Oklahoma HB 1674, one of several bills under the guise of 'academic freedom' that seeks to infiltrate science with religious myth has been introduced by Republican State Representative Gus Blackwell.
The Oklahoma Common Education committee is considering the bill, which would further blur the lines between science and religion in public schools.
According to a story filed by Mother Jones,
"…the Oklahoma Common Education committee is expected to consider a House bill that would forbid teachers from penalizing students who turn in papers attempting to debunk almost universally accepted scientific theories such as biological evolution and anthropogenic (human-driven) climate change."
Blackwell, who spent two decades working for the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma, stated,
"I proposed this bill because there are teachers and students who may be afraid of going against what they see in their textbooks. A student has the freedom to write a paper that points out that highly complex life may not be explained by chance mutations.
"[These bills are] a kind of code for people who are opposed to teaching climate change and evolution.
'Students can't say because I don't believe in this, I don't want to learn it. They have to learn it in order to look at the weaknesses."
Mother Jones points out,
"Stated another way, students could make untestable, faith-based claims in science classes without fear of receiving a poor mark."
According to the story, the Education Project Director at the National Center for Science Education, Eric Meikle, responded,
"The problem with these bills is that they're so open-ended; it's a kind of code for people who are opposed to teaching climate change and evolution. An extremely high percentage of scientists will tell you that evolution doesn't have scientific weaknesses.
"If every teacher, parent, and school board can decide what to teach on their own, you're going to have chaos. You can't deluge kids with every theory that's ever been considered since the beginning of time."
For more information, commentary and relevant links, please read the rest of the story at Mother Jones.