Eliot Cutler responds

I’ve asked the three main candidates* to either state or clarify their positions on the teaching of creationism in public schools. Paul LePage acted like a spoiled little brat and deleted my question from his Facebook page. Libby Mitchell has yet to respond. Eliot Cutler, on the other hand, has responded. First, here is how I worded my question.

Mr. Cutler, I recently left a message on Libby Mitchell’s and Paul LePage’s respective Facebook pages asking them to either state or clarify their position on teaching creationism. Mitchell wants to be known as the “education governor”, so I presume she will favor teaching the basis of biology – evolution. (But I await… a response.) LePage, on the other hand, has had my question deleted and kicked me from his Facebook page. I presume he views his support for creationism as a liability.

What is your position? Thanks.

And once I write up a letter to the editor explain Paul LePage’s actions and inane, anti-science position, I hope his ignorance does become a liability. But first, here is Cutler’s response.

Hi Michael,

I support the teaching of evolution in elementary and secondary schools. Evolution is fundamental to every student’s comprehensive understanding of the world they live in and their ability to reason critically from evidence.

I have no objection to referencing creationism as an alternative view, but I do not believe it should be taught as part of the curriculum in public schools.

As a matter of principle, I do not believe that religion should make rules for government or that government should make rules for religion.


It took me a second to digest this response. At first glance, being okay with references to creationism sounds sketchy, but then I thought back to my first biology course at university. Intelligent design and creationism were referenced before much got started. The professor basically covered his ground so that students wouldn’t be bringing silly challenges to him. He certainly welcomed a whole range of questions (and fielded them incredibly well, as he’s likely one of the smartest people I know), but he wasn’t there to undo 20 years of religious indoctrination. In that light, Cutler’s response works for me.

*Update: I’ve also asked Shawn Moody and Kevin Scott for their positions. They aren’t as high in the polling as the others, but they certainly aren’t off the radar.

One Response

  1. I’m in the bible belt, so when I start teaching about evolution, I say that creationism is religion and I’m teaching science. To be an educated person you must understand the science and that is what we will be discussing.

    I teach elementary, and that simple setting of expectations is enough to keep students from derailing class discussions. Occasionally students will pipe up but the bible/preacher says – and the other students will correct by saying this is science class not Sunday school

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