Public Funding for Teaching Creationism? La. Tries Again

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Adam & Eve

July 31, 2012; Source: The Advocate (Associated Press)

Louisiana has a new school voucher program funded by taxpayers. The taxpayers will reportedly find themselves paying religious schools to teach students creationism and to reject evolution.

As an example, the Associated Press cites the online handbook of Ascension Christian School, which explains that students “will be expected to defend creationism through evidence presented by the Bible versus traditional scientific theory.” “Household of Faith” schools Ascension (which will get 10 voucher students) and Faith Academy (which will get 41 voucher students) will receive a total of $250,000 in voucher payments from the state.

At Northlake Christian High School, 18 voucher students will be taught “a creation worldview of life origins” according to the curriculum of the biology teacher. Slated to receive $375,000 in voucher payments, the Northlake teacher has rejected fossil evidence of evolution on a website, stating that such evidence is incompatible with the Bible.

The Ascension, Faith, and Northlake science curricula might make it tougher for voucher students to pass the state’s required science test, which Superintendent of Education John White says “measures evolution;” that’s an odd phrasing, but presumably he means that evolution is on the state test. It’s unclear to us whether a student could bomb any question(s) related to evolution but still pass the test overall.

Two elements of this story are worth noting. First, Louisiana once had a law mandating equal time for teaching creationism in public schools, but the U.S. Supreme Court nixed it as promoting religion. With 19 religious schools in the voucher program apparently pledged to teach creationism, doesn’t the voucher problem look like a circumvention of the Supreme Court decision? A little obvious, don’t you think?

Second, article notes that Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, whose undergraduate degree was in biology, supports the teaching of creationism and says that the theory of evolution has “flaws and gaps.” Jindal, a high-profile Republican, is no dummy. To the contrary, as a kid, Jindal was named to the USA TODAY All-USA Academic Team in 1992. Although he was accepted to both Harvard Medical and Yale Law, Jindal instead became a Rhodes scholar at Oxford. Do you really think that Jindal doesn’t believe—check that, doesn’t know—that evolution is fact, not a speculative hypothesis? Jindal may believe in free market economics, but there’s not a chance that he really believes in creationism. As for his comments about evolution’s “flaws and gaps,” it’s true that we learn new things about evolution all the time. New discoveries fill in gaps in the record, but that hardly means that the theory (not hypothesis) of evolution doesn’t work and merits being replaced by creationism.

Using taxpayer-funded vouchers to support nonprofit and religious schools to teach creationism amounts to a misuse of public funds in support of institutionalized ignorance.—Rick Cohen

  • Theot58

    There is an inference in this article that Evolution is a proven scientific “fact”, but is it?
    “Evolution” is a vague word. The main defintions in the text books are:
    1) “change over time”, this is silly as it is stating the flaming obvious.
    2) Micro evolution is minor changes within a species, this is real and observable and uncontested.
    3) Darwinian/Macro evolution (where the conflict is) which asserts that:
    a) All living things had a common ancestor. This implies that your great….. great grandfather was a self replicating molecule.
    b) The observable world has come into existence by totally natural, unguided processes and specifically WITHOUT the involvement of an intelligent designer.
    The vague and changing definition is poor science and a thinly disguised strategy to make it easier to defend and propagate.

    The evolution battle is often MISrepresented as science against religion – this is baloney!
    The real battle is between good science and Darwinism. When Darwinian/Macro evolution is scrutinised using the scientific method, it crumbles.
    The scientific method demands: observation, measurement, repeatability. Darwinian/Macro evolution has none of these, all it has is circumstantial evidence which is open to interpretation. Ask yourself: What evidence is there that our great …. great grandfather was a self replicating molecule?

    Dr John Sanford (Geneticist and inventor of the GeneGun) said .
    “The bottom line is that the primary axiom [of Darwinian/Macro evolution] is categorically false,
    you can’t create information with misspellings, not even if you use natural selection.”

    I do not have a problem with vouchers going to schools question the Evolution myth and apply the scientific method fully in the science classroom.

  • Brandt Hardin

    Here in TN, they have taken steps though new legislation to allow creationism back into the classroom. This law turns the clock back nearly 100 years here in the seemingly unprogressive South and is simply embarrassing. There is no argument against the Theory of Evolution other than that of religious doctrine. The Monkey Law only opens the door for fanatic Christianity to creep its way back into our classrooms. You can see my visual response as a Tennessean to this absurd law on my artist’s blog at with some evolutionary art and a little bit of simple logic.

  • theot58

    Your comment “There is no argument against the Theory of Evolution other than that of religious doctrine” is provable wrong.
    I note that you do not define what you mean by “Evolutoin”. The inference is that you are referring to Darwinian/Macro evolution, hence my strong objection. Evolutionist continually confuse and deceive the general public with the asssertion that all who oppose Evolution do so for religious reasons – this is baloney.

    There is significant dissent from Darwinism. For proof of the dissent to go and download the list of brave scientists who are willing to publicly declare their dissent from Darwinian/Macro evolution. Micro Evolution is observable science, Darwinian/Macro evolution is a fairytale supported only by propaganda.

    Consider just a small number of fundamental problems with Darwinian/Macro evolution
    1) Where did the information come from to build the DNA molecule?
    2) How did genders “evolve”?
    3) How do you explain symbiotic relationships while holding to gradual “evolution”?
    – eg The bees need the flowers, the flowers need the bees – they both MUST exist togeter, how could this occur slowly or gradually
    4) Where are all the myriad of transition fossils that Darwin predicted?
    – They were missing then and they are missing now

    NASA Director Wernher von Braun said, (1972)
    “For me, the idea of a creation is not conceivable without invoking the necessity of design….
    Certainly there are those who argue that the universe evolved out of a random process, but what random process could produce the brain of man or the system of the human eye.”