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Nov 14 2013

Everything you need to know about Texas creationists

The Dallas Observer has a good history of creationist meddling in the Texas textbook wars. The Gablers, Phyllis Schlafly, Ray Bohlin, the Discovery Institute…they all get a mention, and the sordid descent of the Texas Board of Education into chaos and stupidity are all explained. It doesn’t have a real ending yet, but there are some promising suggestions that the creationists’ influence is beginning to wane.

8 comments

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  1. 1
    richardelguru

    Aaaaaargh!!
    Help me, I have to live in Plano!!!!
    Oh! The horror!!!

  2. 2
    paulburnett

    I’ve logged in and made my comment – everybody else here please do so.

  3. 3
    Algernon

    Rather depressing for those of us stuck here, though I appreciate the article.

  4. 4
    Jacob Schmidt

    The opening is rather amusing:

    At the University of North Texas, [Raymond Bohlin] participated in research revealing that colonies of pocket gophers in Oklahoma and Texas, once indistinguishable, had diverged somewhere along the way into two identifiably distinct species.

    In a way, so had Bohlin. He never accepted the hypothesis central to his discipline, hardened in the crucible of 150 years of experimentation, validated by the advent of modern genetics.

    It’s pretty bad when a creationist trips over some evidence for evolution.

  5. 5
    Rich Woods

    An excellent article. Bookmarked for future use.

  6. 6
    madtom1999

    #4 Jacob; He tripped and banged his head?

  7. 7
    MetzO'Magic

    I’d heard of Bohlin before, but was unaware of his backstory. Wow, sees evolution happening right before his eyes, documents it, then tucks it in one of those little corners of his brain where it will never emerge to conflict with his religious brainwashing ever again. What a waste of a good education.

  8. 8
    MetzO'Magic

    ETA: slight inaccuracy towards the end of the otherwise excellent article:

    Barbara Forrest, the professor who found the smoking gun in early drafts of Of Pandas and People, unearthed something else not too long ago: A fundraising document not meant for public consumption that laid out the Discovery Institute’s long game.

    From the text below that, it is almost certainly the Wedge Document, and that was leaked to the web back in 1999 by a guy named Tim Rhodes. And that’s more than “not too long ago”. But that’s just something that got lost in translation by the journalist, I suspect.

    And yeah, gotta give Barbara Forrest much credit for digging up the ‘cdesign proponentsists’ gem. That was a great piece of detective work.

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