Journal Article

The Rise and Fall of the Louisiana Creationism Law

THE RISE AND FALL OF THE LOUISIANA CREATIONISM LAW

Part 1: A Bold Trick

by WILLIAM J. BENNETTA

[Republished, with the kind permission of the author and the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County, from the July/August 1988 issue of the museum’s magazine Terra, vol. 26, no. 6, pp. 20–22, 24–27.]

Milestone, 1997: NCSE Submits Brief in Creationism Case

In 1984, three years before the Supreme Court ruled in the well-known Edwards v. Aguillard decision that "balanced treatment" of evolution and "creation science" is unconstitutional, the Attorney General of Texas put an end to another anti-evolution practice. In answer to an inquiry from a state legislator, the Attorney General gave an official opinion that the Board of Education policy requiring "disclaimers" in biology textbooks violated the First Amendment.

The Foundation for Thought and Ethics

Readers of NCSE Reports know that a new creationist book, Of Pandas and People, is making the rounds. Scott Brande has described the efforts of Haughton Publishing Co. to get Pandas adopted in Alabama as a supplementary text (NCSE Reports 9(6):5 and 10(1):8). Pandas presents the "intelligent design" version of the origin of species in an attractive wrapper without any explicit sign of religious creationism (see review, NCSE Reports 10(1):16).

Remembering Stephen Jay Gould

Steve Gould wrote like no one else in our field — or in any other field. His sentences were long, erudite, and full of parenthetical phrases, allusions to classical literature, intellectual history, philosophy of science, art, music, historical personages, and baseball. His short pieces always had a moral, and usually it was about how important it is to see biology through the glass of evolution.

Popper and Evolution

In connection with the discussion of Karl Popper's philosophy of science (Reports 13(1) and 13(3)), it should be recalled that this philosophy played a small but significant role in the creation-evolution controversy in the early 1980s, and it is still used by anti-evolutionists a decade later.

Washington School District Wrestles with Creationism, "Intelligent Design Theory"

From February through April, 1996, the small town of Sultan, WA, was the site of now-familiar rancorous school board meetings over the question of whether creationism should be taught with evolution. Teacher Meg Town had attended a workshop on creation and evolution at a National Science Teachers Association regional meeting (taught by NCSE board member Dr. Duane Jeffery), so she knew where to go for help when the school board was approached with the request that it introduce creation "science" and Intelligent Design Theory into the curriculum.