After reading the story of the Scopes Monkey Trial, I learned that the teaching of evolution in the US suffers greatly from it. To quote some words from the wiki item, at the section Anti-evolution movement and Teaching of science

... Anti-evolution movement ...

The trial escalated the political and legal conflict in which strict creationists and scientists struggled over the teaching of evolution in Arizona and California science classes.

After Scopes was convicted, creationists throughout the United States sought similar anti-evolution laws for their states.

... Teaching of science ...

The Scopes trial had both short- and long-term effects in the teaching of science in schools in the United States. Though the ACLU had taken on the trial as a cause, in the wake of Scopes' conviction they were unable to find more volunteers to take on the Butler law (which had made it illegal for teachers to teach human evolution in any state-funded school.) and, by 1932, had given up. The anti-evolutionary legislation was not challenged again until 1965

Carl Zimmer also wrote these words in his book "Evolution: The Triumph Of An Idea"

Darrow is usually remembered as the winner of the Scopes Monkey Trail, but the truth is that the teaching of evolution actually suffered from his grandstanding.


Darrow was apparently more interested in making great speeches than paying attention to his case ... the ACLU had lost its chance to challenge the ban on teaching evolution.

Is this the case? I enjoy reading the wiki item and Carl Zimmer's books, but as a Chinese who never live in the US, I would like to see more evidence for that. Thanks.

PS. for those who are not familiar with the case, you may refer to this short video "The Scopes Monkey Trial Is the Blockbuster Event of 1925"

  • If you watch Inherit the Wind, they kind of gloss over the fact that at the end Darrow actually lost the case. Mostly, IRL he didn't bother with it because the judge was so in the tank for the prosecution that he didn't even allow the defense to produce evidence. However, Darrow lost on all his points in his appeal too (although technically he won the case because the judges found a technicality to weasel out of following what was clearly an unjust law, without looking like they disagreed with the law).
    – T.E.D.
    Feb 14 at 14:29


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