Two days ago I wrote about candidates for both the Fremont and Lake Zurich school boards, in northern Illinois, who were in favor of teaching creationism alongside evolution in public school science classes. I was distressed to learn that all four of the Lake Zurich candidates answered “yes” to the question, “Do you believe that creationism should be taught alongside evolution in science classes?”
Cue a rapid retreat of three of them (all incumbents) after they were excoriated for their stand. As the Daily Herald reports,
In a separate telephone interview, [Doug] Goldberg said he misunderstood the context of the original question.
Goldberg said he’s researched the issue since the original Daily Herald interview session and understands teaching creationism in science class is against the law.
In a separate telephone interview, [Tony] Pietro said he misunderstood the question and didn’t remember that it specifically referred to science classes.
“I would like to retract the comment as it pertains to creationism in the science classroom,” he said. “Creationism is not a scientific theory, and creationism has no place in a science classroom.”
If creationism is taught at school, it would have to be in a world culture or sociology class that gives all religions equal time, Pietro said.
He apologized for the confusion.
[Jim] Burke could not be reached for comment Friday. At the previous night’s public forum, he said he has never supported creationism in science class and that “any quote that may make it look like I do has been taken out of context.”
Nonincumbent Chris Wallace stands by his statement. People of Lake Zurich—DEFEAT HIM!
And, rattled, the Lake Zurich Board of Education published a letter on its web page asserting that creationism is not part of their school curriculum, that they’re scrupulously following the law, and that there is no “controversy” over creationism:
The Illinois Learning Standards and the laws of Illinois do not allow for the teaching of creationism in science class, and we do not do so.
For at least the past six years during which current Board members have been seated, never once has the subject of creationism been discussed or even mentioned. No sitting Board member has ever asked to have the issue of creationism put on a meeting agenda, nor has any current Board member expressed plans to do so. Simply put, the issue of whether to teach creationism in a science class is not a controversy that exists in District 95. It is a controversy that has been created by an article published by the Daily Herald last Friday.
That’s all well and good, and I’m pretty sure creationism won’t rear its head in Lake Zurich schools, but the letter is a bit disingenuous. For one thing, it was signed by Burke, Goldberg, and Pietro—the very incumbents who made the pro-creationist statements. Further, the controversy was not created by the newspaper; it was created by these three mushheads and their non-repentant crony saying stupid things in public, and betraying an ignorance of the law. They’ve already revealed their beliefs and the incumbents have shown themselves to be weasels, politicians without honor (is that an oxymoron?) For both reasons they should be defeated.
h/t: The Sensuous Curmudgeon (who really should reveal who he/she is) and Michael