La. School Board Rejects Anti-Evolution Textbook Disclaimer. (People & Events)

Article excerpt

Louisiana's Board of Elementary and Secondary Education has voted 7-3 to reject a proposal to add anti-evolution disclaimers to biology textbooks used in public schools.

A board committee had earlier approved use of the disclaimer, which casts doubt on the validity of evolution and claims that the theory "still leaves many unanswered questions about the origin of life."

The vast majority of biologists in the country accept evolution. It is stridently opposed by many fundamentalist Christians, however, who have worked to undermine instruction about the theory in public schools. Religious Right groups have pressured educators in many states to adopt the disclaimers. So far, only Alabama has done so.

Alabama's disclaimer, adopted six years ago, engendered months of controversy and led to threats of legal action. The full Louisiana board apparently had no desire to go through that.

"I am not prepared to go back to the Dark Ages," Board President Paul Pastorek said. "I don't think state boards should dictate editorial content of school textbooks. …