Texas Versus Science

 Posted by on 4 December 2007 at 8:15 am  Religion
Dec 042007

Yup, it’s government by religious dogma in Texas:

AUSTIN, Tex., Nov. 29 (AP) — The state’s director of science curriculum said she resigned this month under pressure from officials who said she had given the appearance of criticizing the teaching of intelligent design. The Texas Education Agency put the director, Chris Comer, on 30 days’ paid administrative leave in late October, resulting in what Ms. Comer called a forced resignation.

The move came shortly after she forwarded an e-mail message announcing a presentation by Barbara Forrest, an author of “Creationism’s Trojan Horse.” The book argues that creationist politics are behind the movement to get intelligent design theory taught in public schools. Ms. Comer sent the message to several people and a few online communities.

Ms. Comer, who held her position for nine years, said she believed evolution politics were behind her ousting. “None of the other reasons they gave are, in and of themselves, firing offenses,” she said. Education agency officials declined to comment Wednesday on the matter. But they explained their recommendation to fire Ms. Comer in documents obtained by The Austin American-Statesman through the Texas Public Information Act. “Ms. Comer’s e-mail implies endorsement of the speaker and implies that T.E.A. endorses the speaker’s position on a subject on which the agency must remain neutral,” the officials said. The agency documents say that officials recommended firing Ms. Comer for repeated acts of misconduct and insubordination.

The officials said forwarding the e-mail message conflicted with her job responsibilities and violated a directive that she not communicate with anyone outside the agency regarding a pending science curriculum review. The documents criticize Ms. Comer for giving a presentation and attending an off-site meeting without approval. It also said she had complained that “there was no real leadership at the agency.”

This incident speaks volumes about the commitment to teaching religiously-motivated pseudo-science in the state government of Texas. Creationism has become dogma. To dissent — to even suggest some exposure to criticisms of creationism — is unacceptable. That’s not good news.

(Via Americans United for Separation of Church and State.)

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