Ed Brayton at Dispatches from the Culture Wars today complains about the pressure teachers come under not to teach about evolution. Hmmm. I may be mistaken, but isn't this the kind of observation which, if it were made, for example, by Christians about religious persecution in our society, would elicit charges of whining from blogs like Brayton's?
We should say to Brayton what I think should be said to the people who are always complaining about religious persecution in this country: suck it up. If you think that's persecution, then you don't know what persecution is. Go home and turn the TV back on, throw in a DVD, pop open a soda, and stop complaining.
We're so comfortable we don't have a clue what persecution really means.
But, ironically, the Evolution Dogmatists, despite the fact that they control the nation's science curriculum, still want the benefit of looking like martyrs. Look, I know teachers that are in this kind of position and I see the pressures they face--and I respect them for standing up for what they believe in even if I don't agree with them on some things. If there are teachers out there who are under pressure to do what is against their principles, then, hey, stand up for what you believe in. It's good for you.
"I like getting into hot water," Chesterton once said. "It keeps you clean."
There are countless times in life when you're put in a position in which you have to take a stand. Unfortunately, most people have a very low pain threshold when it comes to such things, but it doesn't cost you near as much as you think it will.
You get the distinct impression from comments like Brayton's that somehow he and his very unmerry band should be immune from the common vicissitudes of public debate, and sheltered from the costs to which the rest of us are subject in fighting the culture wars.
Well folks, that's life. Get used to it.