Darwinist Groups Stumbling Over Academic Freedom in Ouachita

As we recently reported, the Ouachita Parish School Board in Monroe, Louisiana, has passed a policy protecting Academic Freedom to Teach Scientific Evidence Regarding Controversial Scientific Subjects. The policy observes that “some teachers may be unsure of the district’s expectations concerning how they should present information on such subjects” and guarantees teachers the academic freedom to teach both scientific strengths and weaknesses of controversial scientific subjects: Toward this end, teachers shall be permitted to help students understand, analyze, critique, and review in an objective manner the scientific strengths and weaknesses of existing scientific theories pertinent to the course being taught. What could be less objectionable? Indeed, according to an article in the News Star in Monroe, Louisiana, a local attorney Read More ›

Language of Ouachita Parish’s New Academic Freedom Policy

As noted here, Ouachita Parish around Monroe, Louisiana recently passed a policy on academic freedom for teaching controversial scientific subjects. Here is the text of Ouachita Parish’s new resolution on academic freedom as well as their new their curricular policy: From http://www.opsb.net/downloads/forms/Ouachita_Parish_Science_Curriculum_Policy.pdf Ouachita Parish Science Curriculum Policy Adopted November 29, 2006 RESOLUTION ON TEACHER ACADEMIC FREEDOM TO TEACH SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE REGARDING CONTROVERSIAL SCIENTIFIC SUBJECTS: WHEREAS, the Louisiana Constitution declares that among the legitimate ends of government is “to promote the …education … of the people….” (1), and; WHEREAS, Congress in 2001 declared that “Where topics are taught that may generate controversy (such as biological evolution), the curriculum should help students to understand the full range of scientific views that exist, Read More ›

Junk DNA and Science-Stopping

Over the years, many (though not all) Darwinists have stated that non-coding DNA is not worth exploring because it is thought to be mere evolutionary junk. In 2003, Scientific American explained that “the introns within genes and the long stretches of intergenic DNA between genes, Mattick says, ‘were immediately assumed to be evolutionary junk.’” John S. Mattick, director of the Institute for Molecular Bioscience at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia was then quoted saying this might have been “one of the biggest mistakes in the history of molecular biology.” (Wayt T. Gibbs, “The Unseen Genome: Gems Among the Junk,” Scientific American (Nov. 2003), emphasis added) Of course known functionality for non-coding DNA now goes far beyond intronic DNA. Read More ›

Busting Another Darwinist Myth: Skeptics of Evolution Do Exist Outside the United States!

A common Darwinist myth is that the only people who are skeptical of evolution are Americans. A recent article in the Virginia Informer stated, “John Swaddler, UK native and associate professor of biology at the College [of William and Mary], noted that the media phenomenon of creationism/ID vs. evolution doesn’t happen in countries besides America.” Saddler is promoting a common Darwinist claim which is simply untrue: As we’ve noted recently, there has been a push to teach intelligent design in the United Kingdom. This summer an article in the London Guardian noted that over 30% of British students support non-evolutionary accounts of the history of life. Such skepticism extends far beyond the U.K. Nature reported that Poland is experiencing an Read More ›

Update: Were All UCSD Freshmen Required to Attend Pennock Lecture?

(Editors Note: This Post Was Revised and Updated on November 28, 2006): Some people have contacted me insisting that not all freshmen were required to attend the lecture by Robert Pennock at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) (first discussed here). In this regard, consider the following points: I have posted a screen shot at https://evolutionnews.org/wp-content/uploads/2006/12/tritonlink_11-24-06.jpg which clearly stated on the main UCSD student website (called Tritonlink) that “All first-quarter freshmen are required to attend the event.” To my knowledge UCSD has not issued any statements retracting or changing this announcement. I have been presented with no credible evidence that the official UCSD student website statement was incorrect. A 6th College web page did state that “first quarter CAT Read More ›