Kathy Martin, Kansas Creationist, Up for Reelection

Kathy Martin of Kansas

Kathy Martin of Kansas

A FEW YEARS AGO, Kansas was the focus of the battle about teaching creationism in state schools, and the queen of the Kansas creationists was Kathy Martin, pictured above. Many of you remember when, in 2005, with the assistance of the Discovery Institute, the Kansas State Board of Education actually voted to change the definition of science so that it would include supernatural phenomena. Here’s a Wikipedia article on the Kansas evolution hearings.

The foolishness in Kansas was eclipsed by the trial in Kitzmiller v Dover Area School District in late 2005. Then, in August of 2006, control of the Kansas State Board of Education changed, and the insane science standards were thrown out: Evolution Fight Shifts Direction in Kansas Vote. Kathy Martin wasn’t up for re-election then, but she is now.

From the Manhattan Mercury, in Kansas, we have Education board candidates face off in Manhattan. Excerpts:

Candidates for the state Board of Education’s 6th district seat faced community members during a forum held Tuesday night at the Manhattan Public Library. Incumbent Kathy Martin was joined by Republican challenger Bill Pannbacker and Democratic candidate Chris Renner. Martin and Pannbacker will face off in the Aug. 5 Republican primary. The winner will compete against Renner in November’s general election.

So Kathy first has to beat Pannbacker, and then the winner of that primary contest will run against Democrat Renner. We know where Kathy stood on evolution back in 2005 — she was a hard-core creationist. But what about the other two? The article informs us:

Another topic that generated a lot of audience interest was science standards, specifically how they relate to teaching evolution. Renner said he supports the current standards. “I don’t understand intelligent design to be a scientifically credible theory,” he said. Pannbacker agreed and added that the function of public education was to create an informed electorate.

Well! Is Kathy the lone creationist in this election contest for her seat, or has she learned something since the madness of 2005? The article reports that she talked about the creationist invention of a difference between micro-evolution and macro-evolution, saying:

“In areas where the evidence is not 100 percent, I believe we still need to question and allow other view points to be considered.”

So Kathy remains as we remember her — a dedicated creationist. You didn’t really expect her to change, did you?

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