Dr. Norman Geisler’s new book from Crossway, Creation & the Courts: Eighty Years of Conflict in the classroom and the Courtroom, is an extensive look at the court decisions over the past eighty years regarding the teaching of creation science in the public schools. Dr. Geisler, currently professor of Theology and Apologetics at Southern Evangelical Seminary, is widely known for his writing in the fields of philosophy and apologetics.
Beginning with the infamous Scopes trial in 1925 and concluding with the most recent Dover case in 2005, Dr. Geisler provides readers with an overview of five court cases. Setting the stage for the cases to come, he devotes the first part of the book to the Scopes trial followed by a quick review of the 1968 Epperson v. Arkansas Supreme Court ruling.
The next and most substantial section of the book is devoted to the 1982 McLean v. Arkansas Board of Education trial, which “became known as ‘Scopes II.’” As an expert witness during the McLean trial, Dr. Geisler writes from firsthand knowledge about the court proceedings in that case. The final two cases he discusses are Edwards v. Aguillard (1987) and Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District (2005).
Through his review of these five cases, Dr. Geisler shows that since the Scopes trial, we’ve come full circle. It’s now the evolutionists and not the creationists who are trying to deny schoolchildren the right to hear the scientific evidence on both sides of the evolution/creation debate. And the courts have ruled consistently in their favor.
Creation & the Courts also includes six appendices that include media coverage of the McLean trial, a transcription of Dr. Geisler’s testimony in the McLean trial, a review of the Webster case, and a discussion of the two competing views about origins.
Creation & the Courts is not an easy book to read since much of it consists of court transcripts, legal arguments, and judicial rulings. It is, however, an important book to read, especially for Christian parents whose children attend public schools. Creation & the Courts will help parents understand where the legal battle lines have been drawn with regard to the teaching of human origins and will enable them to make better-informed decisions about their children’s educations.Reviewed by Linda Whitlock, Christian Book Previews.com
With the explosion of the Intelligent Design movement, many Americans are once again forced to take sides in the long-standing battle between creation and evolution. Yet many feel inadequately educated on the judicial process of this battle.
In Creation and the Courts, Norman Geisler offers a behind-the-scenes look at the testimonies and arguments of the prosecution and defense of the major creation versus evolution court battles. Geisler offers a compelling look at the erosion of Christian influence in America’s public schools. Creation and the Courts encourages readers to learn from the past judicial fights and to take their rightful places in the battle. These conflicts in today’s classrooms and courtrooms must continue to be fought, and anyone willing to be a soldier must be equipped with the knowledge found in this book.