A man's ethical behavior should be based effectually on sympathy, education, and social ties; no religious basis is necessary. Man would indeed be in a poor way if he had to be restrained by fear of punishment and hope of reward after death.
Science classes must recognize every "possibility"
Familiar with the case of John Freshwater? He's the Ohio middle school teacher who, despite orders to cease, has for years been pushing creationism in the science classroom. He made news in a bigger way recently by burning a cross into a student's arm. (Yes, you read that right.)
For a recap of the story, read http://cafephilos.wordpress.com/2008/06/20/the-firing-of-john-freshwater... .
On that page, I replied to one commenter, evangelistbro, who seems to think that it's perfectly all right to inject non-science into the science class, as long as the belief in question is his belief:
"Why is someone a fool? Seeing an enormous, intricately complex, ordered universe, and denying even the possibility of an intelligent designer? Is that intellectually honest?"
Seeing a beautiful, sparkly, multi-colored rainbow, and denying even the possibility of a mischievous Leprechaun at the end? Is that intellectually honest? We must introduce Leprechaun science into the schools!
Here's the clue you missed, my friend. It's fine to ask "Is there a God", "Is there an Intelligent Designer", "Is there a Zeus", "Are there Leprechauns", etc. But teach those "possibilities" in school? No, and for a simple reason: there is ZERO EVIDENCE for all of those "possibilities".
If we had schools teaching every belief for which there is ZERO EVIDENCE, the length of required school curricula topics would be infinite. Kind of hard to go through infinite topics in a school year, don't you think?
Yep. We'll slot your "Intelligent Design" beliefs into the curriculum. Somewhere right after the lessons on the "possibility" of an Earth supported by giant turtles (the Testuda Firma Hypothesis), the "possibility" that Odin created the world from the giant Ymir's body (Come on! Teach the Controversy!), and the "possibility" that this world is, like, maybe just an electron in an atom in, like, the fingernail of a guy in a bigger universe, you know (Stoner Design Theory).
Infinite "possibilities", in a limited school term... but hey, all things are possible with Magic Beard Man!