Montana bill would ban teaching of scientific theories in schools

Montana freshman Senator Daniel Emrich (R) thinks children shouldn't be taught scientific theories. He introduced Senate Bill 235, which says, "The trustees of a school district shall ensure that science curriculum and instructional materials, including textbooks, used in the district include only scientific fact."

Montana Public Radio reports that more than 20 people testified against the bill to voice their concern "that it could keep teachers from including gravitational theory, evolution and cell theory in curriculum."

In his testimony, Emrich "If we operate on the assumption that a theory is fact, unfortunately, it leads us to asking questions that may be potentially based on false assumptions," Emrich said.

We know what Emrich is up to. He wants to ban the teaching of the theory of evolution, which is a well-substantiated explanation based on a large body of factual evidence, not assumptions. His dangerous and misguided bill creates a false dichotomy between science and scientific theories, and undermines the principles of academic freedom and the separation of church and state.

I can't get upset with Emrich, however. The GOP relies on a large base of poorly-educated voters and he is only doing his part to make sure there are enough ignorant people to keep his party afloat.