Louisiana House Adopts Academic Freedom Bill on Evolution and Other Science Issues
The Louisiana House of Representatives just approved the Louisiana Science Education Act by an overwhelming bipartisan vote of 94-3. The bill previously passed the Louisiana Senate by a vote of 35-0. Because there was a minor amendment to the bill in the House, the bill now goes back to the Senate for its concurrence, but the original author of the bill (Senator Nevers) has indicated his support for the slightly amended version, and so Senate concurrence is likely.
The Louisiana Science Education Act is designed to safeguard the right of Louisiana teachers "to create and foster an environment within public elementary and secondary schools that promotes critical thinking skills, logical analysis, and open and objective discussion of scientific theories being studied including, but not limited to, evolution, the origins of life, global warming, and human cloning." The bill emphatically states that it "shall not be construed to promote any religious doctrine, promote discrimination for or against a particular set of religious beliefs, or promote discrimination for or against religion or nonreligion." Thus, any claims that this bill is about "creationism" are completely bogus.
Prior to the House vote, Rep. Frank Hoffmann gave an excellent statement of the reasons for the bill, emphasizing that its focus is on science and that it cannot be used to promote religion. I'm sure the other side will now go into overdrive trying to misrepresent the bill. Let's hope people actually read the legislation for themselves so they will see that the hysterical rhetoric of the other side is just that--rhetoric.