Nature on the Kansas Decision: Adding Some Context

Geoff Brumfiel with Nature has a news article on the recent decision in Kansas to teach scientific criticisms of evolution. I like Mr. Brumfiel and I think he is a good reporter. His April 28, 2005 piece in Nature on students and ID was fair and consciously non-inflammatory, albeit at times emphasizing religion over science. In his most recent article, I am quoted saying the following: “This is a huge victory for students in Kansas,” says Casey Luskin, a programme officer in policy and legal affairs at the Discovery Institute, an intelligent-design think-tank in Seattle. Luskin says that the standards will help students to recognize legitimate scientific criticisms of evolution. He notes that they make no direct reference to intelligent Read More ›

The Major Media’s Embarrassing Blooper on Kansas Science Standards

On Tuesday the Kansas State Board of Education adopted new science standards. According to the Board, these new standards “call for students to learn about the best evidence for modern evolutionary theory, but also to learn about areas where scientists are raising scientific criticisms of the theory.” These standards do not require the teaching of intelligent design. That fact didn’t stop some major media outlets, including Bloomberg News and the Washington Post, from erroneously claiming otherwise. The Bloomberg story began: Kansas State Board Votes to Teach Intelligent Design in Schools Nov. 8 (Bloomberg) — The Kansas State Board of Education approved a proposal to teach intelligent design along with evolution as a scientific explanation of how life began. The Washington Read More ›

Closing arguments: Dover Plaintiffs’ Counsel Speaks Loudly, Carries Small Stick

Harrisburg, PA — Yesterday I sat in the Federal Courthouse observing the Kitzmiller trial where the ACLU is trying to ban intelligent design from the science classroom. Many of the plaintiffs’ closing arguments sounded like they were taken directly from Pandamonium (click “Pandas Gallery” to hear the “objections” without playing the game). I’m actually serious: this silly, satirical game captures nearly all of the central arguments of the NCSE-assisted plaintiffs in this case. First, Some Compliments: But before I delve into critique, I want to say some kind things about the “opposing side” in this case. While in Harrisburg this week, I interacted with a number of very nice people from the ACLU, NCSE, and even plaintiffs’ counsel and staff Read More ›