I’m pretty much at a loss for words about Kansas deciding, not for the first time, to implement education standards that “cast doubt on evolution”. It follows hard on the news that Dover, Pennsylvania kicked out all eight IDiot members of its school board who forced science teachers to read a statement in favour of intelligent design to each class. What can one say? That a democracy -- even at school board level -- gets the leaders it deserves? But what is worrying is another report today, in Wired, that the US National Academy of Science and the National Science Teachers Association used copyright law to try to block the decision in Kansas.
It is a complex issue, for sure. The two organisations refused the Kansas State Board of Education permission to extract their science education standards into the state’s own curriculum. As the article’s author, Jennifer Granick, writes:
We “copyright liberals” have been highly critical when IP owners enforce an ideological litmus test for permission to use a work. So why was there no hue and cry in the copyright blogosphere when Kansas got stung?
. . .
This is an uncomfortable issue for copyright scholars, who, if they are anything like biologists, presumably disagree with intelligent design. But we have to call the game fairly. After complaining so loudly when Disney, Diebold and NBC used copyright as a weapon, it’s hypocritical to stand by and watch as others use it to bring the Kansas Board of Education into the scientific fold.
Or is all fair in love and war? Because whatever fancy name people may give to creationism, inserting it in into science is a war on truth.
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