The leftist public-policy group People for the American Way is urging its supporters to contact governors around the nation to oppose efforts to teach intelligent design alongside evolution in public schools.

“It may be hard to believe that we are still fighting to protect the teaching of evolution 80 years after the infamous Scopes ‘monkey trial.’ But it remains very much under threat,” states an e-mail from the organization.

“On Aug. 9, the Kansas Board of Education signed off on a new draft of science standards that includes language from ‘intelligent design’ advocates, giving hope to extremists across the country.”

A form letter on the group’s site allows supporters to send the following message to their state governors:

I am writing to urge you to resist efforts to teach “intelligent design theory” in our public school science classes.

This concept, which the National Academy of Sciences has called “creationism in disguise,” is intended to circumvent the Supreme Court’s ruling that teaching creationism as a science in public schools is an unconstitutional establishment of religion.

Since President Bush voiced his support for teaching “intelligent design” earlier this month, those looking to undermine the separation of church and state may renew their effort to bring this stealth version of creationism into our public schools. Our science teachers should be teaching science, not religion.

I ask that you resist efforts to require them to teach creationism in any form.

PFAW says public school teachers must be protected from “renewed assaults on their work from the radical religious right.”

Note: This month’s Whistleblower magazine issue, entitled “CENSORING GOD: Why is the science establishment so threatened by the intelligent design movement?” is a groundbreaking expose on crucial debate now erupting in divisive controversy in state after state over the theory of evolution and how it should be taught in the nation’s public schools.

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