Dear Members of the Kansas State School Board,
I am the Welsh Distinguished Professor of Biology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. I have a number of colleagues at Kansas State and the University of Kansas and had the chance to present a seminar there a few years ago and see the vibrant scientific community that had grown up there.
Your current discussion of what to include in your curriculum is an interesting one to all who teach at State Universities. One of the great things about my home state of North Carolina is the investment the state has made in science, beginning with the founding of the Research Triangle Park more than 50 years ago. This has provided a tremendous boost to the state's economy, particularly as agriculture and traditional manufacturing decline.
In many ways your decision to consider adding "alternative theories" to your Biology curriculum will be a boon to states like mine, as it will ensure that we continue to be favored by the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries looking for states with a well-educated work-force. It also means our children will be at an advantage as they go to look for technology related jobs, here and elsewhere, since they will have a sound scientific education. Finally, it will help Department's like mine when we compete with you for the best young faculty candidates, and as we try and woo some of your more senior scientists to join us here.
I am a Presbyterian and see no conflict between my religious beliefs and my science, but also no reason my own beliefs should somehow be promoted over those of others under the cloak of "science". In particular, I have been very impressed with the interesting theories developed by Bobby Henderson and other proponents of the Flying Spaghetti Monster Theory, which seems to me to be equally well-founded as is Intelligent Design Theory. While I would prefer to see Kansas students learn science in their science classes, if you choose to open the field more broadly, I would encourage you to give equal time to the Flying Spaghetti Monster.
Professor of Biology
- On the street: Are you familiar with the Flying Spaghetti Monster theory?
- Evolution debate creates monster
Open letter and e-mails supporting the theory
- Open letter to Kansas School Board
- Support for both Intelligent Design and Flying Spaghetti Monsterism
- Convert to Flying Spaghetti Monster
- Intelligent Design decision boon to other states
- Hope for intelligent response
- Be fair about theories
- Teach all theories of Intelligent Design
- A Concerned Citizen
- The Flying Spaghetti Monster didn't create the earth
- Response requested for Flying Spaghetti Monster Theory
- Flying Spaghetti Monster created us all
- Students should hear more than one theory of Intelligent Design
- Expose students to different ideas