I APPEAR to have touched a nerve with Mr Hugh McLoughlin (Letters, November 27) when I wryly pointed out that if creation science expects to be taught in school science classes, then logically a scientific alternative to the creation story should be presented in acts of religious observance.

In my naive and untutored way I was trying to point out the logical absurdity of trying to rationalise the two incompatible views on the world. If I had had his great experience in debating then maybe I would not have been so bold as to try?

I will, however, cavil at Mr McLoughlin's implication that in making the above observation I am a totalitarian creature. I will, however, freely admit to thinking that as we are no longer a ­ single-culture society, religious teachings should not be part of the curriculum. I am not exactly alone in this.

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For example, religious teaching is forbidden in many countries including American public schools, except in so far as allowing teaching about religion in a secular context.

Given the wide diversity of religious views, and none, throughout Scottish communities, let us adopt the American model for our schools. If our children are to share our schools, this is the only way to be fair to all members of our diverse society and to avoid the logical absurdities engendered by trying to rationalise science with religion.

Bob Downie,

66 Mansewood Road,


THERE is no ambiguity about what is concerning the Scottish Secular Society. It is - to quote the Abstract to our petition - "The presentation in Scottish publicly funded schools of separate creation and of Young Earth doctrines as viable alternatives to the established science of evolution, common descent, and deep time."

If someone wanted to deny the existence of atoms for religious reasons, we would oppose that too. Not because we are opposed to religion - one of our most eloquent supporters is an Anglican priest - but as we don't think children should be misinformed about fundamental science, recognised as such in the Curriculum for Excellence.

Garry Otton,

Secretary, Scottish Secular Society,

58a Broughton Street, Edinburgh.