A petition launched last weekend on the White House’s “We the People” website calls upon President Barack Obama to issue a decree forbidding the teaching of intelligent design theories in school settings.
The petition, created by someone with the initials A.J. in Vienna, Va. asks the Obama administration to “[b]an Creationism and Intelligent Design in the science classroom as federal law.”
“Since Darwin’s groundbreaking theory of Evolution by Natural Selection, scientists all around the world have found monumental amounts of evidence in favor of the theory, now treated as scientific fact by 99.9% of all scientists,” the petition reads.
“However, even after 150 years after the establishment of evolution, some schools across the US are ‘teaching the controversy,’ including Creationism and Intelligent Design,” the petitioner continues. “Both of these so-called ‘theories’ have no basis in scientific fact, and have absolutely zero evidence pointing towards these conjectures. These types of loopholes in our education are partially to blame for our dangerously low student performances in math and science.
“Therefore, we petition the Obama Adminstration [sic] to ban the teachings of these conjectures that contradict Evolution.”
The petitioner does not cite a source for statistic concerning the percentage of scientists who now treat evolution as a fact. Similarly, the connection between teaching creationism in science and poor performance in math goes unexplained.
It’s also not clear which executive power Obama could use to implement such a ban in the absence of a bill passed by both the House and the Senate.
Whatever the case, the bill has seen a steady stream of supporters. The total number of signatures has climbed over 7,600 as of late Tuesday night. The petition still needs over 92,000 signatures to reach the goal of 100,000 signatories.
The “We The People” website, which was the brainchild of the director of the White House office of digital strategy, requires petitions to achieve at least 100,000 signatures before they receive an official White House response. The magic number used to be a mere 25,000.
The fourfold increase in required signatures came in response to petitions calling for things such as the construction of a Star Wars-inspired orbital death cannon that previously reached the 25,000 signatory threshold. (RELATED: White House staff: Our petition website sure is dumb, huh?)