Dispatches from the Creation Wars

Florida Committee Passes ID Bill

The Tampa paper reports:

Despite her argument, religion kept coming up anyway, as Storms pressed for her “academic freedom” act. Her bill would allow public school teachers to present science-based alternatives to Darwin’s theory of evolution, a theory written into Florida’s curriculum standards and one that is held as a fundamental concept of biology by most members of the science community.

Although professors spoke in opposition to the bill and a representative from the American Civil Liberties Union said it would open the door to teaching creationism, the committee voted to move the bill forward.


The bill would allow teachers to “present scientific information relevant to the full range of views on biological and chemical origins.” It might as well read “present the full range of lies and nonsense from the intelligent design movement.” That is precisely what it means and everyone knows it. And as soon as that happens, we will file suit in court and prove, yet again, that all of this is just a rhetorical masquerade for science. Welcome to the Dover trap.

And I must once again point out the special pleading going on here, the fact that only evolution is being singled out:

It’s not about letting religion creep into science classrooms, Sen. Ronda Storms insisted.

It’s about protecting the rights of students and teachers who don’t agree with the science behind Darwinian evolution, the Republican from Valrico argued before the Senate’s pre-k through 12 education committee voted 4-1 Wednesday to approve the bill.

But why, then, is Storms not concerned about “protecting the rights of students and teachers” who don’t agree with the big bang? Or the germ theory of disease? Or heliocentricity? Or the earth being spherical? There are students and teachers who disagree with all of those things. If she’s going to claim that those students and teachers who object to evolution have a right to teach something other than the approved curriculum, then every single student and teacher who disagrees with any scientific theory has an equal right to teach what they believe to be true. Yet they don’t apply their own arguments consistently. And they don’t because they know it’s a losing argument if they do. This is special pleading.