Saturday, March 14, 2009

Bill Would Exempt the Institute for Creation Research from State Regulation

Acting as a surrogate for Jesus Christ, Lord and Savior of the World, State Rep. Leo Berman (R - Tyler) has filed HB 2800. This bill would execute what could be termed a cosmic end-around. A Machiavellian move to make is easier for students of “Creation Science” to receive their Master’s degrees in Science, and allow them to teach their brand of science in a school.

How to do this is simple in the extreme.

The Texas Education Code, an instrument that is used to promote quality education in Texas, regulates the efforts of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board to do the following (from Subchapter G Sec. 61.301):

“It is the policy and purpose of the State of Texas to prevent deception of the public resulting from the conferring and use of fraudulent or substandard college and university degrees; it is also the purpose of this subchapter to regulate the use of academic terminology in naming or otherwise designating educational institutions, the advertising, solicitation or representation by educational institutions or their agents, and the maintenance and preservation of essential academic records. Because degrees and equivalent indicators of educational attainment are used by employers in judging the training of prospective employees, by public and private professional groups in determining qualifications for admission to and continuance of practice, and by the general public in assessing the competence of persons engaged in a wide range of activities necessary to the general welfare, regulation by law of the evidences of college and university educational attainment is in the public interest. To the same end the protection of legitimate institutions and of those holding degrees from them is also in the public interest.”

To this end State Rep Berman seeks to incur such a “deception of the public” by filing HB 2800 which would exempt from the oversight of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board any “non-profit institution” that
  • “does not accept state funding of any kind”
  • “does not accept state-administered federal funding”
  • “formed as or is affiliated with or controlled by a nonprofit corporation or nonprofit unincorporated organization” and
  • “offers bona fide degree programs that require students to complete substantive course work in order to receive a degree from the institution”

That is, any private educational organization like the one described above may confer any kind of advanced degree it wants to without any kind of regulation or oversight by a Texas educational governing body.

This, friends and neighbors is educational deregulation writ large.

Why would he do such a thing? Why would State Rep Berman open up his state to any fly-by-night organization to confer educational degrees within its boundaries, solely because no government dollars go to support it?

Because the fly-by-night organization that State Rep Berman wants to help out is the infamous Institute for Creation Research, a privately funded organization that seeks to promote the pseudoscience of Creationism, where adherents, and it is a belief system, claim that Earth is 10,000 years old, Noah’s flood and all of the Genesis stories actually happened.

And they can by God prove it.

With science.

A very odd form of science that requires one to believe that something has occurred and then set out to prove, with science, that it did. That is, science education using the Scientific Method, but written backwards.

A science that, by the way, a minority of Texas State Board of Education members adhere to.

Now my guess is that this bill of Berman’s will suffer from neglect and die long before this seemingly endless legislative session ends in May. After all, the state legislature has so many pressing issues on its plate, like Voter ID, getting rid of the illegal immigrants, and preserving everyone’s 2nd Amendment rights that they just won’t have time to deal with this one.

Thank God.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Oh goody, next we can prey to our corporate rulers here in America. Does anyone have a good Coca Cola prayer?