatness of this is realized, people will no longer feel a need to think that being related to other great apes is some kind of an insult, or injury. Belonging is the very reason, after all, that every religion on earth began with animism.
Nor do thinking people ever assume, that God, if there is one, is so petty and fickle, that He or She is going to smite those who feel pride in being one thread of a rich and intricate web of life. When people realize they can integrate back into belonging, they usually find a way to take pride in “the creation” and to appreciate it more to the point where they are willing to defend that it stay clean, safe, and viable for all life to continue.
Understanding wonder and awe, such as is revealed in the truth of our biology changes hearts and minds. People learn they do not need to struggle forever for dominance exploitation of one another, or other organisms. They can celebrate that inter-connection and inter dependence is the fundamental foundation that supports every continuing system from a river, to a forest, to an economy, or to a civilization.
That life consists of give and take between all organisms and systems is thought to be in direct contradiction to the idea of independent, master-full and dominating culture that sees nature as a lot of commodities. But this is why it is so crucial for people, and especially children to know that they have every reason to trust in science and learning.
Children should think skeptically, even about evolution, perhaps, because the evidence and the outcomes speak for themselves.