Tennessee’s House Bill 368 was passed on a 9-4 vote, with no testimony or discussion, at the House General Subcommittee of Education meeting on March 16, 2011. A version of the “academic freedom” antievolution bill, HB 368 would, if enacted, require state and local educational authorities to “assist teachers to find effective ways to present the science curriculum as it addresses scientific controversies” and permit teachers to “help students understand, analyze, critique, and review in an objective manner the scientific strengths and scientific weaknesses of existing scientific theories covered in the course being taught.” The only examples provided of “controversial” theories are “biological evolution, the chemical origins of life, global warming, and human cloning.”

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Comments

  1. #1 Rod
    March 17, 2011

    In these days of significant problems requiring thoughtful analysis and carefully targeted legislation, we are offered this crap?
    How can these people look at themselves in the mirror and claim that they are serving the best interests of their constituents?

  2. #2 D. C. Sessions
    March 17, 2011

    How can these people look at themselves in the mirror and claim that they are serving the best interests of their constituents?

    Well, if they don’t appear in mirrors and keep enough people under thrall, it would explain a lot.

  3. #3 Clam
    March 18, 2011

    I can understand why the loonies in the US aren’t in asylums (they can’t afford it) but how come they get into the legislative assemblies?

  4. #4 informania
    March 18, 2011

    Psychopaths can do that, that’s why they’re so dangerous!

  5. #5 Phillip IV
    March 18, 2011

    Rod @ #1:

    How can these people look at themselves in the mirror and claim that they are serving the best interests of their constituents?

    It’s a complicated process, but in principle it works like this:

    1. Convince yourself that there is a higher being which is benevolent, omnipotent, omniscient, transcendent and the creator of the universe, ignoring all logic and evidence to the contrary. It might be hard at first, but as your sanity starts to crumble away, it will get easier by the day – just hang in there, if Liquid Ocelot could do it, so can you!

    2. Equip your fictional higher being with anthropomorphic features, sticking as close as possible to yourself as a template, so that your higher being will generally agree with your opinions and consider your personal lifestyle exemplary and worthy of promotion at the expense of all others. Important! Make particularly sure that your higher being hates all the people you dislike.

    3. Get elected to office by fellow self-deluded religionists and a few dimwits who vote for you because they blame the other party for the consequences of your own party’s bad policies of the past.

    4. Explain that you first priority is not serving men, but the god you created in your own image, because serving god is per definition in the best interest of your constituents. Congratulations! All of the effort to delude yourself is now paying off: you can freely give in to your worst, bigoted impulses while feeling upstanding and righteous – you can even feel victimized when anybody criticizes you for the ruined lives you leave in your wake!

    Not to forget:

    5. Profit!