Thursday, 19 April 2012

Tennessee Law: Why Are Darwinists Afraid of Academic Freedom?

Image courtesy of Wikipedia.

Joel Kontinen

During the past few weeks we have witnessed a barrage of not-so-civil comments on what has happened in the state of Tennessee. Bloggers at Huffington Post and elsewhere claim that the doors have now been opened for the teaching of creationism.

However, the Academic Freedom Law that was recently passed merely states:

Neither the state board of education, nor any public elementary or secondary school governing authority, director of schools, school system administrators, or any public elementary or secondary school principal or administrators shall prohibit any teacher in a public school system of this state from helping students understand, analyze, critique, and review in an objective manner the scientific strengths and scientific weaknesses of existing scientific theories covered in the course being taught within the curriculum framework developed by the state board of education.”

The Law does not allow the teaching of creationism or even intelligent design, but it allows teachers to present evidence both for and against Darwinian evolution.

This section only protects the teaching of scientific information, and shall not be construed to promote any religious or non-religious doctrine, promote discrimination for or against a particular set of religious beliefs or non-beliefs, or promote discrimination for or against religion or non-religion.”

Similar laws have been passed in nine other states, for instance in Texas, and they have not taken a single state back into the Stone Age.

What they have done is they have (at least in theory) protected teachers from being discriminated against and allowed them to teach their students to think critically.

If there was no controversy about the mechanics of Darwinian evolution, evolutionists would have nothing to worry about. However, their angry comments suggest that the evidence is not all that convincing.


Zimmerman, Michael. 2012. Tennessee Joins the Anti-Evolution Parade and Ignores the Experts The Huffington Post (23 March).