Sunday, November 09, 2008
Here is a hopeful sign, found in The Baltimore Sun:
Diane Butler, who finished fourth in the contest for three seats [on the county school board], said campaign literature distributed by third-place finisher Allen Dyer was taken out of context and distributed without her permission.So what were the scurrilous views attributed to Butler? It was an answer to a questionnaire that Butler responded to, circulated by an advocacy group:
"This is dirty politics," said Butler, who finished about 1,000 votes behind Dyer. "I was very nice with Allen, and this is how he repaid me."
The question from Democracy for Howard County was: "Do you support or oppose the teaching of creationism or what is called 'Intelligent Design' as part of the curriculum in county schools."It would be nice to think that humping the teaching of ID has become so toxic among voters that school board candidates could be penalized for doing so, but the voters' judgment may be tied more to Butler's capabilities, as revealed by her explanation as to how her answer was "taken out of context":
According to the group, Butler responded: "I believe 'Intelligent Design' should be taught as a different theory than 'Evolution.' In science we have many subjects that are taught theoretically, and I believe all sides should be offered to allow students to make up their own minds."
"I was very new at what I was doing," Butler said. "I sent them quick answers. ... It is my own fault for not being savvy enough." ...She was maliciously maligned by being accurately quoted? Even more strangely, for a candidate for the school board, she is a home-schooler:
Butler objected because she thought the answer in Dyer's literature did not accurately reflect her views.
"I'm not a creationism-teaching, right-wing, voucher-slinging, home-schooling mom," she said. ...
"I am not being sour grapes," said Butler, a community activist from Ellicott City. "I am upset that I have been maliciously maligned. He had no business using it."
Butler has said that she home-schools her daughter out of concern over the quality of county schools.Still, if, as Butler says, she "lost a lot of votes" over her stated views on creationism and ID and it might have cost her the election, that would be a good thing.