Livingston Parish Saved from Creationists

For now. This just in from the National Center for Science Education:

Creationism won’t be taught in the public schools of Livingston Parish, Louisiana — at least not yet. The Baton Rouge Advocate (August 1, 2010) reports that “The Livingston Parish School Board won’t try to include the teaching of creationism in this year’s curriculum, but has asked the School Board staff to look at the issue for possible future action.” At a July meeting, inspired by the Louisiana Science Education Act, the board formed a committee to explore the possibilities of incorporating creationism in the parish’s science classes. The committee is not expected to report its findings in time for the board to take any action for the 2010-2011 school year; the board’s president Keith Martin explained, “We have decided not to try to hurry up and rush something in for this year.”

Marjorie Esman, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Louisiana, told the Advocate that the decision to teach creationism would be not only doomed to failure but expensive. “If they were to do it, they could anticipate that any litigation would result in them not only losing, but having to pay enormous legal fees,” she said. “They would be wasting a huge amount of taxpayer money on a battle they can’t win.” The board’s attorney confirmed that it would be unconstitutional for the schools to teach creationism. Meanwhile, board member David Tate, who broached the possibility of teaching creationism at the previous board meeting, commented, “We don’t want litigation, but why not take a stand for Jesus and risk litigation.”

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6 thoughts on “Livingston Parish Saved from Creationists

  1. With board members who think this way

    “We don’t want litigation, but why not take a stand for Jesus and risk litigation.”

    does anyone really think this issue will go away for long? What are the chances the board’s attorney has to have a good stiff drink after every meeting with these loons?

  2. The board’s attorney confirmed that it would be unconstitutional for the schools to teach creationism.

    This is the part I don’t get about these cases. They flatly ignore the person paid to protect them from liability. They don’t want litigation, but they’re willing to risk it. 100% probability isn’t really a risk, especially when all the plaintiffs would have to do is introduce Tate’s quote on the first day and ask for a summary judgment, right? It’s just stupidity.

    Would this attorney end up having to defend the district if they ignore his advice?

  3. I’d like to tell that David Tate: Spend your own money on the lawsuits you goddamned dubmbshit.

    Unfortunately we see many places (like the whole state of Texas) wasting money this way – it means less money in the education budget for carrying out the mandated tasks like teaching, but the creationists repeatedly prove that they don’t give a shit about education, they only care about preaching their jesus lies.

  4. I’m not sure if Isabar is a poe or what, but I agree wholeheartedly with everything you said after the first sentence. Creationism is religion, and belongs in church. You teach whatever you want there. No one is saying you can’t. Your beliefs are demonstrably wrong, but church is exactly the right place to be teaching them. Go to, and keep it out of science classes.

  5. That “take a stand for Jesus” statement made me laugh in relief. I know it worried Dean at #1 because of the mentality we’re dealing with… but it’s that same mentality that will expose the Board’s non-secular purpose, and doom it to failure. Tate’s statement was not idle chatter–that quote came from a Board meeting, and that wasn’t all he said. The Baton Rouge Advocate reports:
    Tate said teaching evolution as a theory is fine, but there are other ideas.
    â??Creationism is another thought of how things came into being,â? he said. â??Give every theory due timeâ? in the classroom.

    And from the Advocate’s coverage of another Board meeting, July 24th:
    Benton said that under provisions of the Science Education Act enacted last year by the Louisiana Legislature, schools can present what she termed â??critical thinking and creationismâ? in science classes.
    Board Member David Tate quickly responded: â??We let them teach evolution to our children, but I think all of us sitting up here on this School Board believe in creationism. Why canâ??t we get someone with religious beliefs to teach creationism?â?
    Fellow board member Clint Mitchell responded, â??I agree â?¦ you donâ??t have to be afraid to point out some of the fallacies with the theory of evolution. Teachers should have the freedom to look at creationism and find a way to get it into the classroom.â?

    I can’t believe they’re speaking this carelessly–why hasn’t the Discovery Institute PR machine muzzled them yet? In Kitzmiller v Dover, statements just like these were made at school board meetings. Judge Jones applied the Endorsement and Lemon tests, and used those statements to demonstrate that the Board’s purpose was clearly to advance religion, and was therefore unconstitutional.
    This effort will absolutely go down in flames–but not until after taxpayers’ money has been wasted.

    I find it hilarious that creationists contain the seeds of their own undoing, because they just can’t seem to shut up about Jesus. It doesn’t matter how polished the Discovery Institute’s talking points are; it’s the people at the center of these things, these people just don’t get it. They have no idea what they’re doing wrong.

  6. Sorry ~ my links don’t work. If you go to Greg’s NCSE link in the OP, you can link to the Baton Rouge Advocate from there.

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