Nearly a year ago, I introduced you to an old (young) pal of mine, Zack Kopplin, who is fighting to repeal a law in Louisiana that allows creationism to be taught in public schools. At that time he wrote:
I’ve spent the past year fighting to repeal my state’s creationism law, the misnamed and misguided Louisiana Science Education Act (LSEA). The Louisiana Legislature passed the LSEA in 2008 with the goal of sneaking creationism into the public school science classroom. It’s a so called “academic freedom” law, claiming to encourage critical thinking but in reality advancing political, not scientific controversies through unapproved supplemental materials.
Nobody needs a law to teach critical thinking. That is the nature of science and good education in general. On the other hand, if you want to sneak non-science like creationism into the classroom, you do need a law.
This law is unconstitutional. It confuses students about the nature of science. And, as Nobel Laureate Sir Harry Kroto said, it makes my state a “laughingstock.”
Worst of all, it hurts Louisiana students’ chances of getting into the colleges they want or landing the cutting edge science job that they may want. Colleges, research institutions, and companies will doubt the quality of a science education short on evolution and mired in politics, and will place their bets on graduates from science friendly states instead.
Zack is not only one impressive teenager and a really nice guy, he’s also sharp as a tack as you can see, as well as persistent. He needs to be to slog through this battle.
He dropped me a line letting me know he was on The Melissa Perry Show this last weekend (which airs early in the morning while I’m still snoozing away, so I’m glad he alerted me) and that an interview was also written up on her blog site. Another great guy and someone I’ve loved getting to know on Twitter, Jamil Smith (@JamilSmith) wrote the post. Please give it a read.
Thank you, Melissa and Jamil, for giving Zack Kopplin and his cause the attention they deserve.
You can participate in an online day of action here.
You can find Zack on Twitter at @ZackKopplin and @RepealtheLSEA. Keep up the good work and don’t give up!