A Voice for Evolution As Science

... After polling the membership on its views, the Executive Council of the American Scientific Affiliation hereby directs the following Resolution to public school teachers, administrators, school boards, and producers of elementary and secondary science textbooks or other educational materials:

Because it is our common desire to promote excellence and integrity in science education as well as in science; and

Because it is our common desire to bring to an end wasteful controversy generated by inappropriate entanglement of the scientific concept of evolution with political, philosophical, or religious perspectives;

We strongly urge that, in science education, the terms evolution and theory of evolution should be carefully defined and used in a consistently scientific manner; and

We further urge that, to make classroom instruction more stimulating while guarding it against the intrusion of extra-scientific beliefs, the teaching of any scientific subject, including evolutionary biology, should include (1) forceful presentation of well-established scientific data and conclusions; (2) clear distinction between evidence and inference; and (3) candid discussion of unsolved problems and open questions.

Adopted by the Executive Council of the American Scientific Affiliation on December 7, 1991. ASA was founded in 1941 as a nationwide fellowship of evangelical Christians trained in science. Its vision is "To have science and theology interacting and affecting one another in a positive light." The 1991 resolution was preceded by a background statement citing various definitions of evolution and identifying "scientific creationism" at one extreme and "evolutionary naturalism" at the other as "essentially religious doctrine masquerading as science." First published in ASA's journal, Perspectives on Science & Christian Faith (Vol. 44, No. 4, p. 252, Dec. 1992), the resolution and its background statement also appear in the 1993 edition of Teaching Science in a Climate of Controversy, a guidebook for high school teachers from ASA, P.O. Box 668, Ipswich, MA 01938.

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