Thursday, January 11, 2007



I have HAD IT with the downright dishonest portrayal of Kansas and the science standards issue. It seems that no matter how many times these inaccuracies in the media are addressed, one only need to wait a few weeks to see the same thing put into print somewhere else!

The latest comes from Ed Kimbrell in an article titled, American history slips into oblivion.

Ed tells us that he has…
…been doing research during the winter break about the First Amendment, especially in the area of religion. I have been very vocal about the decline in the quality of high school history textbooks, so I decided to reach into my groaning shelves of books to find the books I used at Northwestern University, the two-volume set, "The Growth of the American Republic" by Samuel Eliot Morison, Henry Steele Commager, and William E. Leuchtenburg. For 50 years, their work was the gold standard for university students.
Then he tells us what he values about these particular textbooks:
What I found was a history marked by lively writing, opinions that were tart, yet thoughtful, and woven with honesty about the nation. They made history interesting, challenging and inviting. [my emphasis]

Oh…the irony.

He goes on later in the article to dismiss the high standards he holds for textbook authors and writes something entirely dishonest about my home state of Kansas:

Turn to the sciences for a moment and look at Kansas and Georgia, where the boards demanded that intelligent design be taught along side evolution. Thankfully, the people dumped the Kansas board and the only major court decision ruled against intelligent design, calling it religion, not science, which it is.
What an absolutely dishonest thing to put into print. The Kansas Board of Education NEVER demanded that "intelligent design be taught along side evolution"!!! The new standards specifically made the point that:

The Science Curriculum Standards do not include Intelligent Design.
Rather, they focus on teaching the scientific strengths and weaknesses of evolution. There was never a member on that board that “demanded” that ID be “taught along side evolution”!

Will the media ever get that straight????!

Something else that America and Kimbrell should note is that it is extremely hard to discern whether Kansans “dumped the Kansas board” in the last election. There were only three conservatives up for reelection who supported the new standards, and only one was not reelected. That particular board member had other issues she was dealing with in her district as well.

In one district, the evolution backing liberals elected Harry McDonald to run against a conservative who supported the new standards, and McDonald didn’t make it past the primaries. In the general election they stuck a moderate in the race to run against the same board member and lost again. So, at present, two of those three conservatives remain on the board.

It’s interesting to note that Harry McDonald was the former President of Kansas Citizens for Science, a very vocal anti-ID group in Kansas. If Kansans wanted to make a point about their disapproval of the new standards, it sure seems to me that they would have voted in this particular candidate, BUT THEY DIDN’T.

Nope, I don’t think the Darwinists have Kansas in as firm a grip as they believe.

But, back to Kimbrell…

He makes the point that:
Textbook companies have to deal with two major states that buy millions of dollars worth of textbooks annually: Texas and California.

…When the boards decide, or ask for changes, the book sellers respond instantly. Millions of dollars, for them, are at stake.
And, there you have it. ID is not only fighting against philosophical naturalism, but also against the problem of those “millions of dollars” worth of textbooks sitting in a warehouse somewhere. Can anyone say Ken Miller? - textbook author who has misrepresented numerous issues in this debate. Then there are countless books and articles written by scientists who are not about to take the chance of losing a bit of prestige and perhaps a lot of cash to actually give ID the consideration it deserves.

Some advice for Kimbrell - get your facts straight, and try a little of that honesty you cherish when relaying information about Kansas. THANKS!


[Hat tip to Casey Luskin at Evolution News & Views for pointing out this article, and for providing further documentation of how WRONG Kimbrell’s statements about the Kansas science standards are.]