Guest / Limited Access /

Anna Harvey, a bright, straight-A sophomore in Lawrence, Kansas, raised her hand in biology class one day in early 1999. "Mr. Roth, when are we going to learn about creationism?"Stan Roth exploded. "When are you going to stop believing that crap your parents teach you?" Anna was stunned, and within five months Roth was removed from the classroom. Some say the irascible high-school teacher was about to be fired anyway; others wonder if it was mere coincidence that, three months after he was forced to retire, the Kansas Board of Education voted 6-4 to de-emphasize the speculative aspects of evolution& amp;mdash;a move that sparked a national debate.Other states reacted swiftly. In Kentucky, education officials replaced the word evolution, which had been added to the guidelines for the first time last spring, with an earlier locution: change over time. The New Mexico Board of Education went the other way, revoking 1996 standards requiring teachers to "present the evidence for and against" evolution, and reverting to a one-sided presentation. Oklahoma's State Textbook Committee inserted a disclaimer into science books stating that evolution is controversial (identical to a disclaimer in Alabama textbooks)& amp;mdash;a decision later struck down by the attorney general. Kanawha County, West Virginia, voted down a resolution permitting teachers to present "theories for and against the theories of evolution." Similar brushfires continue burning in other states. Small wonder that the Associated Press voted the Kansas controversy the state's top story of 1999.Oddly, similar controversies had erupted in several other places not long before& amp;mdash;California, Colorado, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska, Oregon, and Washington. Yet ...

Subscriber access only You have reached the end of this Article Preview

To continue reading, subscribe now. Subscribers have full digital access.

Read These NextSee Our Latest
RecommendedThe Wrong Kind of Christian
Subscriber Access Only The Wrong Kind of Christian
I thought a winsome faith would win Christians a place at Vanderbilt’s table. I was wrong.
TrendingNine Current Mars Hill Pastors Tell Mark Driscoll To Step Down from All Ministry
Nine Current Mars Hill Pastors Tell Mark Driscoll To Step Down from All Ministry
(UPDATED) Mars Hill responds Friday to leaked letter, says 'our team is Jesus, not one group of elders or another.'
Editor's PickDesire and Deliverance
Desire and Deliverance
Three new documentaries examine Christian faith, homosexuality, and the question of change.
Comments
Christianity Today
We're Not in Kansas Anymore
hide thisMay 22 May 22

In the Magazine

May 22, 2000

To continue reading, subscribe now for full print and digital access.