GOP Tennessee Governor Haslam to Sign Anti-Evolution Bill

Really stupid
Wingnuts • Views: 22,206

Meanwhile in Tennessee, Republican Governor Bill Haslam has announced that he’ll “probably” sign a right wing bill protecting teachers who tell their students that evolution and global warming are not real: Anti-Evolution ‘Monkey Bill’ Poised to Become Law in Tennessee.

Although the bill is written to seem benign, as it neither specifically authorizes the teaching of creationism nor permits teachers to do more than criticize scientific theories “in an objective matter,” the practical impact of this bill will be to intimidate all but the heartiest of school administrators against disciplining teachers who preach the most outlandish junk science in their classrooms. Because the bill provides little guidance as to what constitutes an “objective” criticism of a scientific theory, any principal who reigns in teachers who force creationism or Pastafarianism upon their students risks finding themselves on the wrong side of the law.

In reality, of course, there are few, if any, “objectively” valid objections to the theory of evolution (or, for that matter, to global warming). Rather, as Travis Waldron explained when this bill passed a legislative committee nearly a year ago, “Scientists have reached a consensus that evolution is ‘one of the most robust and widely accepted principles of modern science,’ and as such, it is ‘a core element in science education.’”

This is the modern Republican Party in the 21st century, folks — anti-science religious fanatics, continually trying to sneak their Dark Ages atavism into public schools and force it on everyone’s children. And in the Tea Party era, they’re actually succeeding, in the states that can least afford to be teaching ignorance.

And imagine my surprise that the deceptive anti-evolution “think tank” the Discovery Institute is behind this initiative, as they are with most of these bogus “academic freedom” laws: Tennessee’s Attack on the Teaching of Evolution.

Among its more dubious claims to fame, Tennessee was the site of the 1925 “Monkey Trial,” in which John Scopes was convicted of violating a state law against teaching that “man has descended from a lower order of animals.” Eighty-seven years later, the Tennessee Legislature is itching for an encore. It has sent to Gov. Bill Haslam a bill governing the teaching of “scientific subjects that may cause debate and disputation,” including evolution and global warming. The legislation says teachers cannot be prohibited from “helping students understand, analyze, critique and review in an objective manner the scientific strengths and scientific weaknesses of existing scientific theories.”

The governor should heed the plea of the American Assn. for the Advancement of Science and veto the bill. And similar laws in nine other states should be repealed.

Unlike the Butler Act under which Scopes was prosecuted, the bill does not require that the creation story in Genesis be taught as science. In fact, it states that the legislation “shall not be construed to promote any religious or non-religious doctrine.” The Seattle-based Discovery Institute, which provides state lawmakers with a model for such “academic freedom” laws, says this is proof that the bill isn’t designed to further religion. Critics, the institute says, are “putting up a smoke screen to divert attention from their goal to censor dissenting scientific views.”

Related

Jump to top

Create a PageThis is the LGF Pages posting bookmarklet. To use it, drag this button to your browser's bookmark bar, and title it 'LGF Pages' (or whatever you like). Then browse to a site you want to post, select some text on the page to use for a quote, click the bookmarklet, and the Pages posting window will appear with the title, text, and any embedded video or audio files already filled in, ready to go.
Or... you can just click this button to open the Pages posting window right away.
Last updated: 2016-01-01 10:29 am PST
LGF User's Guide RSS Feeds Tweet

Help support Little Green Footballs!

Subscribe now for ad-free access!Register and sign in to a free LGF account before subscribing, and your ad-free access will be automatically enabled.

Recent PagesClick to refresh
Josh Bernstein: Barack Obama Is a Very Bad Person Doing Very Bad ThingsJosh, relax. He left office more than a month ago. Oh shoot, I forgot about the... DEEP STATE!!!!!!!! More: Josh Bernstein: Obama Is ‘An Arrogant, Elitist, Communist, Marxist, Muslim Scumbag’ And Possibly A ‘Closeted Homosexual’
thecommodore
4 hours, 4 minutes ago
Views: 88 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Getting Rid of Trump ‘Easy’: Neither Impeachment nor 25th Amendment Required Could it really end this easily? Color me doubtful. However the tax data release would be worth the effort regardless of any forecast outcome. It's also time to add a tax release requirement for any primary winner (at least) ...
Unshaken Defiance
8 hours, 37 minutes ago
Views: 148 • Comments: 1 • Rating: 1
Tweets: 1 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
How Trump’s Campaign Staffers Tried to Keep Him Off Twitter President Donald Trump’s former campaign staffers claim they cracked the code for tamping down his most inflammatory tweets, and they say the current West Wing staff would do well to take note. The key to keeping Trump’s Twitter habit ...
The Vicious Babushka
8 hours, 49 minutes ago
Views: 136 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 2 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Missouri Veteran Accused of Planning ISIS Terrorist Attack on Kansas City A Columbia man is accused of plotting a Presidents Day jihadist terrorist attack on buses, trains and a train station in Kansas City. Robert Lorenzo Hester Jr., 25, was charged in U.S. District Court of Kansas City with attempting ...
Tarkloon
22 hours, 43 minutes ago
Views: 200 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Six Things You Can Learn From a Woman Who Has Fought for Abortion Rights for 18 Years "That means making sure we're engaging with them as we're coming up with our ideas and our strategies and creating our messages," Johnson says. "I believe that if we center the most affected we will create winning strategies that ...
Birth Control Works
1 day, 5 hours ago
Views: 166 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
New Study Reveals Americans Are Actually Supportive When People Talk About Getting an Abortion How would you expect people to respond if you told them that you’d had an abortion? Who would you tell, and why? Despite the fact that many women do talk about their abortions with family and friends, many still ...
Birth Control Works
1 day, 5 hours ago
Views: 175 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Meet the Jewish Woman Who Helped Lay the Groundwork for Planned Parenthood - Culture - Forward.com Four years before women won the right to vote in the United States, Margaret Sanger — the future founder of Planned Parenthood — and her sister, Ethel Byrne, met a young Jewish immigrant named Fania Mindell. On October 16, ...
Birth Control Works
1 day, 6 hours ago
Views: 171 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
U.N. Says 1.4 Million Children at Imminent Risk of Death in Famines Nearly 1.4 million children are at "imminent risk" of death in famines in Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan and Yemen, the U.N. children's agency UNICEF said on Tuesday. People are already starving to death in all four countries, and the ...
Tarkloon
1 day, 14 hours ago
Views: 426 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Same-Sex Marriage Laws Linked to Fewer Youth Suicide Attempts, New Study Says The researchers found that suicide attempts by high school students decreased by 7 percent in states after they passed laws to legalize same-sex marriage, before the Supreme Court legalized it nationwide in 2015. Among LGB high school students, the ...
Tarkloon
1 day, 22 hours ago
Views: 525 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 1
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Today in Weather & Climate: California Flood Emergency Edition (Monday, February 20th)It pays to be ready for the worst. Here's what is causing so much concern: If the atmospheric river stalls, there could be up to a foot of rain in a span of about 36 hours over places that are ...
Unshaken Defiance
2 days, 6 hours ago
Views: 610 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 3
Tweets: 2 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Comments: 0
: 0