|Tennessee v. John T. Scopes Trial: George Washington Rappleyea (l) and John Thomas Scopes (r) (Photo credit: Smithsonian Institution)|
For years, an anti-science, right-wing faction of the Texas State Board of Education has done all it can to undermine the science of evolution and climate change by giving equal weight to unscientific beliefs like climate change denial and creationism -- the idea that dinosaurs and humans coexisted, and Earth is just 7,000 years old. The final vote on this matter will take place this Friday – on November 22 – deciding what science materials will be in Texas classrooms for the next decade.
I’ve been fighting to keep creationism, climate change denial and other junk science out of public school textbooks since I was in high school. Now as a student at Rice University in Houston, I’m furious that the same right-wing extremists are trying to insert their ideological agenda and their religious and unscientific views into science classrooms and textbooks in Texas.
That's why I started my own campaign on CREDOMobilize.com, which allows activists to start their own petitions. My petition, which is to the Texas State Board of Education, demands the following:
Stand up for science and approve public school science textbooks that are based on sound, peer-reviewed scholarship – not the opinions of politicians and culture warriors whose personal views aren't backed up by real science.Tell the Texas State Board of Education: Stand up for science and only approve books that are based on sound, peer-reviewed science scholarship.
Because of the advocacy and public protest of thousands of activists from CREDO Action, the Texas Freedom Network and other pro-science groups, all 14 major textbook publishers have refused to water down or compromise instruction on evolution and climate change in their proposed new biology books.
Now those science textbooks face their biggest threat — the 15 politicians who sit on the Texas State Board of Education. The state board, including its creationist chair and other anti-science members, takes up consideration of these materials this Friday.
We want students to learn real science in their classrooms, not discredited creationist arguments that will leave them unprepared for college and the jobs of the 21st century.
Whether you have school-age kids or not, this fight is too important to the future of Texas and the nation to ignore. With 5 million students, Texas is one of the country's biggest buyers of textbooks, and has "significant influence on the textbook available for classrooms across the nation."1
Will you join me and add your name to my petition to demand the Texas State Board of Education to stand up for science and only approve books that are based on sound, peer-reviewed science scholarship?
Thank you for your support.