They're not doomed yet, but the folks of Florida's Polk county are headed that way:
A majority of Polk County School Board members say they support teaching intelligent design in addition to evolution in public schools.
I have to come right out and say this: the incredible ignorance of this type of thinking is mind numbing (and read the whole article for a series of chillingly horrifying quotations from the School Board members on this issue). Does no one remember what happened in Dover, Pennsylvania, just two short years ago? Humiliating national attention, huge amounts of money and time wasted, ruinous attention spotlit right on the disgrace that is creationism and Intelligent Design... and in the end, a crystal clear ruling showing unequivocally that ID is the exact same thing as creationism, and that many people promoting it (cough cough Discovery Institute) are nothing more than a pack of evil liars?
Yet here we have 4 out of 7 school board members saying they should teach ID, with one being unsure.
Truthfully, if I had put myself in suspended animation 10 years ago and revived today, I would swear I would have woken up in a real life version of 1984, or else my brain had been damaged and I was experiencing some sort of phantasm or fugue.
If things in Polk County continue down this course, then I sure hope the taxpayers don't mind seeing a few million bucks thrown down a rabbit hole. Because if the Board thinks ID needs to be added to the schools' curriculum, then they are in a for a whole lot more trouble then they bargained for.
Still, there is some hope. One board member who is firmly anchored in reality made an excellent statement:
Jonathan Smith, a retired engineer from Lakeland and member of the board of directors for Florida Citizens of Science, and Joe Wolf, president of the group, plan to tell the board that intelligent design is a religious concept, not scientific theory. Smith said that he will remind the board of what occurred in Dover, Pa., in 2005 when school board members there wanted intelligent design taught in classrooms.
"You can't teach two sides when there isn't a second side," Smith said. "There isn't."
Good on ya, Mr. Smith. I hope that 1) the other Board members heed him and 2) the voters in Polk County show those four pro-fantasy Board members the door as soon as possible. Otherwise...