Over at Seed , Josh Rosenau describes his organization's long, failed attempt to get the Texas School Board to adopt evolution-friendly standards for the state's textbooks. Much as I'd like to, I cannot get exercised over this issue; my own public, and later parochial, elementary education was full of so much misinformation (America will run out of landfills by the year 1990! Marijuana kills! New York City is the capital of New York!) that my expectations remain unflappably low.
What I find more interesting is how such a narrow group of political actors effectively controls a wide swath of the the textbook market. Given the size of the state, publishers are likely to tailor their books to conform to the standards set by Texas; the same books are then sold to smaller states, so millions of non-Texan kids read what Texas tells them to read. Or, more precisely, what the 15 people on the Texas School Board tell them to read. Seven of those 15 are creationists, one of whom was moved to shout, during recent hearings, "Someone's got to stand up to the experts!" Mission accomplished.
TODAY IN SLATE
Meet the New Bosses
How the Republicans would run the Senate.
The Government Is Giving Millions of Dollars in Electric-Car Subsidies to the Wrong Drivers
Scotland Is Just the Beginning. Expect More Political Earthquakes in Europe.
Cheez-Its. Ritz. Triscuits.
Why all cracker names sound alike.
Friends Was the Last Purely Pleasurable Sitcom
This Whimsical Driverless Car Imagines Transportation in 2059
- Protesters Take to the Streets to Sound Alarm on Climate Change in New York, Across the World
- Knife-Carrying White House Jumper is Vet who Feared “Atmosphere Was Collapsing”
- North Korea: American Sentenced to Hard Labor Wanted to Become “Second Snowden”
- Almost One in Four Americans Support Idea of Splitting From the Union
Did America Get Fat by Drinking Diet Soda?
A high-profile study points the finger at artificial sweeteners.