The two creationism bills now pending in the Oklahoma legislature are old news to our readers. We’ve already discussed them here: Josh Brecheen’s Oklahoma Creationism Bill; and Sally Kern’s bill is here: Oklahoma’s 2nd Creationism Bill for 2011.
In Tulsa World of Tulsa, Oklahoma we read Two Oklahoma lawmakers file bills encouraging creationism. The only news is a few comments by Victor Hutchison of Oklahomans for Excellence in Science Education, plus a few odd comments by the creationist legislators, Brecheen and Kern. Here are some excerpts, with bold added by us:
Sen. Josh Brecheen, R-Coalgate, and Rep. Sally Kern, R-Oklahoma City, have filed legislation designed to undermine the teaching of a fundamental of modern science, the theory of evolution.
“[Brecheen’s bill is] very slickly written,” said Victor Hutchison, a retired University of Oklahoma zoology professor who tracks such legislation. “But it includes comments from the creationism crowd that you recognize if you’re familiar with these things.” The upshot, Hutchison said, is “criticism of evolution without any scientific basis.”
Tulsa World tried to get some input from Brecheen for this story, but first they say:
Brecheen does not really dispute that his bill is an attack on evolution. He promised such a measure after his election in November and said evolution is “a religion,” not science.
We wrote about that here: Oklahoma’s Senator Josh Brecheen: Totally Crazed. Let’s continue:
Brecheen would not agree to be interviewed for this story, but he said in an e-mail that “legislators have a responsibility to ensure state-supported classroom instruction is factual so, concerning evolution, … we must fully educate using all confirmed scientific discoveries.”
Yeah, his only interest is in teaching good science. All creationist legislators say that. Next, the paper tries to get something from Kern about her bill:
Kern did not respond to an interview request, but she issued a statement earlier this week denying that her bill is “anti-evolution.”
“Given the impact of the theory of evolution, it is important that students be familiar with it and able to discuss it,” she said. “At the same time, teachers and students should be free to discuss critiques of the theory, and no student should ever be penalized for personal views on this issue.”
That’s the standard creationist run-around. The only thing harder to find than an honest creationist is the wreck of Noah’s Ark. Let’s read on:
But Kern’s and Brecheen’s bills state that they are not intended to promote a religious viewpoint.
“That’s ridiculous,” Hutchison said. “These bills come primarily from people who are biblical literalists.”
There’s a bit more in the article, so check it out. But it seems to us that Tulsa World understands what’s going on, and they’re the second-biggest paper in that state. Stay tuned to this blog, because things are just getting warmed up.
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