Science and Religion Twenty Years After Mclean V. Arkansas

I. Introduction The conventional wisdom in constitutional law is that the debate that began with the famous Scopes trial in 19251 over the teaching of origins in public school science classrooms officially ended in 1987. In that year the U.S. Supreme Court, in Edwards v. Aguillard, 2 struck down a Louisiana statute, the Balanced Treatment Act, that required its public Read More ›

Public Education, Religious Establishment, and the Challenge of Intelligent Design

In 1987, in Edwards v. Aguillard, the United States Supreme Court declared unconstitutional a Louisiana statute (the Balanced-Treatment Act) that required the state’s public schools to teach Creationism if evolution was taught and to teach evolution if Creationism was taught.’ That decision was the culmination of a series of court battles and cultural conflicts that can be traced back to the famous Scopes Trial of 1925 in Dayton, Tennessee. Although many thought, and continue to think, that Edwards ended the debate over the teaching of origins in public schools, a new movement, made up of largely well-educated and well-credentialed scholars, has given it new life. Read More ›