Archive for the ‘Kelly Coghlan’ Category

On ‘Lacking a Moral Compass’

March 30, 2009

Houston lawyer Kelly “” Coghlan is burning up the Internets with another screed on the evolution battle in Texas public schools. (Coghlan was the author of another e-mail a few weeks back linking acceptance of the science of evolution to serial murderers like Jeffrey Dahmer.) He testified at least week’s Texas State Board of Education public hearing, darkly warning that the state would face lawsuits if the board eliminated a science curriculum requirement that students learn phony arguments attacking evolution. The board ultimately refused to retain the “strengths and weaknesses” requirement, but Coghlan is declaring victory anyway.

(T)he phrase was replaced with an even broader
standard requiring teaching “all sides of scientific evidence” which 
implicitly includes teaching the scientific weaknesses. Some other 
 were also voted on, and our side (pro-science) prevailed on most of
issues in close votes. The evolution lobby won the battle but lost the

There is no doubt, of course, that creationist pressure groups and their allies on the board will try to use the new language to force publishers to dumb down instruction on evolution. But what’s most interesting about Coghlan’s e-mail is the contempt with which he holds three Republicans who opposed “strengths and weaknesses” but supported the compromise that Coghlan now praises. He lists each of the three, asking for candidates to run against each in the next election:

We must elect people of integrity to the State Board. Over the
next 2 years, this Board will decide which textbooks are used to teach
4.7 million students. We don’t want to have to go through this same
 again. We must eliminate Board members who lack a moral compass on 
important issues such as these.

The lesson: political compromises with extremists earn you little but future troubles. The world of extremists is black and white. If they can’t get their way completely, they will squeeze everything out of you they can get and then push you over the political cliff. Talk about “lacking a moral compass.”