Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Louisiana Science Education Act, signed into law in 2008 by biology major Gov. Bobby Jindal and derided by supporters of mainstream biology education as a Trojan Horse for creationists, is being targeted by a bill that would repeal the controversial act.On Friday, Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, D-New Orleans, pre-filed Senate Bill 70. The LSEA, heavily lobbied for by Louisiana Family Forum, allows biology teachers to “supplement” the biology curriculum by introducing materials that question the validity of evolution and introduce students to Intelligent Design, a pseudo-science that cloaks itself in scientific terminology while positing that because life on earth is so complex its genesis must be due to a creator, or intelligent designer. ID is designed to skirt clear and unequivocal federal rulings against teaching creationism in public school. Our segue into Pas Bon is this: The LSEA enjoyed overwhelming bipartisan support when it cleared the Legislature; its repeal is highly unlikely.

Amid the steady stream of positive economic news for Lafayette specifically and Louisiana in general comes a sobering reminder that we’re not immune to the nation’s economic torpor: Nearly 1,400 homes in Louisiana were taken back by lenders in the first quarter of 2011, according to national foreclosure tracking firm RealtyTrac. For the January-March period, 5,275 properties in the state faced some type of foreclosure-related activity ranging from default notices to repossession. Overall foreclosure actions in the state jumped 10.8 percent from the fourth quarter of last year and were up an alarming 34.4 percent compared to the first quarter of 2010. Lafayette, meanwhile, recorded 291 foreclosure-related actions in the first quarter, affecting one in every 391 housing units. That was up 8.6 percent from the fourth quarter of 2010 and up more than 21 percent from the first quarter of 2010.

Open letter to Downtown Lafayette Unlimited: Don’t just look out the window, y’all; call a meteorologist. And be patient. Around 6 p.m. Friday, after the humidity had been flushed out of the Hub City by a delightful cool front and as the sun shone its beneficent face upon us, our frisky, end-of-the-week throw-down known as Downtown Alive! was dead, quashed by DLU in a spasm of acute weather anxiety. Indeed, the sky was gray and the thunder a-rumbled in the distance that afternoon, but DLU put the kibosh on DTA a little after 3 p.m., three hours before the scheduled first tune from NIK-L-BEER, the world’s most bad-ass cover band ever.

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