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Science wins: Religious language struck from South Carolina state fossil bill

By David Ferguson
Wednesday, May 14, 2014 8:43 EDT
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Rachel Maddow announced Tuesday night that the South Carolina legislature’s attempt to inject Creationist language into a bill naming the state fossil has been blocked. The anti-science clauses that some Republican legislators wanted included in the bill have been removed.

In December of 2013, 8-year-old Olivia McConnell wrote to the state government asking that the Columbian Mammoth be named the state’s official fossil. All but seven of the states have a state fossil, but McConnell noted that South Carolina did not.

In 1725, she explained to lawmakers, slaves dug up fossil teeth that belonged to mammoths, one of the earliest discoveries of fossils in the New World.

Two lawmakers sponsored a bill in Olivia’s honor naming the Columbian Mammoth as South Carolina’s official state fossil.

It passed the state House, said Maddow, “But then it turned out that this fairly harmless, fairly adorable official state fossil bill just didn’t sit right with some members of the South Carolina state Senate.”

One tried to block the state from naming any further state symbols, another said that the bill should go forward, but should include verses from the book of Genesis from the Christian Bible.

Including the Creationist language, Maddow said, invalidates the whole exercise.

“Behold our official state thing that we don’t believe in!” she quipped.

The rewritten bill stalled out in the state House and now, conservative lawmakers have finally agreed to strike the Biblical and Creationist lines from the bill altogether.

“Good work, Olivia,” concluded Maddow. “You’re almost there.”

Watch video about this story, embedded below:

[image via Wikipedia]

David Ferguson
David Ferguson
David Ferguson is an editor at Raw Story. He was previously writer and radio producer in Athens, Georgia, hosting two shows for Georgia Public Broadcasting and blogging at Firedoglake.com and elsewhere. He is currently working on a book.
 
 
 
 
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