Friday, May 26, 2006

Federal Court Throws Out Ruling in Cobb County Trial

On Thursday, May 25, 2006, the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit ruled in favor of keeping an open mind. The federal court, made up of three justices (one appointed by former President Bush, one by former President Clinton, and one by current President Bush) voted unanimously to send back the case discussing the constitutionality of disclaimers in science texts to the trial court. The earlier decision in the case Selman v. Cobb County School District ordered that disclaimers be removed from biology textbooks in the Cobb County School District in Georgia.

The disclaimer at the center of the controversy read: "This textbook contains material on evolution. Evolution is a theory, not a fact, regarding the origin of living things. This material should be approached with an open mind, studied carefully, and critically considered." The complaint, voiced during the trial, from evolutionists, such at Dr. Kenneth Miller, Ph.D., a professor at Brown University and co-author of the biology textbook Biology, was with the phrase "this material should be approached with an open mind...."

This decision stops short of declaring the disclaimer constitutional, but it demands that more evidentiary hearings be held before a ruling be rendered. While disclaimers are not the best way to approach the ID and evolution issue in schools, to demand a disclaimer removed that makes no mention of intelligent design and asks students to keep an open mind is unreasonable. The court made the right decision in throwing out the lower court's decision.

3 comments:

Cody said...

"Federal Court Throws Out Ruling in Cobb County Trial"

"The federal court . . . voted unanimously to send back the case discussing the constitutionality of disclaimers in science texts to the trial court."

Well, which one is it?

Anonymous said...

I don't understand the confusion--this is basically the same thing. The federal court is telling the lower court to try the case again.

The federal court "throws out" the first ruling and "sends back" the case to the lower court for them to try again. It's like a retest--the teacher throws out the first grade and makes the student do the same test again.

Cody said...

Hmm, I read too much into it, then. Pay no heed to my original post!