If some members of the Texas Board of Education have their way, more than a few of their students risk being laughed out of university-level science classes.
This morning's New York Times reports that the Texas board is delaying final approval of a widely used biology textbook because it presents evolution and climate change as scientific truth. In particular, the book "Biology," published by Pearson Education, is being challenged.
The book is being disputed by, among others, by Ide P. Trotter, who the Times identified as a chemical engineer, financial adviser and regular contributor to a website of the Creation Science Hall of Fame.
But Dr. Ronald Wetherington, professor of evolutionary anthropology at Southern Methodist University, described Trotter's complaints as "non sequiturs and irrelevant," adding that, "It was simply a morass of pseudoscientific objections."
How does any of this matter to Idaho or the rest of the nation? Texas is the nation's second-largest purchaser of textbooks behind California, and according to the Associated Press, "the Lone Star State has historically wielded enormous clout in deciding what material appears in classrooms across the country."