Curriculum

Louisiana Won’t Take Unconstitutional Creationism Law Off the Books

By Liana Loewus — March 31, 2016 1 min read

CORRECTED

Louisiana senators voted yesterday against repealing a law that requires that public schools give balanced treatment to evolution and creationism—despite the fact that the law has been deemed unconstitutional and can’t be enforced.

The law, which also prohibits teaching evolution as scientific fact, was initially passed in 1981 but found unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court six years later. It’s not supposed to be applied to classrooms. However, it hasn’t yet been stripped from the books.

The senators voted 4-2 against the law’s repeal, reports the Associated Press. “It basically creates a situation where only the secular review of creation is taught,” said state Sen. John Milkovich, a Keithville Democrat, who was in favor of keeping it, according to the AP.

Other such laws that were found unconstitutional have been repealed in the state. “I’m not asking you to give up your belief in God. I’m not asking you to get in bed with the devil. I’m just asking you to uphold your oath” to the constitution, said Sen. Dan Claitor, a Republican from Baton Rouge, who hoped to delete the law.

[CORRECTION: A previous version of this post misstated the court in which the law was deemed unconstitutional.]


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A version of this news article first appeared in the Curriculum Matters blog.