I have an Indian background and have long given up trying to argue against astrology with Indian friends and family who are into it. This got me thinking about culture wars and whether or not the modernity versus tradition battle manifests itself as a different culture war in each culture. I wonder if a list could be worked out for different cultures. Came up with three examples so far.
US: science versus ID/creationism
Turkey: secular people versus Islamists locked in a battle for power
India: science versus astrology/homeopathy/
Western Europe seems to be an exception.
"I'm curious: is that teacher still working?"
Yes. This is because she's considered a good teacher in everything else and it's very, very difficult to get good school teachers these days.
When I discussed this issue with some of the other teachers, the general sense is that they feel intimidated/threatened. There's a weird combination of victimhood and strident aggression that's very hard to confront. My sense is that most teachers back away and try and defuse the issue. For instance, one school teacher now has every student submit ten arguments for and against evolution.
My wife is a middle/high school teacher and is teaching evolution in 8th grade as we speak. The other day, a student confronted her in class and said, "You may have come from a monkey but I certainly didn't." This is a charter school here in Gainesville, FL (where we also try burning Qurans every once in a while).
You would think that the situation is better in a magnet school. Nope. In one of the magnet schools here, the teacher flat out refused to teach evolution claiming that it went against her beliefs.
Now this is interesting. Currently, on my work PC, linux/X11 seems to be a bit slower (KDE 4 especially, GNOME a bit less and definitely not Enlightenment) than Windows XP. Will this move bring the response *feel* of the linux desktop (in Unity on Ubuntu) to be on par with XP? While there are many anecdotal complaints all over the web regarding the intrinsic slowness of X, this seems to be disproven by my Enlightenment 0.16 experience.
Refreshed by a brief blackout, I got to my feet and went next door. -- Martin Amis, _Money_