Washington, 1974 - Initiative Measure No. 47
An initiative demanding no teaching of evolution unless equal time is given to creation.
In 1974, an initiative petition sponsored by Ward E. Ellsworth of Issaquah, Washington, was circulated to solicit the endorsement of legal voters. Known as Initiative Measure No. 47, it was the intent of the petitioners that the initiative be transmitted to the legislature of the State of Washington at its next regular session, and that the legislature enact the proposed measure into law. Formulated outside the legislature and requiring that the initiative be brought to the floor for vote if it carried a certain number of signatures from citizens, Initiative Measure No. 47 was not brought to the floor for vote as the petitions fell short of the needed 118,000 signatures.
INITIATIVE MEASURE NO. 47
An Act relating to education, and the teaching of multiple philosophical viewpoints (thought by some to be scientific or religious) in certain public educational institutions; and adding a new section to chapter 223, Laws of 1959 ex. sess. and to chapter 28A.05 ROW.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Washington :
New Section. Section 1. There is added to chapter 223,Laws of 1969 ex. sess. and to chapter 28A.05 ROW a new section to read as follows:
Neither evolution (natural materialistic process) or creation (by fiat) shall be taught in the public schools, orally, or by selection of materials used, to the exclusion of the other basic viewpoint. Both shall receive equally serious consideration and fair treatment within the context of the subject matter under consideration at the time.
Theistic evolution (the belief that the creation acted through the process of evolution) is not to be considered as an acceptable attempt to teach both viewpoints at once.
Further, neither catastrophism (the belief that changes have come about quickly, closely associated with the creation concept) or uniformitarianism (the belief that changes have come very slowly over very long periods of time, closely associated with the evolution viewpoint) shall be taught in the public schools, orally, or by selection of materials used, to the exclusion of the other, as an explanation of the present condition of the earth, or the process by which it came to be in its present state.
Textbooks, reference materials and other instructional materials touching on these areas, if they present these viewpoints as fact, shall be replaced by materials that are either unbiased, or in which the bias is acknowledged, when they would normally be replaced by reason of wear, deterioration, depreciation, or in the process of the selection of new texts, reference materials or instructional materials.
This section shall not be construed as either requiring or authorizing the teaching of either creation or evolution in any manner other than as an impartial objective study.