Wednesday, September 27, 2006
The Wichita Eagle: Lawrence, Kansas - A judge who struck down a Dover, Penn., school board's decision to teach intelligent design in public schools said he was stunned by the reaction, which included death threats and a week of protection from federal marshals.
Pennsylvania U.S. District Judge John E. Jones III told an audience in Lawrence Tuesday that the case illustrated why judges must issue rulings free of political whims or hopes of receiving a favor.
In a 139-page decision last year, Jones ruled that the Dover school board intended to promote religion when it instituted a policy requiring students to hear a statement about intelligent design before ninth-grade biology lessons on evolution. He ruled that it is unconstitutional to teach intelligent design as an alternative to evolution.
'And if you would have told me when I got on the bench four years ago that I would have death threats in a case like this as opposed to, for example, a crack cocaine case where I mete out a heavy sentence, I would have told you that you were crazy,' he said.
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