Judge dismisses lawsuit over Kansas science standards

Dec 9, 2014

The Associated Press

A federal judge Tuesday dismissed a lawsuit alleging that science standards for Kansas public schools promote atheism and violate the religious freedoms of students and parents.

U.S. District Judge Daniel Crabtree ruled that a nonprofit group, parents and taxpayers challenging the standards did not claim specific enough injuries from adoption of the guidelines to allow the case to go forward.

The State Board of Education last year adopted standards developed by Kansas, 25 other states and the National Research Council. The guidelines treat both evolution and climate change as key scientific concepts to be taught from kindergarten through 12th grade.

The guidelines replaced evolution-friendly standards that had been in place since 2007, and most board members believed they will improve science education by shifting the emphasis in classes to hands-on projects and experiments. The board sought the lawsuit’s dismissal.


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18 comments on “Judge dismisses lawsuit over Kansas science standards

  • The State Board of Education last year adopted standards developed by Kansas, 25 other states and the National Research Council. The guidelines treat both evolution and climate change as key scientific concepts to be taught from kindergarten through 12th grade.

    This would appear to be a useful constructive move, unless it undermines previously better science teaching.

    A federal judge Tuesday dismissed a lawsuit alleging that science standards for Kansas public schools promote atheism and violate the religious freedoms of students and parents.

    U.S. District Judge Daniel Crabtree ruled that a nonprofit group, parents and taxpayers challenging the standards did not claim specific enough injuries from adoption of the guidelines to allow the case to go forward.

    No surprises there – that faith-head objections to factual science teaching are too incoherent to make credible claims!

    @OP link – The lawsuit was filed by Citizens for Objective Public Education, a group based in the small, Wichita-area town of Peck. It had criticized the standards as an attempt to indoctrinate students into a “non-theistic” world view!

    You have to laugh at the group name selected by psychological projection and faith-head pseudo-logic!
    Citizens for Objective Public Education objecting to “non-theistic science”! – That’s about as brain addled as it comes!!!



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  • If a lawsuit succeeds in muzzling science, the people who succeeded in doing this also suffer with lower quality of life, worse medicine, lower incomes, depressed economy… Who in their right mind would like to return to the pestilence and madness of the middle ages when the church had almost complete success in muzzling science?

    In Canada, our fundamentalist prime minister muzzled all government scientists, insisting everything they say publicly be vetted through his office. A convoluted result: a 500 point drop in the Toronto stock Exchange and a massive collapse in the value of our dollar. Harper’s faith-based wishful-thinking policies simply do not work.

    Refusing to heed science is effectively deliberately choosing policies that do not work.



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  • America might be the leader of the free world and a member of the G20, but a constant flow of stories like this puts America way behind the rest of the rational world. If these people weren’t so dangerous, I could laugh at this.



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  • 4
    Miserablegit says:

    America for all its scientific progress, seems still to be unable to free itself from being held back by its retarded religious wingnuts.



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  • “Abstract stigmatic injury”; I love it, and I’ll use it from now on in place of whinge.

    This, it seems to me, is an excellent example of the religious mind-set.

    Blind faith is easy, you just have to believe in what ever takes your fancy.

    Science is hard work, but, “…it’s true whether or not you believe in it.”.



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  • I fear our nation has officially forfeited its stature as a leader of scientific exploration. We seemed doomed when the major part of the populace has a mindset that ignores the past century’s discoveries and advances. Natural science only makes sense under the the dictates of evolution and natural selection. Last week in my doctor’s office she said that the human back had to be in alignment just like God made it. I said, “You, mean, the way natural selection made it. If a god had made it, the back would not have the flaws that can only be explained by its development through evolution.” She would have none of that! How can anyone working in medicine not champion the obvious evolved development of our bodies? This scares me.



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  • A similar thing happened to me many years ago after I had a serious head injury and recovered. I went to the neurologist for a final checkup and he asked me , since I had been briefly close to death, if the experience had made me any closer to God. Although I was still young and still struggling my way toward atheism, I already sensed the impropriety of the question and answered no. He seemed disappointed, and the subject was dropped.



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  • human back

    A mother and daughter relative both have idiopathic scoliosis, that required months of wearing a back brace. They are also very Catholic (the girl was taught to fold hands for prayer whilst still in a high chair).

    I’d like to know how they reconcile god’s imperfection, alas, that question is off limits. Maybe the usual “god answered our prayer for healing” – (d’oh).



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  • Then why did their god allow this scoliosis to happen, in the first place ? O-oh… How dumb I am… Just to have the pleasure to “heal” it, of course ! Good ole naughty god… ‘Will always make me laugh.



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  • It reads like the judge threw out the suit on a technicality, because the nut jobs had filed an incomplete suit, not because he was defending rationalism or ruling on the content of the suit.
    Anyway, whether judges are elected or political appointees, we can’t assume the next generation of judges will be as science-friendly.



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  • justinesaracen Dec 11, 2014 at 5:13 am

    A similar thing happened to me many years ago after I had a serious head injury and recovered. I went to the neurologist for a final checkup and he asked me , since I had been briefly close to death, if the experience had made me any closer to God.

    Apparently brain damage can have that effect on people!

    In the most recent study, Johnstone studied 20 people with traumatic brain injuries affecting the right parietal lobe, the area of the brain situated a few inches above the right ear. He surveyed participants on characteristics of spirituality, such as how close they felt to a higher power and if they felt their lives were part of a divine plan. He found that the participants with more significant injury to their right parietal lobe showed an increased feeling of closeness to a higher power. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120419091223.htm



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