On Aug. 13, the Kentucky legislature’s Interim Joint Committee on Education held a hearing. It was a very sorry affair indeed.
Four years ago, Kentucky legislators voted to tie the state’s testing program to national education standards, reported the Lexington Herald-Leader. But now some of them are having second thoughts because the national science standards stress (gasp!) evolution.
“I would hope that creationism is presented as a theory in the classroom, in a science classroom, alongside evolution,” Sen. David Givens (R-Greensburg) told the newspaper.
I wouldn’t hope that if I were you, senator. Any public schools in Kentucky caught doing that are going to be sued. Your friends in Louisiana tried that tactic back in the 1980s and lost at the U.S. Supreme Court.
And, oh, senator, you might have heard of a case Americans United co- litigated against the Dover, Pa., school district when board members decided to teach “intelligent design,” a gussied-up variant of creationism. The school lost that one, too – and ended up paying hefty legal fees.
Givens at least pretends to want “balanced treatment.” His colleague, Rep. Ben Waide (R-Madisonville), decided to go one better. He seems to want to kick out evolution all together.
“The theory of evolution is a theory, and essentially the theory of evolution is not science – Darwin made it up,” Waide said. “My objection is they should ensure whatever scientific material is being put forth as a standard should at least stand up to scientific method. Under the most rudimentary, basic scientific examination, the theory of evolution has never stood up to scientific scrutiny.”
(In case you’re wondering, Waide is not a biologist, an anthropologist or a scientist of any kind. He is a physical therapist with a bachelor’s degree in health science.)
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