Intelligent Design

Here is the Response From the Los Angeles Times Explaining Their Reporting on That New Academic Freedom Law

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David Zucchino at the Los Angeles Times has graciously given permission to post the messages he and I exchanged on theTimes coverage of that new Academic Freedom law in Tennessee, and why the Times will not print a correction to their article. Please keep in mind that Mr. Zucchino’s comments, which are reproduced below, were sent to me in direct response to my query. So please read them charitably. For completeness, the three messages are reproduced below, in their original sequence.  Read more

2 Replies to “Here is the Response From the Los Angeles Times Explaining Their Reporting on That New Academic Freedom Law

  1. 1
    kairosfocus says:

    Folks:

    We have a verdict, a verdict by confession.

    LA Times: guilty of willful distortion and scapegoating, spin-laced, false accusation based yellow journalism, as charged.

    I have commented at Dr Hunter’s blog, here.

    KF

  2. 2
    DLH says:

    Zucchino appears unaware of the Santorum “Sense of the Senate” resolution (or Amendment) that was passed by the Senate in 2001 during the debate over the No Child Left Behind Act:

    “It is the sense of the Senate that— (1) good science education should prepare students to distinguish the data or testable theories of science from philosophical or religious claims that are made in the name of science; and (2) where biological evolution is taught, the curriculum should help students to understand why this subject generates so much continuing controversy, and should prepare the students to be informed participants in public discussions regarding the subject.”

    Congressional Record, June 13, 2001, p. S6147-S6148.
    There being no corresponding House language, the resolution committee incorporated Santorum’s resolution into Congress’ Conference Report for the No Child Left Behind Act which states:

    “The Conferees recognize that a quality science education should prepare students to distinguish the data and testable theories of science from religious or philosophical claims that are made in the name of science. Where topics are taught that may generate controversy (such as biological evolution), the curriculum should help students to understand the full range of scientific views that exist, why such topics may generate controversy, and how scientific discoveries can profoundly affect society.”

    2001-107th Congress-1st Session-House of Representatives Report-107 334 No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 Conference Report to accompany H.R. 1.

    See Rick Santorum, the Santorum Amendment and Intelligent Design
    See “The ‘Teach the Controversy’ Controversy”: David DeWolf Tells the True Story of the Santorum Amendment

    The Tennessee law upholding academic freedom appears to draw directly on these principles underlying The No Child Left Behind Act as stated in the Conference Report.

    When courts rule on lawsuits, they look to Congress’ Conference Reports to understand the legislature’s purpose for laws. David DeWolfe explains:

    Courts routinely treat Conference Committee Reports as authoritative statements of what legislation means. Report language, while not part of a statute in a technical sense, is typically regarded by Congress as on par with the authority of statutory language. Congress regularly provides substantive policy guidance to federal agencies through report language, including detailed instructions on how the money allocated in an appropriation bill should be spent. In fact, most earmarks for specific projects to be funded by Congressional appropriations bills are provided through report language rather than statutory language.72 Report language also typically provides authoritative guidance on how statutory language should be interpreted and applied.

    THE “TEACH THE CONTROVERSY” CONTROVERSY DAVID K. DEWOLF

    For context, see:
    THE CONSTITUTIONALITY AND PEDAGOGICAL BENEFITS OF TEACHING EVOLUTION SCIENTIFICALLY BY CASEY LUSKIN*

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