Agape Press Responds to the Decision
After completing the previous entry, I visited the Agape Press website. They responded to the decision in precisely the manner I predicted at the end of my previous entry:
A Christian attorney says a federal judge has joined the ACLU in its crusade against critical thinking by ruling that a suburban Atlanta school district must remove an evolution disclaimer from science books.
On Thursday (January 13), U.S. District Court Judge Clarence Cooper ordered the Cobb County Board of Education must remove from inside the textbooks a sticker that says “Evolution is a theory not a fact, regarding the origin of living things.” Continuing, the sticker admonished students that the material “should be approached with an open mind, studied carefully, and critically considered.”
Evidently the caveats did nothing to dissuade Judge Cooper, who said the stickers violate the Establishment Clause of the U.S. Constitution. Parents and the American Civil Liberties Union had challenged the stickers in court, arguing they violated the “separation of church and state” -- and Cooper agreed.
Actually, the parents and the ACLU argued that the stickers violated the Establishment Clause of the first amendment, as well as the Georgia state constitution.
But what really struck me about the Agape Press article was this paragraph:
But Brian Fahling, an attorney with a Mississippi-based pro-family organization, says the stickers do not constitute a violation of the Establishment Clause.
“I think it's absolutely beyond the pale that we live in a nation where the fact that maybe people who had religious beliefs [and] wanted to encourage their students to think with an open mind is somehow now a violation of the Establishment Clause,” says Fahling. “It just makes one unable to comprehend how the judge got there -- other than ultimately a hostility, I think, to religion.”
Of course, the judge wrote forty-four pages explaining how he arrived at his decision. He based his finding on the Lemon test, relevant Court precedents for applying the Lemon test, and the evidence that was before him. But as I mentioned before, subtelties like that are too difficult for the religious right to contemplate.