The last time we wrote about Kentucky was back in December: Kentucky, Darwin, Pluto, and Uranus. That was about Hart County school superintendent Ricky Line. He didn’t like evolution. He didn’t like the Big Bang, and he didn’t like scientists — because they had recently changed their minds about whether Pluto was a planet. Well, good ol’ Ricky is back in the news.
We present to you, dear reader, some excerpts from GOP lawmakers question standards for teaching evolution in Kentucky, which appears in the Lexington Herald-Leader located in Lexington, Kentucky — the second-largest city in that state, and known as the “Horse Capital of the World.” The bold font was added by us:
Kentucky’s Senate Republicans pushed successfully in 2009 to tie the state’s testing program to national education standards, but three years later, they’re questioning the results. Several GOP lawmakers questioned new proposed student standards and tests that delve deeply into biological evolution during a Monday meeting of the Interim Joint Committee on Education.
The proposed standards “delve deeply” into evolution. Let’s read on:
“I would hope that creationism is presented as a theory in the classroom, in a science classroom, alongside evolution,” Sen. David Givens, R-Greensburg, said Tuesday in an interview.
Givens said he and other legislators have been contacted by a number of educators with concerns about Kentucky’s proposed new science standards, which are tied to ACT testing and are scheduled to be adopted this fall. [ACT is the company that prepares Kentucky's new state testing program.]
“I think we are very committed to being able to take Kentucky students and put them on a report card beside students across the nation,” Givens said. “We’re simply saying to the ACT people we don’t want what is a theory to be taught as a fact in such a way it may damage students’ ability to do critical thinking.”
Givens is concerned that learning science will damage the kids’ ability to think. The story continues:
Another committee member, Rep. Ben Waide, R-Madisonville, said he had a problem with evolution being an important part of biology standards.
“The theory of evolution is a theory, and essentially the theory of evolution is not science — Darwin made it up,” Waide said. “My objection is they should ensure whatever scientific material is being put forth as a standard should at least stand up to scientific method. Under the most rudimentary, basic scientific examination, the theory of evolution has never stood up to scientific scrutiny.“
The newspaper also spoke with Ricky Line, the guy we wrote about last year:
“When it says evolution as if there is no other option, then over time our students are going to assume that is the only option when there are other options out there,” Line said.
There’s much more to the news story. They even talked to people who were in favor of the pro-evolution standards. But at this point, it looks to us as if there’s trouble brewing in ol’ Kentucky. Those fancy new science standards won’t get adopted without a fight.
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