I really like this idea:
Creationism or intelligent design could not be taught as science in Wisconsin public schools under a first-of-its-kind proposal announced today by Madison state Rep. Terese Berceau.
Under the bill, only science capable of being tested according to scientific method could be taught as science. Faith-based theories, however, could be discussed in other contexts.
Alan Attie, a biochemistry professor at UW-Madison, said the bill puts Wisconsin on the map in the ongoing controversy over evolution and intelligent design.
“We can be the un-Kansas,” Attie said in an interview.
William Dembski doesn’t like the idea so much:
i’m offering $1000 to the first teacher in Wisconsin who (1) challenges this policy (should it be enacted) by teaching ID as science within a Wisconsin public school science curriculum (social science does not count), (2) gets him/herself fired, reprimanded, or otherwise punished in some actionable way, (3) obtains legal representation from a public interest law firm (e.g., Alliance Defense Fund), and (4) takes this to trial. I encourage others to contribute in the same way. Thank you Wisconsin.
And we get yet another contradiction on the question of whether ID should be taught in science classrooms. The DI says they’re not for it, they just want the “evidence for and against evolution” to be taught. Just this past weekend at a forum, Dembski himself admitted that it was premature to teach ID in high school science classrooms. And yet here he is offering cash to someone to do what he previously said shouldn’t be done.
I really like what I read from the bill’s sponsors. They seem to really understand that science education really is under attack all over the nation:
At a news conference this morning at the State Capitol, Berceau, a Democrat, was flanked by Rep. Spencer Black, D-Madison, and 13 top researchers from the University of Wisconsin who helped draft the legislation.
She said her bill addresses the attempts in Wisconsin and across the country to undermine science education.
“It is designed to promote good science education, and prevent the introduction of pseudo-science in the science classroom,” she said.
“It does not ban the discussion of intelligent design or any other ideology in schools in nonscientific contexts. It simply states that if something is presented as science, it must actually be science.”
Naturally, the DI doesn’t like it:
Rob Crowther, director of communications for the Discovery Institute, the main booster group for intelligent design, said his group opposes the bill.
“We think it is a scientific theory,” Crowther said of intelligent design. “There are a lot of scientists and scholars doing a lot of research on the topic in research institutions. Any effort to stifle the subject really ultimately harms the work they’re doing. We see this as an academic freedom issue, not just for teachers, but for scientists.”
Same old nonsense from the DI. They’ve been claiming for years that there are a lot of scientists doing a lot of research on ID, but they have yet to produce any actual research that supports ID (and scouring the scientific literature for anyone who disagrees with some minor sub-theory within evolution and then screaming “Aha, see, a real scientist says Darwinism is wrong!” does not count as “research”).
They also continue to deliberately conflate what may be taught in a science classroom with what a scientist may research. There are no limits on what a scientist can research. If ID is valid, then scientists should be able to produce solid research supporting it. Then and only then should there be any discussion of teaching it in science classrooms. The IDers seem to be the only scientific “revolutionaries” in history who think that you overthrow an accepted scientific theory with a PR campaign rather than with hard work to establish their alternative as a compelling explanation.