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The Sciences

Louisiana. Well, that’s it then.

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Bobby Jindal, creationist/exorcist governor of Louisiana, has signed the academic freedom bill into state law. So that's it then. Teachers are now free to teach a false controversy in their classrooms, introducing creationism like it's an actual science instead of tissue-thin nonsense. It will also allow them to talk about other non-controversial subjects like global warming, as if there were two sides to the debate. For a detailed history of this incredibly bad law, and why it's so evil, please read Barbara Forrest's essay posted on Talk to Action. She has been embroiled in this since day 1, and has fought very hard for reality. She wrote that essay just before Jindal doomed his own state. Sadly, Louisiana legislators have no time or care for reality, and are determined to drag its children back into the Middle Ages. I am honestly very sorry for everyone in the entire state. I hope that this law gets contested; it'll take a brave teacher to do it, but I think there are Constitutional grounds against it. Seeing as how the whole legislature voted for it overwhelmingly, and many are scared to speak out against it, it'll be a very, very tough fight. Humans have an enormous predilection for nonsense, and those of us in the reality-based community have been fighting it for centuries. But science tends to win out in the long run; ask any smallpox virus about that. And like a disease, antiscience can be fought back. Shining a light on it will help, and I have no doubt the attention - and ridicule -- of the world on the Louisiana politicians (and the reluctance of high-tech companies to build there) will go a long way to inoculating other states against this creeping plague. But many other states are at risk (Texas, Oklahoma, Michigan, and on and on). Never flag, never tire, and never assume you're safe. Keep fighting, people. Because I guarantee this victory for the bad guys in Louisiana will embolden them. Keep fighting. Hat tip to Mike Smail for letting me know about the newspaper article.

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