Louisiana is one of those states where really stupid stuff tends to happen, especially when it comes to evolution in the school curriculum. Recently, a state panel was in a position to chose either creationist textbooks with which to abuse the children for whom they are responsible, or good biology textbooks to educate the children for whom they are responsible. Under considerable pressure to not become the next national laughing stock, the advisory council voted 8-4 to use the correct books.

That’s good news, but it ain’t not over yet. This was only a preliminary vote, and the final vote will be carried out next moth by the state board of education.

Barbara Forrest writes on the LA Science Coalition blog:

We now have a Texas-style attack on the selection of biology textbooks, courtesy of the Louisiana Family Forum (LFF), which brought us the creationist Louisiana Science Education Act (LSEA) of 2008…. This attack began with a volley of letters written by LFF operative Darrell White to various Louisiana newspapers in July…

Barbara then goes on to explain the recent history of this particular attack. This is a very worthwhile read, as an exemplar of this sort of shenanigans.

In the end, there may be creationist textbooks used in Louisiana. Or, there may be stickers inserted in actual biology books. And then there will be law suits. And Louisiana will be forced, at great expense, to do the right thing. What a waste.

See also Erik Robelen’s blog post covering recent events in Louisiana. I’ll keep you posted, and the NCSE will probably have an update soon (their current press release is here).

Update: This jsut came out from Barbara Forrest’s blog at LCS: Hell just froze over in Louisiana.

Comments

  1. #1 gwen
    November 13, 2010

    I’ll believe it when September rolls around again next year and the textbooks are all handed out AND the teachers actually USE it.

  2. #2 Clam
    November 13, 2010

    You know, if it wasn’t so sad, we Europeans would be roaring with laughter at the U.S.A. and its population of un-educated bigots. Ho hum.

  3. #3 MadScientist
    November 13, 2010

    It’s the 21st century and we still have people who deny reality and insist that their lies be taught instead.

    Jeezus wawked on wawa – uhuh – I know caws the lawd tol’ me so!

    That sort of stuff seemed retarded way back in elementary school – it doesn’t sound any better when the adults insist on it.

  4. #4 MacTurk
    November 15, 2010

    as a matter of interest, where in the statistics does the Great State of Louisiana stand? In terms of average income, life expectancy, health, unemployment, college-educated percentage of population, etc? Curious, I am.

    Meanwhile, I thank Dog I live in Europe.

  5. #5 John
    November 15, 2010

    1) US market collapses (1930’s).
    2) US economy gets recovered entirely on the back of government spending.
    3) Local independent economies vanish in favor of large, state-supported economies.
    4) Increasing entanglement of state and corporate interests.
    5) Only jobs you can get are shitty, unstable. Policies favor the rich. People’s lives become crappy.
    6) Maslow’s hierarchy of needs: people can’t be arsed to care about evolution, intellectualism, science. They’re increasingly scared, emotional and tribal. They respond to charlatans and demagogues.
    7) People are ignorant idiots run by corporate thugs.

    QED.

  6. #6 Greg Laden
    November 15, 2010

    John,

    Excellent summary of the history of the American Economy and Society from the beginning of the Great Depression to 1940, then from the election of Ronald Regan until, roughly, the present.

    You left out the 1940s, the 19500, the 1960s, and the 1970s.

    Or was that just the history of LA?

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