WICHITA, Kan., March 14 (UPI) -- Policymakers in 19 U.S. states are debating the question of teaching the theory of evolution in schools, the Washington Post reported Monday.
The move is led largely by political conservatives who prefer the Christian biblical account of creation. President Bush further fanned the flames by declaring the jury is still out on evolution.
In Seattle, the nonprofit Discovery Institute spends more than $1 million a year for research, polls and media pieces supporting divine creation. In Fort Lauderdale, Christian evangelist James Kennedy established a Creation Studies Institute. In Virginia, Liberty University is sponsoring the Creation Mega Conference with a Kentucky group called Answers in Genesis, which raised $9 million in 2003.
"Every one of these groups is now actively engaged in trying to undercut sound science education by criticizing evolution," said Barry Lynn, executive director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State. "Even the people who don't specifically mention religion are hard-pressed with a straight face to say who the intelligent designer is if it's not God."