A Baton Rouge native who last year led the fight the repeal the creationist-friendly Louisiana Science Education Act — an effort he is again spearheading in this year’s legislative session — is one of two recipients of this year’s Friend of Darwin award from the National Center for Science Education.
Zach Kopplin, now a freshman at Rice University, shares this year’s distinction with Judy Scotchmoor, assistant director for education and public programs at the University of California Museum of Paleontology. Kopplin was a senior at Baton Rouge Magnet High last year when his attempt to repeal the LSEA died in committee. State Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, D-New Orleans, is once again sponsoring the legislation that would repeal the 2008 act. Seventy-five Nobel laureates in the sciences have endorsed Kopplin’s effort.
According to the NCSE, the “Friend of Darwin award is presented annually to a select few whose efforts to support NCSE and advance its goal of defending the teaching of evolution in the public schools have been truly outstanding.” Recent recipients include Tammy Kitzmiller — plus six fellow plaintiffs — the namesake for “Kitzmiller, et al v. Dover Area School District,” the watershed 2004 federal lawsuit in Pennsylvania that tied Intelligent Design to creationism and prohibited instruction of the topic in public school science classrooms.
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OCT 31 The National Journal posts another story from its visit to NOLA, this one about the struggling Vietnamese shrimpers in the area. The publication has been looking at how the state is recovering from Katrina, nine years later.
OCT 31 The New York Times posts this look at Louisiana politics, and how national issues are forcing out the old-time local politicking. Of course they mention EWE, aptly described as an old-time politician known for "charming one half of the state and mortifying the other."
OCT 31 Here's an AP story on the ABC site about Louisiana's chicken little response to an international medical conference planned in NOLA this weekend. Organizers (who are actual physicians, as opposed to the hand-wringing state officials who issued the edicts) say the orders are "unfortunate" given that a main focus of the meeting was Ebola.
OCT 31 Given the things Bobby Jindal has said and done since he's been governor, it's a pretty safe bet he thinks we're a bunch of dummies. Apparently, he's sure President Obama is one, too. This story on Huff Post quotes Jindal as saying the president - a graduate of Harvard Law - should sue to get his money back. (What should a Brown biology grad who doesn't believe in evolution do?)
OCT 31 Us old folks are used to a two-party system, although most of us aren't sold on its success. But what if that system wasn't in place; what if politics reflected the true level of diversity among voters? That's what an LSU student is dreaming of in this editorial. He sees the two parties' control of our politics as limiting.
OCT 31 And you thought the Senate race was dirty. This post on the Forward Now blog tells the story of a Shreveport mayoral campaign worker who was paid to "infiltrate" and "sabotage" an opponent's campaign. Karma's a beeotch, though, because turns out the guy really liked the "enemy," and now he's supporting her. For real.
OCT 30 The National Journal offers this analysis of Bobby Jindal's willingness to stump in any Senate campaign that's not in Louisiana. Why is that? The Journal asks some GOPers and finds that the answer is one we already know: he's so unpopular here, because he's been so busy running for President, that his support might be "toxic."
OCT 30 Blogger Tom Aswell is still all over the OGB mess - and all by himself, apparently. In this post, he's revealing orders from the Jindal administration to destroy records from the state employee health insurance plan. Those orders (he's heard) have angered the Secretary of State and caused an administration lawyer to quit her job. Wow!
OCT 30 A NOLA lady has alleged she was drugged and raped at a Bywater club that had a clothing-optional policy until recently, and she's now become the victim of a smear campaign, columnist Jarvis DeBerry writes in this post. She chose to reveal her story and her name, and she's being punished for that now, he says.
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