Letter from Texas University Biology Professors
Defending Biological Evolution as a Central Pillar of Modern Science Education

More than one hundred biology faculty members from universities across Texas signed a letter sent Monday, December 10, 2007, to Texas Education Commissioner Robert Scott saying Texas Education Agency employees should not have to remain neutral on evolution.

The letter is in response to the departure of former science curriculum director Christine Comer, who says she was forced to resign days after forwarding an email message her superiors said made the agency appear biased against alternatives to evolution. The agency said it must "remain neutral" on the subject of evolution vs. Creationism and used this as the primary justification for asking Ms. Comer to resign.

Texas Commissioner of Education Robert Scott wrote a Reply (PDF file) to the Texas biology professors on December 13 in which he defended his agency's actions. University of Texas at Austin Assistant Professor Daniel Bolnick in turn wrote a Response (PDF file) to Commissioner Scott on December 18 that further explains and justifies the concerns of the Texas biology professors. A particular concern was Scott's quote of Science Process Rule 3A, which requires treatment of "strengths and weaknesses" in study of scientific explanations. Prof. Bolnick repeated long-standing scientific criticisms of this unscientific and unnecessary requirement and its well-known past use by State Board of Education members and Creationists who attempted to insert "alleged," "non-existent," and "spurious weaknesses" in biology textbook evolution coverage to the detriment of science education. It is apparent that the same SBOE members plan to try to do the same thing in 2008 with the revision of the science curriculum standards. These individuals are being assisted by the Discovery Institute, and Prof. Bolnick repeats the claim of many scientists that the Discovery Institute's materials are filled with "factual errors and logical fallacies." This December 18 letter by Dr. Bolnick is also reprinted below in an easily-copied format.


Here is the text of the original letter with a list of the first 140 signers:

December 10, 2007

To Robert Scott, Commissioner of Education for Texas,

As biology faculty at Texas universities1, we are deeply concerned by the forced resignation of Chris Comer, the director of science curriculum for the Texas Education Agency (TEA). Ms. Comer’s ouster was linked to an email that she forwarded announcing a lecture by Barbara Forrest, a philosophy professor and distinguished critic of the intelligent design movement. A few days after sending the email, Ms. Comer was told she would be terminated. The memorandum she received from her superiors claimed that evolution and intelligent design are a “subject on which the agency must remain neutral”.

It is inappropriate to expect the TEA’s director of science curriculum to “remain neutral” on this subject, any more than astronomy teachers should “remain neutral” about whether the Earth goes around the sun. In the world of science, evolution is equally well-supported and accepted as heliocentrism. Far from remaining neutral, it is the clear duty of the science staff at TEA and all other Texas educators to speak out unequivocally: evolution is a central pillar in any modern science education, while “intelligent design” is a religious idea that deserves no place in the science classroom at all.

A massive body of scientific evidence supports evolution. All working scientists agree that publication in top peer-reviewed journals is the scoreboard of modern science. A quick database search of scientific publications since 1975 shows 29,639 peer-reviewed scientific papers on evolution in twelve leading journals alone2. To put this in perspective, if you read 5 papers a day, every day, it would take you 16 years to read this body of original research. These tens of thousands of research papers on evolution provide overwhelming support for the common ancestry of living organisms and for the mechanisms of evolution including natural selection. In contrast, a search of the same database for “Intelligent Design” finds a mere 24 articles, every one of which is critical of intelligent design3. Given that evolution currently has a score of 29,639–-while “intelligent design” has a score of exactly zero–-it is absurd to expect the TEA’s director of science curriculum to “remain neutral” on this subject. In recognition of the overwhelming scientific support for evolution, evolution is taught without qualification– and intelligent design is omitted– at every secular and most sectarian universities in this country, including Baylor (Baptist), Notre Dame (Catholic), Texas Christian (Disciples of Christ) and Brigham Young (Mormon).

Evolution education is more than an academic question. Biotechnology is a key player in our economy, and biotech firms move to places with well trained biologists. Evolutionary biology has made fundamental contributions to drug synthesis, medical genetics, and our understanding of the origins and dynamics of diseases. Principles of evolution are at the basis of human genomics and personalized medicine and are applied daily by people working in medicine, agriculture, engineering, and pharmaceuticals. In contrast, anti-evolutionary ideas like intelligent design have yet to produce any medical or technological advances.

Even if the scientific evidence were not so one-sided, there remains the fact that intelligent design is a religious concept. In the 2004 court case Kitzmiller vs. Dover, Judge John E. Jones III (an appointee of President Bush) concluded that “not one defense expert was able to explain how the supernatural action suggested by ID [intelligent design] could be anything other than an inherently religious proposition” and that the school board was trying to present “students with a religious alternative masquerading as a scientific theory.” Teaching intelligent design in public school science classes clearly violates the First Amendment of the Constitution, as emphasized in the 1987 Supreme Court decision Edwards v. Aguillard. The Texas Education Agency has a constitutional duty to keep intelligent design out of public school science classes, and leave religious instruction of children to their parents.

In Kitzmiller v. Dover Judge Jones concluded that the school board exhibited “breathtaking inanity” when it tried to adopt “an imprudent and ultimately unconstitutional policy.” The TEA appears to be flirting with an equally unsupportable policy. There can be no neutrality on an issue that is scientifically and legally clear-cut: evolution should be taught at the K-12 level in the same fashion that we teach it in universities, an accepted and rigorous science, not juxtaposed with a religious idea however politically popular. The agency should work to bolster evolution education in Texas rather than undermining it.

Sincerely,

Dr. Daniel Bolnick, Assistant Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin
Dr. David Hillis, Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Sahotra Sarkar, Professor of Philosophy and Integrative Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Dick Richardson, Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Hans Hofmann, Assistant Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin

Dr. Kirk Winemiller, Professor of Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences, Texas A&M
Dr. Eric Pianka, Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Ken Whitney, Assistant Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Rice U.
Dr. Michael Singer, Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Claus Wilke, Assistant Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin

Dr. Darryl de Ruiter, Assistant Professor of Physical Anthropology, Texas A&M
Dr. Bill Murphy, Associate Professor of Veterinary Integrative Biosciences, Texas A&M
Dr. Volker Rudolf, Assistant Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Rice U.
Dr. Anja Schulze, Assistant Professor of Marine Biology, Texas A&M
Dr. Sharon Gursky, Associate Professor of Physical Anthropology, Texas A&M

Dr. Thom DeWitt, Associate Professor of Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences, Texas A&M
Dr. Jennifer Rudgers, Assistant Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Rice U.
Dr. David Queller, Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Rice U.
Dr. Gil Rosenthal, Assistant Professor of Biology, Texas A&M
Dr. Fran Gelwick, Associate Professor of Wildlife and Fisheries Sciences, Texas A&M

Dr. Christopher Marshall, Assistant Professor of Marine Biology, Texas A&M
Dr. Jose Panero, Associate Professor of Botany, UT Austin
Dr. Bradford Wilcox, Professor of Ecosystem Science and Management, Texas A&M
Dr. Martin Terry, Assistant Professor of Biology, Sul Ross State U.
Dr. Caitlin Gabor, Associate Professor of Biology, Texas State U.

Dr. Yousif Shamoo, Associate Professor of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Rice U.
Dr. Susan Schwinning, Assistant Professor of Biology, Texas State U.
Dr. Mathew Leibold, Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Amy Dunham, Research Faculty of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Rice U.
Dr. Dean Hendrickson, Assistant Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin

Dr. Elizabeth Erhart, Assistant Professor of Physical Anthropology, Texas State U.
Dr. Kerrie Lewis, Assistant Professor of Physical Anthropology, Texas State U.
Dr. Claud Bramblett, Professor Emeritus of Physical Anthropology, UT Austin
Dr. Jim Woolley, Professor of Entomology, Texas A&M
Dr. Michelle Hamilton, Assistant Professor of Physical Anthropology, Texas State U.

Dr. Michael Huston, Professor of Biology, Texas State U.
Dr. Christine Hawkes, Assistant Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Richard Gomer, Professor of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Rice U.
Dr. Andrew Aspbury, Senior Lecturer, Texas State U.
Dr. Molly Cummings, Assistant Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin

Dr. Daniel Wagner, Assistant Professor, Rice U.
Dr. Ronald Parry, Professor of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Rice U.
Dr. Ira Greenbaum, Professor of Biology, Texas A&M
Dr. Robert Edwards, Professor of Biology, UT Pan American
Dr. David Crews, Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin

Dr. Tom Juenger, Assistant Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Beryl Simpson, Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Mike Ryan, Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Randy Linder, Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Ryan King, Assistant Professor of Biology, Baylor U.

Dr. Michael Stern, Professor of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Rice U.
Dr. Liza Shapiro, Professor of Physical Anthropology, UT Austin
Dr. Tony Frankino, Assistant Professor of Biology & Biochemistry, U. Houston
Dr. Ricardo Azevedo, Assistant Professor of Biology & Biochemistry, U. Houston
Dr. Richard Strauss, Professor of Biological Sciences, Texas Tech University

Dr. Steve Pennings, Associate Professor of Biology and Biochemistry, U. Houston
Dr. Diane Wiernasz, Associate Professor of Biology and Biochemistry, U. Houston
Dr. Blaine Cole, Professor of Biology and Biochemistry, U. Houston
Dr. Tom Waller, Regents Professor of Biology, U. North Texas
Dr. James Grover, Professor of Biology, UT Arlington

Dr. Owen Lind, Professor of Biology, Baylor U.
Dr. Lee Hughes. Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences, U. North Texas
Dr. Brad Keele, Associate Professor of Biomedical Sciences, Baylor U.
Dr. Rebecca Dickstein, Professor of Biological Sciences, U. North Texas
Dr. Pamela Padilla, Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences, U. North Texas

Dr. Robert Baldridge, Professor of Biology, Baylor U.
Dr. Mark McGinley, Associate Professor of Biological Scienes, Texas Tech U.
Dr. Joseph White, Associate Professor of Biology, Baylor U.
Dr. Darrel Vodopich, Assistant Professor of Biology, Baylor U.
Dr. David Cannatella, Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin

Dr. Andy Ellington, Professor of Molecular and Cellular Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Terry Maxwell, Professor of Biology, Angelo State University
Dr. Basset Maguire, Professor Emeritus of Integrative Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Jill Nugent, Instructor, Biological Sciences, U. North Texas.
Dr. Nathan Collie, Associate Professor of Biological Sciences, Texas Tech U.

Dr. Deborah Carr, Research Associate, Department of Physiology, Texas Tech U.
Dr. Jim Carr, Professor of Biological Sciences, Texas Tech U.
Dr. Gad Perry, Assistant Professor of Natural Resource Management, Texas Tech U.
Dr. Frederick Gehlbach, Research Professor of Biology, Baylor U.
Dr. Bryan Brooks, Associate Professor of Biomedical Studies, Baylor U.

Dr. Ernest Lundelius, Professor Emeritus of Vertebrate Paleontology, UT Austin
Dr. Denné Reed, Assistant Professor of Physical Anthropology, UT Austin
Dr. Larry Gilbert, Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Garland Upchurch, Associate Professor of Biology, Texas State U.
Dr. Rasika Harshey, Professor of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, UT Austin

Dr. Makkuni Jayaram, Professor of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, UT Austin
Dr. Richard Aldrich, Professor of Neurobiology, UT Austin
Dr. Jackie Dudley, Professor of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, UT Austin
Dr. Harold Zakon, Professor of Neurobiology, UT Austin
Dr. John Sisson, Associate Professor of Molecular Cell & Developmental Biology, UT Austin

Dr. Chris Nice, Associate Professor of Biology, Texas State U.
Dr. Andrew Gore, Professor of Pharmacology and Toxicology, UT Austin
Dr. Alan Lloyd, Associate Professor of Molecular Cell & Developmental Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Edward Marcotte, Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry, UT Austin
Dr. Arturo De Lozanne, Associate Professor of Molecular Cell & Developmental Biology, UT Austin

Dr. Tanya Paull, Associate Professor of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, UT Austin
Dr. Jeff Gross, Assistant Professor of Molecular Cell & Developmental Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Tigga Kingston, Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences, Texas Tech U.
Dr. Robert Krug, Professor of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, UT Austin
Dr. Kenneth Kohnson, Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry, UT Austin

Dr. Jon Robertus, Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry, UT Austin
Dr. JoAnn Hunter Johnson, Senior Research Associate, Institute for Cellular and Molecular Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Paul. Szaniszlo, Professor of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, UT Austin
Dr. Arlen Johnson, Professor of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, UT Austin
Dr. Nigel Atkinson, Associate Professor of Neurobiology, UT Austin

Dr. Vichy Iyer, Associate Professor of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, UT Austin
Dr. Dave Stein, Associate Professor of Molecular Cell and Developmental Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Clarence Chan, Associate Professor of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, UT Austin
Dr. Lauren Meyers, Associate Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Marvine Whiteley, Assistant Professor of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, UT Austin

Dr. Julie Westerlund, Associate Professor of Biology, Texas State U.
Dr. Cornelia Winguth, Faculty Research Associate in Earth and Environmental Science, UT Arlington
Dr. John Wickham, Professor of Earth and Environmental Science, UT Arlington
Dr. Arne Winguth, Assistant Professor of Earth and Environmental Science, UT Arlington
Dr. Mikhail Matz, Assistant Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin

Dr. Arjang Hassibi, Assistant Professor, Institute of Molecular and Cellular Biology UT Austin
Dr. Rebecca Zufall, Assistant Professor of Biology and Biochemistry, U. Houston
Dr. Mark Kirkpatrick, Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Malcom Brown, Professor of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology, UT Austin
Dr. Michael Dini, Associate Professor of Biology, Texas Tech U.

Dr. Klaus Kalthoff, Professor of Molecular Cell and Developmental Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Dennis Sawyer, Faculty Adjunct in Biology, Midland College
Dr. Diane Post, Associate Professor of Biology, University of Texas of the Permian Basin
Dr. Steve Levene, Professor of Molecular and Cell Biology, UT Dallas
Dr. Larry Reitzer, Professor of Molecular and Cell Biology, UT Dallas

Dr. Santosh D'Mello, Professor of Molecular and Cell Biology, UT Dallas
Dr. Gail Breen, Professor of Molecular and Cell Biology, UT Dallas
Dr. Robert Marsh, Senior Lecturer in Molecular and Cell Biology, UT Dallas
Dr. Vincent Crillo, Senior Lecturer in Molecular and Cell Biology, UT Dallas
Dr. Doug Henry, Professor of Physical Anthropology, U. North Texas

Dr. Homer Montgomery, Associate Professor in Science and Math Education, UT Dallas
Dr. Sean Rice, Associate Professor of Biological Sciences, Texas Tech U.
Dr. David Ribble, Professor of Biology, Trinity University
Dr. Frank Bronson, Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin
Dr. Dean Appling, Professor of Biochemistry, UT Austin

Dr. Barrie Kitto, Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry, UT Austin
Dr. Ingo Schlupp, Adjunct Professor of Integrative Biology, UT Austin
Dr. John Burr, Associate Professor of Molecular and Cell Biology, UT Dallas
Dr. Kevin Livingstone, Assistant Professor of Biology, Trinity U.
Dr. Mona Mehdy, Associate Professor of Molecular Cell and Developmental Biology, UT Austin

140 Signatures as of Dec 14, 2007
_____________________

1 The opinions expressed in this letter are not necessarily those of our Universities, but rather our own professional opinions as Ph.D. biologists.

2 Counting all articles in the following journals devoted exclusively to evolutionary topics: Evolution, Journal of Evolutionary Biology, Molecular Biology and Evolution, Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, Systematic Biology, Evolutionary Ecology Research, Evolutionary Ecology, American Naturalist, and counting articles in Nature, Science, Proceedings of the Royal Society, and Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences that have ‘Evolution’ in the title or abstract. By restricting the search to these few journals and the short time-span (since 1975), we are likely to vastly underestimate the number of research papers on evolution, which is probably several times higher than what we found here.

3 A search for “Intelligent Design” in the same journals listed above finds one article, which is critical of intelligent design. Opening the search to all indexed scientific journals (to be generous to ID), one finds 410 articles in all, most of which are irrelevant to biology, focusing on engineering or computer science. Restricting the search to “Biology and Intelligent Design” yields 24 papers, all critical of intelligent design.


Here is a copy of Dr. Daniel Bolnick's response to Texas Education Commissioner Robert Scott:

December 18, 2007

Robert Scott
Commissioner of Education
Texas Education Agency
1701 N. Congress Avenue Austin, TX 78712

Dr. Daniel I. Bolnick
Section of Integrative Biology
University of Texas at Austin
Austin, Texas, 78701 512-471-2824
danbolnick@mail.utexas.edu

Dear Mr. Scott,

Thank you for your reply to the biologists' letter concerning the TEA's "neutrality" regarding evolution and intelligent design. I have forwarded your response to my colleagues. I believe I can speak for most of the faculty who signed the letter (now over 150), when I say that the work that you and the TEA do to strengthen K–12 education in Texas is appreciated. It is precisely because we recognize your efforts that we felt it would be helpful to contact you with our concerns as professional educators and researchers in the biological sciences.

I and the other signers of the biologists' letter recognize the distinction between the policy-setting role of the Board of Education and the implementation duties of the TEA. As public bodies, both must be responsive to the public's concerns. However, it is also essential that these public bodies stand for the highest educational standards that reflect the current state of scientific knowledge. Listening to the public is essential, but the public is not always fully informed or correct when it comes to technical matters like the content of a science curriculum.

There is an old joke about the tendency of elected bodies such as school boards to want to compromise: If group A thinks that 2 + 2 is 4, and group B thinks 2 + 2 is 6, the school board will declare that 2 + 2 is 5. (My favorite historical example is the Indiana State Legislature's House Bill No. 246, which passed 67 to 0 and redefined the mathematical constant pi to be 3.2, rather than 3.14159…, at the urging of a doctor and amateur mathematician Dr. Edwin Goodwin.) There are times when 2 + 2 simply has to equal 4, and pi does not equal 3.2 no matter what the House Bill said.

Likewise, evolution has overwhelming empirical support, while there is zero original empirical research supporting intelligent design, and no credible evidence against evolution.

You write "that anything said will be scrutinized and may be interpreted as representing a position of the agency or State Board of Education." The Board's position on science education should be to provide the best and most accurate science possible, regardless of the political consequences. There are times when public bodies need to lead, and this is one of them. Speaking on behalf of my colleagues, I urge both the Board and the TEA to exercise such leadership by issuing statements that unambiguously support the teaching of evolution and omission of intelligent design in public classrooms. The full weight of scientific evidence would be on your side. The scientific community is agreed that evolution should not only be taught, but taught in a straightforward manner, unqualified by alleged "weaknesses" that are invariably based on faulty logic or misrepresentations of available data.

This is emphatically not an attempt to suppress contrary viewpoints. Rather, it is a professional judgment that the claims of "weaknesses" in evolution are based on shoddy scholarship. We wish to assure you that not a single so-called weakness promoted by anti-evolutionists has passed scientific muster. For example, the Discovery Institute's recent publication Exploring Evolution: The Arguments for and against Neo-Darwinism, which was written to facilitate classroom discussions of "weaknesses," is demonstrably full of factual errors and logical fallacies. We would be more than happy to help you understand the flaws in any of the "weakness" arguments that you or members of the Board are uncertain about.

This is not to say that there are no controversies in evolution. But the genuine controversies concern esoteric points about how evolution works, not whether it works. Such debates are a normal component of active research in any scientific field, and do not signify the existence of "weaknesses". For example, there is currently a vigorous debate over whether coding or regulatory genetic changes contribute more to evolution. Coding changes alter the structure of proteins and their functions; regulatory changes alter when and where a given protein is produced. Clear instances of both types of evolutionary change have been documented, but their relative importance is a subject of active research. Personally, I would love to see these kinds of debates taught in science classes, but they do not represent "weaknesses" in evolution as a whole. The difficulty is that understanding these topics requires a substantial level of background knowledge. In the case I just outlined, students must understand how coding and regulatory genes work, but gene regulation is not covered until university-level biology courses, so students are not equipped to investigate this topic until late in their undergraduate careers. The same pedagogical problem arises for many of the supposed "weaknesses" of evolution described in creationist sources like Explore Evolution

In your response to the biologists' letter, you mentioned Process Skill 3A, which taken on its face, is innocuous and seems to be admirable pedagogy: "The student uses critical thinking and scientific problem solving to make informed decisions. The student is expected to: (A) analyze, review, and critique scientific explanations including hypotheses and theories, as to their strengths and weaknesses using scientific evidence and information." You correctly identified 3A as being applied to all science standards from 3rd grade through the discipline-related standards for high school. From its ubiquity across the curriculum, we assume that the purpose of 3A is to encourage students to exercise scientific reasoning, which is quite appropriate. However, you probably recall that in 2003, during the textbook adoption hearings, the evolution-related standards were the only standards to which 3A directly was applied, in an effort to weaken the coverage of evolution in the books. An attempt to force textbook publishers to rewrite their textbooks to include non-existent "weaknesses" almost succeeded. This would have resulted in students in Texas and nationally being miseducated about evolution. Upon entry to university science classes, they would have to unlearn the spurious "weaknesses" they had been taught in high school, which is profoundly unfair to them.

We look forward to working with the SBoE to rephrase 3A to encourage critical thinking in all the sciences, without providing a backdoor for scientifically unsound "weaknesses" that are currently being promoted by the Discovery Institute and other creationist organizations. Dropping the "strengths and weaknesses" language from the TEKS is an important first step. I and others of my colleagues are willing to assist the TEA or the TEKS reviewing committees in this effort. Having science standards that accurately reflect the scientific community's consensus is essential to the successful education of Texas students.

In conclusion, biology faculty around the state are deeply concerned that next year Texas will be a battleground where creationists (including advocates of intelligent design and "weaknesses" of evolution) try to water down evolution education. This would harm public understanding of biology (already poor), weaken the quality of university-bound biology students, and undermine Texas's ability to compete in tomorrow's biotechnology-driven economy. I hope that as the TEKS revisions move forward, both the TEA and the Board adopt firm stances in support of improving evolution education. I also hope that the the Board consults more extensively with Ph.D. biologists among the highly qualified research and teaching faculty at universities around Texas. Finally, on behalf of all my co-signers, I extend an invitation to you to discuss details of evolutionary biology with faculty from any of the universities in Texas. There is a vast reserve of knowledge about science and in particular about evolution in this state that is at your disposal as you and the the Board work to understand the current state of knowledge on this topic. Please avail yourself of this resource, and take a firm stand in support of increased quality of evolution education in Texas.

Sincerely,

Dr. Daniel Bolnick, University of Texas at Austin

P.S. You commented on the disclaimer in our original letter, that the letter reflected our own professional opinions. I should point out that this was only added because the ouster of Ms. Comer created an atmosphere of intimidation. A number of faculty expressed concern over possible retribution from their state employers for signing the letter. Some chose not to sign for fear of their jobs, others signed on the condition that the disclaimer be added.


Last updated: 2007 December 19
Texas Citizens for Science