Kansas School Board Candidate Wants to Ban Evolution From Schools

A candidate for a position on the Kansas State Board of Education is seeking the complete removal of the Theory of Evolution from public schools.

Jack Wu, a native of California who moved to Topeka after joining the infamous Westboro Baptist Church, is running against 4th District incumbent Carolyn Wims-Campbell, who was elected in 2008.

"The current public educational system in Kansas and the United States is preparing its students to be liars, crooks, thieves, murderers, and perverts," said Wu in an entry on his campaign site.

"My mission, in running for the Kansas State Board of Education, is to throw out the crap that teachers are feeding their students and replace it with healthy good for the soul knowledge from the holy scriptures."

While Wu hopes to have the Theory of Evolution completely removed from the public curriculum, many major creationist organizations do not share that position.

Mark Looy, co-founder and chief communications officer for Answers in Genesis and the Kentucky-based Creation Museum, told The Christian Post that eliminating evolution from the curriculum should not be pursued.

"Answers in Genesis opposes efforts to remove evolution teaching from schools. It is a major worldview that affects so much of society, and thus it needs to be studied," said Looy.

"However, students, using their critical thinking skills, should be able to study evolution warts and all. AiG welcomes challenges to 'molecules-to-man' evolution, which sadly is a belief system that is taught as fact in most public school science classrooms."

Looy explained that Answers in Genesis believes a better way to deal with the teaching of the Theory of Evolution in public schools is not to outright ban it but rather counter it through "grassroots" efforts.

"To counter evolutionary indoctrination in schools, we believe it would be more effective to see a grassroots approach of impacting churches and communities," said Looy.

Lawrence Ford, director of communications for the Institute for Creation Research, told CP that his organization does not support efforts like Wu's to ban the teaching of evolution or mandate the teaching of creation science.

"The institute for Creation Research does not advocate teaching biblical creation in public schools. Teachers who don't believe the Bible shouldn't be forced to teach something they don't believe," said Ford.

"On the other hand, students should be encouraged to develop and apply critical thinking skills to any scientific theory presented to them in the classroom."

For the past several years, Kansas has been the epicenter of much controversy over how evolution and creation are taught or referenced. In August 1999, the board voted 6 to 4 in favor of science standards that eliminated most references to evolution. In February 2001, this vote was overturned in a 7 to 3 vote taken by a largely new group of board members.

In November 2005, science standards more critical of evolution theory were supported by the board, which included giving time to Intelligent Design, a modern counter to evolution.

Westboro Baptist Church, which earned a nationwide reputation for its protests of funerals, is not affiliated with any Baptist denomination.

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