Archive for Thursday, December 1, 2005

Urgent goal

December 1, 2005


To the editor:

Controversy regarding Kansas University associate professor Paul Mirecki, his intelligent design class and his e-mail comments must not interfere with achieving an urgent goal: changing the composition of the Kansas Board of Education membership.

Kansans who support this goal should take note of our governor's leadership. She recognizes that the problem is political, and that solving it requires hard work to educate people about what is at stake and to ensure high voter turnout. Part of this effort involves something even more challenging: reaching out to flexible or undecided voters who do not share the zealotry of people on the extremes.

The future of children and young people in Kansas is at the heart of the current conflict. Redefining science and including intelligent design in the public education curriculum will endanger that future and do harm to our state.

Fire and brimstone politics is not the answer, nor is an approach based on antagonizing those who support intelligent design, or who are inclined to support it.

There are many reasons why Kathleen Sebelius has been successful in an otherwise red state; Kansans who seek a positive way out of this difficult time will listen and look to her as a role model.

Ray Pence,



Jamesaust 12 years, 3 months ago

The composition of the BOE is a symptom not a cause.

It is unrealistic to expect voters to maintain vigilence in vetting BOE candidates -- the BOE is just too obscure. Sure, when they do exceptionally stupid things, like the last time they played with fake science, the voters rise up and smite them. But then attention wanes, and obscure, agenda-seekers sneak back in.

We don't try to elect a Secretary of Agriculture, a Secretary of Corrections, a Secretary of Wildlife and Parks, or the Superintendent of the Highway Patrol. Yet each of these positions (and others) are more likely to affect Kansans directly than the BOE. So why aren't these positions appointed by the Governor, whom we can all keep track of and directly hold accountable?

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