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Monday, March 11, 2013

Update on HB 1674, Scientific Education and Academic Freedom Act



O.K. folks, I was browsing the internet to see what I could learn about the anti-science education legislation bills that are currently floating around in the Oklahoma State House.  H.B. 1674 is apparently still alive, after being passed 9-8 on Feb. 9, 2013.  

The reps that voted Nay are Cannaday, Cox, Dewitt, McDaniel (J), Condit, Denney, McDaniel (C), and Virgin (no snickering) These fine folks need to be commended what they did, even though it seems to go against almost everything the rest of their peers are attempting.  

The reps that voted Yea are Blackwell (the author of the bill), Casey, Coody, Kern (of course, as well as being the co-author) Nelson, Nollan, Roberts (D), Smalley, and Thomsen.  These folks need to talk to a biologist, anthropologist, zoologist, or anyone else involved in one of the hard sciences to determine if there is any evidence that Intelligent Design (I.D.) actually has any basis in fact.  

I did notice that on the Nay side, while Cannaday, McDaniel (J) and (C), Condit, and Virgin are of the Democrat Party, the rest are actually Republicans and every single one that voted yea are Republican.

I also noticed that on the State of Oklahoma website, they list the effective date as "emergency"  Really????  WTF people.  It would appear that they are going to try and rush this bill through the House as quickly as they can and institute it immediately.  Similar bills have only passed in 2 states, Tennessee and Louisiana.  In Tennessee, even though it has passed, they advised school districts not to apply it, due to an uncertainty about the legality of the bill. The people trying to push "Intelligent Design" as a legitimate science, and not connected to religion are pointing out that there have been no lawsuits filed, so everything is fine and dandy, never mentioning that no district is enforcing it!!!  This info came from the OESE website, which is http://www.oklascience.org/.  They are the Oklahomans for Excellence in Science Education.    Another excellent group is the NCSE.  They are the National Center for Science Education.  They do a lot of fine work helping combat anti-science education legislation and discrimination across the country.  I suggest everyone that reads this blog and lives in the state of Oklahoma contact them and find out what they can do to help prevent an atrocity such as this from occurring.  If you don't know exactly who to contact, you can go here to find out who they are.  The members of the Common Education council are found here , so contact them as well. I know I am going to contact not only my state Representative, but also the members of the Common Education Council and inform them that allowing the students to use unfounded religious beliefs as a basis for scientific proof will undermine everything our science teachers have been trying to accomplish.  Bills such as these will leave the future generations woefully unprepared for college and employment, which in turn will effect our overall economy by making it less desirable for technology and science businesses to come and set up production or research centers.

I know that the bill does not specifically use the terms "Creation" or "Intelligent Design", and due to copyright protection, I really can't copy the whole bill and post it here for you to view.  I can, however, put up a link to the bill, which is here  If the link doesn't work, let me know, and I will attempt to fix it.  In the bill, one of the key phrases that clues people in that this is essentially a I.D. bill is "addresses scientific controversies".  This is the language that I.D. and creationism proponents have begun to use to slide these items past the casual reader.  It is a rather underhanded approach, but it may prove to be effective.  

Sorry there were no attempts at witty banter at the start, but as the Common Education Council puts it, the effective date for action on this issue is Emergency, and we need to act now.  Contact everyone you can, but remember to be respectful and polite.  If we come across as crass or rude, this will hurt us in the long run.  They will use poor attitudes as proof that without religion in the schools, everything will go to hell.  (I had to squeeze in one bad joke.)

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1 comment:

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