In This Issue
“Common Core Curriculum: Update”
“Human Origins (according to the Discovery Institute)”
“Creation Scientists, ‘Born Again’ in Hawaii”
Common Core Curriculum: Update
by Douglas Roger Dexheimer
The Internet is bursting with news about the backlash against the Common Core Curriculum (CCC). Slowly but surely, the public is becoming aware of this dangerous program. Recent news stories include an August report by the Associated Press,1 and another which surfaced the same day in my EarthLink newsfeed.2
Before I could submit my summation of the above two articles for CSAMA Newsletter publication, my September copy of Newsmax Magazine arrived via the U.S. Mail. Emblazoned on the magazine’s cover were the words, "The Revolt against CCC."3
In this article I will attempt to summarize the development of, and what appears to be a rapidly growing public disillusionment with, the Common Core Curriculum, as related in the above-mentioned articles. The following are some key points:
- In 2007, The Council of Chief State School Officers met to express their desire for “clear, consistent standards for academic achievement."4
- The National Governor's Association became involved in 2009.
- Funding was provided by Bill Gates, with half a billion dollars thrown in by the U.S. government.
- The U.S. Department of Education provided assistance in working out the details of implementation, and of testing procedures.
- The plan was for a state-by-state adoption of CCC, with a promise of federal support for each state that would adopt the program for its own schools.
- By August of 2010, there was a rush of states adopting the CCC “standards,” since doing so placed them in competition for a share of the billions of federal money in “Race to the Top” grants.
- States’ adoption of the CCC curriculum grew rapidly, creating a “snowball” effect.
- By 2012, 45 states had signed up, with support from the teachers' unions.
- Then, as more and more teachers and parents became familiar with the standards, the backlash began to strike with a vengeance.
- Five states refused to join the CCC: Alaska, Minnesota, Nebraska, Texas, and Virginia.
- Louisiana, under Governor Jindal, became the first state to withdraw from the CCC state standards initiative and the federally mandated testing program.
- In the following months, other states have followed suit: Indiana, Oklahoma, and South Carolina have changed their position, rejecting CCC.
- Kansas has limited, or pulled out of, the national tests.
- Missouri may withdraw, or adopt its own standards.
What are some of the reasons states have deemed CCC unacceptable?
- They are increasingly reluctant to relinquish control of their own educational systems.
- Mandatory adoption of at least 85% of the federal standards in the English Language portion of the CCC was one of the requirements. The remaining 15% of their own standards were allowed, but if states changed even a period, a word, or a sentence in the curriculum, they would lose federal funding. This sort of mandate applied to other aspects of the curriculum as well.
- Stressing evolutionary dogma in the science curriculum, regardless of parents’ desires, was another mandate.
- Parents did not want their children’s school records and Social Security numbers imported into the faceless federal computerized database.
- Many objected to educational “standards” which were obviously intended to make students from every state equally “competitive” -- at a substantially lower level.
- Social standards in CCC are deplorable, encouraging sexual experimentation and “unconventional lifestyles” among students.
We at CSAMA continue to encourage parents to reject the CCC in their local schools, public and private, with complete removal of children from the public (and, yes, perhaps even private) school systems being the best option.
There are a number of excellent, Bible-based home school curricula that parents can use to educate their kids at home in a Biblically responsible fashion, and we encourage parents to carefully and thoroughly explore this route.
We encourage and welcome your feedback, whether you agree or disagree.
3 "Common Core: Where Did It All Begin?", Newsmax Magazine, September, 2014, pp. 54+
4 Ibid., page 54
November Monthly Meeting
Tuesday, November 4th
“The Great Debate” DVD
moderated by Bob Farwell
Ken Ham, AiG president, is perhaps the most widely recognized creation-apologist in the world today. Ken Ham and AiG astrophysicist Dr. Jason Lisle engage Drs. Hugh Ross (Reasons to Believe) and Walt Kaiser (president of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary), both of whom are proponents of an old earth, no-global-flood view of Bible interpretation. In this eye-opening debate, well-mannered disagreement is punctuated by intriguing confrontations as these four Christian leaders communicate their views. Ham and Lisle implore Ross and Kaiser to accept the Genesis account of history as written, while Ross and Kaiser argue for their view that the first chapters of Genesis are more symbolism than history.
(1st Tuesday of each month; content subject to change; no signup or registration necessary.)
- January 7th: “The Great Debate” DVD, moderated by Bob Farwell.
- February 4th: (cancelled due to weather).
- March 4th: “The Mystery of the Cambrian Fossil Record” DVD, moderated by Bob Farwell.
- April 1st: “Evolution vs. God” DVD, moderated by Kevin Anderson.
- May 6th: “Noah Extravaganza,” by Kevin Anderson & Bill Cowherd.
- June 3rd: “Radiometric Dating,” by Dave Penny.
- July 1st: “The Mystery of Our Declining Genes” DVD, moderated by Bob Farwell.
- August 5th: “The Ice Age - Only the Bible Explains It” by Michael J. Oard DVD, moderated by Kevin Anderson.
- September 2nd: “Relativity and Creationism,” by Dave Penny.
- October 7th: “Every winged fowl, after his kind....”” by Douglas Roger Dexheimer.
- November 4th: “The Great Debate” DVD, moderated by Bob Farwell.
- December 2nd: “Hegelian Implications,” by Dave Penny.
CSA Monthly Meeting Location
Overland Park, KS 66121
10 blocks east of 69 Highway (or Switzer) on 95th St. to Antioch, south two blocks on Antioch, on east side of street.
Fellowship & book table: 6:15PM. Meeting: 7:00PM.
For detailed Monthly Meeting information:
Human Origins (according to the Discovery Institute)
by Douglas Roger Dexheimer & Paul Fennern
Unexpected invitations often come too late to take advantage of them. Such is the case with one I received via email on September 12th. The original source of the email was The Koinonia Institute, founded by Dr. Chuck Missler. The invitation was to a "Science & Human Origins Conference,"1 scheduled for September 20th, at the Ray and Joan Kroc Center in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho -- a terrific place to visit, had I the time to attend. While there may indeed be time for me to drop everything and head to the conference, it will, unfortunately, be too late for those of you who are reading this article. Had I only heard of it earlier, I could have invited some of you to join me.
The organization’s website contains much verbiage describing the conference, including the following tidbit:
... you will get to see the premiere of Privileged Species, an exciting new documentary that examines how our universe is designed not just for life, but for life like us.2
Here’s what they have to say about the new documentary:
Are humans the accidental products of a blind and uncaring universe? Or are they the beneficiaries of a cosmic order that was planned beforehand to help them flourish? Privileged Species is a 33-minute documentary by Discovery Institute that explores growing evidence from physics, chemistry, biology, and related fields that our universe was designed for large multi-cellular beings like ourselves. Featuring geneticist and author Michael Denton, the documentary investigates the special properties of carbon, water, and oxygen that make human life and the life of other organisms possible, and it explores some of the unique features of humans that make us a truly privileged species."3
You may recognize the name of the producer of Privileged Species. It is none other than Discovery Institute / Illustra Media. Illustra Media produces video documentaries that examine the scientific case for intelligent design, or ID. Working with Discovery Institute and an international team of scientists and scholars (including Michael Behe, Guillermo Gonzalez, Stephen Meyer, and Lee Strobel), Illustra has helped define both the scientific case for design and the limitations of materialistic processes like Darwinian evolution.4
This group of scientists are responsible for a number of other high-quality videos, including:
- Darwin's Dilemma
- The Case for a Creator
- The Intelligent Design Collection
- The Privileged Planet
- Unlocking the Mystery of Life
- Where Does the Evidence Lead?
The signature spin on all of their videos is intelligent design -- i.e., things like this do not just happen; rather, they are designed this way for a reason. Note, however, that there is no mention of a Creator, creation, or the Bible in their mission statement: “The mission of Discovery Institute is to advance a culture of purpose, creativity and innovation."5 Their statement of philosophy is likewise “sanitized”:
Mind, not matter, is the source and crown of creation, the wellspring of human achievement. Conceived by the ancient Hebrews, Greeks and Christians, and elaborated in the American Founding, Western culture has encouraged creativity, enabled discovery and upheld the uniqueness and dignity of human beings.
Linking religious, political, and economic liberty, the Judeo-Christian culture has established the rule of law, codified respect for human rights and conceived constitutional democracy [sic; critically important editor’s note: such ignorance is common, and often intentional; the U.S. was established as a constitutional republic -- the rule of law -- rather than a constitutional democracy -- the rule of the majority -- as is, unfortunately, commonly and falsely believed by many, including otherwise believing Christians, and promoted by tyrants who, like Karl Marx, expect that the ignorant masses will happily vote themselves “strong leaders” who promise them temporal salvation from some real or imagined threat -- a threat which likely will have been created by the leaders themselves for that very purpose; in other words, the poison and the potion are often created in the same laboratory -- beyond the view of the simpleminded]. It has engendered development of science and technology, as well as economic creativity and innovation.
In contrast, the contemporary materialistic worldview denies the intrinsic dignity and freedom of human beings and enfeebles scientific creativity and technological innovation. Its vision of a closing circle of human possibilities on a planet of limited horizons summons instead the deadening ideologies of scarcity, conflict, mutual suspicion and despair.6
In other words, the Discovery Institute is opposed to the teaching of random chance evolution, but stops short of naming the Intelligent Designer. CSAMA is also opposed to the teaching of evolution, but we gladly identify the LORD GOD ALMIGHTY, as the Creator and Savior of humankind.
But enough of that -- I took you down a rabbit trail to provide you with a small preview of an ID video presentation at an upcoming monthly meeting, and to inform and warn you about the limited approach the ID movement takes on the subject of origins.
If you wish to learn more about the Intelligent Design movement, Dave Penny plans to conduct our monthly meeting in September of next year. In that meeting he will briefly discuss the various organizations which promote creation science, and identify the fallacy of Darwinian evolution. A more detailed examination of Illustra Media, which also promotes the ID movement, is scheduled for the December 2015 monthly meeting, which will be hosted by yours truly.
2014 Creation Safaris
- March 28 (Friday, 7:30 PM) – Astronomy Safari (cancelled).
- April 25 (Friday, 8:00 PM) – Astronomy Safari.
- April 26 (Saturday) – Southeast Kansas Fossil and Mineral Safari.
- May 30 (Friday, 8:30 PM) – Astronomy Safari.
- May 24 - 26 (Saturday - Monday) – Western Kansas Safari.
- June 7 (Saturday) – Photo/Nature Hike Safari at Overland Park Arboretum.
- June 28 (Saturday, 8:45 PM) – Astronomy Safari. (cancelled)
- June 19-21 (Thursday - Saturday) – A float trip down the Ozark River. (cancelled)
- July 19 (Saturday) – Kansas University Natural History Museum Safari.
- July 26 (Saturday, 8:45 PM) – Astronomy Safari.
- Rock Bridge / Connor’s Cave Safari (not scheduled this year).
- August 16 (Saturday) – Greater KC Fossil Hunt.
- August 22 (Friday, 8:15) – Astronomy Safari.
- Aug 29 - Sept 1 (Friday - Monday) – Southeast Missouri Safari. (cancelled)
- September 19 (Friday, 7:30 PM) – Astronomy Safari.
- Safari Zoological Park, Caney, Kansas (not scheduled this year).
- October 18 (Saturday) – HaHa Tonka Safari.
- October 24 (Friday,7:15 PM) – Astronomy Safari.
- Bike Safari on the Katy Trail (not scheduled this year).
- November 21 (Friday, 7:15 PM) – Astronomy Safari.
- November 22 (Saturday) – Squaw Creek National Wildlife Refuge Safari.
You must register for any safari.
For safari details, and to register please visit:
Astronomy safaris only, call:
Too far away to attend CSA meetings?
Why not attend via audio or video tape?
Attend CSA Meetings by ordering the audio ($5) or video ($13) copy.
A full list of what is available can be found in a link at:
To order, request by meeting date and topic. Copies of above items may also be borrowed from...
The CSA Lending Library
Overland Park, KS 66212
Creation Scientists, "Born Again" in Hawaii
by Douglas Roger Dexheimer
As I search for material to incorporate into our newsletter, I often find suitable articles and subjects contained in news magazines, and in broadcast television and radio programs. Occasionally, however, a quite unexpected medium may prove to be one of the best sources of all.
Recently I was browsing through the September issue of the Samaritan Ministries Health Care Newsletter, when I came across an article which I thought our readers might find particularly interesting and stimulating. The article is somewhat of a departure from the material we usually include in our newsletter. It’s the testimony of two formerly pagan scientists, and the eventual founding of their organization, Hawaiian Creation Adventures.
The cover article is entitled, "This is What Happened to Me / How God Saved Two Pagan Scientists in Hawaii.” I invite you to check out their website,1 where you’ll find a more detailed account of these two Christians, and their journey from secular paganism, to Christianity.
Both Marc and Aly Hodges were born and raised on the island of Maui, Hawaii. Both have degrees, and work, or have worked professionally, in various fields of Biology, including, in Mark’s case, Wildlife Biology, and in Aly’s, Marine Biology. Concerns with their daughter’s health eventually led them to the Great Physician, whereupon they soon became “beginner” Christians. Aly, who by this time was running her own business as a licensed real estate appraiser, then left that business to devote her time to homeschooling their children.
Through a series of encounters with other creationists (including “the Estells”), Marc and Aly began a ministry of visiting churches and sharing the truth of God's creation. As you might expect, they encountered, and continue to encounter opposition to their message in some of the churches they visit since, as is often the case, many church leaders cling strongly to a belief in naturalism and evolution.
Realizing that visitors to Hawaii are presented with a wide variety of opportunities to view the splendor of the islands on various Eco Tours, and engage in a large and varied array of outdoor activities, Marc and Aly now have the opportunity to not only show those tourists the beauty, but also to present to them the great and true Creator of it all through their van tours of the world famous Road to Hana. They use their solid training and expertise as professional biologists and their ever-increasing knowledge of God’s Word to give Him the glory for His amazing creation that surrounds us.
They enjoy sharing the history of the church in Hawaii, and the great awakening that once occurred there. Other thought-provoking facts they impart upon their guests:
- The early inhabitants of Hawaii worshiped one true God before being overcome by idolatry, polytheism, and violence.
- In one generation in the 1830's, the Kingdom of Hawaii went from a pagan culture of oppression and human sacrifice, to one of the most genuinely Christian nations in the world.
- In just a few short years, 30,000 Hawaiians were baptized as Christians.
- The largest church in the world was in Hilo, with an attendance of 7,000.
- The King of Hawaii declared that all laws shall be in consistency with the general spirit of God's Law.2
Please visit the Hodges’ website.3 Read the exciting details of their conversion to Christ, as well as their conversion to creationism, and how they began sharing their experiences and discoveries of how science actually points to the God of creation.
I would also highly encourage all who visit Hawaii to check out the Hodges’ Hawaiian Creation Adventures, and consider participating in one of their tours or other activities. I can't imagine a better way to experience magnificent Hawaii.
Are you participating in CSA as much as you should?
“The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few.”
Are you doing all the Lord has called you to do in the war for the minds and souls of our citizens... especially our youth? CSA is not a closed fraternity. Any born-again believer who is abiding in the words of Jesus, and has been gifted in research, computers, speaking, clerical activities, writing of articles or book reviews, etc., and who has heard a call to serve in an origins ministry should consider and pray about serving with us. Write or call for more information.
|Write or call:
22509 State Line Road
Cleveland, MO 64734
Phone: (816) 618-3610
FAX: (816) 658-3253 (FAX only - long distance from the KC metro area)
CSAMA is seeking an editor for, and contributors to, our newsletter. If you are a born-again Christian, believe the Bible is the infallible word of God, subscribe to the literal 7-day creationist viewpoint, if you have researching and writing skills, and if you have suitable ideas for articles to contribute to our publication and can meet a monthly deadline schedule, please contact the newsletter webmaster via the link at www.csama.org.
You are invited to attend all of the monthly meetings, and as many of the safaris as you can fit into your schedule. Pass the word. Tell your friends and neighbors about CSAMA and our activities. Show them how to subscribe to the CSAMA Newsletter.
Never miss an opportunity to debunk the "millions-of-years" notion that evolutionists insist is necessary for life as we know it.
We’d love to hear from you!
If you have questions or comments, or if you have suggestions for making our newsletter better, please feel free to contact us. We’ll do our best to respond to every query. THANK YOU!
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