Creationism advocates are furious about the recent loss of an anti-evolution majority on the Kansas school board. Watergate figure and high-profile Religious Right operative Chuck Colson bemoaned the “censorship” of not mandating the instruction of “Intelligent Design” creationism in public schools. Wichita pastor Terry Fox (who quit his church shortly after the election to be a full-time activist against same-sex marriage, abortion, and evolution) called evolution a “cult” and “the mother of all liberalism” and cited the “homosexual agenda” and “taking Christ out of Christmas” as related reasons to elect right-wing school board members. Board member Connie Morris, who called evolution a “fairytale” and lost her bid for re-election to a moderate, blamed the “lying liberal media” for her defeat, and Kansas “Intelligent Design” advocate John Calvert complained of a “propaganda” campaign of “systematic misinformation” that Kansas might have trouble competing for science-related business if it maintained a standard of science education opposed by almost all scientific societies.
Now right-wing stalwart Phyllis Schlafly weighs in, claiming that those who take their cues on public-school science curricula from scientists are out to stifle children’s laughter and quash their dreams:
Liberals see the political value to teaching evolution in school, as it makes teachers and children think they are no more special than animals. Childhood joy and ambition can turn into depression as children learn to reject that they were created in the image of God.
Schlafly claims that “The issue in the Kansas controversy was not intelligent design and certainly not creationism,” preferring to refer to “the movement to allow criticism of evolution.” She notes that the Kansas standards point to a non-binding statement that came out of the congressional conference committee negotiating the No Child Left Behind Act that singles out evolution as a “controversy” and calls on schools to teach the “full range of scientific views that exist.”
But as the National Center for Science Education details, the so-called Santorum Amendment – partially designed by “Intelligent Design” advocates as part of a long-term strategy to undermine scientific instruction – was never passed into law.