Tuesday, July 12, 2016

It's The 90th Anniversary Of The "Scopes Monkey Trial"

The photo above is of Clarence Darrow and William Jennings Bryan. The picture at left is of John Thomas Scopes. They are the major figures in one of the most famous religious discrimination trials in this country's history. It is commonly called the "Scopes Monkey Trial".

The state of Tennessee had passed a law making it illegal to teach evolution in that state's schools. Scopes, a teacher, was accused of violating that law. The case quickly became front-page news, and Clarence Darrow volunteered to defend Scopes. William Jennings Bryan volunteered to prosecute Scopes. They were two of the most famous lawyers of that time.

The case started on July 10, 1925 in Dayton, Tennessee, and was followed by Americans across the country. Scopes was found guilty of teaching evolution by a Dayton jury, and was fined $100 by the judge. The verdict was later overturned by the Tennessee Supreme Court on a technicality (that the judge decided the fine instead of the jury).

Sadly, we are still fighting this same silly fight in the United States today -- over whether science or religion should be taught in science class in our public schools.

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