Texas Creationist Freak Show, Day 2

Yesterday we posted about the Creationist Freak Show Starting in Texas. The Texas State Board of Education (SBOE), now under the leadership of Barbara Cargill, met to discuss approval of various publishers’ offerings of “supplemental materials” to be used in science classes. Remarkably, everything was approved (with trivial corrections requested) except for the text of a creationist publisher.

As you know, Cargill is Governor Rick Perry’s latest choice as board chairman. She occupies the position held by Perry’s two previous nominees that the state Senate had refused to confirm — Don McLeroy, the creationist dentist, and then Gail Lowe, McLeroy’s intellectual clone. Cargill’s Bronze Age creationism is the same as that of her predecessors.

How did it go yesterday? As we learn in the Dallas Morning News, New science e-books approved by state education board. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us:

State Board of Education members Thursday tentatively adopted new supplemental science materials for Texas schools, dismissing complaints by social conservative critics that the materials are too one-sided when it comes to evolution and key principles of Charles Darwin.

“Social conservatives” are to conservatism what social workers are to work. For other examples of the Negation Effect of the word “social,” consider the relationship of social security to security, social justice to justice, social science to science — and for that matter, social Darwinism to Darwin’s theory of evolution. In other words, dear reader, when you encounter the word “social” you should immediately run in the opposite direction — unless it’s a noun and you’re being invited to a party.

Let’s read some more news:

A potential source of disagreement was eliminated when state Education Commissioner Robert Scott excluded a creationist-backed biology e-book from his list of recommendations to the board. Scott and an educator review team determined that the material, published by International Databases, did not meet state curriculum standards.

It won’t surprise you to learn that the material submitted by that rejected publisher was given a rave review by the Discovery Institute. The Discoveroids’ “report” is available here. It’s a 71 page pdf file. Your Curmudgeon has saved you the agony of going through it because we’ve done it for you. It starts out on page 2 by saying this:

[O]nly one of the proposed curricula (International Databases, LLC) makes any serious attempt to fulfill the call for meaningful critical analysis of biological and chemical evolution.

An extended discussion of that publisher’s offering starts at page 46 of the “report.” The Discoveroids love it, but they doth protest too much about the publisher’s overt enthusiasm for the “theory” of intelligent design. By making that objection to what they think is otherwise a splendid text, the Discoveroids maintain the absurd fiction that they don’t want their “theory” taught, at least not now. All they ask — wink, wink — is that evolution be taught “correctly,” with a full presentation of its alleged weaknesses. The Discoveroids’ supernatural theory can be taught later, after evolution collapses from having its weaknesses exposed. (Astute readers already know that the anti-science strategy just described literally is the entirety of the Discoveroids’ theory.)

We continue with the Dallas Morning News article:

Despite not being on the commissioner’s list, the International Databases e-book still dominated the three hours of testimony that the board listened to Thursday afternoon before they voted. Dozens of speakers urged the board to not allow the teaching of “intelligent design” in science classes as called for in the e-book.

[…]

Other testimony was offered by evolution critics, who contended that some of the high school biology materials did not comply with science curriculum standards adopted by the education board two years ago that called for high school students to study evidence challenging key principles of evolution.

Unfortunately for the critics, that “evidence challenging key principles of evolution” is still undiscovered — just as it was back in 2009 when the board insisted on teaching it. Here’s more:

The six social conservatives on the board voted with other members to approve the science materials, surprising some educator groups who had expected them to insist on more critical treatment of evolution. However, there appeared to be little appetite for any major revisions from the panel’s other nine members.

Those “six social conservatives on the board” are the six true conservative Christians on the board mentioned recently by Barbara Cargill. What happened to them? Did they fall under a Satanic-Darwinian spell? The news article reports:

This was probably the best we could get for now, considering that they were supplemental materials and that we had a compressed timeline to get them approved,” said board member Gail Lowe, R-Lampasas, a member of the social conservative bloc.

The creationists aren’t giving up. And don’t forget, what happened yesterday wasn’t the last word. The board’s final vote will be at today’s meeting. We don’t expect any fireworks, but we’ll keep you advised.

In closing, we can’t resist responding to what must be fury and frustration in Seattle. Hey, Discoveroids: BWAHAHAHAHAHA!

Copyright © 2011. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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7 responses to “Texas Creationist Freak Show, Day 2

  1. Check out the TFN Insider blog. We won!

  2. Amazing.

    Can’t wait to read the DI response.

  3. For Immediate Release: July 22, 2011
    The following statement is from TFN President Kathy Miller:

    “Today we saw Texas kids and sound science finally win a vote on the State Board of Education. Now our public schools can focus on teaching their students fact-based science that will prepare them for college and a 21st-century economy. And our schoolchildren won’t be held hostage to bad decisions made by a politicized board that adopted flawed science curriculum standards two years ago. Moreover, today we saw that the far right’s stranglehold over the state board is finally loosening after last year’s elections. That’s very good news for public education in Texas.”

  4. Can’t wait to read the DI response.

    My guess? ‘We are very happy with the results and we got what we wanted, blah blah blah.’ IOW, I expect face saving. In fact, I think the reason those six “true Christians” changed their vote and made it a unanimous vote in favor of the science materials was precisely so they could claim some sort of victory. We meant for that to happen…yeah…and as my wife, Morgan Fairchild, was saying…

  5. Darn! La La Land is still the dumbest around. Kudos to those with some brains in Texas. Now we just have to worry about Perry running for President

  6. Hmmm, someone help me with my math here. NCSE is reporting the vote was 8-0. SC’s source says six creationists plus nine others. Were most people missing from the vote?

  7. Hmmm, a company called “International Databases” that publishes creationist material. Weird name. Then you look at the acronym, “ID”. Ah! Now it makes sense.