The publishing company of a marine science textbook designed for Florida high schools will remove two sidebar pages that contain what critics call "pro-creationism" material and information that is "bad science."
A spokesman for Current Publishing Corp. recently told the Orlando Sentinel the two pages in Life on an Ocean Planet were intended as a "critical thinking exercise for students." In fact, he noted that "everywhere else in the book, we teach evolution, and we teach it to The Sunshine State standards." But the publishers maintain those two pages seem intent on misinforming students or rehashing discredited ideas.
Casey Luskin, policy analyst at the Discovery Institute, decides that those who favor evolution are intolerant of any scientific challenges.
"You can have a whole book that's pro-evolution, but if you have a couple of pages that just mention the fact that there are some scientists out there who are raising some questions, that's way too much for them," Luskin suggests. "They want pro-Darwin-only, and that's all they're going to allow. As soon as you step out of line, they have to basically rip those pages out of the textbook [and] go and burn those pages. They do not want students learning about anybody that raises scientific challenges to evolution."
He says the real blame for what students are being taught lies with state education officials. "Florida has some of the most dogmatic science standards in the United States that really hamstring teachers from mentioning any scientific discussion of some of the weaknesses in evolution," the policy analyst points out.
Luskin adds that Life on an Ocean Planet is now being sold nationally.