Msg # 22 Date: 15 May 91 18:15:15 To: All Subj: 'creationism' rejected in Lake County

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Msg # 22 Date: 15 May 91 18:15:15 From: Christopher Baker To: All Subj: 'creationism' rejected in Lake County Florida ____________________________________________________________________________ Florida Today, Section A, front page, 15 May 91: (Associated Press) TAVARES -- The Lake County School Board voted 4-1 Tuesday to reject a proposal to permit the teaching of creationism in science classes as an alternate view to the theory of evolution. Lake County Schools Superintendent Thomas Sanders said the idea, which was opposed by the ACLU and a state teachers' union, was unworkable partly because teachers are ill-equipped to explain creation theories. "I asked Christian ministers...They tell me without question, they believe in creationism but they didn't believe the school system knows how to teach it," Sanders said before the vote. The Rev. Bob Well of Eustis, who presented the fundamentalists' plan, accused the board of "intellectual dishonesty and bigotry" and walked out of the meeting, saying his group might file a lawsuit against the School Board. Board member Patricia Hart, a creationism supporter, was the lone dissenter, saying she had to vote her convictions. Sanders noted that keeping scientific creationism out of science classes was the board's only issue. He said the board did not intend to infringe on teachers' First Amendment rights or prevent discussion of creationism in other classes, such as comparative religion. After a Monday workshop on the issue, School Board Chairman Jerry Smith said the creationism debate made the board "the laughingstock among our collegues. This has brought us a lot of unneeded publicity." The teachers' organization, Florida Education Association-United, and the ACLU threatened to take the board to court if it did not reject the idea. Wells, executive director of the Lake County Christian Care Center, made the proposal to the board April 23. The board decided to hold the workshop to clarify the meaning of scientific creationism, but it then became a confrontational issue. Supporters on Monday explained that scientific creationism closely follows the biblical account of life's origins and relies on the premise that the universe was created by a supreme being. The theory of evolution is taught in schools as the scientific theory of life's beginnings, suggesting the earth and its life forms emerged from a naturalistic process billions of years ago. Also opposed to the proposal was the Lake County Education Association. It pointed out in a statement that science teachers aren't required to give "equal time or equal weight" to evolutionary theory and scientific creationism. -30- the article failed to mention that about 10 religious groups [mostly Baptist and other Protestant sects] also opposed the fundamentalists' proposal. it is becoming increasingly common for mainstream sects to oppose attempts to 'Christianize' public schools. this may be enlightened self-interest since the slippery slope would probably lead to Roman Catholic domination of any doctrine introduced leaving the other sects out in the cold. the most disturbing thing about these constant assaults on the separation of State and church, foisted mostly by fundamentalist types, is that such proposals are not rejected outright at first suggestion. the lack of backbone in school boards and other government offices is shameful and dangerous. that the media give stature to so-called 'creationism' by using the fundie term 'scientific creationism' over and over in articles and news reports is also unfortunate. there is NOTHING scientific about 'creationism'. attempting to legitimize mythology as fact is a tactic we will continue to see until someone puts their foot down a few times and makes an outright rejection of the term and its minions from wasting government time fending off these attacks on our basic freedom from religion. keep your eyes open in your own community. it can happen anywhere. it must be fought at all levels. TTFN. Chris --- D'Bridge B1046/00R * Origin: Rights On! - Free of Religion! - Titusville_FL_USA (1:374/14) SEEN-BY: 103/903 109/120 374/14 3610/98 PATH: 374/14

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