Last night we posted Ball State Yields to Discoveroid Demands? That was the first news we could find about post-ultimatum events in what is shaping up to be the scientific battle of the Twenty-First Century.
On one side of this epic struggle, representing the forces of reason, we have Indiana’s Ball State University — see Statement from Ball State University’s President, Jo Ann Gora on the impropriety of teaching intelligent design in science class. On the other side we have the creationist colossus of Seattle — the Discovery Institute — described in the Cast of Characters section of our Intro page.
Now, in the Star Press of Muncie, Indiana, we find the latest news: BSU reviewing alleged ‘atheism’ class. The Discoveroids have just put up a new post by John West (a/k/a “Westie”), but we’ll get to that another time, if it’s worth the bother. [Addendum: We’ve read Westie’s post; there’s nothing new in it. He concludes by muttering: “BSU’s disregard for both academic freedom and the Constitution is shameful; and if BSU continues along this path, it is going to find itself in serious trouble.”]
Here are some excerpts from the Star Press, with bold font added by us:
“You can be assured that the syllabi and curricula of all of the courses you singled out, as well as those of other courses offered by the Honors College and elsewhere at the university, are reviewed and updated on a regular basis,” BSU President Jo Ann Gora wrote in a letter on Monday to The Discovery Institute.
We learned about the occurrence of the review last night. Now we have this report of Gora’s letter to the Discoveroids. Last night we feared it might be a surrender notice. Now it doesn’t sound like that. Gora is saying that courses are always being reviewed. Stay with us; we’ll find out what’s going on:
The institute is an anti-evolution, pro-creationism intelligent design think tank in Seattle that maintains supernatural forces shaped the universe.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Now that is great journalism! We congratulate the Star Press for their accurate reporting.
Then the newspaper repeats the history of the battle, which our regular readers already know. We’ll skip that and proceed to their account of the latest events:
[N]othing submitted by the institute “persuades us we should change our position” on intelligent design, Gora wrote in this week’s letter.
That sounds good to us, but it didn’t seem so in Seattle:
The Discovery Institute is not satisfied with Gora’s response and continues to threaten to “seek another remedy.”
Ooooooooh! We continue:
“We are seriously concerned about whether the subcommittees being established will apply the same standards fairly and equally to all faculty,” [Discoveroid John] West told The Star Press via email on Tuesday. “In particular, we will be looking at the make-up of the various committees to see if they are as ideologically one-sided as the ad hoc committee appointed to investigate Eric Hedin.”
Ooooooooooooh! Westie “will be looking” at the situation. What a chilling prospect that must be. Here’s more:
He [Westie, presumably] accused Ball State of continuing to “stonewall by refusing to answer basic questions that have been raised about its potential violations of the law, the federal and Indiana constitutions, and its own guarantees of academic freedom and due process.”
We were wondering about that. Ball State seems to have ignored the Discoveroids’ questions that were included with the ultimatum. Moving along:
West said, “We gave BSU an opportunity to clarify what it is doing, and to show that it is applying its policies in a fair and legal manner. Because BSU has refused to clarify what it is doing or answer our questions, we will be forced to seek another remedy.”
Westie gave Ball State a chance, and they blew it. This is getting scary. Here’s one last excerpt:
[Ball State’s president, Jo Ann] Gora said she shared the institute’s concerns and demands with the university’s board of trustees before responding to the institute by letter this week.
Ah, Gora has the support of the board of trustees. But Westie has the support of the Man Upstairs — the magical, mystical, intelligent designer of the universe and the bacterial flagellum — blessed be he! — whom Ball State refuses to acknowledge. Only one side can prevail in this contest, and the sides are not evenly matched.
Whatever happens, this will be the Iliad of our age (and your humble Curmudgeon will be its Homer). The young ones will sing of it around the camp fires for generations to come. We tremble as we await future developments.
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