Alabama antievolution bill dies

When the Alabama legislative session ended on May 15, 2009, House Bill 300, the so-called Academic Freedom Act, died in committee. If enacted, HB 300 would have purportedly protected "the right of teachers identified by the United States Supreme Court in Edwards v. Aguillard to present scientific critiques of prevailing scientific theories" and "the right of students to hold a position on views [sic]." Previous similar antievolution bills in Alabama — HB 923 in 2008; HB 106 and SB 45 in 2006; HB 352, SB 240, and HB 716 in 2005; HB 391 and SB 336 in 2004 — failed to win passage. In 2004, a cosponsor of SB 336 told the Montgomery Advertiser (February 18, 2004), "This bill will level the playing field because it allows a teacher to bring forward the biblical creation story of humankind."