Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Montana High School Cancels Nobel Laureate Talk

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Republican Town Refuses Global Warming
Lecture for High Schoolers

There is a reason there were dark ages.

Some people are proud of being stupid.

Some people refuse to learn.

Always, some people line up with pitchforks and lighted torches to burn intelligence to the ground.

The Enlightenment was a long, hard time coming. And in places such as Choteau, Montana, complaints from conservatives were enough to get the superintendent to cancel a lecture to 130 high school students from Professor Steven W. Running, Nobel Laureate.

The New York Times

Dr. Running was a lead author of a global warming report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the 400-member United Nations body that shared last year’s Nobel Peace Prize with former Vice President Al Gore. But when some residents complained that his presentation here would be one-sided because no opposing view would be offered, the superintendent of Choteau School District No. 1, Kevin St. John, canceled it.

Dr. Running was surprised.

“Disbelief was the primary reaction,” he said in a telephone interview. “I’ve never been canceled before. But it was almost comical. I had a pretty candid discussion with the superintendent and the school board, and they said there were some conservative citizens who didn’t want me to speak.”

Mr. St. John said that numerous residents had complained to school board members and that they in turn had suggested that the program be called off.

People on Main Street here were divided over the cancellation. Melody Martinsen, the editor of The Choteau Acantha, a local weekly, said that while she rarely received letters to the editor, “this week I have nine and seven are on the subject, and they are all chastising the school board.”

Kirk Moore, the owner of a farm and ranch store, is a school board member who favored canceling the talk. But he declined to say why. “No comment,” Mr. Moore said. “Go talk to the superintendent.”

There's more...
The Republicans legacy leaves our children further and further behind every first world country... in science, math, technology, preparing for an uncertain future.

We sent men to the moon on man-made fire. Now children in Montana are taught to be afraid of the lightening.

Bushism and Republicanism has failed our nation, has failed our children, has failed our planet, has just plain failed. Anyone with the sense of a dog avoiding a skunk knows what's been happening the last seven years is just plain wrong.

Telling children they can't hear a Nobel Prize winner is wrong. It's against everything this country stands for.

Shame on that superintendent and that school board, and shame on Choteau, Montana for being so out of touch with basic American values.

It's just plain wrong.