Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Steve Case on Dover

Statement by Steve Case, chair of the Kansas science standards committee, whose work was perverted by the Board of Education:
The parallels between Kansas and Dover, Pennsylvania are striking. In Kansas, the State Board of Education ignored their appointed panel of experts who represented a broad cross section of Kansans. Instead, the State Board chose to rely on outside political pressure groups for their information.

Dr. Abrams and Mr. Bacon of the State Board of Education are arguing that Dover does not apply in Kansas because Kansas did not mandate ID teaching; however, the Dover school board did not do that, either.

While the Kansas State Board of Education may argue, as they do in the introduction to the Standards, that they do not introduce the words, "intelligent design" into the Kansas Standards, they did introduce all of the elements of intelligent design that the Dover court used to define ID (as per the Dover Decision below).

(1) Expanding the Nature of Science (supernatural causation);

(2) Adding Irreducible Complexity (Standard 3 Grades 8-12); and

(3) Criticisms of evolution.

It is clear they are playing word games, but their intent is transparent.

It is interesting that U.S District Judge, John E. Jones says in the decision, "It is ironic that several of these individuals, who so staunchly and proudly touted their religious convictions in public, would time and time again lie to cover their tracks and disguise the real purpose behind the ID Policy." This is exactly what happened in Kansas. Though the creationist BOE members denied any intent to inject creationist ideas into the science standards, they made numerous public statements that confirmed their religious motives, and they ordered a halt to the science standards writing committee’s process.

The verdict in the landmark federal case, which was the first legal challenge to teaching "intelligent design," is a victory for the 11 parents from Dover, Pennsylvania. Is the State Board of Kansas willing to listen to parents and allow them input into their children's education?

Steve Case, Ph.D.
Co-Chair, Science Standards Writing Committee