Wednesday, September 09, 2015

Review: God Sent Me: A Textbook Case on Evolution vs. Creation by Jeffrey Selman

Jeffrey Selman (website) was the lead plaintiff in a suit against the Cobb County, Georgia Board of Education which resulted in an order for it to remove a disclaimer from its public high school biology textbooks.

I've met Jeffrey twice in my activities for Americans United for Separation of Church and State, the first time to lobby against Georgia's Religious Freedom Restoration Act legislation in March 2015 and the second time to hear him speak at our Augusta, Georgia chapter meeting about his book in August 2015.

The book opened my eyes in a number of ways. Number one, reversing a policy, even one as clearly unconstitutional and as manifestly irrational as the disclaimer stickers, requires a great deal of persistence and sacrifice and willingness to endure some public criticism. Yet, if some citizens don't do this and if others don't support organizations like Americans United for Separation of Church and State and the American Civil Liberties Union which support the citizens who do undertake this, a lot of what makes the United States of America livable could disappear. Number two, politicians who do wrong will do almost anything to resist having to admit they were wrong. In this case, an active part of the voters encouraged the Board of Education's misbehavior, and the Board seemingly had an unlimited budget and appetite for legal services. Number three, minority groups must overcome their fear of the majority to assert civil rights. For readers of this blog, the majority of whom I assume are Muslim, it means we can't always wait for the WASP to defend our rights by initiating a lawsuit. We have to have confidence that the majority of our neighbors will understand that violations of civil rights, while they may initially have stronger impacts on a minority group, will eventually erode the welfare of all members of society.

Finally, please remove all Harun Yahya books from your homes and masjid libraries. They are just materials recycled from the intelligent design movement with some additional anti-Marxist rhetoric. This blog has a number of reviews of science-related books.