Jason Wiles, an Arkansas native who heads the evolution education research center at McGill University, Canada’s Harvard, has written a piece for Inside Higher Ed taking the hide off candidate Mike Huckabee for his uninformed comments about evolution and the sorry state of scientific education that evolved under Huckabee’s leadership. It includes some verbatim transcripts of Huckabee being called to account by better informed callers on his AETN show. Wiles, some may remember, wrote a cover story for the Times about the state’s systematic avoidance of the subject of evolution, despite its place in teaching frameworks.
During Huckabee’s tenure as Governor, evolution education in Arkansas languished in an environment of general hostility and insufficiency. Two anti-evolution bills were introduced in the state’s House of Representatives; textbooks in the Beebe, Arkansas public high school carried disclaimer stickers denigrating evolution; the state’s science curriculum earned a grade of “D” overall and an abysmal “zero” for its treatment of evolution; a creationist “museum” enjoyed state-funded advertising; and evolution was systematically and broadly squeezed out of schools and other educational institutions across the state. Huckabee did nothing to deter any of this – in fact, some of his public statements might indicate his tacit support.
Digby works him over on this too with an item that includes his slick answer to dodge the issue on ABC.