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Daily Kent Stater

Student is fed up with repetitive letters

Dear Editor:

In response to “State and Church so Happy Together” (and countless other similar letters):

 I am fed up with all of the same articles week after week of people arguing their fundamentalist views about church and state, abortion, etc. There is real news going on in the world that most students are illiterate to because all they read in the student newspaper is how important God should or should not be to everyone. No one will be enlightened by reading someone else’s opinion that is not supported by facts! I would like to get rid of the garbage and read some news. If you do not receive any letters to the editor that are worth the space, then you should not print anything.


Elizabeth Woolf

First year graduate student, Business Administration


Columnist’s views on homosexuality are contrary to the Bible

Dear Editor:

I am responding to Leslie Arntz’s column, “I am biased, but so are you.” I am still pondering how the title has anything to do with the article, however. I am astounded by some of the claims Ms. Arntz made in her column regarding the relationship between secular humanism and homosexuality. I lost respect for this article when it changed from an argumentative perspective regarding Christianity on campus to finger-pointing and condemnation of a respectable group of people attempting to attain equality. Ms. Arntz, a self-described “conservative Christian,” has made a claim that certain “plagues,” including homosexuality, stem from a humanistic and secular viewpoint. This is her view, and I can almost guarantee she stands alone. Christian doctrine clearly defines that these plagues (as Ms. Arntz puts it) occurred as a result of the fall of mankind. Homosexuality existed before secular humanism. Ms. Arntz has desecrated the claims that the book of Genesis makes. Plagues existed immediately following the fall of Adam and Eve, according to Christian theology. Thus, her deplorable attack completely contradicts the Christian view that she claims to understand.

Your attack on homosexuality, Ms. Arntz, is unrelated to the original point of your column. Moreover, the association of homosexuality with lawlessness and pornography is absurd and unfair to a large group of people fighting for the rights they deserve. Jesus loves us too, and through his words, we recognize this. The Scripture states, “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 8:38-39).”

Not only is Miss Arntz wrong in stating that secular humanism is the root of homosexuality and other plagues, but what she also does not understand is that by His grace, His ultimate sacrifice on the cross, Christ defined love. Ms. Arntz’s column, however, does not reflect this love.

Christopher Taylor

PRIDE!Kent secretary


Evolution is verified by science

Dear Editor:

This letter is in response to the column written by Leslie Arntz Feb. 22.

Ms. Arntz’s world view seems engulfed by the concept that everyone else is a “true believer” in the same manner as she. The simple fact is religion is a belief system and science is not. Science is a pragmatic method of determining valid information about the physical world.

Should we all “believe” in gravity? If I don’t “believe” in gravity, will it go away? Or should we understand that since Newton, we have factual knowledge that gravity is a force which can be measured and quantified in a manner that produces a factual statement about the attraction of bodies that everyone in the world can then use with confidence?

In a like manner, Galileo measured the skies and found that contrary to the prevalent religious beliefs that the sun went around the Earth, the fact is the opposite is true. Religious forces did not “believe in” Galileo’s explanation and suppressed the facts about the Earth and Sun for many years. However, the facts are now universal public knowledge.

There is a pragmatic world of difference between religious faith and scientific investigation. I think it helps to distinguish between two forms of human knowledge — private and public.

“Private knowledge” consists of beliefs held by an individual. Examples of this are religious beliefs, political beliefs, romantic beliefs and many health beliefs. An individual holds a belief as true, but there is actually no way to publicly determine the truth value of the belief (e.g. “I believe there is an afterlife.”). The “private knowledge” statement “I believe in X” is always challenged by the fact that there are many who believe “I believe X is false and Y is true.”

In contrast, science produces public — not private — knowledge. Science is the process of making measured observations of some aspect of the universe. When there is a measurable match between an idea and some aspect of the universe, then science can present the idea to the world as “verifiable public knowledge.”

Beliefs are “private knowledge,” perhaps true for one person (e.g. “I love you, Bob”). “Verifiable public knowledge” is true for all people, in all places, at all times.

I am quite sure that Ms. Arntz is quite happy that there is verifiable “public knowledge” when her doctor prescribes for her a drug that has been scientifically tested, and there is “public knowledge” that is it safe and effective. She probably also agrees that science has provided the “public knowledge” that she is constructed of atoms and molecules, and that atoms are constructed of sub-particles such as electrons, protons, and neutrons. One does not “believe” these things exist because it can be easily (well, sort of easily) demonstrated that they exist.

Whether she “believes” it or not, science is the major provider of factual “public knowledge,” including that evolution, the change of species through time, is a fact of public knowledge, and that the explanation of this change (natural selection) is also a fact of public knowledge.

Scientists producing our valuable biologicals (drugs) use evolution in their work. So do the scientists all over the world who are working on problems with food production, environmental degradations, viral and immunological problems, insect transmitted diseases and various viral plagues and epidemics.

Having a strong world view, which Ms. Arntz exhibits, is a fine quality, until it overwhelms the ability to view the world except from the platform of faith and private knowledge. The university is the place to learn that there is more to the world than our private views, and to learn the processes by which we can safely and effectively modify our views when they prove to be contrary to the facts of the situation.

Paul Geisert, Ph.D.

Retired biology professor


Creationism and evolution can co-exist

Dear Editor:

I am writing in response to the article “I am biased, but so are you” that ran Feb. 22. I have to agree with the author that “religion versus science” is a misnomer. However, I believe the word in question should be the “versus.” The article makes some serious generalizations about the group of people described as evolutionists, including the idea that believing in evolution and believing in God are mutually exclusive. I took the term evolutionists here to describe people who agree with the Darwinian theory that natural selection causes gradual shifts in organisms that allow them to evolve into different forms, and that this is how the race of humans came to be. If this is so, then on behalf of some of the evolutionists here, I would like to correct some of these generalizations.

It was stated that “evolutionists believe in evolution because they desperately want to.” However, Darwin himself was a believer in the intelligent design of God for many years before his research that led to the Origin of Species. Science “believes” in evolution because there are facts that support it. Darwin saw these facts and changed his mind, against the beliefs of the most of his contemporaries.

It was also stated that evolutionists’ “goal” is to “explain away God.” Darwin, as well as many current evolutionists, believe that God and evolution can co-exist. Different people see things in different ways, there is no single statement to describe the theology of people who believe in evolution.

Science does not ignore other theories of human life. Our own freshman biology textbook states the existence of these theories. Scientific methodology, however, requires testable statements, hypotheses. Natural selection is a testable hypothesis. Creationism is not. Science also looks to facts from the tests of these hypotheses to support ideas, but not to prove them. Yes, evolution is disputable, but so is any scientific theory. Competition as an ecological theory has been disputed. Does that make it less possible? Scientists need to both defend and attempt falsification of their theories because that is what science is about. It is about asking other people to look at the same facts or new facts in a different way.

I would like to close with an idea that I know encompasses scientists that I have worked with in a number of different fields:

“Some people say that religion and science are opposed: So they are, but only in the same sense as that in which the thumb and forefinger are opposed — and between the two one can grasp everything.”

—Sir William Bragg

Melissa Rubin

Graduate student, Department of Biological Sciences