It’s going downhill


Texas is racing at top speed toward the edge of a cliff again.

At least six creationists/”intelligent design” proponents succeeded in getting invited to review high school biology textbooks that publishers have submitted for adoption in Texas this year. The State Board of Education (SBOE) will decide in November which textbooks to approve. Those textbooks could be in the state’s public school science classrooms for nearly a decade.

Deep sigh.

It’s biology. It’s not church. Biology textbooks should not be reviewed according to churchy criteria. Ever.

Next question?

Following are the six creationists/evolution critics we have identified so far on the biology review teams:

  • Raymond Bohlin is vice president of vision outreach for Probe Ministries in Plano and a research fellow for the Seattle-based Discovery Institute. The Discovery Institute promotes the pseudoscientific concept “intelligent design” over evolution. Founded in 1973, Probe works “to present the Gospel to communities, nationally and internationally, by providing life-long opportunities to integrate faith and learning through balanced, biblically based scholarship.” Bohlin has a doctorate in molecular and cell biology from the University of Texas at Dallas, making him a star performer for anti-evolution groups. He is listed as a “Darwin Skeptic” on the Creation Science Hall of Fame website. Probe and the Creation Science Hall of Fame promote a fundamentalist, literal interpretation of the Bible’s creation story. We know that Bohlin is in Austin this week to participate in the biology review panel meetings.

Groan.

  • Ide Trotter is a longtime standard-bearer for the creationist movement in Texas, both as a source of funding and as a spokesperson for the absurdly named creationist group Texans for Better Science Education. Trotter, listed as a “Darwin Skeptic” on the Creation Science Hall of Fame website, is a veteran of the evolution wars at the SBOE and is participating the biology review panel meetings this week. He testified before the board during the 2003 biology textbook adoption and again in 2009 during the science curriculum adoption. In both instances, Trotter advocated including scientifically discredited “weaknesses” of evolution in Texas science classrooms. Trotter, who has a doctorate in chemical engineering, runs his own investment management company and served as dean of business and professor of finance at Dallas Baptist University. He claims that major scientific discoveries over last century have actually made evolutionary science harder to defend:

    “The ball is rolling and it’s going downhill. There are not enough forces on the side of Darwinism to keep pushing it back uphill forever.”

Groan. Texas Texas Texas – please grow up.

Comments

  1. deepak shetty says

    i>It’s biology. It’s not church. Biology textbooks should not be reviewed according to churchy criteria.
    No you are doing it wrong! Everything should be reviewed by churchy criteria.

  2. Pieter B, FCD says

    The ball is rolling and it’s going downhill. There are not enough forces on the side of Darwinism to keep pushing it back uphill forever.

    Up is down, black is white, freedom is slavery and we have always been at war with EurEastasia.

  3. notyet says

    You have opened a can of my favorite worms. Nothing is likely to send me into a rage faster than Texas school board and textbook choice news. At age 56 I went back to college to get a degree in education primarily to fight against this particular evil. I will be graduating in 2015 with a BS in education, a certification to teach middle school, and a concentration in science. I haven’t decided where I am going to teach, but Texas is looking better every day. If for no other reason than the opportunity to go hand to hand with some of these fairy-worshiping idiots. I cannot understand the mentality necessary to want to condemn their own children to the failure that is born of a substandard education. Willful ignorance will always be a mystery to me but not comprehending it will not stop me from opposing it.

  4. CaitieCat says

    California needs Schools need to reject use of any textbooks approved by Texas. Period.

    FIFY.

  5. shari says

    well, you have just provided an excellent reason for me to get off my lazy ass and think hard about attending school board meetings. MN public schools are not my first suspect for introducing this bs (i like my church but i like my church-and-state – separate. on the side, so to speak) but crap, this nonsense can happen. Does happen. And if I miss this kind of talk through sheer innattention, I am going to feel even stupider than usual.

    Just gave me another calendar item. Thanks, Ophelia ;-)

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