NCSE Past Events

Nick MatzkeNick Matzke

Kevin PadianKevin Padian

Celebrating the 10th Anniversary of Kitzmiller v. Dover

Featuring: 
Kevin Padian, Nick Matzke, Christie Rehm, Eric Rothschild, Baba Brinkman
Time: 
4:00am
Date: 
November 7, 2015
Location: 

The Gallery at Appalachian Brewing Company
50 North Cameron Street
Harrisburg PA 17101

Panel discussion featuring Dover trial participants on the impact and experience of being part of the constitutional test case of intelligent design and evolution.

Performer: Baba Brinkman, the Rap Guide to Climate Chaos, whom The New York Times describes as, "Very funny, very educational … like attending the best TED talk ever, but with musical breaks."

ACLU-PA logo

Kevin Padian is past president of NCSE's board of directors and also Professor of Integrative Biology and Curator in the University of California Museum of Paleontology, Berkeley; he testified for the plaintiffs in Kitzmiller v. Dover. Nick Matzke is a former staffer at NCSE; he served as scientific advisor to the plaintiffs' legal team. Christie Rehm was one of the eleven parents to serve as plaintiffs. Eric Rothschild of Pepper Hamilton LLP was the lead attorney for the plaintiffs.

For more information: 
+ read

Eugenie C. Scott and Kenneth R. Miller

What If Intelligent Design Had Won?

Featuring: 
Eugenie C. Scott and Kenneth R. Miller
Time: 
3:00am
Date: 
November 5, 2015
Location: 

DeMeester Recital Hall
York College
York PA 17403-3651

‌What if the judge in Kitzmiller had ruled that ID was legal to teach? Very little would change in the science community where ID repeatedly has been shown to lack scientific merit. But the politicization of education and science would have increased exponentially.

Eugenie C. Scott and Kenneth R. Miller will explore the legal, political, scientific, and educational implications of the trial and its aftermath.

The event is free and open to the public.

For more information: 
+ read

Climate Change

Featuring: 
Benjamin D. Santer, Ph.D., NCSE board member
Time: 
3:00am
Date: 
October 28, 2015
Location: 

First Presbyterian Church of Livermore
2020 Fifth Street
Livermore CA 94550 

Ben Santer will be giving a talk and leading a discussion on climate change.

A member of NCSE's board of directors, Santer is a noted climate researcher at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, a member of the National Academy of Sciences, a recipient of the MacArthur "genius" grant, and a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union.

The event is free and open to the public. 

For more information: 

Visit the church's website.

+ read

Eugenie C. Scott

Kitzmiller v. Dover at Ten: Lessons Learned

Featuring: 
Eugenie C. Scott
Time: 
1:10am
Date: 
October 17, 2015
Location: 

Gardens Theatre
Queensland University of Technology
2 George Street
Brisbane QLD 4000, Australia

 

In the United States, the First Amendment requires schools and other state institutions to be religiously neutral. Courts have held for decades that any advocacy of creationism in science class is unconstitutional, but creationists have evolved new adaptations. One of the cleverer recent developments was “intelligent design theory,” which grew in the 1990s and 2000s to challenge the teaching of evolution. In 2004 a Pennsylvania school district passed an ID policy, and was challenged in court in 2005. Evolution won as the teaching of ID was declared unconstitutional, and the case virtually stopped similar policies from being passed. But in the ten years since Kitzmiller v. Dover we have learned that eternal vigilance is essential. The creationist movement continues to adapt to its legal environment and has evolved new strategies. These call for teaching the “strengths and weaknesses of evolution” or the “critical analysis of evolution” which are creationism in disguise. A common form of these laws is “Academic Freedom Acts” in which the disguised teaching of creationism is claimed to reflect a student’s right to learn or a teacher’s right to teach.

Australian Skeptics National Convention logo

Tickets for the whole weekend convention are $280, $240 for students.

For more information: 
+ read

Kevin PadianKevin Padian

Why Intelligent Design Flunked Science — and the Law

Featuring: 
Kevin Padian
Time: 
3:30am
Date: 
October 8, 2015
Location: 

La Peña Cultural Center
3105 Shattuck Avenue
Berkeley, California

In 2005, an important trial was held in a Federal District court to test the constitutionality of the Dover, Pennsylvania, school board policy requiring the teaching of a new form of creationism, "intelligent design." To commemorate the 10th anniversary of this case, Kitzmiller v. Dover, expert witness Dr. Kevin Padian, former board president of the National Center for Science Education, explains how the trial required rehearsal not only of First Amendment rights, but of how science is done and not done, and what qualifies as an explanation in science.

This is one of a monthly series of
SkepTalks
sponsored by the
Bay Area Skeptics

Kevin Padian is past president of NCSE's board of directors and also Professor of Integrative Biology and Curator in the University of California Museum of Paleontology, Berkeley, where he has taught since 1980. An international expert on the evolution of vertebrates, particularly dinosaurs and their relatives, his principal interest is in the origin of major adaptive changes. It was on this subject, as well as on phylogenetic relationships, homology, and the nature of science, that he testified in the Dover, Pennsylvania trial on "intelligent design" in 2005. He is the author of over a hundred scientific articles and numerous books. He was one of the authors and editors of the California Science Framework K-12 in 1990, and has served on three panels advising the adoption of textbooks and other instructional materials in science to the state of California. He has received numerous awards and academic honors and appointments, including the Carl Sagan Award for the Popularization of Science.

For more information: 
+ read

Eugenie C. Scott

Why do people reject good science?

Featuring: 
Eugenie C. Scott
Time: 
5:15pm
Date: 
August 3, 2015
Location: 

Gold/Small Room
Commonwealth Club of California
555 Post St.
San Francisco CA 94102

 

Scientists are often puzzled when members of the public reject what we consider to be well-founded explanations. They can’t understand why the presentation of scientific data and theory doesn’t suffice to convince others of the validity of “controversial” topics like evolution and climate change. Recent research highlights the importance of ideology in shaping what scientific conclusions are considered reliable and acceptable. This research is quite relevant to the evolution wars and the public’s opposition to climate change, and to other questions of the rejection of empirical evidence.

Tickets are $20, $7.00 for students, free to members of the Commonwealth Club.

For more information: 
+ read

Eugenie C. Scott

What if “Intelligent Design” Had Won? Reflecting on 10 Years Since Kitzmiller v. Dover

Featuring: 
Eugenie C. Scott
Time: 
4:00pm
Date: 
July 18, 2015
Location: 

Tropicana Las Vegas
3801 S. Las Vegas Blvd.
Las Vegas NV 89109

 

What if the judge in Kitzmiller had ruled that “intelligent design” was legal to teach? Very little would change in the science community—“intelligent design” repeatedly has been shown to lack scientific merit. But the politicization of education and science would have increased exponentially. What are the legal, political, scientific, and educational implications of the trial and its aftermath?

The Amaz!ng Meeting 13

A talk for The Amaz!ng Meeting (TAM) sponsored by the James Randi Educational Foundation. Basic registration is $499; a single-day pass is $299. See the meeting's website for further pricing information.

For more information: 
+ read

Visit the Grand Canyon with NCSE!

Featuring: 
NCSE's Steven Newton and Joshua Rosenau
Date: 
July 2, 2015 to July 10, 2015
Location: 

Grand Canyon, Arizona


Twenty-two lucky members will raft the Grand Canyon from Marble Canyon to Diamond Creek, experiencing one of the most beautiful and majestic natural features on the planet.

Of course, as NCSE's Josh Rosenau will inform the rafters, the whole Colorado plateau was laid down by the receding waters of Noah's Flood about 4,327 years ago, and the Grand Canyon itself was gouged catastrophically in a matter of days. Geologist Steven Newton will present the standard geological history of Grand Canyon to the rafters — and "they can make up their own minds."

NCSE's "Creation/Evolution Grand Canyon Raft Trip" is a wonderful way to learn about the creationism/evolution controversy in a fabulous natural setting.

 
For more information: 

Click here for more information or e-mail NCSE.

+ read

Eugenie C. Scott

Crank Anthropology

Featuring: 
Eugenie C. Scott, Ph.D.
Time: 
10:00am
Date: 
June 13, 2015
Location: 

Buffalo Marriott Niagara
1340 Millersport Highway
Amherst NY 14221

 

A talk for the Center for Inquiry international conference, Reason for Change.

Anthropology, the science of humankind, deals with evolution, human biology, and archaeology, all in the context of the behavioral complexities of culture. Perhaps this breadth – and the fact that the subject is ourselves – is why there is such a huge amount of misinformation, misunderstanding, and just plain pseudoscience about human evolution and human nature. Anthropology is cursed with the Aquatic Ape theory, the Paleo Diet, Raelianism (of various kinds), theories of relict hominoids, the Killer Ape, Krishna Creationism, some very far out ideas about race and sex – and that’s just for starters. Being human, however, does not make one an expert on anthropology. What does the actual science of anthropology say about these popular, if incorrect, ideas?

For more information: 
+ read

Josh Rosenau

Climate Change Panel

Featuring: 
Josh Rosenau
Time: 
3:40pm to 5:00pm
Date: 
June 13, 2015
Location: 

Buffalo Marriott Niagara
1340 Millersport Highway
Amherst NY 14221

NCSE's Josh Rosenau, along with Mark Boslough, Scott Mandia, and Jan Dash, will participate in a discussion of climate change at the Center for Inquiry international conference, Reason for Change.

For more information: 
+ read