Zack Kopplin

, a 19-year-old Rice University student waging a national campaign in defense of science education, spoke with Bill Moyers about his opposition to laws that make it easier to teach creationism in public schools.

Kopplin’s crusade began in 2008 when his home state passed the Louisiana Science Education Act. The law permitted public schools to teach their students that life, the world and everything in it may have been created by a supernatural being, and that despite a lack of evidence, this view was a scientifically valid alternative to biological evolution. Then a sophomore in high school, Kopplin understood science as the practice of using evidence to draw conclusions about what is true and false, and he didn’t like what he saw.

About the law, he told Moyers:

“This law allows supplemental materials into our public school biology classrooms to quote, ‘critique controversial theories,’ like evolution and climate change. Now, evolution and climate change aren’t scientifically controversial, but they are controversial to Louisiana legislators. And basically, everyone who looked at this law knew it was just a back door to sneak creationism into public school science classes.”

— Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.

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