The Knox County school board has been meeting today in Knoxville, Tennessee to decide on whether to ban a biology textbook. One parent, Kurt Zimmermann, had complained that the book was disrespectful to creationists. We recently posted about this here: Biology Book Banning in Tennessee?
The allegedly blasphemous book is Asking about Life by Allan J. Tobin.
If you want to dig deeply into this issue, here’s a 54-page pdf file — it’s the memorandum prepared for the school board’s meeting: Appeal to Textbook Review Committee Decision Regarding “Asking About Life”. On page 6 is the complaint that Zimmermann filed on what appears to be a school board form. After identifying the book, in response to the question: “To what material do you object?” his answer was this:
Page 319: “Creationism, the biblical myth that the universe was created by the Judeo-Christian God in 7 days.” See below*
* Page [illegible] “Creationism: The view of the origin of life that says that the Earth was created very recently and that each species was created individually.”
In response to the question: “What do you feel might be the result of using this material?” his answer was:
Mislead, belittle, and discourage students in believing in creationism and pointedly calls the Bible a myth.
Founded in 1930, Bryan College is named after William Jennings Bryan: statesman, orator, and renowned prosecuting attorney in the famous Scopes Evolution Trial.
William Jennings Bryan, as you know, was one of the most loathsome creatures in American history — populist, opponent of banks and railroads, creationist, advocate of the income tax, prohibition, debased currency, popular election of US Senators, and numerous other follies. Bryan was once a giant in American politics who always enjoyed the support of the Klan — and of course he was a Democrat. Hey, the Great Populist Blowhard was born 19 March 1860, so last month was his 150th birthday.
But enough about Bryan. Let’s keep our attention on the biology textbook controversy started by what we assume is one of Bryan’s followers. We know you’ve been anxiously awaiting the results.
Addendum: As you can see in the updated red box, the matter has been postponed 30 days. We’ll be waiting. Stay tuned to this blog!
Update: See Tennessee Biology Book Ban (03 May ’10).
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