By Barbara Forrest
Well, friends, the fun just never stops here in Louisiana. As the saying goes, “Here we go again.” What, you ask, is the state of Louisiana up to now?
We now have a Texas-style attack on the selection of biology textbooks, courtesy of the Louisiana Family Forum (LFF), which brought us the creationist Louisiana Science Education Act (LSEA) of 2008. (See the LFF’s “Action Item” in its August 10, 2010, Family Facts newsletter.) This attack began with a volley of letters written by LFF operative Darrell White to various Louisiana newspapers in July of this year. (See White’s July 22, 2010, letter in the Hammond Daily Star. See my response in the July 26 Daily Star.) However, the process has been developing under the radar. The November 9, 2010, story on the front page of the Baton Rouge Advocate has now provided a glimpse of what may be about to happen on Friday, November 12, at a meeting of the Textbook/Media/Advisory Council in Baton Rouge [agenda here (pdf)]. According to the Advocate article, the LFF and its followers just have all kinds of problems with the biology textbooks.
Critics contend some biology I, biology II and other school books under scrutiny for public classrooms put too much credence in Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution.
‘It is like Charles Darwin and his theory is a saint,’ said Winston White, of Baton Rouge, who filed a comment with state officials reviewing the textbooks. . . .
Darrell White, who is the father of Winston White and is co-founder of the Louisiana Family Forum, said the proposed biology textbooks he reviewed fail to meet the benchmarks spelled out in a  law aimed at expanding classroom talks on the theory of evolution.
‘If this was a beauty contest, we have got all ugly contestants in these biology textbooks,’ [Darrell] White said.
And — hush my puppies! — the article says that “In written comments to state officials, David Mathers, of West Monroe, said he would ‘like to see intelligent design explained as an alternate theory to the theory of evolution.’” Moreover, Curt Eberts of Monroe “faulted a biology textbook he reviewed for lacking material on the concept of intelligent design.” One would think that these folks were coordinating their efforts, wouldn’t one?
The meeting is open to the public, and concerned citizens may want to attend. But first, a little history is in order, because this goes all the way back to 2002, when the LFF made its first attempt to influence the selection of state-approved biology textbooks. So let’s take a little stroll down memory lane. Continue Reading »