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Wednesday, March 26, 2008


The Evolution of a Senator

Let me start out by saying that when I was attending high school in Pinellas County less than twenty years ago, my teacher for Biology II taught evolution. She also took an off the books week to do a sex ed seminar for us after finding out that it was possible to graduate from high school without anymore sexual education than was available from the thirteen year olds hanging out at the 7-11, but that's another matter.

In any case, it never occured to me or my teacher that evolution could be reduced to being just one answer on a multiple choice quiz, but that it would also be one of the cool, new age tests where there is no wrong answer because we are all beaitiful inside - because this was science class!

Despite my misgivings over here in Pinellas, voters in Hillsborough decided to give unruly commissioner Rhonda Storms a try at being a state senator.

How wrong could I have been? Storms has brought her keen insight, rigorous logic, and smooth people skills to the Florida Senate in a huge way.

Yes, she introduced in a committee a bill to protect science teacher who protect teachers who offer alternative theories to evolution. In other words, to protect science teachers who opt not to teach science. With only Sen. Ted Deutch opposing, she shepherded the bill out of committee where it will, sadly, go before the full Senate.

The only silver lining here is that Sen. Steve Wise did amend it to prevent Holocaust deniers from getting equal time.

You heard right: Storms introduced legislation that had to be amended to prevent history teachers from being allowed to tell Florida children that the Holocaust never happened. And all this in the middle of a desperate budget crisis, a desperate mortgage crisis, and a desperate insurance crisis.

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