THIS is another update on the anti-science, anti-evolution, pro-creationism bill filed by Florida’s state Senator Stephen Wise at the end of February. See: Florida Creationism: Stealth Bill Filed.
As we reported almost two months ago (see: Florida’s Axis of Creationism), because of the remarkably similar religious affiliation of virtually every principal player in Florida’s creationism controversy, and because the Florida Baptist Witness had been an excellent inside source of information about the anti-evolution legislation introduced by Senator Ronda Storms in 2008, and because the Florida Baptist Convention had a legislative consultant — Bill Bunkley — who was keeping the Florida Baptist Witness informed of this year’s creationism legislative progress (as he had done last year), we regarded that paper to be one of the best sources of information on this subject. We also said:
From these observations we regard the Florida Baptist Convention and the Florida Baptist Witness to be part of the faith-based network of the Discoveroids, and they constitute the principal Axis of Creationism in Florida. We have therefore been scanning the Florida Baptist Witness for early indications of what we can expect in Florida for this year.
Since we posted that article, although we’ve continued to scan the Witness for news of Senator Wise’s bill, we’ve noticed what seems to be a total blackout on that subject. We doubt that our humble blog was the cause, but for whatever reason, that once-useful source of information has gone dark.
Nevertheless, one can still learn things by observing what news isn’t covered, and so we present to you, dear reader, some excerpts from Bunkley summarizes non-gambling legislation of interest, which appears in the Florida Baptist Witness. The bold font was added by us:
As the Florida Legislature passed the mid-way mark of the 60-day annual legislative session, Florida Baptist legislative consultant Bill Bunkley gave Florida Baptist Witness an overview of matters he’s watching in the final month.
With the session scheduled to conclude May 1, Bunkley is carefully following dozens of bills of interest to Florida Baptists, offering to legislators support or opposition in response to the legislation.
The first thing we’ve learned is that the legislative session ends on 01 May. We should have known that already, but we didn’t. Now we’re all aware of the time frame within which things must happen. Let’s read on:
Many bills of concern – like several homosexual rights measures – have not advanced beyond merely being introduced, while other bills – like gambling expansion – have been of prime concern for Bunkley this year.
In addition to his activities related to opposing gambling expansion (see related stories), Bunkley told the Witness there are other matters which he has watched closely.
This is where we’d expect some news of Senator Wise’s creationism bill, because it must be among the “dozens” that Bunkley is watching. So we scan …
First is a report on the possible repeal of a sales tax exemption for bibles. Repealing that tax exemption seems unlikely. We’re also told that the Florida Baptist Convention supports a proposed $1-per-pack increase on cigarettes. We learn that there are difficulties for a bill that would require an ultrasound image be shown to a woman considering an abortion in the first trimester.
We’re further informed that:
Legislation that would increase the marriage license fee but offer a discount to couples who agree to eight hours of pre-marital education has been approved by committees in the House and Senate.
This is thrilling stuff — especially if you were planning on buying a bible, getting a marriage license, purchasing cigarettes, or maybe having an abortion. And the Witness has other articles about bills affecting gays and gamblers. It’s a veritable encyclopedia of topics that don’t interest us.
But what about Senator Wise’s creationism bill? The article says nothing about that legislation — not a word. As we said, the Witness has gone dark. Maybe it’s your Curmudgeon’s fault. So be it.
Anyway, there are only three weeks remaining in this legislative session, so it looks like nothing will be happening to promote creationism in state-run schools. But there’s always next year.
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