Northern California Town May Teach Intelligent Design

THE WORD GETS OUT slowly sometimes, and that’s how it seems to be in the far north of California. In the Mount Shasta Herald, we read: Butteville school board exploring intelligent design. Here are some excerpts:

Butteville Union Elementary School District trustees, as well as school administrators, are considering adding “intelligent design” to the school’s seventh-grade science curriculum.

Brilliant. Absolutely brilliant. Moving along:

In a discussion on an information/action agenda item, “Evolution versus Intelligent Design Taught in the Classroom,” during the district’s board meeting last Wednesday, trustees agreed to seek legal counsel regarding the issue.

That makes sense. But seeking advice is one thing, and following it is another. The article continues:

“I think this will be a big issue in the Supreme Court before long,” said board president Stephen Darger, a practicing attorney and former police officer. “Maybe it will be with this school.”

Great. A cop who went to law school, and who now fancies himself a constitutional expert. Your Curmudgeon will make a prediction: This matter will never get to the US Supreme court. It’ll die after the first appeal, if not before then, and the Supreme Court won’t need to mess with it. Moving along:

Darger said that in order to legally teach intelligent design in a public school the subject would have to remain entirely secular and only offer possible explanations for what evolution cannot explain. He cited a decision nearly 20 years ago in the case of Edwards v. Aguillar [sic], where the Supreme Court concluded that “teaching a variety of scientific theories about the origins of humankind to school children might be validly done with the clear secular intent of enhancing the effectiveness of science instruction.”

That’s quite a misreading of Edwards v. Aguillard, which sensibly allows for scientific theories to be taught, but doesn’t leave any wiggle room for creationism (which includes its closeted brother, Intelligent Design). Also, Mr. Darger, you might check this out: Kitzmiller v. Dover: Is ID Science?

Besides Intelligent Design creationism, we suppose Mr. Darger could also try to teach Flat Earth theory, as long as it too was done “with the clear secular intent of enhancing the effectiveness of science instruction.” Good luck with either course.

One more excerpt:

In recent years many scientists have developed issues surrounding Darwinism and are uncovering evidence that is contradicting certain aspects of the widely accepted theory, Darger said.

Ah yes, the much mentioned (but never seen) evidence contradicting evolution. All right, Mr. Darger. Bring on your Intelligent Design course. Good luck!

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