Federal Court Tosses W. Va. Anti-Evolution Lawsuit

A federal court has dismissed a lawsuit by a parent who claimed the teaching of evolution in public schools violated his rights.

Kenneth Smith of Harpers Ferry, W. Va., filed suit against the Jefferson County Board of Education, the State Superintendent, the National Institutes of Health (and its director, Francis Collins) and the U.S. Department of Education. He represented himself.

 “Their actions during the 2014-2015 school year affects my child’s future directly through the state grading system to enter college and the ability to earn economic security and a good job in her chosen veterinarian medical field of work, by being taught a faith base (evolutionary ideology) that just doesn’t exist and has no math to back it,” Smith wrote in his complaint.

Smith asserted that schools should instead teach his “accurate scientific mathematical system of genetic variations.” He also argued that evolution is a religion. The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of West Virginia disagreed with that assessment and dismissed the Smith v. Jefferson County School Board et al case.

It isn’t the first time Smith has sued over the teaching of evolution. He filed similar suits in 2007 and 2010 arguing that evolution constituted an “ideology specific religious belief.” Courts also dismissed those lawsuits.