Evolution’s critics shift tactics with schools

They have spent years working school boards, with only minimal success. Now, critics of evolution are turning to a higher authority, reports the Wall Street Journal: state legislators. In a bid to shape biology lessons, evolution’s critics are promoting what they call "academic freedom" bills that would encourage or require public-school teachers to cast doubt on a cornerstone of modern science. A handful of states have considered such bills in recent years, but backers are now organizing a national movement, with high-profile help from actor Ben Stein. His new documentary, "Expelled," argues that educators suffer reprisals if they dare question evolution; in an attempt to spur action, he has held private screenings for legislators, including a recent showing in the Missouri statehouse (http://www.eschoolnews.com/news/top-news/related-top-news/?i=53604). The academic-freedom bills now in circulation vary in detail. Some require teachers to critique evolution. Others let educators choose their approach–but guarantee they won’t be disciplined should they decide to build a case against Darwin. The common goal: To expose more students to articles and videos that undercut evolution…

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