The two antievolution bills on the horizon in New Hampshire have now been prefiled in the state House of Representatives. House Bill 1148, introduced by Jerry Bergevin (R-District 17), would charge the state board of education to “[r]equire evolution to be taught in the public schools of this state as a theory, including the theorists’ political and ideological viewpoints and their position on the concept of atheism.” House Bill 1457, introduced by Gary Hopper (R-District 7) and John Burt (R-District 7), would charge the state board of education to “[r]equire science teachers to instruct pupils that proper scientific inquire [sic] results from not committing to any one theory or hypothesis, no matter how firmly it appears to be established, and that scientific and technological innovations based on new evidence can challenge accepted scientific theories or modes.” Although HB 1457 as drafted is silent about “intelligent design,” Hopper’s initial request was to have a bill drafted that would require “instruction in intelligent design in the public schools.” Both bills were referred to the House Education Committee; HB 1148 is scheduled for a hearing on February 9, 2012, and HB 1457 is scheduled for a hearing on February 14, 2012. A columnist for the Nashua Telegraph (July 3, 2011) who interviewed Bergevin and Hopper about their bills commented, “My taxpayer dollars pay science teachers to teach science, not philosophy. Let’s hope lawmakers don’t try to get in the way.”

Holy crap. Source: NCSE

Let me repeat that key part: “including the theorists’ political and ideological viewpoints and their position on the concept of atheism”

Holy crap. Get an escape route, people, they’ll be coming for us!

Comments

  1. #1 D. C. Sessions
    December 21, 2011

    It’s kind of strange to single out biology for this treatment — we really should teach about the political and ideological viewpoints in chemistry, physics [1], mathematics [2], history [3], art [4], and music [5].

    [1] The kids will get no end of amusement regarding Newton
    [2] Once you know more about Pythagoras, you might have second thoughts about geometry
    [3] Especially that stuff about the Mediterranean rim two or three thousand years ago
    [4] Yes, let’s do tell them about Leonardo and Michaelangelo
    [5] Pick one, although Ted Nugent is fun to discuss

  2. #2 MadScientist
    December 21, 2011

    They’re all (R) – the GOP must be Allah’s Party.

  3. #3 D. C. Sessions
    December 21, 2011

    MadScientist, s/GOP/POG/ — “Party Of God.” You might be more familiar with the Arabic version of that name.

  4. #4 StevoR
    December 21, 2011

    So this law means they want to teach the (evolutionary) “.. theorists’ political and ideological viewpoints and their position on the concept of atheism”

    Like they mean actually promoting them and educating students on the concept of atheism and explaining various political perspectives to the kids? That’s sounds reasonable~ish.

    Or do they mean some sort of disclaimer along the lines that :

    “Dem ebil teacherz are all mean atheists and libruls and dere all comink from dis silly ideological view that uh, well all dat fossill ebbidence akshully means somethink! So don’ U believe dat because while they have to teach it we all know the Bibble is really rite instead!”

    Which sounds more like them and rather silly and certainly NOT what should get taught in school.

  5. #5 StevoR
    December 21, 2011

    .. would charge the state board of education to “[r]equire science teachers to instruct pupils that proper scientific inquire [sic] results from not committing to any one theory or hypothesis, no matter how firmly it appears to be established,

    Time travel cut to a near future in flux. High school science class post this legislation’s passage. Hopefully an alternative history :

    “Now kids the hypothesis that the Earth goes around the Sun appears to be well founded and established but remember that we cannot committ to it because its only Copernican theory and he was a Catholic cleric and diplomat coming from that particular philosophy and ideology so we also have to consider the alternative notion that the Sun goes round the earth as the pagan Greek Ptolemy suggested – and also that Danish monarchist supporting nobleman and scientist Tycho’s alternative model that the planets go round the Sun but then the Sun around the Earth – are correct.

    What’s that? Oh yes, Joshualeene you are quite right to cite that law again. Yes.

    Okay class. Before we can go into those adanced theories we have to challenge the merely scientifically well-established hypothesis that the world is round with the alternative notion that it is flat and resting on an infinite number of turtles and or elephants.

    Yes Adam? Why elephants and not mammoths or deinotheres since they were there earlier? Good question. I’ll set you that one as homework.

    Katie, you want to use this mathematical formula to show how the curved shadow of the moon during eclipses and the way sailing boats disappear below the horizon masts-last is evidence for the Round Earth theory?

    Well, fine, but before making any mathematical calculations to show this one way or the other you need to challenge the speculative idea that Pi equals other than exactly 3 as Congress wanted us to have it and the idea that and calculus is correct – despite appearing to be well established that needs to be re-proven from the ground up or is that ground down? Remeber here specially class that Isaac Newton was coming form the position of an unorthodox Christian and occult-lover who didn’t believe in the holy trinity and that Leibniz, along with Ren√© Descartes and Baruch Spinoza, was one of the three great 17th century advocates of rationalism who also wrote a bit on politics so that automatically must make all of calculus suspect.

    Why Jo? Well because, uh, because, .. Oh wait, teacher needs her special headache easing glass of “water” here .. (Glug, glug, glug. Sigh. Long pause. Glug, glug, glug. Sotto vocce “Oh for pity’s sake.” Glug. Sigh.Pause. )

    … Now where were we up to again was it the Zeus theory of cosmology or the Flying Sphaghetti Monster one?

  6. #6 dean
    December 22, 2011

    …including the theorists’ political and ideological viewpoints and their position on the concept of atheism.

    Is that a new thing? I don’t remember any of the other anti-science laws including this? I thought one of the complaints about the liberal elite professors was that they were trying to convert all the good christian students?

    Is there any idea about how far these bills will go?

  7. #7 Eric Lund
    December 22, 2011

    Dean @6: I haven’t heard of such a provision before (although I don’t follow this stuff as closely as some). There’s a good reason for that: I expect (IANAL) that such a provision would be grounds for challenging the law (if the bill passes) under the First Amendment, since it can and should be construed as promoting religion. Note that no similar provision applies to anybody pushing creationism or ID.

    A note to the folks at NCSE (whose press release Greg quotes): Please identify state legislators by town, not district number. I am from New Hampshire, and I have no idea what part(s) of the state these clowns are from. Is Mr. Bergevin the 12th member of a 12-member district (it is quite easy, and even common, for kooks to be elected to our state legislature that way), or is he from some small town with only one or two reps? Are Mr. Hopper and Mr. Burt from the same District 7 or from different counties? I’d like to know which voters were responsible, if that’s the right word, for electing these d00ds. Also, district numbers will likely change between now and the next election, but town names will not.

  8. #8 Ted
    December 22, 2011

    how about

    “[r]equire clergy to instruct believers that proper inquire [sic] results from not committing to any one faith or god, no matter how firmly it appears to be established,