We can always depend on Oklahoma to enliven the legislative season, especially with Senator Josh Brecheen in office. That’s a link to his official page at the Senate’s website, where we got the impressive photo above this post.
When we first started writing about Brecheen’s creationist activity a few years ago, his occupation was tractor salesman. That’s been changed. He’s now Motivational Speaker, and he “spends his spare time raising and training Quarter Horses.” That’s apparently why he’s so good at shoveling stuff. His Senate page says that Josh is “a graduate of Oklahoma State University, where he earned a dual degree in agricultural communications and animal science.” Back in December of 2010 we wrote Oklahoma’s Senator Josh Brecheen: Totally Crazed.
Our friends at the National Center for Science Education (NCSE) recently posted Antievolution legislation in Oklahoma. This is a link to Senate Bill 1322, introduced by Josh Brecheen. NCSE says it’s similar to what Josh introduced last year.
We wrote about his bill for last year and included its text in Oklahoma Creationism Bill for 2015, so we won’t bother doing it again. Josh tried the same thing in 2014 too. His bills are all based on the anti-science, anti-evolution, pro-creationism Academic Freedom Act promoted by the Discovery Institute. We’ve critiqued their model bill here: Curmudgeon’s Guide to “Academic Freedom” Laws.
You can follow the progress of Brecheen’s new bill here:Bill Information for SB 1322. Nothing’s happened yet. It was apparently pre-filed, because that site says it was introduced on 01 February, the first day of this year’s legislative session, which will adjourn on 27 May. All of Brecheen’s previous efforts have failed to pass, and perhaps that will be the fate of this one too.
As for Oklahoma’s other creationist bill, NCSE also posted A second antiscience bill in Oklahoma. They say:
If enacted, the bill would require state and local educational authorities to “assist teachers to find more effective ways to present the science curriculum where it addresses scientific controversies” and permit teachers to “help students understand, analyze, critique, and review in an objective manner the scientific strengths and scientific weaknesses of existing scientific theories pertinent to the course being taught,” prohibiting administrators from interfering. As introduced, the bill specifically mentions “biological evolution, the chemical origins of life, global warming, and human cloning” as subjects which “some teachers may be unsure” about how to teach.
This one is House Bill 3045. NCSE also tells us: “The sole sponsor of HB 3045 is Sally Kern (R-District 84), a persistent sponsor of antiscience legislation in the Sooner State.” They say her bill is the same thing she’s introduced before. Sally Kern is a sociology major who is married to a preacher. We wrote about one of her earlier bills in Oklahoma’s Second Creationism Bill for 2014.
You can track the progress of Sally’s bill here: Bill Information for HB 3045. As with Brecheen’s bill, it was pre-filed, and nothing has happened yet.
Well, dear reader, this year’s legislative season is underway. Your Curmudgeon will keep you advised of all developments.
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