Oklahoma, Textbooks, and Ignorance

In an online press release on 2005/05/25, Oklahoma state Senators Mike Mazzei & Clark Jolley announced, "Henry Nominee for Textbook Committee Opposed".

Interesting... what, in particular, made them think that the nominee in question, Dr. Virginia Ann Dell, should be opposed?

“Despite her impressive academic degrees and her service as a teacher at the Oklahoma School of Science and Math, her errant belief that the teaching of the Intelligent Design Theory blurs the line between the separation of church and state is the first of many problems to arise with her nomination,” stated Sen. Clark Jolley, R-Edmond.

Sen. Mike Mazzei, R-Tulsa, stated, “Nothing exists in state or federal law that prohibits the discussion of creationism or Intelligent Design theory in the classroom. Let’s encourage open and honest discussion of all theories so students can learn to think critically and, with their parents’ guidance, develop their own worldview.”

Dell’s responses to questioning in the Senate Education Committee showed she is unwilling to even allow a mention or discussion of alternative theories on the origins of the universe.

So, someone with actual academic training, experience as a science teacher, and apparent familiarity with the legal status of antievolution efforts (such as Epperson v. Arkansas, McLean v. Arkansas, and Edwards v. Aguillard, which show Mazzei to be behind the times as far as legal issues go) is definitely someone to keep away from helping make decisions on textbooks in Oklahoma.

Continue reading "Oklahoma, Textbooks, and Ignorance" (on The Austringer)