Preface Although virtually all biologists accept evolution as a unifying principle for understanding life, its acceptance by the public has lagged far behind, with many people instead preferring religious claims to explain life’s diversity.1 Indeed, the teaching of evolution in public schools has been the subject of numerous court cases, sermons, documentaries, television/ radio shows, billboards, books, museum exhibits, firings, protests, and arguments at kitchen tables for more than a century. Today, the evolution– creationism controversy continues to divide America. The recurring cultural, political, and theological disputes associated with the evolution controversy are not new (Appendices 1, 4). Soon after being proposed in 1859, Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection generated controversy, and by the early 1920s was being denounced as evil and ruinous by countless preachers, politicians, and others who blamed the teaching of evolution for war, immorality, crime, and even “the peculiar behavior of the younger generation.”2 Similar claims have been made ever since, and today the evolution controversy remains a faith-laden societal battle between good and evil. As noted by creationist Ken Ham (b. 1951), the founder and CEO of anti-evolution behemoth Answers in Genesis, “There is a war going on in society—a very real battle . . . we must wake up to the fact that, at the foundation level, it’s God’s Word versus man’s word” about evolution and creationism.3 In recent years, Ham and other anti-evolutionists have transformed the evolution–creationism controversy into big business, as evidenced by the growing number of “creation museums” in the United States, all of which denounce evolution as immoral, destructive, and unproven. These claims are popular the $100 million Ark Encounter (in Kentucky, est. 2016), $27 million Creation Museum (also in Kentucky, est. 2007), and
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