Bell Curve The Law Talking Guy Raised by Republicans U.S. West
Well, he's kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace "accidentally" with "repeatedly," and replace "dog" with "son."

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

A Rare Victory for Education

U.S. District Judge John E. Jones III--an appointee of George W. Bush--ruled in strong, unequivocal language, that the Dover, PA school board acted unconstitutionally when it compelled teachers to teach intelligent design and, "to denigrate or disparage the scientific theory of evolution." (The voters in Dover have already thrown out all the school board members who tried to insinuate "intelligent design" into the curriculum, but the trial had concluded before the November election.)

Judge Jones anticipated some of the criticism that evangelicals will throw at him, and he responded with a pre-emptive attack. He wrote that this decision was not the "product of an activist judge." Instead, he threw the charge of 'activism' squarely where it belonged: "This case came to us as the result of the activism of an ill-informed faction on a school board, aided by a national public interest law firm eager to find a constitutional test case on I.D., who in combination drove the Board to adopt an imprudent and ultimately unconstitutional policy."

Judge Jones went on to mock the Dover board's pretext of a secular purpose for introducing intelligent design into science classes, saying, "it is ironic that several of these [members of the Dover school board] who so staunchly touted their religious convictions in public, would time and again lie to cover their tracks and disguise the real purpose behind the policy."

The LA Times has an excellent summary of the case and the decision. This is a major defeat for the nascent "intelligent design" movement (a repackaging of discredited creationism). In this era of right-wing "religious correctness," Judge Jones' ruling constitutes a rare victory for education and science.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It's a start. I bet the judge gets death threats from angry Christians - sorry, Intelligentdesignians.  

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