REV. BILL MCLEAN, ET AL. *
Plaintiffs * IN THE UNITED STATES
VS. * DISTRICT COURT, EASTERN
THE STATE OF ARKANSAS, * DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS,
ET AL. *
Defendants * WESTERN DIVISION
*,* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
ORAL DEPOSITION OF MR. JIM TOWNLEY
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
MR. ROBERT CEARLEY, Esq., Cearley,
Gitchel, Mitchell & Bryant,
1014 West 3rd, Little Rock,
Ms. LAURIE FERBER, Esq., Skadden,
Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom,
919 Third Avenue, New York
** For the Plaintiffs
MR. DAVID WILLIAMS, Esq., Deputy
Attorney General, Attorney
General's Office, Justice
Building, Little Rock,
** For the Defendants
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
LAURA BUSHMAN COURT REPORTING SERVICE
1100 N. University, Suite 223
Little Rock, Arkansas 72207
I N D E X
Witness sworn in: MR. JIM TOWNLEY 2
Direct Examination by MS. FERBER: 3
Objection made by Mr. Williams 35
Objection made by Mr. Williams 46
Objection made by Mr. Williams 54
Objection made by Mr. Williams 55
Objection made by Mr. Williams 59
Objection made by Mr. Williams 61
Objection made by Mr. Williams 72
Objection made by Mr. Williams 79
Objection made by Mr. Williams 86
Objection made by Mr. Williams 110
Objection made by Mr. Williams 112
Objection made by Mr. Williams 135
Objection made by Mr. Williams 155
Objection made by Mr. Williams 158
Objection made by Mr. Williams 159
Objection made by Mr. Williams 160
Objection made by Mr. Williams 161
Objection made by Mr. Williams 172
Objection made by Mr. Williams 183
Objection made by Mr. Williams 196
ANSWERS AND DEPOSITION OF MR. JIM TOWNLEY, a witness
produced on behalf of the Plaintiff, taken in the above
styled and numbered cause on the 14th of November, 1981,
before Michelle R. Nienstedt, a Notary Public in and for
Pulaski County, Arkansas, at the office of Mr. Robert
Cearley, 1014 West 3rd Street, Little Rock, Arkansas at
9:30 a.m., pursuant to the agreement thereinafter set
MRS. GLADYS HOLMES
the witness hereinbefore named, being first duly cautioned
and sworn to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing
but the truth testified as follows:
BY MS. FERBER:
MS. FERBER: This deposition is being
taken for all purposes permitted under the Federal Rules.
All objections except as to form are waived until trial.
Do you want to waive signing?
MR. WILLIAMS: No.
MS. FERBER: Okay. Then we will provide
an original to the witness for signing, which should be
signed within five days of receipt or we will be able to
use it without signing.
MR. WILLIAMS: I don't know about that.
I know the rules aren't five days, it is after thirty.
We will get it signed as expeditiously as possible.
BY MS. FERBER:
Q. Okay. Mr. Townley, first off I want to thank you
for coming today. I'll try not to keep you longer than
necessary. If I ask any questions which you don't
understand feel free to ask me to repeat them or to
Were you shown any documents -- asked
to bring any documents with you today?
A. No. Actually -- I take that back. I was asked at
breakfast, if I had any with me. And I did bring down
this information, but I wasn't sent any documents through
Q. Okay. Okay. Would you state your full name for
the record, please?
A. Jimmy Don Townley.
Q. And your address?
A. **** ***** ***** *****, **** *****, ********
Q. How old are you Mr. Townley?
Q. Are you married?
Q. Do you have any children?
Q. Are they in school?
Q. How old?
A. He's six.
Q. Is that first grade?
A. First grade. The other one is actually in school
too, but it's not public.
Q. What kind of school?
A. Christian school.
Q. And how old is that child?
Q. Would you briefly summarize your educational
background for me?
A. I graduated from Fort Smith Senior High. I
graduated from Arkansas State Teacher's College, which is
now called the University of Central Arkansas.
Q. What year was that?
A. That was 1962.
Q. And what was your degree in?
A. Bachelor of Science & Education.
A. I graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a
Master of Natural Science, M.N.S.
Q. When was that?
A. That was 1974.
Q. Any other degrees?
A. I've attended several other universities;
University of Bridge Port, off campus in Peurto Rico,
University of the Phillipines in the Phillipines, and --
Q. Briefly, what did you study at those other
A. I studied administration from the University of
Bridge Port for high school principles, or junior high
school principals, secondary principals. I studied, from
the University of the Phillipines, educational courses.
One in statistics, one in programed instruction.
Q. Okay. Do you have any academic honors from any of
Q. Have you ever applied for any grants of any kind?
A. Yes, my Master's Degree was on a National Science
Q. Okay. Did you do a thesis for your Master's?
A. We did a paper.
Q. What was your topic?
A. This was on "Oil Pollution."
Q. Was there a specific topic assigned to the grant
or a specific purpose for the funds?
A. This was to educate science teachers so that they
might be better informed to teach children.
Q. In general or in regards to oil pollution?
A. No, this was in general. Many teachers on the
Science Foundation were in various subjects in science;
physics, chemistry, biology, natural science, general
Q. Okay. Did you ever determine to go for an advance
degree beyond your Master's?
A. Not at this time.
Q. Okay. When you attended the various universities
after you got your Master's Degree, were you ever working
towards a degree?
A. I had already received a degree.
Q. Okay. So they were continuing education rather
than further degree studies?
Q. Would you briefly summarize your work history for
me, or not briefly?
A. Starting way back when?
Q. Back when.
A. Back when. Okay. Would this would this mean after
college or --
Q. Start with after college.
A. Okay. I taught first of all at Fort Smith when I
graduated from high school. I taught --
Q. Give me a time frame, please.
A. 1962 through 1964. I taught mathematics and
chemistry. Geometry specifically, in mathematics.
In 1964 I was offered a job by the United States
Department of Defense teaching children overseas. I
was offered a job specifically in Spain in Rota.
Spain where our naval base is at. I taught there one
year. I taught physics, chemistry, physical science, and
general science. After one year I transferred to
Germany; Frankfurt, Germany. Taught again on military
bases for two years there, 1965 through '67. I taught
specifically; chemistry and geometry for two years. I
then transferred to England. I taught chemistry, and
introduction to physical science. I then transferred to
Bermuda, where I taught for two more years. I taught
physics, chemistry, earth science. I then transferred to
Q. I'm jealous already.
A. Tsuchiura, outside of Tokyo where I taught physics,
chemistry, and introduction to physical science. After
one year I transferred to the Phillipines, to Angelis
[sic.] City, out of Manila where I taught I.S.C.S.
A. I.S.C.S level two, which is a course which teaches
chemistry to junior high students.
Q. What does I.S.C.S. stand for?
A. Intermediate Science Curriculum Study.
Q. Is that a particular curriculum?
A. Yes, it is. It's -- it's a -- the most important
thing about I.S.C.S is the method of study by the
students rather than what is taught. The method of
study is one of individualized learning by students
with the teacher being a resource person, organizer
type of person who makes available the opportunity to
learn on an individual basis. It has to be a highly
organized -- highly organized program. Teacher does not
lecture, is not in the traditional sense a teacher.
Okay. Then -- I taught there three years.
Q. What years are we up to now?
A. Okay. I have to go back. I went overseas in '64.
I taught a year in Spain, that would be '64 through '65.
'65 through '67 in Germany. '67 through '69 in England.
'69 through '71 in Bermuda. Is that right? '71 through
'72 in Japan. '72 through '75 in the Phillipines.
And then we moved back to Germany to Bonn, Badgodesburg
[sic.] which is the capital of West Germany. Badgodesburg
is the suburb where all of our embassies are located.
And at that time I taught physics, chemistry, and
introduction -- introduction to physical science to 8th
graders. And a physics course to 12th graders. And
chemistry to 11th and 12th graders. Thirty-three different
embassies were there, their children -- I think it was
thirtythree, many. After one year there I moved to San
Juan, Puerto Rick, that would be in '76 and taught
there for two years until 1978.
Q. Where did you teach in Puerto Rico?
A. Fort Bucannon.
Q. Military base?
A. Military base. I taught 8th grade science. And in
1978 I resigned from overseas and moved back to Fort
Smith, Arkansas. And I taught junior high science,
general science in the 8th grade for two years. And
last year, which was '80-'81, I moved up to the senior high
and taught general chemistry and advanced chemistry. And
that's the same thing I'm teaching this year.
Q. Okay. Do you hold any outside employment at
any of the Fort Smith schools?
Q. What district is your school in? What school
district? Is it a Fort Smith school or county wide
A. It's called "Special School District of Fort Smith.
It's in Sebastian County.
Q. Have you ever applied for a job and been turned
down for a position?
Q. Have you ever been released from a position,
ever been fired in a position?
Q. Have you ever applied for a promotion which you
Q. Is there a tenure system in the Fort Smith schools?
A. There is no tenure in Arkansas, to the best of my
knowledge. We do have a state law which puts teachers on
probation for three years. And after three years you're
no longer a probationary teacher.
Q. So you are no longer a probationary teacher?
A. I'm off as of last year.
Q. Congratulations. Have you ever published any
Q. Have you ever submitted any articles for
Q. Do you have any writings at all?
MS. FERBER: Mr. Williams, we have
served you with expert interrogatories. Can you tell me
when you're going to respond to the interrogatories?
MR. WILLIAMS: Yes. I responded to them
yesterday. I filed a motion for extension of time, and
MS. FERBER: Have we been served with
MR. WILLIAMS: It was mailed yesterday.
[Off the record discussion.]
MS. FERBER: How long an extension did
you request in that motion.
MR. WILLIAMS: To December the 4th.
MS. FERBER: To December the 4th,
three days before trial?
MR. WILLIAMS: Right.
MS. FERBER: Being that you have a
motion pending we will respond in appropriate fashion.
MR. WILLIAMS: Okay.
BY MS. FERBER:
Q. I apologize Mr. Townley, I may have to ask you some
additional questions since I have not been provided with
anything which will tell me what your testimony is going
MR. WILLIAMS: You have been provided
in the list of witnesses. I think that we provided there
what his testimony would be.
MS. FERBER: Are you representing that
his testimony will be limited to the precise description?
MR. WILLIAMS: It will be simply
limited to that, that's correct.
MS. FERBER: Essentially.
MR. WILLIAMS: Obviously, the testimony
we will present will be in some fashion determined by the
testimony presented by the plaintiffs. Therefore, I
cannot exactly limit it only to what is in there.
BY MS. FERBER:
Q. Okay. Mr. Townley, are you a member of any
Q. Would you describe them for me, please?
A. I'm a member of the National Education Association for
Teachers, the Arkansas Education Association for teachers,
and the Fort Smith Classroom Teachers Association, local.
Q. Have you ever held an office in any of these
A. Yes. I am -- are you talking currently?
Q. Start with currently.
A. Yes. I am president now of the Fort Smith
Classroom Teachers Association.
Q. How long have you been president?
A. Since June 1st.
Q. Okay. And what are your duties as president?
A. To run our organization, to appoint people to
serve on various committees that we have.
Q. What kind of committees do you have?
A. Publications Committee; we have also a Political
Action Committee; we have Rights and Responsibilities
Committee; Negotiations committee; Publicity committee,
we have Golden Apple Committee; we have -- We have a
committee which I've forgotten the name of.
Q. What does it do?
A. Provides tea and cookies.
Q. What is the Golden Apple Committee?
A. This is the committee that selects four people usually
per year for an award for outstanding contributions to
education from our local school district and from -- not
from -- either from the educational viewpoint or for
professional educators within the system to business people
who may have contributed worthwhile contributions to
education in our school district.
Q. Are you a member of any of these committees?
A. Yes, I am. I am -- by appointment, I am a member
of all committees. I specifically head only one.
Q. Which committee is that?
Q. What does the Political Action Committee do?
A. Political Action Committee interviews candidates
specifically for school board positions, finds out their
positions, and ask each -- ask each candidate the same
essential questions for the interview. And then based
upon their responses chooses the candidate that we
wish to back in the -- in the race for school board
position. And we recommend this to our general assembly,
the pace [sic.] committee does, recommends it to the
general assembly of teachers which meets in spring. And
the general assembly then will vote to sustain the
recommendation or not to sustain the recommendation.
Q. Does that committee take any position or conduct any
interviews in regard to pending legislation?
A. Not to the best of my knowledge.
Q. And what is the Rights and Responsibilities
A. This would be the rights of teachers, what rights
they have relative to education. Responsibilities, would
be what responsibilities that they have in their teaching
field, what duties they must perform and how much leeway,
I guess, they would have to perform these duties. That
is one of our least active committees.
Q. I was about to ask you how often it meets. Have you
held any position in a -- in any of the organizations you
listed prior to this time?
A. I was vice president of our own Fort Smith local
teachers organization last year.
Q. What is -- I'm sorry you had mentioned before
that you were a member of the N.E.A., the A.E.A., Fort
Smith Classroom Teachers Association?
A. Right. I am currently a member of all of those.
Q. Now, was that a different organization you just
A. I was Vice President last year of the Fort Smith
Classroom Teachers Association, before. And previous to
that, I've been a board member of the S.E.T.A, Southeast
Asia Teachers Association.
Q. Okay. You mentioned that the Fort Smith Classroom
Teachers Association has a publications committee.
Q. Does the organization have it's own publication?
Q. What is that.
A. "The Informer."
Q. And what kinds of articles of information do
A. Anything that is pertinent to our local
Q. How often do you publish it?
A. Once a month.
Q. Have you published any articles relating to Act 590?
Do you know what I mean when I refer to Act 590? Have
you heard of the -- let me get the title right, The
Balance Treatment for Creation Science and Evolution
A. Yes, I have heard it. And we haven't published
anything with regards to that.
Q. Have you ever published any general articles about
the teaching of Creation Science?
Q. Or the teaching of Evolution?
Q. About science curriculum, in general?
Q. About Academic Freedom?
A. No. Our newspaper just started in September. It
has had three publications
Q. Thank you. Do you ever intend to publish any
articles about it?
A. I don't -- my -- the publications chairman is Ann
Scott Gray, and I do not interfere with what she does in
the newspaper. If she wants to, she may.
Q. When you were contacted by the Attorney General's
office in order to arrange for your deposition today, was
there any discussion of you furnishing documents or
bringing any materials to this deposition?
A. Not that I remember.
MR. WILLIAMS: Let me state for the
record that I think we mailed him and apparently did not
get there, did not have my schedule as attached there.
MS. FERBER: When did you know about
MR. WILLIAMS: Sometime this week, I
don't know. And I've gone over it with him. You can go
over it with him if you like, as far as knowing anything
responsive to it, I don't think he does.
MS. FERBER: I will accept your
representation that he does not. If it -- of course, if
it comes up in the deposition that he does, we'll have to
leave the deposition open.
MR. WILLIAMS: No problem.
MS. FERBER: In fact, I think we will
have to do that since you have provided me with four tapes
which I'm about to identify.
MR. WILLIAMS: Let me state -- okay.
You can identify the tapes. You can ask him if they
belong to him. Technically, they are not responsive to
that either because they are not his own tapes. Those
are something he happened to have borrowed and had with
him. And I asked him to bring them with him.
MS. FERBER: I think they will be
relevant to future questions. And since they are
here on tape -- and unless we take a break for me to
listen to all of them I may have questions which come from
the tapes. And we'll probably have to leave the deposition
open until I review the tapes.
WITNESS: Wait just a minute.
MS. FERBER: Yes.
WITNESS: I cannot give you those
tapes, they're not mine to give.
MS. FERBER: Okay. We can deal with
MR. WILLIAMS: They'll make copies of
MS. FERBER: We can copy the tapes.
The four tapes which Mr. Townley has provided to me all
come from the Institute for Creation Research in San
Diego, California. The first one is "Dinosaurs And The
Deluge" I believe by Henry M. Morris, P.h.D. The second
one is, "Evolution Mechanisms: Do They Really Work?" by
Duane T. Gish. The third tape is, "Creation, Evolution,
And The Fossil Records" also by Duane T. Gish. And the
final one is, "Latest Research On The Origin Of Man" by
Duane T. Gish.
BY MS. FERBER:
Q. Mr. Townley, how did these tapes come into your
A. My school district is -- I borrowed them from my
Q. Do you know where your school district got them
A. Well, I assume that they got them from California.
Q. Do you know why they got them?
A. Yes. They got them because your teachers -- the
school system is currently, on a voluntary basis, offer
the teachers the opportunity to review materials on
Q. Do you know who in your school district is responsible
for providing those materials?
A. Mr. Floyd and a Mr. Sherry.
Q. Mr. who?
A. Floyd and Sherry.
Q. And who are these gentlemen? What are their
A. They’re -- they work in the admin office.
Q. Admin, administration?
A. Administration office.
Q. And how is it communicated to teachers that there
are materials available?
A. Each school receives papers that come out stating that
these programs will be available on a voluntary basis to
review Creation Science in case the law is passed, so
that teachers can be better informed as to what the views
of creationists are.
Q. When were these materials -- when were teachers
first informed the materials were going to be made
A. Sometime this fall. I can't give you a specific
date because I don't remember, but we've been -- we've
been -- we've attended two sessions as this time, which I
guess, maybe was three weeks ago, the first one. That
would be a guess. At that time we saw materials. These
haven't -- we haven't used these yet. And that's the
reason I borrowed them is because these haven't been
utilized yet by the school.
Q. Who attended these sessions?
A. Science teachers of Fort Smith education session,
not all but some.
Q. Were -- what -- do you know what materials were
made available at a meeting?
A. There were -- there was two filmstrips with audio
cassettes. But I do not --
Q. Did you review the film?
A. Yes, we did. We reviewed the film and had
Q. Do you know the names of those films?
A. I really do not.
Q. Were you provided with a list of available
Q. If I mention the name of the filmstrips, do you
think you would recognize them?
A. It's possible.
Q. Do you know what organization the filmstrips
A. I think from the same place. I think we have all of
the materials from the same place.
Q. That would be from the Institute for Creation
A. I think, but I'm not sure. One was about a
Q. About a butterfly. What grade level were the
filmstrips designed for, if you know?
A. I don't think they were designed for children. I
may be wrong in that.
Q. I'm sorry. When you say children, are you
referring to a specific age group?
A. No specific age group. I think they were designed
for background -- again I'm not sure but, somehow or
another -- and my memory maybe wrong in this, but I think
that it may have been as background material.
Q. For teachers, you mean?
A. Yes, I think so or for adults.
Q. I'm going to read off a list of names and just
answer yes or no whether any of these filmstrips sound
familiar. "Whose World?".
A. [Witness nodds.]
Q. "The Miracle Of It All"?
A. [Witness nodds.]
Q. Answer audibly, the recorder can't record a nodd.
A. No, I don't --
Q. "Winged Royalty"?
A. That may be if that has to do with the monarch
Q. The title is "Winged Royalty: Life Cycle Of The
Monarch Butterfly"? "How The Sun Effects Our World"?
Q. Did you see a description of the winged butterfly
A. It was about the life cycle of the monarch
Q. Let me read you a description and then you can tell
Q. "The life cycle of another beautiful creation of
the master designer is examined, including ecology and
migration routes. Junior to adult, Suitable for public
school, 22 minutes, 142 frames."
A. That could possibly be the description.
Q. "Creation And Evolution, A Comparison Of Two
A. Would you read the description there?
Q. "An excellent sound and color presentation that
compares the two primary scientific models for origins.
Suitable for public schools, 22 minutes, 74 frames."
A. That very well could be the one we saw.
Q. "The Ark Of Noah"?
Q. "The Heavens Declare"?
Q. "The Earth, God's Home For Man"?
Q. "The Moon, God's Gift To Earth"?
Q. "The Planets, God's Reminder To Men"?
Q. "The Stars, God's Mirror"?
Q. "Foot Prints Of God"?
Q. "Rocks Reveal Noah's Flood"?
A. You want to read the description?
Q. Geological documentation showing that there is
sufficient evidence on earth today to indicate that there
was once a worldwide flood. Discusses logistics of
of building and surviving on the ark.
Q. "Fossils, Strata, And Evolution"?
A. Would you read the description of that one?
Q. Prevents an extensive investigation of "wrong
order" strata regarding the dating of geological
formations by so called index fossil."
A. No, but I think one of these -- the reason -- one
of these I think refers to that.
Q. By one of these, you're indicating one of the tapes
which you brought with you?
A. Right, uh-huh.
Q. "Design In Mature Probable Or Improbable"?
A. We may have.
Q. Will the description help?
A. Yes, maybe.
Q. "A scientifically descriptive review of design and
nature with respect to the origin of life. Junior high
A. Maybe. There -- we did have a filmstrip on
probabilities, but I don't remember what the name of it
Q. And your understanding was that both -- there were
two filmstrips and they both came from the Institution
for Creation Research?
A. We may have seen three, you know.
Q. Did you review any books or pamphlets?
A. None, none.
Q. Were there materials there if you wanted to review?
Q. Were you told that the school had gotten other
materials that would be made available to you?
A. Yes, these are going to be made available. And I
think they have some other -- I think they said that they
had several sessions that they're going to put us through.
We've been through two of those sessions. These particular
tapes that you have in front of you is going to be the next
Q. Third session?
A. And then -- obviously, there would have to be more
materials in order to have more sessions. So, I assume
they have other materials.
Q. Mr. Townley, you told me the first session was
three weeks ago?
A. I think so.
Q. You saw two filmstrips at that time?
A. I'm getting --
Q. Two or three?
Q. And there was a second session?
A. The second session -- the second session, I think
we may have had another filmstrip. And I think that one
may have dealt with -- there was a filmstrip there on
probability -- we had some -- in one of those sessions we
had a filmstrip that dealt with probabilities.
Q. Could you tell me a little bit more about that?
A. I'm trying to remember back. I have to think back
a little bit.
Q. Take your time.
A. Okay. It's -- the reason I hesitated, it's sometimes
difficult for me to remember what was discussed there and
what I read in other books.
Q. That's fine.
A. Because we did have a long discussion after each
filmstrip in which everybody shared views and ideas. And
sometimes you get confused what we shared and what was
actually in the filmstrip.
Q. That's okay.
A. One of the filmstrips discussed the various types
of -- of men Peking men, Chromagnum, Neanderthal. One
went into probabilities, but I cannot remember exactly in
what respect it went into it.
Q. Can you tell me what probabilities means?
A. Probability of an event occurring.
Q. Do they use a specific event as an example?
A. For instance, I can give you an example of
probability that wasn't used in the film. If you had a
roll of the dice and you have two die, each with six
numerals atttached, and you role the die. The
probability of a specific number coming upon the
die is called probabilities.
Q. Can you give me an example from the filmstrip?
A. I've forgotten, not offhand.
Q. Do they discuss the probability of the earth being
millions of years old?
A. It may have come up in the discussion or it may have
been in the filmstrip.
Q. Okay. All right. Approximately how long did
each of these two sessions last.
A. Hour and fifteen minutes.
Q. And how many teachers, approximately, attended each
Q. And who led the discussions?
A. Well, I would not say led. Tony Sherry and Mr.
Floyd were the people who carried on the sessions, but
they simply said, what do you feel about this. And then
the dialogue between the teachers carried it on from
Q. Can you tell me what you remember about the
A. Well, there were of course, people who felt like
that the filmstrips were presenting material which was
not scientific. And there were people who felt like that
the filmstrips presented material which were. And we had
dialogue and discussion about the importance of the
filmstrips and their possible validity.
Q. Did you believe that the material presented in the
filmstrip was scientific?
A. Yes I did, some of it anyway.
Q. Can you tell me what you thought wasn't scientific?
A. Well, of course, it's not scientific to say that
something is true unless it can be experimented on,
unless it can be proven to be repetitious, can be
validated. That doesn't mean to say that something which
cannot be validated, cannot be repetitious isn't scientific.
It just means that you're continuing to work on it. Okay.
For instance, let's say that I hypothesize some theory.
A. Science would run experimentation to validate or
not to not validate, to invalidate the hypothesis.
That's what science is to validate or to invalidate
the material that's hypothesized.
Q. Okay. I'm a little confused. You -- I think, and
I do not mean to mischaracterize what you said, that you
thought some of the material presented was not scientific
because something isn't scientific unless it can be
experimented on, validated, repeated. But that's not to
say something is not scientific if it isn't those things.
So, I'm not sure what was in the filmstrips then.
A. For instance, if you have -- if you make a
statement that something has occurred in the past and you
cannot experiment on it, it would be very difficult
to validate that. All you can do is to make a guess or an
assumption. For instance, if I were to say to you that the
the world was purple in the beginning, it would be very
difficult to disprove that. We could do a lot of
experimentation to -- that would show that that would
probably not be true, that that would probably have no
credence at all, but it would be impossible to -- to
A. So to me, there are worse statements made that
it is impossible to validate. It's impossible to find
out on -- involving both creation and evolution.
Q. Okay. Did you believe that these filmstrips were
suitable for use in public school classrooms?
A. In some cases there was material that I would not have
Q. Can you give me an example, please?
A. They made -- again, I think they made specific
references to biblical material.
Q. Okay. Did other teachers express an opinion as
to whether or not they thought the material would be
usable in the classroom?
A. No. I didn't express that opinion either. That's
just an opinion which I expressed to you.
Q. Did the school district indicate whether these
materials would be available for use in the classroom?
A. I think they indicated that they would prefer that
they not be used in the classroom.
Q. Can you remember anything else about the discussion
that followed the filmstrips?
A. It was lively.
Q. Did teachers express any opinion as to how they would
teach creation science?
Q. Did they express any opinion as to whether or not they
would teach creation science?
A. I don't think so.
Q. Can you remember what comments you made?
Q. Would you tell me about those comments, please?
A. Let's see. I remember stating that that I felt like
ideas which are brought forth about how man came into
existence, how life came into existence on this earth
should be fully explored. That science, in the best that
I can -- can do, should do experimentation to either
validate the theory or not as best as possible in the
hope that you can clear up the miss -- any misconceptions
about the belief as to how life came to earth.
Q. Do you have a personal belief as to how life
came to earth?
A. You mean on the mechanism by which life came to earth?
Q. Okay. We can start with that.
A. Okay. I personally believe that -- that there is a
God that created life here on earth. The mechanism that
God used to create that life, I'm not sure of. It is
acceptable to me that God could have created life on
earth in any way. And I will not be -- or not
place myself in the position of trying to be all
understanding. I do not understand how God created earth.
It is within the realm of possibility that God created
all life instantly. It is within the realm of
possibility that God created life in an evolutionary
process. I -- if -- for me to exclude one or the other
would be making a judgment on God.
Q. Have you ever, in the course of your science
studies, encountered any explanations of how life was
created that you did not agree with or could not agree
A. In the study of science? Not that I can exclude
the possibility of. There's been only, in my existance
in the study of science, two possibilities for the
creation of life on earth. And one is the creation
theory and one is evolution.
Q. I'm sorry, would you repeat that please?
A. As far as my basic understanding, there's only been
made mention of the two possibilities for the way life can
-- have been brought about here on earth. One is through the
mechanism of creation, that God created everything, life as
it was, instantaneously in basically the form it is now. Or
second of all, that God created -- or that God didn't create
life to be formed from inanimate material and progress on up
through man, which is called evolution. And the second
belief, evolution precludes the need for an exterior force.
Q. Evolution, I'm sorry.
A. There is no need for an exterior God in evolution.
On the other hand, I don't think in my own personal
belief that evolution excludes the possibility that God
used that as a mechanism by which life was created.
Q. So, the only two alternative scientific models of
origins that you are aware of are the creation model and
the evolution model?
A. That's the only two basic theories that I'm aware
of. I know that there are others, but I haven't studied
them. Such as -- I've heard that there are eastern
philosophies on life, that life was created from -- in
other ways, but I'm not familiar with them.
Q. Have you ever heard of Eric Von Donegan?
A. No, I have not.
Q. Have you ever heard of a theory that life was
transported here from another planet?
A. If life were transported here from another planet, it
would still necessitate that life had been created some
place else in one of the two ways that I referred, either
through evolution or through creation.
Q. Okay. Have you ever had a student ask you what
mechanism God used to create life?
Q. Okay. Have I exhausted your memory about your
comments following those filmstrips?
A. I think you have. It's difficult to remember between
what kind of conversations take place when you're having
one discussion and when you're having -- you have had
other discussions with teachers at break, recess.
Q. Mr. Townley, were you ever asked to respond to a
set of interrogatories?
A. You have to explain.
Q. Okay. Were you ever asked by the Attorney General's
office to state the subject matter on which you would
be expected to testify?
A. You mean write it down?
Q. Did you ever have a discussion with anybody where
they were writing down what you would testify about?
A. I don't know if they wrote it down or not. Most our
conversations have been on the phone.
Q. Okay. Were you ever asked to state the substance
of the facts and opinions on which you were expected to
MR. WILLIAMS: I object to that.
That's kind of a legal conclusion calling for on what he's
going to testify. And obviously, we may talk on
general terms and we would derive from that what we would
expect him to testify to.
MS. FERBER: Mr. Williams, counsel for
plaintiffs was in your office yesterday. Nevertheless, I
understand that you've mailed to us a copy of a notice of
objections and a motion for extension of time to respond to
interrogatories. We have not received those papers and I'd
like you to explain to me the grounds for the objection.
MR. WILLIAMS: The grounds for the
objection, and I'll be glad to get you a copy, it's my
understanding that first of all this was not available --
was not completed when Joan was in the office yesterday.
We are objecting on the ground that the earlier orders
of the court requiring parties to disclose the name, the
subject matter of the testimony, et cetera, of the
witnesses has essentially muted the need for the
interrogatories. Further, to the degree that any more
specific information is desired, that information will not
be obtained until such time as the discovery depositions are
completed. And we simply are not in a position at this
point to respond to those interrogatories. I think we have
responded to the extent available in our earlier pre-trial
defendant's list of witnesses, one and two.
MR. CEARLEY: Let me interject here
since I am the one that any understanding would have been
had with. The purpose of these interrogatories, without
regard to the purpose of the Court's entering an order
requiring the exchange of the names of witnesses and
other information, was to put the plaintiffs in a
position -- or plaintiff's counsel in a position of being
prepared to define the scope of the testimony to be
offered by the defendant's witnesses at the trial and
to be prepared to take their discovery depositions with some
advanced notice of the areas within which they were going to
testify and with regard to experts, in particular with
regard to experts. The opinions which they intended to
state and the basis for those opinions.
The interrogatories were filed by the plaintiffs not ordered
by the Court. They were not in anyway muted by anything
that the Court did. And there is no law that would have
done that and no rule of procedure which would have done
that. And we are severely prejudiced with eight depositions
scheduled in the coming week of expert witnesses because we
do not have this information. Not only was this the topic
of discussion as late as November the 4th, and then perhaps
several times after that, but I wrote a letter to you as
counsel -- to Mr. Williams as counsel confirming an
agreement that the answers to interrogatories would be
furnished by Wednesday, November 11th, stating that this
agreement is to accommodate the depositions scheduled which
was presented which contains depositions scheduled to begin
on November 13th. There has been one deposition canceled
for the 13th, and another one canceled for today since that
And it appears to counsel for
plaintiffs that the Attorney General's office is
meeting with its witnesses on the day prior to depositions
and making decisions then that should have been made
before now, and putting counsel for plaintiffs in the
position that we're going to have no advance knowledge of
the area in which a witness is going to testify or the basis
for his opinions. All in contravention of our agreements
and noncompliance with the answer date or response date on
the interrogatories. And frankly, I feel so strongly about
that and so prejudiced by it that I want to try to contact
the Court today and request a telephone conference in regard
MR. WILLIAMS: I have no problem with
that. Let me tell you that I -- our agreement and our
understanding, as I understand it, was that we would provide
you with what we had. Now, we have talked with our
witnesses by telephone to the extent that time and
circumstances allow. The information that we essentially
have on their testimony is what's contained in the
defendant's list of witnesses. And we simply are not in a
position to respond with any more specificity.
I think that the purpose for which
those interrogatories were issued has been obviated
by the -- by the list of witnesses. But secondarily, if
the objection should not be sustained, we are requesting
additional time in which to respond pursuant to Rule
33B of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure where the
Court has the authority to order that.
Further, if you look at the depositions,
particularly of expert witnesses, Rule 26, it says that
those interrogatories which can be issued concerning
their opinions can be -- can be issued and then after
that time the Court may order further discovery for
depositions. Now, we have agreed to depositions which
essentially mutes that because the rules specifically call
for the interrogatories and then that. But we have gone
ahead and established depositions by agreement. So -- and
there has never been an order of depositions from the Court.
I'm telling you that we are giving you what we've got.
MR. CEARLEY: I understand that, I'm
just not satisfied with it David.
MR. WILLIAMS: Well, I can only
do so much as humanly possible.
MR. CEARLEY: Well frankly, my position
is simply that you've given us a list of twenty witnesses
that are all over the country. And if you don't have
time to determine what those witnesses are going to
testify to at the trial prior to the time that you find
out when we take their discovery depositions that you've
put the normal sequence of things in reverse order. And
we shouldn't be in a position of structuring your
testimony for you. We ought to know in advance why
they're being called so we can question them with regard
MR. WILLIAMS: We have given you that
MR. CEARLEY: Well, I don't have that
information other than what you responded with that
was ordered by the Court, which is just a very general
statement of the area of claimed expertise of the witness.
It's not in any semblance a proper response to the
MR. WILLIAMS: We also supplied -- We've
also supplied curriculum vitaes for all of the witnesses
which we now know.
MR. CEARLEY: Which was also ordered by
the Court. They were ordered by the Court at the pretrial
of October 1st.
MR. WILLIAMS: Well, I'm scheduled to
take a deposition of Frances Ialah on Tuesday, and I don't
have his curriculum viatae yet.
MR. CEARLEY: That's one out of all the
MR. WILLIAMS: Right. That's the first
one. That's the first deposition of your own expert, I
don't have his.
MS. FERBER: Excuse me, this is the
first deposition of one of your experts and I do not have
Mr. Townley's curriculum viatae?
MR. WILLIAMS: Mr. Townley, do you have
a curriculum viatae? Do you have a resume prepared?
MR. CEARLEY: None the less David,
I think objections at this date come a bit late. It's an
eleventh hour effort. And the normal sequence of events was
not necessarily followed here because of the time frame at
that time we're operating in. And asking for an extension
to respond to these interrogatories until three days prior
to the trial --
MR. WILLIAMS: I'm not asking for an
extension, that's the only alternative. I'm objecting on
the first ground.
MR. CEARLY: I understand that, but
furnishing this information to us three days prior
to the trial is absolutely useless. And by that time it's
all over but the trial and we could do absolutely nothing
with that information at that time. So, the reason
I'm going through all of this is I wanted to make a
record of our conversations. And I do want to discuss it
with the Court. And I'm going to make an effort to
do that and see if I can set up a telephone conference.
And if you have other information, I'd like to have it.
If you don't, I want to know that. Recognizing you filed
an objection, if you want to stand on that, then fine.
But I'm not asking this information of you in an effort to
harass your office or take advantage because you just have
two lawyers working on it, if that is the case. The fact
is, we have forty depositions scheduled in the following --
three weeks following this date. And unless it's done in an
orderly fashion, it's not going to get done, or not get done
And I want that information.
MR. WILLIAMS: We've given you the
information as to what the witnesses' qualifications are and
the subject matter of their testimony. Obviously, as to the
exact basis for each of their opinions, that's something you
can inquire into and you're going to inquire to in your
depositions. And it's entirely duplicative to try to do
this when we've already given it to you once you've had a
MR. CEARLEY: There's no sense in our
arguing about it --
MR. WILLIAMS: And it's burdensome in
view of the time frame allowed. I am going to be out of
the -- you know, I could get a brief extension. Let's say
I got a brief extension of a week. One week from today,
I'm going to be taking Carl Sagen's deposition in New
York. I cannot conceivably respond to them from New
MR. CEARLEY: I understand that. They
were filed, however, thirty days ago -- not filed, but
prepared thirty days ago. And the -- the plaintiffs gave
no direction to the defendants on who to call as
witnesses, expert or otherwise. If you don't know what your
own experts are going to say, then we ought not to be placed
in the position of taking their depositions just so you can
MR. WILLIAMS: I know what they're going to
say. They're going to testify that Creation Science is
supported by scientific evidence within your own particular
field of expertise. And they're going to testify why it
should be taught.
MR. CEARLEY: Well, that's all I need to
get on the record. We can go forward with this
deposition and I'll see if we can get ahold of the Court
and see if we can get something settled on it or have a
hearing on it. But I have fully stated our position. Go
BY MS. FERBER:
Q. Mr. Townley, do you know whether your school
district purchased the filmstrips which you reviewed at
the two meetings you've described?
Q. They did purchase?
A. As far as I know, they purchased them. I assume
that they didn't borrow them.
Q. Did they purchase the four tapes which you have
provided to me today?
A. As far as I know, they did.
Q. And have they purchased other materials, as far as
A. As far as I know -- it would be my opinion that they
Q. Have you ever been told the names of other
publications which they have?
Q. And did you tell me that you thought all the
materials were from the Institute of Creation Research,
including the books which have been -- books or pamphlets
which were --
A. I don't really know. As far as I know, that's
true. But I don't really know whether they've gotten
materials from other places or not.
Q. Was any statement made to the teachers at these
meetings or in the notices that were sent out that
described the kinds of materials that would be available
A. To the best of my memory, they stated that there
would be workshops on Creation Science. I don't remember
if they said any specific materials would be used.
Q. When you say workshops, are you referring to
the two meetings that you described or --
A. Right, that kind of thing where they would show
filmstrips. And then, of course, after we had the first
meeting they've told us what's going to occur at the next
meeting. Like they told us that at the next meeting we'd
listen to some cassettes. And then after we listened to the
cassettes, we'd talk about them.
Q. At these meetings, has there been any discussion of
what The Balance Treatment for Creation Science and
Evolution Science Act requires teachers to do?
A. It required -- It was stated that, to their
understanding, it would require teachers to teach both if
they taught one, or to teach neither. If they would
teach one of the sciences, one of the explanations for
life that they'd have to teach both. But if they didn't
teach one, then they couldn't teach the other.
Q. If I understand you --
A. If they taught one, they had to teach both. Or
they had the option of not teaching either.
Q. In other words, the teacher either has to give
balance treatment to Creation science and Evolution or
refrain from teaching evolution?
A. Right. That they had to teach both or to not each
Q. Now, were you told what teaching both meant?
Q. How much of each do you have to teach?
Q. Were you told that you had to give balance
A. I don't remember that word being used.
Q. Were you -- was anything said other than you're
going to have to teach both Creation Science and
A. As far as I can remember, nothing was said except
that we would have to teach both.
Q. Did you -- do you have an understanding of what
teaching both would mean?
A. My -- you want me to give a personal opinion as to
what teaching both would mean?
MR. WILLIAMS: Okay. I want to -- he
can answer that question, but I want to make sure he is
not giving -- he's not qualified to give a legal
interpretation of what "teaching" both means under the
Q. No. Your personal opinion as to what you would be
required to teach.
MR. WILLIAMS: Okay. That calls for a
legal conclusion and I object of what he would be required
Q. No. I'm asking your current understanding, today
as a teacher, of what you believe you will be required to do
pursuant to Act 590.
A. To teach both theories as fully as possible. To
teach -- if I taught one -- if I were to teach one, that
I would teach the other also. That irregardless of how
much time it took me to teach one, I would utilize that
amount of time to teach that one.
Q. I'm sorry. Irregardless of how much time it takes
you to teach one --
A. That's the amount of time I would take to teach it.
Q. To teach that one?
A. That one.
Q. And then how much time would you take the other?
A. However much time that it would take to teach it.
Q. In other words, you have to teach each one fully?
A. Fully, to the best of my ability to teach each one
A. I'm talking about in the narrow regards to that
specific part of the theory that applies to what I'm
Q. I understand that. And I will ask you about that
in a little while. Are you a member of any Creation Science
Q. Have you ever heard of the Creation Research
A. I think so.
Q. Do you remember when you first heard of the
A. I think when I started reading the materials.
Q. Okay. And reading what materials?
A. I borrowed some books of which I can't remember the
Q. From whom?
A. From a community college teacher, from their
library. And -- for my own personal reading. Not to
teach, but just for personal interest.
Q. What was that teacher's name that you borrowed the
A. His name was John Deaton. And I can't remember, I
may have talked to a man named Clark, I don't remember.
He also teaches over there. They both teach physics
and chemistry over at the school?
Q. How did you know that they would have books on
A. A course has been taught on Creation Science at the
school for several years. And I thought that would be the
best place to get some information on it. I can't remember
exactly what I was reading at the time that caused me to
become more interested. But I did become more interested in
creation, the ideas. I wanted to read more on their ideas
when I read it in some publication. And so with this in mind
I started asking around and trying to find out where I could
get that kind of information. And I can't remember who, but
somebody said that, you know, that it was being taught at a
local community college. And so I called up out there and I
said, "is there anyone here who can give me some literature
which I can read?" I don't remember the exact books they
loaned me, it's been a year ago. And I borrowed some books,
I read the materials through. Quite frankly, as in any
reading of any text type materials, you forget a lot of it,
you know. Quite frankly, if I were going to teach it, I
would certainly go back review the text material. I would
make notes. I would not, at all, try to teach from what I
currently have committed to memory.
Q. Okay. So, you do not feel that you presently
have the knowledge necessary to give full treatment to
A. Oh, on. I would have -- definite have to do
research on my own as I do in any subject. Right now I'm
teaching advanced chemistry, and yet when I teach organic
chemistry, I certainly have to go back and pour through text
materials to refresh myself, to jot down those things that
are important to make plans.
Q. Would you look to your school or school
district to provide materials or training for the teaching
of Creation Science?
A. I would not expect them to. If they did, I would
certainly utilize the materials.
Q. Do you think that your fellow teachers are --
presently have the knowledge required to reach Creation
Q. Now, you said that you first heard of the Creation
Research Society when you started reading those materials
about a year ago?
A. About a year ago, I guess.
Q. Were some of these written by the Creation Research
Society or published by them?
A. Yes, uh-huh.
Q. Do you remember any particular names; Duane Gish,
A. Gish certainly comes to mind. Morris would not have
come to mind, but I did hear a tape yesterday evening
from Morris called "Dinosaurs And The Deluge."
Q. Why did you hear the tape yesterday evening?
A. It was one of the ones that's going to be presented by
our school system. And it's -- I borrowed them to listen to
them on the way down here, particularly because of this
Q. Okay. Does the name Slusher mean anything to you?
Q. Have you ever heard of the Creation Science
A. I assume that's what you said awhile ago.
Q. No, I'm sorry. That was the Creation Research
A. Okay. The only ones that I'm familiar with and, you
know, if you rephrase them in any way, and I certainly
wouldn't even me the names of them. I mean I could
get them confused or whatever. But the ones I'm familiar
with, there are two or so existing places in the United
States for creationist materials, one is in California.
I do not know the address or the name.
Q. San Diego sound familiar?
A. Could be. I mean it could be Los Angeles, I
really don't know. And there is also one, it's my
understanding, in Michigan. There maybe others, but --
and I speaking without authority, but I mean those are
the -- I've -- comes to mind that those are two places
where there are activities of research being done by
people on that particular theory.
Q. And how do you know that there are these two
A. I've read it someplace. It seems to me that in my
reading it's -- those areas come to mind.
Q. Did you ever see a book called "The Creation
A. Not that I know of.
Q. Does the name Kelly Seagraves mean anything to you?
A. Not a thing.
Q. Robert Kophal?
Q. How about "Evolution, The Fossils Say No"?
A. I've definitely heard of the book. I don't know if
I've read it or not.
Q. It could have been one of the books that you
A. Could have been.
Q. How about, "Biology, A Search For Order And
Q. "Creation, A Scientist's Choice"?
A. I don't think so.
Q. Okay. "Creation And Evolution, A Comparison Of Two
Q. "Fossils, Key To The Present"?
Q. Does the name Bliss mean anything to you?
A. Sounds familiar.
Q. Or Parker, Gary Parker?
A. Doesn't sound familiar.
Q. How about "The Handy Dandy Evolution Refuter"?
A. I've heard the name.
Q. Do you know when you heard of it?
A. In the past year or so.
Q. Was it one of the materials that your school
district could have mentioned to you at these sessions?
A. No, I don't think so.
Q. How about "Origin Of Life Evolution Creation"? I
know the titles all sound alike.
A. You could read me off ten of those and some of them
are going to sound familiar. And maybe, you know....
Q. I'll try a couple of more. How about "The
Scientific Case For Creation"?
Q. Or "Scientific Creationism," by Henry Morris?
Q. Are you a member of the moral majority?
Q. Are you a member of any political groups?
A. Political groups. Well, I guess my own teachers
organization would have to be considered somewhat
political. We make political statements, certainly.
MR. WILLIAMS: A.E.A.
A. A.E.A. certainly makes political statements.
Q. Okay. What is your religion?
Q. Are you a member of a church?
Q. Are you an active member?
A. Yes, I am.
Q. Do you attend church regularly?
Q. Does that mean every week?
A. Every week.
Q. Are you active in other church activities?
A. I'm a deacon. Actually I have been a deacon. Our
church has its deacons on rotation of every three years
and then they're off a year. I am currently off a year.
Q. Have you always been a Protestant?
Q. Do you belong to any church groups?
MR. WILLIAMS: Just for the record, I'm
going to object to all of this as being irrelevant.
Q. You can answer the question.
A. You mean like Sunday school class.
Q. Sunday school class or --
A. Sunday school class, certainly.
Q. Do you have any bible study groups?
A. We have -- for instance, last year we had an
informal group of people that met at our homes and
discussed various books of the bible as Sunday school
classes do. We met about every two weeks at
night and discussed books of the New Testment.
Q. Okay. Do you consider yourself a fundamentalist?
MR. WILLIAMS: Object to the question
as being ambiguous.
Q. Do you have an opinion as to what a fundamentalist
A. You mean by fundamentalist, that you interpret that
as believing specifically exactly every word of the
Q. Do you think a fundamentalist believes every word of
A. That's what I'm asking you. You're asking me if I'm
a fundamentalist, and I'm asking you to defined what
you mean by fundamentalist.
Q. Well, why don't you answer the question of whether
you're a fundamentalist then you can qualify that answer if
you want to.
MR. WILLIAMS: I object to the question,
it's too ambiguous.
A. I believe in Jesus Christ as my savior.
Q. Do you believe that the bible is literally true?
A. No. Could be. There are places in the bible
that -- I'll leave it at that, I guess I should. There
are places in the bible that I would -- I would -- for
instance, where it says that my brother -- if I were to
die without male children that my brother would marry
my wife and provide her with male offspring. I certainly
would not go along with that as a rule by which my
daily life should be lived or his?
Q. Do you believe that the creation story as told in
the bible --
A. In Genesis.
A. Could be, very well could be. I believe it's true
the mechanism by which, of course, that it takes
place is what is in question.
Q. Do you have a personal religious counselor or
A. My minister, Howard Marshall.
Q. Do you consult with him regularly?
A. He's the leader of my Sunday school class.
Q. Is Creation Science, per se, ever discussed in
A. Has been I think. On one occasion I spoke to Howard
on it. I don't think Howard has any -- I don't think
Howard places any limits on the ability of God to do
what he does.
Q. Do you place any limits on the ability of God to
do his work?
A. No, I don't.
Q. Would you consider yourself a born-again Christian?
A. I consider myself Christian.
Q. Okay. Have you read the bible?
A. In total?
Q. In total.
A. Or in parts?
Q. Well, start with in total.
Q. You've read it in significant parts?
Q. Which versions?
A. Well, we have several versions; American Standard.
The version is the version that I have in my home and
it's the version that is used in our church.
Q. So, is that the American Standard?
A. American Standard, right. We have our standard --
Q. King James version?
A. We have King James Version. We have The Way which I
don't know what -- I just -- The Way is a version. It's
certainly more modern than King James or Standard Revised.
A. I should say American version, Standard Revised
version I think is the....
Q. How often do you read the bible?
A. We read the bible every week.
Q. Do you ever, as a teacher, consult the bible?
Q. Is the bible a source of personal revelation to
A. Do you mean by personal revelation, that gives me a
better insight of myself?
Q. That's one thing on --
MR. WILLIAMS: I think the question is
ambiguous and you need to be more specific. What do
you mean by "personal revelation."
Q. Is it a source of insight as to yourself?
A. I think so.
Q. Is it a source of constant or renewed understanding as
to how God is working today?
A. Would you repeat that question again?
Q. Is it a source of revelation to you as to God's
role in modern society as to the presence of God?
A. I certainly try to use it to interpret that meaning
Q. Okay. Does the bible provide for you a personal
code of conduct?
Q. And does it provide a common basis of worship with
Q. Do you believe the bible is inerrant?
Q. Do you believe the bible is inerrant?
A. You mean in error?
Q. No, not in error.
A. Not in error.
MR. WILLIAMS: I think I'm going to
object. I think --
Q. I didn't mean to confuse you on it.
MR. WILLIAMS: Yeah, I think there is a
-- maybe, I'm not sure, but I think there may be a
difference between in error and correct.
Q. Yeah, I'll struggle with that. Infallible, I
suppose is a --
A. I believe that the men, through their revelation
through God, were infallible? Men are infallible -- I mean,
men are fallible. And they -- of course, God made his
revelations to men. And if you mean, do I think that those
men are fallible, I do believe those men are fallible
Q. Okay. Is the bible literally true?
A. Well again, the bible -- I don't know how familiar
you are with the bible.
Q. Not nearly as familiar as you are.
A. But the bible was formed from people who, by word
of mouth, memorized the laws, histories. It wasn't
until after Christ's death, many, many years that it
came into written form. Again, I would love to be
able to get some books and recall specifically dates,
times, so forth, but not being able to do that because I
didn't know those questions would come up, there were --
there is a Greek version of scripture. There is Hebrew
version, interpretations in English from those languages
can disagree. As to the interpreters as being fallible,
that's a possibility.
Q. Does the bible predict future events?
A. The revelation does predict future events.
Q. Has it, to your own knowledge, predicted future
A. The Old Testament does predict the coming of Christ.
Q. Any other events you can think of?
A. Are you asking me to list all the events that I think
the bible predicted?
Q. Give me a couple of examples.
A. Well, it does predict many events in revelations,
although I would be the first to admit that it's very
difficult to interpret what those predictions are. It
does predict that there will be turmoil, conflict.
Q. Do you believe that the bible is free from error?
A. Didn't you ask me that question? You didn't ask me
that question before?
Q. Well, we were struggling with what inerrant
A. Free from error?
MR. WILLIAMS: I object to that. I
think that's ambiguous too. What's inerrant?
Q. Can you answer the question?
MR. WILLIAMS: No. I'm objecting on
the ground that it is ambiguous because what his idea of
an error is and what your idea may be totally different.
So, you need to define what you mean by an error.
MS. FERBER: The witness is welcome to
qualify his answer if he has an understanding as to the
A. It's -- I tried to state that -- that there are
various interpretations in English from Hebrew and from
Greek words. And certainly there can be divergent opinions
as to what those interpretations are.
Q. Is the bible a source of scientific learning?
A. Is the bible a course of scientific --
A. I don't use it as such.
Q. Do you believe it describes events which --
A. I believe the bible describes events which very
well could have happened.
Q. To your knowledge, does the bible describe any
events which happened and which science then verified?
A. Well, the bible has described events such as the
flood, which science has -- some scientists have made
attempts to verify. It has made statements which I think
that science has attempted to verify, yes. Noah's ark
is an event which I think -- there are writers, there are
explorers who have looked for Noah's ark, and are trying to
verify. I'm not really for sure what you're trying to get
me to answer to.
Q. Do you believe that Noah's ark existed?
A. Yes, I do believe that Noah's ark existed.
Q. And that there was a great worldwide flood?
MR. WILLIAMS: I voice that I object --
well, I object to the question on the ground that -- are
you asking him as personally or as a scientist.
MS. FERBER: I'm asking him personally,
sitting here today.
MR. WILLIAMS: Okay. Personally, not
in his professional opinion as to whether there is
MS. FERBER: I did not ask him his
professional opinion as to scientific evidence.
MR. WILLIAMS: All right.
BY MS. FERBER:
Q. Do you ever, in your classroom, discuss the Nowakian
Q. Have you ever discussed Noah's ark?
Q. When was your first contact with the Attorney
A. I don't remember exactly. Eithin the past two
Q. Okay. Who contacted you?
MR. WILLIAMS: To your best of your
knowledge. To the best that you recall.
Q. Who contacted you, if you recall?
A. Maybe David. I don't remember, I really don't
Q. Okay. Did you at that time discuss your testifying in
A. To some extent, I think.
Q. Okay. Do you represent yourself as an expert in
a particular field?
A. As an expert in any particular field?
MR. WILLIAMS: Let me say for the record,
while we would consider Mr. Townley to be an expert in some
senses of the word legally, we do not plan to offer him as
an expert in this trial or have him qualified as such, if
that will expedite matters.
MS. FERBER: That would, thank you.
Q. Have you had any contact with any of the defendants
in this lawsuit?
Q. Have you had any contact --
A. Wait, I'm sorry. By defendants, you mean the state?
A. I've had contact with David.
Q. Other than with the Attorney General's office?
Q. Have you had any contact with any Creation Science
Q. Have you ever had any contact with someone named
Q. Or John Whitehead?
Q. Have you ever testified before?
A. No. Wait. Yes, I have testified before.
Q. When was that?
A. Well, I brought before the Court -- I made a
complaint about a landlord once to the Court. And the Court
Q. Have you ever testified in a legislative
A. In a legislative proceeding?
Q. In front of a legislative body?
Q. Or an administrative proceeding, or school board,
or any --
A. Yes, I have.
Q. When was that?
A. Several times. I went before the school board
to plead a case for many issues.
Q. Tell me about those.
A. All of those?
Q. Tell me the issues as best you can remember.
A. That elementary school teachers should be given
time to prepare for lessons during the day, that they
teach without preparation time, that they receive no
lunch break in which to eat their lunch except for being
with their children and that they should be given
adequate time to eat so that they can relax mentally. And
that they should be given adequate time to prepare for
their lessons, and they were not, and that we felt like
it was the responsibility of the school system to furnish
that time so that they could adequately be -- teach the
children. And we lost.
Q. Was -- did you appear in front of the school board
in your capacity as an officer of the Fort Smith
Classroom Teachers Association?
A. Yes, and as a member of your negotiating team.
Q. Did you believe in that an elementary school teacher
had a right to time to adequately prepare for classroom
A. I believe that it should be given to them. I think
that it's a responsibility of the leadership of our school
system to recognize that teachers need adequate preparation
time, and this is not being given. It is being given on a
secondary level, but is not on the primary level. As far as
to the rights of teachers, of course, I firmly believe that
we have a right to bring forth to school boards our needs.
And I believe in the right that we have to express that we
have those needs. As to their rights, no they don't have
any rights other than what they sign a contract to and what
the school board says. If the school board says that they
will not get any preparation time, they don't have the right
to then arbitrarily on their own desire to take that time
off. They agree to that contract and they must follow it.
Q. Are there any rights provided in your contract?
A. I get time off, prep time.
Q. Any other kinds of rights guaranteed by your contract
other than the preparation time?
A. In my own? Yes. I'm for salary, we have an
extensive personnel policy, which I don't have in front
of me which guarantees that your organization has the
right to speak for teachers. This is recognized by our
Q. Your contract with the school board recognizes the
Fort Smith Classroom Teachers Association?
A. Right, as being the legitimate spokesman for teachers
in our school district. And we have a procedure by which if
the school board wishes to speak to us they can. And if we
want to speak to them we can, although it's a very weak
policy. This -- this state does not have that school
teachers have the right for collective bargaining. It
doesn't preclude it from individual school districts, but
our local does have a form of bargaining rights.
Q. Now, when you refer to the local, what organization
are you referring to?
A. I'm referring to our local school district. There
are 370 or so school districts in this state.
Q. Is there an organization that bargains with the
school district --
Q. -- in regards to your contract?
Q. And what is that organization?
A. Fort Smith Classroom Teachers Association.
Q. Does the Fort Smith Classroom Teachers Association
have any policy statements or a constitution which addresses
the rights and responsibilities of teachers?
A. We do have a constitution which designates
what the responsibilities are of the officers within the
Q. Do you have any policy statement or anything that
discusses academic freedom?
A. I can't -- I can't state that. I don't know for
Q. Do you have anything that discusses the
responsibilities that a teacher owes to students?
A. Not that I know of.
Q. Okay. Do you have a understanding as to what the
term academic freedom means?
Q. As a teacher, what does that term mean to you?
A. That within the confines of the law that I should have
the freedom to teach my course in a responsible manner.
Q. What do you mean by confines of the law?
A. Well, my academic freedom to teach is limited by
Q. What kinds of laws limit what you teach?
A. Well specifically, the law can say that I cannot teach
this or that. So, within the confines of the law that's
what I can or cannot teach. The law says, for instance,
that you cannot have religion in -- so, within the confines
of the law.
Q. Do you believe in that particular law which prevents
you from teaching about religion?
A. You mean relative to science or relative to --
Q. In the public schools at all?
A. Well of course, I wouldn't be placed in that
position because I would never have to teach religion.
As far as teaching religion, I see nothing -- I'm not
sure the law states that you can't teach religion in
the school in the form of a social studies course, okay.
Only in the law -- only that in science, we don't teach
religion in science.
Q. What do you teach in science?
A. We teach science.
Q. Okay. Have you ever attended any debates about
A. Formal debates, set up as debates?
Q. Or discussions about it?
A. Well, only those that I have already told you
Q. Any discussions or debates about Evolution?
A. I've never attended a formal debate on --
Q. Okay. When you say formal, have you attended
informal discussion or debate about --
A. Yes, those that I told you.
Q. So, that's the two meetings.
A. There are many, many informal discussions. I mean
we have informal discussions on science all the time in
our teacher's lounge amongst teachers. So, I mean how many?
Well, there would be probably thousands. So, I mean if
you're talking about a formal set up, you know, not so many.
But if you're talking about informal discussions on
science, I couldn't possibly --
Q. Have teachers expressed to you opinions as to
whether or not Evolution should be taught?
Q. Can you tell me those opinions?
A. I think they feel like they think Evolution should be
Q. Have they expressed opinions whether or not
Creation Science should be taught?
Q. And what are those opinions?
A. Some say no and some say yes.
Q. Has a teacher ever said to you that they wouldn't
teach Creation Science?
A. In seriousness, I don't know. I don't recall
anyone saying that -- I better say I don't recall any
teacher ever telling me that they would not teach Creation
Q. Did they say they'd prefer not to?
Q. Did they say that they couldn't teach it?
Q. Tell me -- could you tell me where those
conversations were? Obviously, there was some doubt
expressed to you about it.
A. That is just conversation amongst teachers, science
teachers. We get together and we talk informally.
There are questions as to how well they've been prepared
at this point to teach.
Q. So, some teachers feel that they are not prepared
to teach Creation Science?
A. Most surely.
Q. Okay. Is there any indication that you are going to
be properly prepared to teach it?
MR. WILLIAMS: I object to that
question. I think it calls for speculation on the part
of the witness.
Q. Do you believe that your school or school
district is going to adequately prepare teachers to
teach Creation Science?
MR. WILLIAMS: Still calls for
speculation, I think.
MS. FERBER: If the witness has an
opinion as to whether or not --
MR. WILLIAMS: I think you should ask
him, do you think it's possible that they can be prepared.
I think --
BY MS. FERBER:
Q. As I understand it, your school district has
already indicated to you that they are going to do
certain things --
Q. -- as regards to Creation Science. From what
the school district has told you, do you feel that
that alone will prepare you to teach Creation Science?
A. I don't think so.
Q. Have other teachers indicated to you that they will
Do any additional research on their own --
Q. -- to equip themselves to teach Creation Science?
Q. Have they mentioned any difficulties in getting
materials to do that?
Q. Have they indicated any problem finding materials
that aren't religious in nature?
A. No. But I haven't had that very -- you know, that
question as to how well they're going to prepare themselves
really hasn't been a question.
Q. I understand. You told me that you consulted some
materials over the last year --
Q. -- that discussed Creation Science. Did those
materials contain religious references?
A. Some did.
Q. Did you believe, as a science teacher, that those
materials were accurate?
A. Those materials were accurate.
MR. WILLIAMS: To the extent that you
recall even looking at them and reading them?
A. I'm sure the people that made the statements felt that
they were accurate.
Q. I asked --
A. Did I feel that they were accurate? I felt that
they were possible. Much of what I read I felt was
Q. Did you ever read anything which you, as a science
teacher, did not believe was accurate?
MR. WILLIAMS: For clarification, by the
term accurate, do you mean that's the way it actually
happened? Or that it's accurate in terms of good science
or a competent scientific theory?
Q. Did not -- well first, was it good scientific
A. Some not.
Q. Okay. Can you remember what?
A. And you're going to ask me to ask what was not.
Q. To the best of your recollection.
MR. WILLIAMS: If you can't recall you
can so state.
A. I can only say that some things which cannot be
validated both in Evolution and in Creation is not
Q. Okay. Were they presented as science.
A. I think in some cases both, in my opinion, are
presented as science.
Q. Both meaning?
A. Both meaning there are parts of Evolution and there
are parts of Creation that are presented in some cases as
science which are not. They cannot be validated, they
cannot be repeated, experimentation cannot prove it.
Q. What in evolution --
A. So, it's strictly hypothesis.
Q. Can you give me an example of something that you've
read or encountered in Evolution that you believe was
A. I can give you a hypothesis in Evolution that -- that
cannot be proved.
Q. For example?
A. They cannot prove that there has been -- man evolved
from a single cell.
Q. Have you personally reviewed any scientific data which
contradicts the evidence that man evolved from a single
Q. Do you believe that the scientific data which you
have read about establishes to a reasonable degree of
scientific certainty that man evolved from a single cell?
Q. What would it take, in your mind, to show to a
reasonable degree of scientific certainty that man evolved
from a single cell?
A. That some other organism -- I think first of all I'd
have -- for my own certainty, I'd have to see us recreate
a single cell, a living single cell animal from inanimate
material. Now, to me, that would create the certainty that
Q. So, your problem is that we can't create anything
from inanimate --
A. Right. We cannot duplicate the process of making
living material from inanimate material through random
collision, through randomness.
Q. What about -- okay. If we forget life from
A. Okay. Well, that's basically though what I would
be teaching. I would not be teaching basically from the
formation of the cell on because I'm not a biologist. I
would be teaching basically chemical reactions. And
basically, this would be inanimate material forming life, I
have great difficulty with that.
Q. So, you can't teach to the reasonable degree of
scientific certainty where first life came from?
A. That's right.
Q. How do you present that to your students?
A. Well, for years I've presented it and still present
it to be as -- that through random collisions, the
possibility of protein structures and then life or more
sophisticated molecules could have occurred. And it
could have happened that a single cell was formed in that
way. Probability does not exclude it.
Q. Do you deposit other ways that first life could
have arisen to your students?
Q. Do I understand you, therefore, to present that to
your students as a theory of the way first life occurred?
Q. And do you know of any other scientific theories as to
how first life occurred?
A. Well, certainly. Creationism. That a creator,
a power, a force not understood by man, beyond the
understanding of man created life in it's current form. That
there have been changes in that current form, but that the
current form did not start off as inanimate, progressed to a
single cell, and evolved through slow evolution to the forms
we have currently on earth.
Q. What is science to you?
A. What is science to me? Explaining natural
phenomenon, basing our explanations on experimentation,
validification through experimentation of events that
happened, and to a lesser degree to events that have
Q. Do you believe that science has depended on natural
A. I believe that that our science that we teach is
dependant on natural laws.
Q. Okay. Is Creation dependent on natural laws?
A. I believe that you can validify, through
experimentation, either that Creation could have occurred
or could not have occurred, with enough experimentation.
I believe that our continued experimentation, for
instance on Evolution, can lend more credence to the fact
that Evolution could have occured.
Q. Can it validate Evolution?
A. I don't think it can validate Evolution. I think --
Q. But experimentation could validate creation?
A. I don't think so.
Q. I'm sorry, I thought I understood you to say that.
A. I think that you can lend credence to it, that you
can make it acceptable. But you can also make something
unacceptable. If we could ever, in any way, show that
things couldn't have happened and you can invalidate even
the hypothesis of the theory.
Q. Do you say we can ever disprove Creation?
MR. WILLIAMS: You're talking about potentially or
conceivably, not whether it will be done.
A. It's possible.
Q. Would your religious believes allow you to accept
that evidence which disproved or, I think you said, lent
credence for -- led us to believe that Creation did not
MR. WILLIAMS: I'm going to object to
that question. I think you're mixing Creation in a
religious sense and Creation Science in a scientific
Q. I believe I understood you to say that we could gather
scientific data that would lend credence to --
A. Either theory.
Q. Either theory, Creation Science or Evolution. And
that it would be scientifically possible to disprove
Creation, that it might be?
A. It might be. It might be. I don't see how it can
be done now, but it might be.
Q. Okay. You told me a few minutes ago that you
presently teach your students that through random
A. Chemical reactions occur.
Q. -- chemical reactions occur and first life may have
been formed in that way?
A. That's a possible way that the first celled
mechanism -- the first celled organism may have occurred.
Q. And do you present any other scientific explanation
to your students?
A. Not now.
Q. And you told me a few minutes ago that Creation is
an alternative scientific explanation of first life.
A. Right. That it was not random, but that it was
planned by some force, some external force to nature.
Q. Okay. And you told me that science is dependent, I
believe, on natural laws?
Q. Is Creation dependent on natural laws?
Q. Then how is Creation an alternative scientific
explanation of first life?
A. Because science can experiment, through laboratory
experimentation, and see if they can validify if there is
the possibility that some external force did create life.
Q. What scientific evidence are you aware of in
support of a creation explanation of first life?
A. What scientific evidence am I aware of that is in
support of --
A. There has been work done on the probabilities of
particulate matter coming together and forming molecules.
Statistically, to show that it would have been a very
small probability that inanimate matter could have formed
a living system through randomness. If that is not so,
that leaves you with what alternative? And the only
alternative that I'm aware of, through the process of
logic, is an outside force.
Q. So, it is through your logical reasoning and
A. And experimentation on statistics.
Q. -- on an evolutionary explanation of first life,
which causes you to say that Creation is an --
A. As a possible -- as an alternate explanation for
how life was created. There are examples of this in the
past. The theory, for instance, that the earth was not
the center of the universe, it was not geocentric, but
instead that the cosmos, as we know them, were heliocentric.
Even that has been disproven, but that was the theory at
Capericus thought that the world was --
as a center of the universe, was not reasonable
explanation. And he felt like that the sun, being the
center of the earth, was a much more reasonable
explanation. No experimentation had been done at that
time. he couldn't come up with experimentation to give
that explanation, but because of experimentation that had
been done on the current system to show that it lacked --
it was lacking in his eyes. He believed in the
heliocentric system as a possible explanation for natural
events. Work continued to be done, and it wasn't until
several hundred years later that it was ever validated,
verified that what he actually thought to be true was
Scientific experimentation continued by
means at that time that they didn't know until they did
finally prove that theory and prove that it was not
geocentric. And yet, the geocentric university, which was
the theory at that time explained to within like 2% of the
movements of the stars and the heavens, the planets and the
heavens, and all the moons. It was extremely difficult to
get anybody to even listen to the other theory, to the event
that Galileo, who is one of the most learned people in his
day, was locked up in house arrest until he died because of
his beliefs, or at least partially because of his beliefs in
a heliocentric system.
So, now to ask me to be an authority on
this, I think is -- I'm giving a personal view point, I
think is incorrect. To ask me to be an authority on
what I teach currently, today, I think is incorrect. I
currently teach organic chemistry. I am a teacher, I
learn it to the best of my ability. As soon as somebody
tells me, this is what you are to teach I read books and
materials and teach what is known.
Q. You told me earlier today that even though you had
heard of some mention of other theories of how life began
that the only two scientific explanations that you knew
of were Evolution and Creation?
A. That's correct. The only two basic -- there are --
if somebody tells you that life comes from -- from a bug.
Somebody says we were all created from a giant bug, that
we evolved from a bug. Well, that in a sense is
Q. I understand. I just want to be certain that what
you're telling me is that because you believe that there is
evidence which shows that there is statistically a small
probability that an inanimate matter could have been formed
into living systems through randomness, that that diminishes
the probability that life began through an evolutionary
process, and therefore supports the scientific theory of
MR. WILLIAMS: You mean you're just
trying to summarize his testimony. You're not saying
that's the only evidence.
Q. Can you tell me any other scientific evidence
that would support the creation model of how life began?
A. If you have matter which is an unorganized,
disorganized, no organization at all completely and
totally random, there should be -- there should be
randomness someplace. There should be total
disorganization of all existing material. But no matter
where we look in nature, from the smallest rock, smallest
grain of sand, to any living thing highly organized and
highly patterned, you may think that something is random
and disorganized but when you look at it further it
is totally organized and patterned.
To ma, this is not acceptable. It's
not acceptable that we can't find total randomness when we
look at the stars on a large scale. I know when we first
look at it they look random. But yet when we look at it in
greater detail there seems to be great patterns.
Q. So, are you telling me that because we can't find --
A. There doesn't seem to be total disorganization. And
yet through evolution, there should be -- there should be
disorganization. There should be lack of pattern.
Q. Are you saying -- is the problem with the second
law of thermodynamics?
A. You're bringing in -- I know you're bringing in a
second law of thermodynamic, but that doesn't -- when
you say that matter tends to go from organized to
disorganized, matter does tend to go from organized to
Q. I did not mean to confuse you or bring in the second
law. I'm trying to understand what is the impact, to you,
the fact that we can't find this total randomness?
A. It doesn't disprove evolution, but it certainly
doesn't lend --
Q. Additional support?
A. It doesn't lend support to it. I -- to me there
are serious questions with evolution. There always have
been in my mind.
Q. Okay. Now, one way that I understand that you
teach subject matter relating to the origin of life
is in a discussion of where first life came from in a
chemistry class, is that correct?
A. Yes, that could come up. Yes.
Q. And under The Balance Treatment For Creation
Science And Evolution Science Act, you would then be
required to teach fully the creation explanation of where
first life came from?
Q. Excuse me.
Q. How would you teach fully the Creation explanation of
how life began?
MR. WILLIAMS: I'm going to object.
Because he's already stated he does not -- at this time
he's done enough study on his own to be able to do that.
Q. Mr. Townley, you've read some books on the matter.
I understand it was in the last year and you can't
remember everything, but you do -- do you feel that
you read a representative sampling of the material that
A. I've read some, right.
Q. And --
A. I'm sure that there is much more, quite -- a
tremendous amount more material that I haven't read.
Q. How many books did you read, do you remember?
A. I think I read three books.
Q. And you're not aware of any other scientific evidence
that would -- that you could present in your classroom in
support of the creation explanation of the origin of life?
A. There has been work done on -- you know, your own
observations would be, for instance, that here on earth
we have many billions of people. And that through
interaction with each other should show that -- one, that
this species cannot change to another species, or that
possibly we could change to another species. And as far
as with billions of interactions, which there has not been
at least that we know about. Sometimes when someone makes a
theory we work on that theory and work on that theory, and
as long as we can't disprove it we have to consider it a
valid theory, such as atomic theory. We've never seen the
atom, we do not know what the atom looks like. It is a
theory. We do much experimentation on the atom --
A. -- to substantiate that it does follow the patterns
that we think it should because of what we've theorized.
A. But we've never seen it. All of our evidence
is indirect, but we still have the theory because, why,
we can't disprove it not because that we can prove that
it's exactly this way. Okay. We cannot disprove much.
A. Now, we can hypothesize many things. And if you
hypothesize something and you tried to disprove it a
hundred thousand times, your hypothesis gains credibility.
On the other hand, if you have never experimented on it,
you have never tried to disprove it, it lacks credibility.
But the more that you experiment to disprove, even though
you never prove it, the more validity it acquires.
Q. Okay. When you -- when a scientist learns new
facts, if those facts contradict the theory that he's been
operating on, doesn't he then have to adjust the theory?
A. He can adjust the theory or it might be so damaging
that you have to throw the theory away. For instance,
they have had to throw theories away in the past,
completely discard major basic theories, basic theories
that were prevalent to all of their explanations, totally.
As example, theory of place, which said that everything
sought it's natural position due to it's natural place
such as air, earth, fire, and water that there was a
natural place. For all earth like objects to be at the
bottom, water to be resting on that, air resting on that,
and fire sought it's place through that. Experimentation
disproved that theory. It had to be discarded totally. An
all the subdivisions of that theory had to be discarded.
The total theory for the explanation of the universe, the
Ptolemetic System, which was carried forth --
MR. WILLIAMS: Spell it for her.
A. P-t-o-l-e-m-y is Ptolemy, oaky. The man Ptolemy who
upon the Ptolemetic Theory was based. And -- and there
are many men named Ptolemy in history. But the original
one was a Greek.
Q. The theory.
A. Okay. So, Ptolemy's theory totally explained
within a very narrow percentage of movements of the stars,
astronomical observation. But it had to be totally
discarded because it was wrong even though, and all the
consequences and the rhetrograde motions, and the epicycles,
and the sequence, and all totally had to be discarded.
Not just a little part of it, but all of it had to be
On the other hand, sometimes a very
small modification will not cause us to discard a theory,
but will cause us to change a theory. An example, we
originally, within the last hundred years, have modified
the structure of the atom many times. We have not had to
discard the basic theory that all matter is made of
particles. We've only had to modify what the -- how the
particles are made, what our view of these particles is.
We have went from indestructible atoms to atoms that are
subdivided, that have many subdivisions, from electrons
to protons. We've made many suppositions on where the
electrons are going within this particle. And we've found
that we were in error. And because of the error we've
modified the theory, but we haven't thrown or discarded
the theory away. On the other hand, there are theories
which could change even that. Okay.
So, there is still theories, but yet we
believe them very much. In other words, we teach them.
And because of the way they're taught, in many cases, and
theory, kids begin to take atomic theory as actual fact.
That there are little atoms with little solar system
electrons roving around the nucleus, and that is a fact when
it is not because we don't pound home the idea that this is
theory and most likely will be changed. Even when we go
into current theories, Shrodenger's wave equation and the
models of the electron clouds that are predicted because of
it and with the use of our computers, we don't really pound
home to our students the fact that these are still theories
and will probably be, as current technology and science
becomes even better, modify even those pictures of the atom.
Q. Okay. Do you believe that there is significant
scientific data in support of the theory that life, first
life occurred through random collision?
A. No, I don't.
A. I think it's possible, but I don't think there
is overwhelming evidence that it happened.
Q. Do you believe that there is significant scientific
data in support of the theory of Evolution?
A. I'm sorry, would you repeat that again?
Q. Do you believe that there is significant scientific
data in support of the theory of Evolution?
A. I think there is enough observation to warrant that
it be taught. I think there is not enough observational
evidence to prove that it was the way that life evolved.
Q. do you have a personal opinion as to the age of
A. I think the earth could be very old. I think the
earth might not be very old. It could be anywhere from
ten thousand years old to five billion, ten billion, or
even longer. It's -- most science today says the earth
is somewhere in the vicinity of five billion years old.
Q. Do you know whether there is scientific data that
contradicts the theory that the earth is ten thousand
A. Yes. But that is based upon -- if you -- if you look
at radioactive dating, radioactive dating currently says if
you believe -- the vast majority of scientists, that there
are objects on this earth that are many times older than ten
thousand years old even up to hundreds ofthousands, hundreds
of millions of years old. There are those scientists who
say that these dating techniques are in error. And I feel
that their hypothesis should be looked at more fully.
A. I've read through some of the material, which I
cannot recall in detail, but I -- you know, if you wish
for me to go on I'll go on as best I can but
understanding that it's not, you know -- but that their
dating techniques are incorrect. Okay.
Q. Okay. Do you believe -- do you know of scientific
data which contradicts the creation explanation for the
origin of first life?
Q. So that the scientific data in support of the
possibility that life first occurred through random
collision does not contradict the creation explanation of
the origin of life?
A. Would you restate that again?
Q. Okay. I believe you told me earlier that some
probability, whatever size --
A. However small --
Q. -- some probability exists that life first occurred
through random collision?
A. There is some possibility not probability. There is
some possibility that life could have evolved through
random collision, correct.
Q. And we talked about -- okay. Do you believe
that that probability, whatever size it is, is based on
A. You must remember that as a teacher and not a
researcher that I only know what I read. And sometimes
what I read is contradictory to each other. And that
based upon what I've read, there is evidence that it
would be extremely unlikely that life could have come
through on this earth through random collision, but it
does not exclude the possibility.
Q. Okay. We talked about the fact that if a scientist
encounters significant data that contradicts his theory
Q. -- he either needs to abandon the theory or see if
he may revise it.
A. That's true.
Q. And do you teach students that that's how
scientific theories are developed?
Q. Okay. How are you going to present to students
data in support of the creation explanation of first life,
and data in support of what we're categorizing as
evolutionary explanation of the origin of life.
A. Okay. In the formation of molecules here on
earth from inanimate material, there is the possibility
that under the right conditions, which do not any longer
exist in earth nor is there anyway to prove that those
conditions did exist, but they could possibly have
existed. But under the proper conditions, inanimate
material could have come together to have formed
molecules. These specific molecules then could have been
formed that would have been amino acids.
to authenticate that amino acids can be formed under
certain conditions which cannot be verified, but at least
the possibility has been shown that they could have
formed, which leads -- which gives credence to evolution.
A. These -- there is a possibility that these amino acids
could have then come together to form long chain molecules
necessary for life, such as proteins. It is then possible
that many of these molecules could have come together under
a process of randomness and formed a living cell.
Q. Is that what you basically teach now?
A. That's what I basically teach now. Now, statistics
show, which I don't teach now. There are many
scientists who now show that statistically, the
probability for this happening is extremely slim. In
fact, according to a few scientists in the world, the
statistics show that it is so slim as not to be very
Q. Why don't you teach that?
A. Because I've just learned it. It wasn't taught
Q. Okay. Good reason.
A. And for twenty years I didn't know it until I started
reading that literature.
Q. So, it was the literature which you have reviewed
in order to teach -- in order to learn about Creation
Science is what has shown you that there is a small
probability that life could have been been formed through
A. Through random collision.
Q. Okay. Have you -- okay. You don't remember what
those books were?
Q. Did you do any kind of review of the scientific
credentials of the authors of books that you read?
A. I looked at the authors and many of the people who
were the authors of the books were professors at -- in
California at very highly recognized universities. Some
were from Michigan, some were from England, some were from
Michigan. They seemed to be very creditable authors. Of
course, I can't personally validify there is -- nor could I
personally validify anybody in evolution as far as that's
concerned. I just simply look and if they have, you know,
what appear to be -- they appear to be from good
universities, good reputable universities, they have
Q. They were from universities that you recognized?
A. I recognized as being highly thought of
Q. Okay. And what you read in those books contradicted
the probabilities that you had had?
A. Well, I think it awakened me to the fact which I
hadn't thought of in the past, of how improbably it was
that life did form through random collision.
Q. Okay. Do you have any other tools available
to you that would enable you to interpret -- enable you
to determine how much credence you ought to attach to
that -- this new information you're learning.
A. Well, some of this information -- and I can't tell
you what. But I looked at some of the copyright dates
and some of the copyright dates were early '70's. I
have not -- and I certainly haven't read all major science
major literature, but most certainly I would assume that
anything which would -- which would greatly prove or
disprove very important theories would make banner headlines
sort of like.
Q. So in other words, what you read didn't make
A. I have never read any literature which tries to show
that the probabilities that these men write about are not
true. I haven't seen anyone or any written literature which
says these people are crazy.
Q. But now, let me see if I understand you. You used
to believe that there was a fairly --
A. Reasonable chance of these -- of these type things
Q. And now you read something else which says that --
A. Several, several books.
Q. Several books all of which you read when you were
reading Creation Science literature in the last year?
A. Right. And in each of these books it is pointed
out again and again of the improbability of through
random collision that statistically, which all -- almost
all science today is based, by the way, on statistics,
probabilities. Okay. Our atomic theory is based on
probability of orbital structure looking like it is.
Probability is something that science uses
as a tool. And when I -- and when I here that probability
is suddenly not very likely, that makes me perk up. Or if I
heard that probability said something was likely, that
would make me perk up and say, "hey, you know, this is
Q. What I want to understand -- what I think my last
question went to was whether you have, when you read this
new information and you looked at what schools the people
were from and you saw they had P.h.D.'s after their names,
whether there is any other resources available to -- for
you, to aid you to determine whether or not to credit what
you were then reading, and therefore based your teaching on
A. No. Nor is there -- the same question could be
applied towards all of my knowledge, any text book
that I read. I must just look at the text book and
assume at the credentials from well known institutions
and P.h.D.'s in those fields, that these people have
creditable ideas and are knowledgeable in the areas
in which they speak.
Q. You went through several years of formal education.
A. That's true.
Q. And you are trained to be a science teacher.
A. That's true.
Q. And in all that training, were you ever taught about
Q. Were you ever taught that the probabilities were
small that life occurred through random collision?
Q. Okay. Have you discussed the specifics of your
testimony in this case with the Attorney General's office?
A. Nothing of what we've been going over now.
Q. How did you first hear about this lawsuit?
A. I think in the newspaper. I don't remember exactly
how I heard about it.
Q. And who asked you to testify?
A. The Attorney General's office.
Q. And that first time was within the last couple of
A. I think so, yes.
Q. Okay. Did the Attorney General's office ever
tell you how they happened to call you and ask you to
A. Did the Attorney General's office -- I think that
they told me that they had heard my name as a teacher who
would teach Creation Science if the law passed.
Q. Had you made that statement to somebody previously?
A. Many people.
Q. Okay. Was that --
A. I've even applied through the superintendant
of the schools. I requested that I be allowed to present
the view of creationists towards the formation of -- of the
statistical probabilities of formation of -- I asked that I
be allowed to point out an alternate view to randomness and
collision theory for the making of long chain molecules,
which was Creation Science.
Q. When did you --
A. And I asked that oh, at the beginning of the
Q. Beginning of this past summer?
Q. What was that in response to?
A. That was in response to the fact that I had read
some material which made me think that maybe what I had been
teaching was possibly not the only way that these things
could have come about. I had been in -- in my own mind,
a true evolutionist, I guess in that sense of the word,
before that time and before my doubt was created. And
to me as a scientist, the statistical evidence was so
overwhelming on the odds that I saw written in books that
I felt like it was my responsibility as a teacher to
relay this information to my students and present the
fact that there was an alternative possibility. And that
the fact that since no other alternative possibilities were
on the horizon, that it should be expressed.
Q. What was the response of the superintendant?
Q. Has he ever given any reason for his answer?
A. During these presentations they have asked that we
not teach Creation Science.
A. Well, their statement was that they would prefer
that we wait until the outcome of the law -- until the
outcome of the court case is known. And that that would
be their hope that we would not go above their wishes.
And of course, I will not.
Q. Was there ever an expression of preference that
prevents you from teaching?
A. Definitely, I will follow their preference.
Q. Okay. What would happen to you if you didn't?
A. Well, under Arkansas Law, I guess if I went against
the wishes of -- of my school district I could be in
Q. What do you mean by be in trouble? You have to help
me out, I don't know Arkansas Law that well.
A. I guess on a worse case basis, I guess they could
decide that they didn't want me.
Q. You mean fire you?
A. I guess so.
Q. Even though you're a nonprobationary teacher?
A. I guess they could try to use that as
A. I don't think they would, but....
Q. Why did you think you had to ask a superintendant
for permission to teach Creation?
A. It's controversial.
Q. Would you have considered it controversial if you
didn't know this lawsuit was pending?
A. Yes, I would have.
Q. You mean, if this were three years ago and Act
590 had never been passed --
A. But there had been as much play in the papers as
there is now on creationism and evolution. I would have
still thought that it warranted my informing the school
district of my wishes.
Q. Was there that much play in the papers before Act
590 was ever considered?
A. When did Act 590 -- when was it considered?
MR. WILLIAMS: I think the record
reflects it was passed in March of this year.
Q. So, say this was 1980?
A. So, I can't answer that question because I didn't
request it, nor even get started until after that time.
Q. Okay. How many contacts have you had with the
Attorney General's office in regard to your testifying in
A. Several phone calls.
Q. Okay, with who?
A. David. Let me see if I have the name of somebody
Q. Is it Rick Campbell?
A. Tim Humphreys. Those are the only two that I
recall. There may have been another person involved?
Q. Okay. Are you being paid for your testimony?
Q. Have you ever been arrested -- I mean been
convicted of a crime?
Q. Have you discussed the specifics of your testimony
with the Attorney General's office?
A. As to what we went over this morning, absolutely
Q. What we went over this morning is my time to
test your information, to learn your knowledge of the
area. Have you ever discussed with the Attorney General's
office what your testimony at trial is going to be?
A. Somewhat, yes. Somewhat.
Q. Have you discussed your testimony with anybody else?
A. My wife.
Q. Anyone else?
A. My -- I've discussed the fact that I will be
testifying with my colleagues, my science colleagues.
Q. Have they expressed any opinions to you about your
A. Some were very pleased. None expressed, you know, any
ill feelings. They know, after our discussions, my feelings
and they -- I think they're all -- there would be no
unhappiness about it from them. We're all still friends,
very much so.
Q. What is your testimony going to be?
A. I have no idea what you're going to ask me. I had
no idea what you were going to ask me this morning. But
I assume that I'll be asked would I teach it. And I would
say, "yes, I would." And beyond that, I have no real
idea what you're going to ask me. I assume you'll ask me
my name, and you'll ask me if I graduated from certain
colleges, or whatever. And I guess that I will, you know,
give that information.
Q. You're right, there will be background questions.
We all assume that. Are you going to testify that you
do not now teach Creation Science because of the
uncertainty about the current state of the law?
A. I sure will.
Q. Didn't you just tell me that you're not teaching
creation Science now because your school district told
you not to?
A. Yes. But my school district implied that because
of the state of the law that they didn't wish me to.
Q. Are you not teaching it because of the state of the
law or you're not teaching it because you told me that you
could be fired by the school district if you went against
their wishes that you not teach it?
A. Well, I didn't tell you that they would fire me.
Q. They could, they might. They could take some
A. They could take some disciplinary action on me for
anything that I did that was, in their view, not correct.
Q. And you said from your expression --
A. That they would prefer that we not teach -- and
they have stated in front of many teachers that they
would prefer, because of the uncertainty of the law, for
us not to teach Creation Science until it has been settled
one way or the other.
Q. If this statute is upheld, you would feel free to
teach Creation Science?
A. I would feel free to teach that which is pertinent to
my area, right.
Q. Okay. Very shortly we will discuss what's pertinent
to your area.
A. I'm going to miss the Arkansas football game, that I
can already see.
Q. Let's go off the record.
[Off the record discussion.]
Q. What textbook do you use for teaching in your
chemistry class and your honors chemistry class?
A. I use "Modern Chemistry" by Dull, Metcalf &
Williams, I think it is. We use Modern -- I'm sorry. We
use -- the name of our textbook by Dull, Metcalf &
Williams, I think that's who we use. And we use another
textbook called "Foundations of Chemistry." We use
another textbook called "Chemistry -- I use so many
textbooks I really can't tell -- you know, I get the
authors all mixed up. I use, to teach my class from my
lectures, I must use ten or fifteen textbooks.
Q. Is there one textbook that's distributed to the
A. Right. That's "Modern Chemistry."
Q. "Modern Chemistry."
A. And also the other textbook is "Chemistry" that's
Q. Both of those are distributed?
Q. And --
A. We distribute a workbook which correlates with the
Q. Is that in your general chemistry class?
Q. And you teach an honors chemistry class?
A. That's the one that has "Chemistry" that's
distributed to it. And again, I use -- like right now, for
the first twelve weeks of school, I have not really taught
out of the book at all, but out of many, many books. So,
like even though the book is distributed, it's just -- we
say, "Well, this is what we're covering," but basically
we'll be covering so much more than is in the book that it's
mostly notes from the board.
Q. In both chemistry and honors chemistry?
A. No, no, Just in honors chemistry. Now, in
chemistry we have a basic textbook which we follow,
but again I draw problems that I use on the board from
many other textbooks. I don't even know how many
textbooks. I draw them from "Chem Study," which is by
Cotton, which is my favorite textbook that our school
system doesn't use that I would -- in fact, I used --
a lot of the experiments that we do come out of "Chem
Q. Who supplies the supplemental books that you
Q. What -- are your chemistry students in the 11th
A. My chemistry students are 10th, 11th, and 12th.
Q. Have they all taken biology?
A. No. Some have.
Q. Let me see if I understand. Are you teaching two
different courses now, one is a straight chemistry course
and one is honors chemistry?
Q. Are they given to the same grade level of students?
A. Predominantly, 11th and 12th grade students take
honors chemistry. They are people who have already had
Q. It is an advanced chemistry course?
A. It's an advanced chemistry course. And general
chemistry is open to 10th, 11th, and 13th graders. But
our second year course obviously is not open to 10th
graders because they couldn't have had it --
Q. They have to have taken --
A. They had to have had Chem I. This is my second
year to teach secondary chemistry. They do not teach
two years of chemistry in government schools.
Q. Students aren't required to take biology before
they take chemistry?
A. Not at all.
Q. Are they required to take biology for graduation?
A. No. They're not required to take any science or
any math for graduation.
Q. Do most of the students in your school take biology?
A. I would venture to say the majority certainly take
biology. I'm trying to figure out the exact -- we have
1,500 students, 500 freshmen. And we have, let's see, two
-- we have one teacher that teaches three classes of biology
and another that teaches, I think, four. And another, I
think, teaches three. So, that would be what, a total of
about ten classes of say -- we probably have 300, 400
students that take biology out of the school per year.
Which, if you streched it over a three year period, because
that's how long they're in high school, that you'd have
somewhere between 9 and 1,200 of those 1,500 take biology.
Which would mean, I guess that the majority of them take
biology, but not all certainly.
Q. Have you ever read The Balance Treatment for
Creation Science And Evolution Science Act?
A. The what?
Q. Have you ever read the --
A. Yes. I have read it through, but I don't know it.
Q. In preparation for this deposition, did you look at
Q. Have you ever seen the complaint that was filed in
A. To the best of my knowledge, no.
Q. If I wanted to learn about Creation Science, can
you point me to any books I would get?
A. From off the top of my memory I could not, no.
Q. Okay. You don't remember the name of the books that
Q. Have you read "Origin And The Species"?
Q. Is -- you mentioned before your favorite chemistry
Q. Is there a particular chemistry book which you
recognize as the best in the field?
A. I can only tell you the ones that I prefer. I
prefer "Chem Study" by Cotton. Cotton is one of the
Q. Is Evolution a science?
A. Well, science is certainly performed in trying to
Q. Okay. What would it take for you to be able to say
that Evolution was a science?
A. For there to be a -- you mean --
MR. WILLIAMS: I want to object to the
question. you say, "is Evolution a science?". I'm not
sure if anything is a science. Science is a --
Q. Is Evolution a scientific theory?
A. I think it's a theory. I think science is working in
it. I'd say yes, it's a scientific theory.
Q. We talked a little bit before about the attributes
of science. I just want to run down and see if you have
an understanding as to them and if -- or just make sure
that they fit with what you've told me before was science
Q. Is testability a criteria of science?
A. Yes, I'd say so.
Q. And predictability?
Q. How about observability?
Q. Does Evolution measure up to the attributes of
science -- those four attributes of science?
Q. What doesn't it measure up to?
A. It's not observable.
Q. Anything else?
A. If you'll read to me again I'll go through them one
at a time with you.
Q. Is it falsifiable?
A. Well, again if you mean statistically?
MR. WILLIAMS: Well, I'm -- we're not
going to deny that he can adequately handle these
questions. I'm going to object because we are not
offering him as an expert on what is science. And I think
that to go into that, unless you're going to try to make
him your own expert, is burdensome and oppressive on him.
MS. FERBER: I will try not to be
burdensome and oppressive.
MR. WILLIAMS: You're asking him
MS. FERBER: He's feeling his questions
MR. WILLIAMS: I agree with you on that.
MS. FERBER: We'll go through them
MR. WILLIAMS: But until you spend a lot
of time on what is science, unless you're going to
make him your own witness on this point --
MS. FERBER: I want to understand how
he teaches science in his classroom and what he tells
students science is. And I think he's handling the
questions very well.
BY MS. FERBER:
Q. Is Evolution testable?
A. The foundations, I think -- I think you can test
Evolution to some degree. You cannot test something on
which -- there are aspects of evolution that you cannot
test. For instance, you cannot test the random collision
of particles in -- under conditions that must have
existed when you don't know if -- whether or not, in fact,
they existed. I mean, if you do not know for certain,
and there is no way of telling whether or not those
conditions existed, how are they available except as a
A. It is -- it is pure conjecture as to what the early
atmosphere of our planet was. There is no way to, as
far as I know, to adequately verify for sure, for certain
what our early atmosphere was.
Q. Do you know whether there are any conditions under
which Evolution could be tested which would disprove it?
A. No, I don't.
Q. Does evolution -- is evolution predictable?
A. You mean by predictable that we can predict what
will happen through evolution?
Q. Uh-huh. Can we predict?
A. We can't because according to evolutionists we're
talking about extremely long time spans over which some
organism must evolve. And under -- in our short life spans
it would be impossible to observe these. We can offer
conjecture hypothesis as to the possibilities and
probabilities I keep coming back to of these things might
occurring, you know. But if you want to say can we
therefore predict. Well, since we can't observe we can't
actually predict. We can make a supposition as to what
might happen, but we certainly can't say since we can't
-- and it
has never been observed in our entire life times. We
must only look at past records and then we must interpret
from these past records which, from my recent readings at
least, there is a lot of conjecture about.
Q. Don't scientists look at the information we have
about some period very long ago, and then based on
that information make predictions what would have
happened at some later time still in the past? And then
A. Wait now.
Q. If we have data as to what happened a million years
ago, some information --
A. All right. Assuming that --
Q. Assuming there is some evidence of what happened.
A. I assume that we agree that there's a million years
ago, but assuming that, okay.
Q. Any period of time ago --
Q. -- we have some information, don't scientists use
that information to predict what happened some years
later still sometime in the past?
A. Can you give me any specific example of where
you're coming from?
Q. Does the Theory of Evolution posit an explanation
of what set every thing in motion?
A. You mean give an explanation of what set everything
Q. We spent a lot of time talking about first life. We
didn't talk in a more general sense life, man, the earth,
Q. Does evolution posit a theory, posit an explanation
of what set life in the --
A. When you say, "posit," would you explain to me what
you mean by posit?
Q. Give a theory, give an explanation of what set life
in motion or the earth in motion?
A. As far as I know, through random collision. It's
just simply the random collision of particulate matter.
Q. Okay. We just went through four attributes of
science, falsifiability, observability, testability,
and predictability. We agreed on it, right?
A. I guess.
Q. Does Creation Science measure up to those four
attributes of science?
Q. Is Creation Science a science?
A. In the sense that evolution's science, it is.
Q. It's no less of a science or more of a science?
A. As far as I'm concerned, right.
Q. Is evolution a belief system?
A. It's a hypothesis which we're working to -- I think
science is working to validate or to invalidate. And,
you know, most hypotheses that you start off with you
haven't validated them. They are when you start, and it
may take a long time span to validate them, a belief.
Q. Is it a religious belief, a faith?
A. I've heard it called such.
Q. Do you belief that it is a faith system?
A. I haven't really honestly given it that much
thought. As far as I'm personally concerned, I don't
call it a religion. But now --
Q. Is creation a religion?
A. In my own mind, no. I think that many religions can
apply theirself to it. I think many religions feel more
comfortable with it. On the other hand, there are
religions that I've been told that feel more comfortable
Q. What controls what you teach in your individual
A. I think when I teach chemistry that I try to
teach the basics of -- of chemistry, of particulate
matter, their interactions, how they react with each
other. Q. What determines that that's what you'll
A. Because that's what chemistry is. That's the
definition of chemistry is particulate matter, models of
particulate matter, the interactions that particulate
matter has with itself.
Q. Does your school board, or your school, your
department, anybody require that you teach specific
A. They do require that we use certain textbooks,
that we issue them to the students. In a sense, to some
degree that dictates what you teach.
Q. So, the textbook significantly influences --
A. Signigicanly influences what you reach.
Q. Is there any curriculum guide or syllabus for
A. Not as far as I've seen
Q. Does anybody come -- anybody sit in on your classes
and monitor what you teach?
A. Yes they do.
Q. Who does that?
A. My principal.
Q. Unannounced or announced?
Q. How often?
A Twice this year.
Q. And do you have an opinion as to what the principal
is looking for when they sit in on your class?
A. He's looking to see if I'm doing my job in the best of
Q. Does he have any way of measuring whether what
you're teaching is chemistry, whether you're moving
through the curriculum, whether you are in fact teaching
what's in the textbook?
A. Well, at the end of the school year our children --
my students take a test, a national test in chemistry.
Q. What test is that?
A. I just -- I was sitting here -- I knew you were
going to ask that, and I honestly can't remember the
name of the test. But I will get you the name of the
test. It's the Chem -- last year there were 114 schools
that took this test across the nation. And I can't
recall the exact name of the test, but I will get it
Q. How come your students were in one of the 114 schools
that took it?
A. There may be more than 114. There were 114
schools, if I remember correctly. You know, again I --
that number may be off five schools or, you know.
Q. I understand.
A. Were used to establish norms. Okay. Other schools
then may utilize the test that was not part of the norm
Q. Was there any information on Creation Science included
on that exam?
A. Not as far as I know.
Q. Was there information in what we have been calling
Evolutionary Theory on that exam?
Q. Was it tested with -- whether the origin of life
was through random --
Q. So, to make sure I understand, there is no
curriculum that's mandated for you?
Q. Is the bible read in your school?
A. I'm sorry.
Q. Is the bible read in your school?
Q. I am certainly getting the sense that I didn't know
before that there is a vast amount of information in the
field of chemistry.
A. There is.
Q. And that you have students who are in a class with
you a limited amount of hours a year and you have to make
some judgement as to what you're going to teach in your
Q. How do you decide what information to include
and what not to include?
A. Based my past experience as to what will be required
at university level for them to enter, based upon
scores that our children take from tests that are
national tests, various national tests, based upon
the S.A.T. scores that our children take in chemistry.
We have Standardized Achievement Tests which are given
nationally called S.A.T.'s.
Q. In chemistry?
A. In chemistry. That they take based upon the
performance of my children, my students how well they
achieve on these tests, I know whether or not that I am
teaching the material that I should be teaching.
Q. So, initially you make a judgment as to what's
A. I guess I'm just about the only one that makes a
Q. How do you decide that one subject matter needs two
weeks of treatment, another one needs two hours?
A. Whether or not my children can be competent after
I've explained it to them. If they can learn it an hour,
then that's the only time that I spend on it. If it
takes to weeks then it takes two weeks. If it takes a
month then you take a month.
Q. You said one of the things that you base your
judgment on is what's required at the university level.
Do many of your students go on to study science in
Q. About what percent?
A. 80% of the students at the particular school that
I'm at go on to study college, or so. How many of those
enter into a university, in can't give you a specific
percentage -- in chemistry, I can't give you a specific
Q. How many hours a year do you have students in the
A. I have them 180 times, times 55 minutes.
Q. Do you use just about every minute of that time?
A. Just about every minute.
Q. And you don't teach Creation now, at all?
A. Not at all.
Q. So, if you're going to teach Creation, that time is
going to have to come from somewhere.
A. That's true.
Q. What would you stop teaching?
A. I would not stop teaching anything.
Q. Okay. We've got 180 times 55 minutes and every
minute is utilized.
A. No, I didn't say every minute.
Q. Just about every minute.
A. Just about every minute.
Q. How many minutes aren't utilized?
A. You're being nit picky, but I would say that
probably at the end of each day, I give them about ten
minutes to where they can study their material. And
then if they have questions individually over what we
went over in class they can come up and ask me.
Q I'm really not being nit picky. I'm really trying
to understand what happens in the classroom time. So,
are you saying that those ten minutes that you have them
review the materials are times that you could use for
A. The amount of time that would be necessary to point
out what I would want to point out to my students would
probably take very little time.
Q. What's very little?
A. Twenty minutes.
Q. Twenty minutes to teach -- to fully teach Creation?
A. No. To teach the aspect that I want to teach.
Q. What aspect do you want to teach?
A. I thought I had said that before.
Q. We talked about one aspect before.
Q. I didn't know if that was the only aspect that --
A. That's the only -- now if I were teaching, for
instance, if I were teaching some other science then I would
want to teach that which is applicable to that science.
Q. Now, let me make sure I understand. The only part
of your curriculum that you would alter would be when you
teach the origin of first life?
A. That's right. That's the only part that I'm
interested in. And that would not be to all students.
That would not be my Chem I students, but would be to my
Chem II students.
Q. And in Chemistry I there is nothing that you would
A. Nothing that I would change.
Q. So, it's only in your honors chemistry course?
A. That's right.
Q. Do you teach anything about the origin of life, man,
the earth, or the universe in Chemistry I?
Q. Okay. And you've read The Balance Treatment For
Creation Science And Evolution Science Act?
A. Yes, I have.
Q. And you told me that your understanding is that if
you teach anything having to do with Evolution Science;
theory of the origin of life, man, the earth, and the
universe, them you have to fully teach the Creation
A. No. Fully the part on which I've -- of either.
Q. Right. That's relevant to your curriculum area.
A. That's relevant to what I'm talking about, right.
Q. The only thing in your curriculum that's relevant
would be about twenty minutes in Chemistryl II.?
A. Well, there is another area that would be relevant.
Of course, that's radioactive dating.
Q. And you teach radioactive dating?
A. In second year.
Q. In Chemistry II?
A. Chemistry II.
Q. How much time do you spend on radioactivity?
A. Probably a week on radioactivity. Maybe -- it
depends on how well the children pick it up and how much
the -- and Chemistry II is a completely different program
than Chemistry I. Our program is dictated by the interest
of our children, how well they -- how much -- where their
interests lie. They've had -- for instance, this years
students have had a tremendous interest in organic
chemistry. So therefore, we spent eleven weeks on
organic chemistry. Last year's students didn't have that
interest, we spent six weeks on it.
So, it's an enlightenment course to
further an area of chemistry that -- for students who are
interested in this. And it's -- we've already covered in
first year the basics of chemistry.
A. And this is for honor students to take, and the
areas that they wish to cover. If they get into
radioactive material and they decide they want to spend
more than the week that I cover, well we'll do it.
Q. Okay. You say you normally cover a week on
A. That's all I have planned right now is a week.
But again, if they really become interested in this
thing, which in the past it varies from class to class as
to how much their interest might be.
Q. In that week as you would -- as you normally teach
it, what information do you teach that would require
you to balance that with a Creation Science alternate model?
A. The possibility that dating is incorrect, that
methods of dating are incorrect. I have never taught
that before. To go into what some scientists have points
of view that our current dating techniques are incorrect.
And there could be fallacies in these dating techniques?
Q. How would you teach that?
A. I would try as best I could to point out both --
the arguments of both people.
Q. And what are the arguments that our dating techniques
A. As I told you when we first started this interview,
that I had brush read this material very quickly through
Q. I understand that.
A. And I haven't read it since, but --
Q. To the best of your recollection.
A. To the best of my recollection, there are areas in
radioactive dating which have caused error in our current
Q. Like what?
A. Assumptions on the original amounts of radioactive
material present. And again, my memory is really vague
on this, but when I read through the material it impressed
me as being very plausible.
Q. This is the -- just to make sure. This is the
material that you borrowed from the community college
when you first became interested in Creation Science?
A. That's correct. Also the fact that our sun has always
been considered to be a constant invariable. Apparently,
some of our scientific satellite research have indicated
that our sun does vary it its output. If there had
been significant variances in our sun, it's my
understanding from this reading that this would affect
Carbon 14 dating because it would affect the amount of
Carbon 14 that would be in our air. Carbon 14 is a
radioactive constituent, and the amount of carbon
radioactive available to be ingested and to organisms
would then vary. If it varied, this would invalidate our
Carbon 14 dating techniques because we wouldn't really
know how much Carbon 14 should have been at specific
times in organisms. The only way you can -- the only
way you can use radioactive dating is that you assume
that -- that the -- that it has been consistent
Q. Okay. So in other words, what you read this
summer casts out on what you had been teaching that our
sun was considered constant, and that dating techniques
A. It casts out on that, that's correct.
Q. And so what you would teach is that there are some
A. That there are some scientists who would point
these things out.
Q. And you would teach -- would you teach the
scientific evidences on which they rely?
A. Uh-huh, as best I knew. I point out what they
stated in their books just like I point out what's stated
in our current textbooks.
Q. Okay. Can you think of -- can you think of any
other area in your curriculum that might be impacted?
Q. Okay. Do you teach about the half lives of the
Q. Okay. In Chemistry I and Chemistry II?
A. Chemistry II.
Q. And don't some of the elements have half
lives that are greater than ten thousand years old?
A. As far as we know, yes.
Q. Would you --
A. Some have -- as far as we know, if you use the --
the vast majority of scientific research indicates that we
have elements that are billions, have half lives of
billions of years. Anywhere from Uranium 238 is 4.5 billion
years. I think it's 4.37, but I'm not sure.
Q. Do you think that under the Balance Treatment For
Creation Science And Evolution Science Act you would
have to balance that with any other teaching when you --
A. Not as far as I know.
Q. In the definition of Creation Science contained in
Act 590, it indicates that Creation Science includes the
scientific evidence that is related and that it would
indicate a relatively recent inception of the earth and
living kinds. Do you have an idea of what relatively
A. I assume several thousand years.
Q. Okay. So, when you reach that there are elements
that have half lives of --
A. Four and a half billion years.
Q. Four and a half billion years.
A. That's not in conflict.
Q. Why isn't that in conflict?
A. Why would it be?
Q. I'd like to know.
A. You're asking me why would it be, and I don't know
why it would be. So, you're going to have to tell me why
would it be.
Q. We have elements that we can test. We know -- now
I don't know very much about chemistry, so I may be asking
A. Right, so I'm answering your questions.
Q. If we can measure that half life of an element, it's
gone through. And that element --
A. It doesn't necessarily preclude that it went through
half its life. Because there is an element present
that has a half life of four and a half billion years
does not necessitate that there have been four and a half
Q. Is there anything else we know about elements and --
I'm probably going to mess up the terminology here, but
elements; basically, isotopes changing into other isotopes
that are -- that suggest that some very long period of time
has to have passed for some chemical reactions to have
A. Chemical reactions have nothing to do with the
sequence or isotopes forming from radioactive materials.
Chemical reactions are interplays between electrons. And
what you're referring to as far a nuclear chemistry has
to do with changing of the nuclei of atoms, which has
nothing to do with chemical reactions.
Q. How does coal get formed?
A. How does coal get formed?
Q. Well let me short cut this. It is my understanding
that we have things such as coal and oil through a very long
history of changes in the earth, a history significantly
longer than ten thousand years?
A. It is theorized that's true that that happens,
yes. That is not an absolute fact.
Q. Do you teach anything about petroleum chemistry?
A. When we study organic chemistry, I think in our
book that it states that it takes long time spans for
petroleum to form. And it goes through the processes
that living materials were one time present on the
earth. And from these living materials who are pressed
beneath the surface of the earth, that through various
processes that petroleum was formed from them, or that coal
was formed from them.
Q. Is there any evidence that we would have petroleum
today if the earth wasn't millions of years old?
A. It depends on, you know, whether you say it was
there originally or whether it wasn't.
Q. I'm sorry, I don't understand. Originally meaning
when God created --
Q. -- the earth? Okay. Can you --
A. You mean, can you --
Q. -- can you.
A. You mean, what you're trying to get around I think,
correct me if I'm wrong. What I think you're trying to get
around to is could petroleum and coal have been formed in
short time spans?
A. Right. I can't answer that question. Possibly.
Q. Can you -- do you know any scientific evidence
in support of a theory that they were formed in short
A. Man can make diamonds now synthetically in very
short time spans.
Q. Aren't they synthetic diamonds?
A. They're synthetic diamonds, that's true.
Q. We're talking about synthetic petroleum.
A. We're not talking about nonreal diamonds. We're
talking about real diamonds, okay. Now, real diamonds
could have been made in short time spans. I assume that
you also know that it's hypothesized that diamonds are
made over very long time spans also. And it's necessary
for them to be created over extremely long time spans.
And yet, we can synthetically make them over very short
time spans now.
Q. Are you suggesting that somebody synthetically
made oil and coal to appear --
A. No, I am not suggesting that at all. I'm suggesting
to you that there is a mechanism now that is possible
to create something in short time spans over which
we have indicated that it takes long time spans in nature to
do. Therefore, the inferences that possibly there is a
mechanism by which the others could be done. Many things
that I don't know the answers to could be, and that's all
Q. Okay. But when you teach petroleum chemistry and
you reach that all theories agree the petroleum represents
the transformation of living material formed in
geological ages, millions of years ago you wouldn't feel
the need to balance that with any alternative theories
that suggest --
A. Yes. I would try to do research to find out
if there were an alternative theory to it.
Q. And if there was?
A. Then I would teach that also.
Q. You would teach that in your classroom?
Q. Is there any other areas like that that you might
have to research in to find out whether there is
something you need to balance that with?
A. I'm sure there are.
Q. So, there might be a lot more effect on your
courses then just in the two hours that we identified?
A. There would not be a lot, but there might be
Q. Okay. Let's go off the record.
Q. Mr. Townley, you told me earlier this morning that
you reviewed some books that you got from a community
Q. And I wanted to show you some books and just see if
any of these books sound familiar to you.
Q. "The Handy Dandy Evolution Refuter"?
A. Definitely not.
Q. "The Creation Explanation"?
A. There certainly are topics in this book that look
Q. You're referring to the Cophaler & Seagraves
"Creation and Explanation."
A. But -- Now, what we're referring to is there was a
period of about two weeks that I borrowed some books from
another teacher and read them in my spare time as fast as
I could and -- enough for me to --
Q. Now, these are Xeroxes you may need to thumb through
to tell. "Scientific Creationism"?
A. That picture really rings a bell. It's hard on
the way it's colored here, but that picture does ring
a bell. Let me look through the table of contents. It
doesn't have --
Q. Okay. I'll see if I can find an original of the book
A. I may have read this book.
Q. That's "Scientific Creationism" by -- put out by
the Institute For Creation Research. How about "The
Scientific Case for Creation" by Henry Morris?
A. Cover doesn't ring a bell.
Q. Okay. Or "The Bible has the answer"?
Q. "Creation Acts, Facts, and Impacts"?
A. You know, with that unusual a title you'd think it
would ring a bell. It doesn't.
MR. WILLIAMS: For the record, I want
to object. This is so irrelevant. It's hard for me to
conceive what relevancy it can have, it really is. This
would be like me asking evolutionist -- showing him a
book published some years ago which said that based on
Evolutionary Theory the average black individual has
evolved to the stage of an eleven year old. Go by
MS. FERBER: Your objection is noted
for the record.
BY MS. FERBER:
Q. "Evolution The Fossils Say No"? I believe that title
was familiar before.
A. The name sounds familiar. Could be.
Q. Okay. I would request that you attempt to find out
what books you reviewed and furnish the names to Mr.
Williams for him to furnish to us.
MS. FERBER: Is that agreed Mr.
MR. WILLIAMS: If he wants to do
that and gives it to me I will forward it.
Q. I will appreciate it if you will attempt to see what
books you reviewed. I request that you will do that.
When did you first hear of Creation Science?
A. Recently. It's been within the last year or two.
Q. Okay. Do you know if Creation Science is currently
taught in any public schools?
A. Not to my knowledge.
Q. You never heard any mention of it being taught in
A. It may be. Not as far as I know. There is in
non-public schools, non-grades K through 12, but on a
university level they are taught at West Ark as I stated
Q. Do any textbooks currently in use in Arkansas that
you know of discuss Creation Science?
A. Not as far as I know.
Q. Do you know of any library materials available in
your school or other schools that discuss Creation
A. Not as far as I know.
Q. Do you know of any case where the legislature ever
mandated or prohibited the teaching of any subject other
than Act 590?
A. You mean Arkansas?
A. Of course, I'm not familiar with Arkansas Law, so
Q. Well, you are a teacher.
Q. Do you know of any subjects which were mandated
or prohibited from being taught by the legislature?
A. No. But on the other hand, I -- you know, just
common sense tells me that there is certain things that
you can't teach in Arkansas too.
Q. Like what?
A. Well, like I'm sure that if you started to teach
something that had to do with pornography that you would
be, you know, told with I'm sure very firm strictness that
you couldn't teach it, okay. But I don't know that there is
such a law against it, but I mean -- so, you know, you're
asking me to judge on something that the only thing I can do
is give you a judgment based on personal reason rather than
on the law. So, I can't answer the question.
Q. Do you know whether your school district
ever considered whether Creation Science should be taught
before Act 590 was passed last March?
A. I would not know.
Q. Did you ever consider teaching Creation Science
before Act 590 was passed?
A. It hasn't been passed, but before it was brought
up. I have indicated that I've only recently started
reading Creation Science. I would say this, that as soon
as I would have read the materials I would have started
having thaughts that it should be taught; it should at
least be mentioned that it should be brought up as a
Q. Had you ever, before you read Creation Science
materials, read any scientific writings that contradicted
any of the information which you were teaching in your
A. I'm not saying that Evolution contradicts what I teach
in any science classes.
Q. All right. I didn't say that evolution contradicts
A. Or that Creation Science contradicts it. I'm not
sure that -- the only thing that I'm saying is that there is
a possibility of things not being as they're taught. That
doesn't -- when you say possibility, that doesn't eliminate,
that doesn't contradict.
Q. Are you telling me that what you read --
A. When you say contradict you mean that means
something is in error. And I have never said that
evolution isn't a possibility. In fact --
Q. I understand that.
A. So, in fact, I'm not saying that there is a
contradiction. I'm saying that there is an alternative
explanation for it.
Q. Didn't you tell me that you read information
which led you to believe that the scientific data on
which the Evolutionary Theory of the origin of man was
A. Was flimsy, was statistically shallow? Yes, I said
that. That doesn't mean that it contradicts it. It just
means that it says that it's unlikely.
Q. Now, do you believe that information which says
that one model is unlikely supports the alternative model,
A. Not necessarily.
Q. So, what information are you -- to the extent you
teach Creation Science, what information are you going to
teach to support that scientific theory?
A. I didn't say that it was a scientific theory
anymore than I said evolution was a scientific --
in fact, we went over that before that science cannot
do experimentation on what it cannot see. It can only
extrapolate which it is doing in evolution. And it
can do the same thing in creationism. And until I see
statistical data saying that it could not have been done,
it's just as much of a possibility as evolution.
Q. Didn't you tell me that what you teach in a science
class is science?
A. Yes. What I teach in science class we call
science, that's right.
Q. Okay. Now, I would like to know what information that
you would categorize as science you're going to teach
in your science classroom in support of the Creation
A. You want me to go back through what we went through
MR. WILLIAMS: I think the question has
been asked and answered.
A. I've already answered it, I think, once before. And
If you want me to go back through that whole thing again
on statistics, on the possibility of particulate matter
coming together, which we already went through.
Q. As I understand it, and correct me -- I'm sure you'll
correct me if I'm wrong. The information which you told me
diminished in your mind the probative value of the
statistics in support of what we are calling an evolution
science explanation of origins.
Q. And that's the same information which is the
scientific support for a Creation Science explanation of
A. Not necessarily in itself. If there were only two
-- if there were only two possible solutions and you
excluded one, then certainly the exclusion of one would
support the other.
Q. Did you you tell me that the origin model --
A. That's -- the only two models that I know of are
those two models. That doesn't exclude that there
aren't others, just none that I know of.
Q. So, now we've said that the information which
diminishes in your mind the probative value of support
for Evolution Science has not been fair in information in
support of Creation Science. So, what is the scientific
information that you will teach in support of the Creation
A. As I also told you, you know, since we're getting
down to this and because this is taking so long, that if
I teach a subject I would research it thoroughly. And since
I told you I have not researched it for this interview I
don't know why these questions continue on that vein. And
quite frankly, I really don't.
Q. Would you believe that you could teach Creation
Science as science in your science classroom?
A. Yes, I do. I could answer some of the questions
that are answered now by Evolution. They are just as
much scientific, in my own personal opinion, as the
way the questions are answered by Evolution.
Q. But you do not currently have the tools necessary --
A. No, I do not.
A. -- to teach Creation Science as science?
A. That's true.
Q. You've told me that your school district is putting
on some workshops and showed you some filmstrips.
A. That's correct.
Q. And thus far, you don't think those filmstrips are
A. I did not say that. I said --
Q. I do not mean to mischaracterize it. What did you
A. I said that they wouldn't be sufficient in
themselves to allow me to teach creationism.
Q. Did you also tell me that they would be
objectionable because they contain biblical references?
A. That's true, some of them do.
Q. Some. Do all of the filmstrips contain some
biblical references --
A. I can't remember if all of them do or not.
Q. -- or otherwise refer to religion?
A. But several of them do refer to -- maybe all the
three that I've seen referred to. But the ones that
do refer to biblical references, I personally would not
use. Now, if that answers your question, fine.
Q. So thus far you haven't seen any materials which
you could use in your classroom to teach Creation Science?
A. I did not say that. If there are ones which do not
refer to biblical references, then I will use them or
would feel free to use them.
Q. Thus far, you have not seen any materials which.
MR. WILLIAMS: And he has said that
some of those did not contain biblical references. And he
said he could use those.
Q. Is that what you said?
A. Any of the information that is available to me
without biblical reference I will use. If it has biblical
reference I would not use it.
Q. All I'm asking you is whether you have seen
anything that does not contain biblical references
that you could use?
A. My memory it's not -- I just don't remember.
Q. So, you don't know if you've seen any materials
that would be suitable for use in the public school to
teach Creation Science?
A. Yes, there is material which I would use to teach
Creation Science because I can edit out any religious
content from written materials that I don't have to use --
because the author refers to this maybe as being or
lending itself more to the view of a religion, I don't
have to teach that in my classes.
Q. That's in the written material that you reviewed on
A. In any written material. I don't have to use
religious material in my teaching.
Q. Mr. Townley sir, the only material I'm addressing
myself to right now -- as I understand it you have seen two
kinds of materials?
Q. That material which you reviewed on your own
A. True. And I can use some of that material to teach
with as long as I don't refer to any biblical references
that are in that material. The same thing with these
audio cassettes. There are references to the Bible
in that material, but that doesn't mean that I have to use
it in my teaching. I can use that as resource material
myself to take notes on it and teach it to the children.
Q. But you couldn't show any material, the filmstrips
that you saw or play any types?
A. I would not show any filmstrips or tapes that had
reference to biblical statements.
Q. I understand that you would not. All I'm trying to
understand is do you --
A. And I've answered your question that I don't know,
don't recall. I don't know how I can state it any more
clearly than that, then to keep going back over it.
Q. Okay. I just want to understand. And I'm entitled
to that understanding.
A. Right, but not so many times.
Q. Do you know how textbooks are selected for your
A. We have a textbook committee formed by teachers,
Q. And are teachers required to use the book that they
Q. Do you know how those textbooks are selected by
your school district?
A. That's what I just said.
Q. That's district-wide, I'm sorry.
Q. And are there any criteria that that district-wide
A. I'm sure they must. I have never served on that
Q. Do they pick one book for chemistry or do they
pick several that you can choose between?
A. They pick two. But there have been many books
in the past that are different from the two that they may
be currently using and we use those for resource material.
Q. Okay. What training do high school science
teachers have that would enable them to teach Creation
Science as science?
A. I would doubt very little. I would doubt if
many of the teachers, if not -- instead of using many,
maybe most of the teachers have any formal training. But
on the other hand, teachers as a whole teach from what
they studied by themselves in a non-formal situation.
They do independent study and use that material that
they use in independent study to teach with.
Q. Do you think that some kind of teacher training
programs are necessary to get high school science teachers
to the point where they can teach Creation Science as
A. I would certainly hope that the school system would
initiate some activities to do that.
Q. Do you have any continuing education requirements --
A. In the State of Arkansas?
Q. -- any kinds of inservice training or anything?
A. Yes, we do.
Q. What are those requirements?
A. Requires six hours of college credit I think every
five years. It may be every six years, but it's a certain
number of hours every so often?
Q. That's a course that you would take out of college?
A. They're courses that you have out of college or you
can take inservice workshops that they give in our
system, this is not statewide. In our system they have
inservice workshops that you can go to and get points
for. And if you get as many as twelve points this
will satisfy the requirement instead of six hours.
Q. Do you have an opinion as to the kind of retraining
that would be necessary for high school science teachers
to teach Creation Science?
A. No. I think that my opinion would be -- because
there are different kinds of science teachers that teach
different subjects in which they would be more involved
in teaching one area than teaching another, it would take
more for one teacher than another to -- in order to
Q. What subjects do you think this has the most effect
Q. Anything else?
A. Geometry, teaching earth science.
Q. Did you ever hear of a seminar given to teacher in
Arkansas on Creation Science?
Q. We've been talking about the Balance Treatment for
Creation Science And Evolution Science, Act 590. Do
you have an opinion as to what "balance treatment" means?
A. Well, yes I do.
Q. What do you think that means?
A. I think a balanced treatment would mean that you
would teach the viewpoint of both to it's fullest extent
that is necessary to get across to the students the
idea of the theory and what it means in that respect.
For instance, if it took me one minute to fully explain
to the students one theory, one part of one of the
theories and yet it took me fifteen minutes to explain
that same part of another theory, then I would expect
that you spend the amount of time necessary. In other
words, whatever is necessary to explain that concept
would be used.
Q. Okay. Are you aware of the fact that Act 590
requires that balanced treatment be given to these two
models in textbook materials taken as a whole for each
A. Balanced has been explained to me to mean that you
be able to teach the viewpoint completely.
Q. Who explained it to you in that way?
A. The Attorney General's office.
Q. When did they explain it to you?
A. I don't know if it's been in the past week or if --
it's been in the past week.
Q. Do you remember whether you had an opinion as to
what balanced treatment meant before it was explained to
you by the Attorney General's office?
A. Balanced treatment before the Attorney General's
office -- it was my opinion that it meant that you would
probably have to spend about the same amount of time.
Q. Now, I had just asked you whether you were aware of
the fact that Act 590 require that balanced treatment be
given to Evolution Science and Creation Science in
textbook material taken as a whole?
A. I never -- I personally never considered that, I
considered only the time element.
Q. Do you know of any textbook materials that would be
available to give balanced treatment to Evolution Science
and Creation Science?
A. I currently do not know of any single textbook
which would give equal treatment to both.
Q. And have you seen any supplemental textbook
materials and any things which you could use -- textbook
materials which could be introduced into the classroom,
into the public school classroom in order to meet the
balanced treatment requirement?
A. Of course, I haven't looked so I don't know.
Q. And Act 509 also requires balanced treatment for
those two models in library materials taken as a whole.
Have you --
A. Again, I haven't looked so I can't answer the
Q. Do you have any understanding as to whether there
are any library materials currently in your school on
A. Going out on the limb, I would say that there is
not any. And that would be a guess, that's just a guess.
Q. In your class now, are there any topics which you
teach where the -- the scientific explanation is in doubt,
where there are two competing theories, what you would
call an unsettled area of science?
MR. WILLIAMS: I think there were
three questions in there.
Q. Do you -- are there any unsettled areas of chemistry
that you currently teach?
A. Any areas in which absolute facts are not known?
Q. You could answer that one, simply.
A. Yes, there are.
Q. Okay. Are there scientific disputes going on in
chemistry where you teach both sides or the various sides
of the dispute?
A. The one that I can currently think of now is on the
basic particulate matter using the Quark Theory, I think
it's Quark, I think. But I am so unfamiliar with the theory
that I couldn't teach it.
Q. So, that's the only scientific dispute?
A. I wouldn't say that's the only.
Q. That you can think of anyway?
A. That I can think of. There are probably others.
Q. What I'm asking you is whether there are any which
you teach in your classroom now?
A. At this time I can't think of any, right now.
Q. Okay. And would you agree that there is a
scientific dispute -- or would you characterize it as a
scientific dispute between Creation Science and Evolution
A. I would characterize it -- there is a dispute going
on about how life started on this planet between people who
believe in evolution as a mechanism and those who believe in
creation as a mechanism.
Q. So, this would be --
A. I do not currently think that you can prove or
disprove, with my current briefs I might change this
later with further reading and more research. I do
not currently believe, based upon what I know, that either
could be proved or disproved. They maybe able to prove
or disprove them in the future.
Q. So, this would be the first such dispute that you
would be teaching in your chemistry class?
A. As far as I know. On the other hand, if I thought
back and had more time to think about it maybe there are
disagreements which we could, if you want to call them
disputes, that we could bring up. But if we're talking
about major disputes on major theory, I can't think of
any at this time. That doesn't mean that there aren't,
but that I can't think of any.
Q. So now, you read some materials in the last year
which you have --
A. That have placed in doubt some of my previous
Q. But you are not presently ready to teach Creation
Science. You have to do more research.
A. That's correct.
Q. And yet, you have expressed the opinion that
Creation Science should be taught in the science
A. That's true. That's right.
Q. And you believe, based on what you've read even
though you're not prepared to teach it, that it should be
taught to chemistry students?
A. That any part of it that involves chemistry should
be expressed as a possibility.
Q. Why do you think Creation Science isn't in the
chemistry textbooks that you currently use?
A. Probably for the same reasons I'm not familiar with
it. We weren't taught, we weren't given the alternative.
Q. Do you have any idea why you weren't taught it?
A. Well, I can go back to why were most people not taught
that the earth went around the sun, because most of the
people those days, those for two thousand years believed the
sun went around the earth. And they firmly believed that.
And they were taught by people who firmly believed one
idea even though it was wrong. So, I assume that my
instructors were no more -- they weren't prepared any better
than I was. And so therefore, they fully believed what they
were teaching. And I do not fault them for it.
Q. Are these Creation Science arguments new?
A. I think many of the statistical discoveries, yes are
new and they haven't been around for very long.
Q. These are the statistical discoveries that have to
do with the probability --
A. You're trying to pin me down on my total knowledge of
Creation Science. And I think that's irresponsible
because I've explained to you that I do not -- that I'm
not fully -- you know --
Q. Mr. Townley, I am entitled to test the extent of
A. And I'm entitled to give an opinion too. Right?
And so you're telling me this and I'm saying that.
Q. Mr. Townley, you're here to answer my questions.
A. True, and I'm answering them.
Q. And I can ask no more of you than to answer to the
fullest extent of your knowledge on this day.
A. That's right. And I've explained to you that my
knowledge is very fragile.
Q. That's right. And I just want to understand the
full extent of your knowledge. And that is all I am
trying to explore. One more time. You just mentioned
new statistical studies.
A. Well, new to me anyway. Okay. As far as I am
concerned they are certainly new to me.
Q. Are these the statistical studies we talked about
throughout this morning and this afternoon?
A. I would hope so.
Q. Okay. Off the record.
[Off the record discussion.]
Q. Have you ever taught any material in your chemistry
class that would -- in which you discussed a creator?
Q. Or God?
Q. Or a supreme being?
Q. Has a student ever asked you about the existence of
or the involvement of God, or a supreme being, or a
A. Not that I can remember.
Q. Do you believe that you can teach Creation Science
without that obvious question of who is the creator?
A. I wouldn't intend not to.
Q. I'm sorry, I don't understand your answer.
A. I would intend to say that there was a creator,
that there was a force external to. That's part of the
explanation. That there is a force beyond the understanding
Q. What if a student asked you who is the creator?
A. I would simply say I don't know because that's what
beyond the understanding of man means, that I don't know.
If it were not beyond the understanding of man I would know
what it meant, I guess.
Q. Isn't the concept of the creator an inherently
MR. WILLIAMS: I object to that as
being beyond the scope of this individual's knowledge.
MS. FERBER: I'm asking his personal
opinion as to whether or not creator implies a religious
MR. WILLIAMS: I object to the
questions and I instruct him not to answer them.
MS. FERBER: Mr. Williams, explain
the basis of your objection.
MR. WILLIAMS: You're asking him the
question as to whether a creator is inherently a religious
MS. FERBER: I asked if in his mind
MR. WILLIAMS: He's not competent to
answer that. That is a question which is so tied up with
theology and even which the theologians I have deposed
in this case I don't think can answer. And to ask him
that question is so far afield from the purpose of his
testimony and the purpose of his deposition that it's
just -- it's really totally objectionable.
MS. FERBER: Are you representing
Mr. Townley in this deposition?
MR. WILLIAMS: I'm representing my
client's interest. I'm representing the defendants.
MS. FERBER: But you are not
representing Mr. Townley?
MR. WILLIAMS: No, but I can object.
MS. FERBER: I do not believe you
can instruct him not to answer the question.
BY MS. FERBER:
Q. Mr. Townley, you can answer my question whether or
not in your opinion, to your personal knowledge, the
concept of creator is inherently a religious concept?
A. May I ask a question?
Q. Go ahead.
A. Not being a legal person.
Q. I'm not asking you for a legal conclusion.
A. I know what your question is, okay. But before I
answer the question, you've told me not to answer it.
MR. WILLIAMS: Uh-huh.
MS. FERBER: Mr. Williams, I would
ask you to withdraw your instructions and not confuse Mr.
Townley as to who -- as to whether or not you are
representing him in this deposition.
MR. WILLIAMS: Well, I don't want to be
obstructionist, I really don't. But I really think the
question is totally beyond the bounds of his knowledge.
Even to ask him if in his mind is so totally beyond the
bounds of his possible testimony in any relevance to this
MS. FERBER: Mr. Williams, I would
rather not clutter the record with our colloquy and our
testimony. The question is your're not -- you're
instructing him apparently not to answer. He is confused
at this moment as to whether or not you can instruct him
not to answer. And I would like you to clarify the
record as to that one matter?
MR. WILLIAMS: I will go ahead -- I
will withdraw the instruction on the grounds it's so
irrelevant that it is -- the question is stupid, but
we'll go ahead and let it be asked.
MR. CEARLEUY: That's a basis for
MR. WILLIAMS: When it's so totally
irrelevent, I think so.
BY MS. FERBER:
A. I -- can I ask you to go back over that question
Q. Mr. Townly, in your opinion, does -- is the concept of
a creator, a supreme being, God an inherently religious
MR. WILLIAMS: I object to that as
being a compound question.
Q. Is the concept of a creator an inherently religious
MR. WILLIAMS: I'm going to object
for the record again. You can answer the question. Not
only is the beyond the purview of his expertise of which
we have offered him as having none, although he would in
the area of science, it is further a legal conclusion
which is going to be decided from this case. And it is
not appropriate for him to make that conclusion.
MS. FERBER: Mr. Townley does have
expertise in the area of science.
MR. WILLIAMS: Are you going to
offer him as an expert witness?
BY MS. FERBER:
Q. Is the concept of the creator a scientific concept?
A. A scientific concept is one that can be experimented
on to prove or disprove or to lend credence to the
hypothesis. And since we can neither prove nor disprove
the creator, I wouldn't say that the -- that the creator --
to prove or disprove a creator would be a question of
science any more than to prove or disprove something that
didn't exist during our knowledge -- and let me finish,
which is exactly what's being done with evolution. So, based
on my personal belief, there would be no more a religious
teaching in that than the other.
Q. So, you're saying that teaching evolution is
A. I'm saying that teaching evolution you cannot -- you
cannot do experimentation on the foundation on which it's
built. And therefore, that's not science.
Q. Why is evolution taught in virtually every biology
A. You're asking.
MR. WILLIAMS: Calls for speculation, I
Q. Do you have an opinion as to why evolution is
taught if it's not scientific?
A. Would you rephrase that for me?
Q. Mr. Townley, you have just told me because
A. I don't think that there is any more validity to
teaching Evolution than to teaching Creation Science for
the reason that neither can be -- and call it absolute pure
science, because neither is absolutely -- can you do
experimentation on the original concrete basement from which
they both come. But for me to sit here and call, because
you can't do experimentation on the original conditions
under which creation is supposedly to have occurred through
evolution, would not justify me calling it a religion. But
on the other hand, it would justify me saying that you
cannot do experimentation on it. And therefore, it's no
more scientific than creationism.
Q. Is creationism no more religious than evolution is?
MR. WILLIAMS: Again, I'll object on
the grounds that he doesn't have the knowledge.
A. I personally do not think that creationism is a
Q. In your mind, is the concept of a creator an
inherently religious concept?
MR. WILLIAMS: I'm going to object
on the ground the question is ambiguous as well because,
are you talking about the creator in the sense as it is
presented in a religion or are you talking about the
creator which is discussed in the theory of Creation
Science as we have been talking about it?
MS. FERBER: Creation Science as Mr.
Townley has been discussing it.
MR. WILLIAMS: In other words, a force
above and beyond what we know, that's what we're talking
MS. FERBER: I would like Mr. Townley to
answer the question based on his own interpretation. I
would prefer that you did not define the term for him. He
has been using it all morning.
MR. WILLIAMS: But the question is
ambiguous, I'm trying to clarify it.
BY MS. FERBER:
Q. What does the term creator mean to you?
A. I think if you go back in the previous pages, must
be volumes by now, that you'll find that I sand an external
force, knowledge beyond the knowledge of man.
Q. Is creator, as in external force beyond the
knowledge of man --
A. Is it necessarily religious?
Q. Is it a religious concept?
A. Is it a religious concept? I don't know if I know
the answer to that question.
Q. Is it the same creator that you talk about in
A. I think the one that I talk about in church could
certainly be applied to it.
Q. And the one that you read about in the Bible?
A. Could certainly be applied to it.
Q. And the one that when you discuss Creation Science
in your Sunday school class, same creator?
A. Could be applied to it.
A. Not necessarily one and the same, but it could be
applied to it.
Q. As a teacher, do you have a definition of religion?
A. Of religion?
A. I don't teach religion.
Q. I understand that. But you do know that you
can't teach religion in the public school, right?
MR. WILLIAMS: That question has been
asked and answered at least twice.
Q, So, you know that -- so, somehow you can recognize the
difference between religion and something else?
A. Well, in the sense that teaching the Christian
religion, or Judiasm, or any of the ones that I'm
familiar with I don't, not as far as I know, any other
teacher use that in science.
Q. Is that the only way that you could teach religion
is to teach Judiasm or Catholicism or....
A. Or any other religion that I'm familiar with, yes. As
to try to draw from that what the definition of religion
would be, I'm afraid I'd have to go -- and since I'm not a
theologian on religion, I'd have to go and research the fact
or what definition you're trying to pull from me.
As far as my own Christian belief,
which if you want to get into my Christian belief you
can, I do not teach that in school.
Q. I assure you I am not trying to pull from you any
definition of religion. But I am trying to understand
whether or not you have a definition of religion or
how you will recognize religion when you see it or when
you talk about it?
A. Well, I can give you characteristics of it. But
characteristics of something doesn't necessarily define
Q. I would like to hear your characteristics of
A. Well, religion is something that's based on faith.
Q. Is it -- in the sense that you are a Christian, is
it part of your faith that there was a creator?
A. It's part of my faith that there was a creator
shaped in the image of man.
Q. How do you distinguish that creator from the
creator that is inherent in teaching Creation Science?
A. Creation Science doesn't give to the creator in that
thought the emotions of love, hate, envy, jealousy, give it
design, give it morals, give it desires as far as I know.
Q. I'm sorry, I'm confused. The creator has to have
A. My biblical God, my creator has emotions. The
Creator and Creation Science, as far as I know, I've
never read where they have to have these characteristics.
Q. So, that's the distinction you would draw between
the -- between your religious creator, God and between --
A. My religious God has set for me morals under
which I live, the facts on relationships that I must have
with my fellow man which Creation Science does not -- not
Q. I apologize if this has been asked and answered,
but I don't guess we want to read back the record and
find it. I asked you whether -- how you would respond to a
child who asks you who's the creator.
A. And I would say, for about the third or fourth time,
that it would be somebody who -- some knowledge between
the knowledge of man, some force, some power that we
don't have the ability to recognize.
Q. But you'd stop short of calling this religion
because you don't attribute that creator with the -- with
A. With a religion there is more to -- I think in a --
a religion has a god that has various emotions, that has
given you certain morals which you must follow, certain
relationships with mankind and each other that you
Q. Aren't those things -- what God gave to man rather
than the characteristics of the creator himself?
A. Right. That our God gave us that's part of our
religion, that's right.
Q. Does God have those characteristics to give them
A. If you're saying religion is just the fact that
there is a God, there are religions in this world who --
who do not have a God, it's my understanding.
Q. I'm not trying to understand every religion in the
MR. WILLIAMS: If you do you're in
the wrong deposition, it's going on down the hall.
A. Is there a shortage of science teachers in your
school or in your district?
A. I think there is probably a shortage of science
teachers in the United States.
Q. Do you --
A. Probably, you know, it's a guess. I don't really know
as to whether or not my district has a hard time getting
scientists to teach as science teachers. I couldn't answer,
I don't know. I've read, of course, that there is a
shortage of science teachers, and math teachers, and shop
teachers in the United States. Although there seems to be an
abundance of teachers as a whole.
Q. Do you -- do you know that there are teachers
who would refuse to teach Creation Science?
Q. Can Creation Science be taught without discussions
of the creator?
A. Without mention that there was a creator? I
Q. Is there any scientific evidence of who the creator
A. Not as far as I know.
Q. Do you believe that under Act 590 you would be
permitted to express an opinion as to the scientific
merit of Evolution?
Q. Do you believe that under Act 590 you'd be able to
express an opinion as to the scientific merit of Creation
Q. Have you discussed that question with the Attorney
Q. Did your opinion change after your discussion with the
Attorney General's office?
A. I didn't have an -- really that much -- I really
didn't have that much of a -- an understanding of what
you're referring to before I talked to the Attorney
Q. Did you believe that you could give your technical
balanced treatment equal time whenever you thought of it
before your discussion with the Attorney General's office,
and say, "But I don't really believe in this evidence
for Creation Science"?
A. I didn't know if I could one way or the other.
Q. Had you thought about it?
Q. And you didn't know whether you were free to
express an opinion or not?
Q. So, your current belief, subsequent to your
discussion with the Attorney General's office, is that
you could give balanced treatment to evolution science
and creation science and then say, but I don't really
believe any of the scientific evidence that I just taught
you for creation science?
A. I guess you could.
Q. Would you be able to, under Act 590, say that some
religions believe this about Creation Science?
A. I don't think so.
Q. Absent Act 590, do you believe that teachers
would be free to teach Creation Science?
A. Absent Act --
Q. If Act 590 had never been passed, had never been
considered by the legislature --
Q. -- do you believe that teachers would have the
freedom to determine whether or not to teach Creation
A. I think some would under great pressure. I think
there would be great pressure on many teachers if they
Q. You mean that -- what I'm asking you is you believe,
absent Act 590, you would have the right to teach
A. Of course, I guess any teacher could teach what
they wanted to ,but the results of what they tried to
teach might be disastrous.
Q. Like what?
A. Well, like -- as I expressed while ago, you know, if
you wanted to teach Moll Flanders, for instance, on the a
high school or junior high level. Although it's able to be
taught on a college level, I'm not sure it would be accepted
by the people or the local school district or possibly the
school board. So, you might have to -- just because you
jump in there and teach something doesn't mean that you
wouldn't suffer the consequences.
Q. Do you have reason to believe that your school
district, absent Act 590, wouldn't let somebody teach
A. Well, let me put it to you this way. If 590
passes, my school district would allow me to teach. Now,
let me finish. We'll go a little logic. If the -- if it
doesn't pass, okay. If it doesn't pass, then my school
district would have no reason to say "wait" unless if it
doesn't pass they didn't intend to let me.
Q. I'm sorry, I'm confused. Maybe Mr. Williams
would like to....
A. Why should there be be any reason why -- if there
is no difference, whether it passes or doesn't pass, why
should we then be told to wait?
Q. Okay. There are....
A. We've been asked to wait in my school district.
Q. Have you been asked to wait until Act 590 passes the
legislature or asked to wait until the court rules on what
A. Until there is a ruling on Act 590.
Q. A ruling on whether the statute, which has already
been passed by the legislature, is unconstitutional or
A. I can't answer that question. I can only say that
our school district has asked us not to teach Creation
Science until this case which we're going through is over.
Okay. Now, if there were not -- there were not intention
to prevent it being taught, why couldn't it be -- why
would even such a statement be made? It seems to me
illogical that such a statement would be made at all if
there were not something intended -- there wasn't some
measure or desire for you not to teach it unless the
act passed. That's again, my own personal opinion. So,
it doesn't really have any merit other than just a
Q. If Act 590 had not passed the legislature and this
lawsuit didn't exist, would you be able to express an
opinion as to the scientific merit of Evolution?
A. In my classroom?
Q. In your classroom.
A. I'm not sure.
Q. Okay. Do you believe that the teaching of Evolution
reenforces any negative values in children?
A. Not that I know of.
Q. Do you think it enforces any negative beliefs?
A. Not that I know of.
Q. Does it impact on their religious beliefs at all?
A. It could.
Q. In what way?
A. Well, I guess if they believed strictly word for word
as the Bible is written, that it would be difficult for
a Christian to -- who was not very knowledgeable in
science to believe that there could be a world by
evolution. For me, personally as a Christian, I find
nothing that would prevent the mechanism by which God
would want to create this world, nothing in evolution
that would prevent that being the mechanism.
Q. Do you know what Christian Political Action is?
A. No. Well, I understand what the words mean, but I
mean as far as the group, I don't know any of the
philosophies of the group or what its intentions are?
Q. Is it a group?
A. I told you I really don't know. You asked me a
Q. I wasn't asking you about a group. I asked what
Christian Political action would mean to you?
A. What Christian Political Action would mean? I guess
it would mean political action taken by Christians.
Q. What kind of political actions would Christians
MR. WILLIAMS: I object. That's so
speculative and has so much conjecture. Really Laurie,
MS. FERBER: I'll withdraw the
Q. Did evolution, as taught in Public schools, deny
the existence of God in any way?
A. No, I don't think so.
Q. Do you believe that religious implications should
be considered along with scientific and academic aspects
in determining whether any subject is taught?
A. Do I believe whether or not what now?
Q. Do you believe that religious implications are
relevant in deciding whether a subject should be taught?
A. I'm not sure, I'd have to put in more thought on
that question. I think I would really have to put
in some thought on it. More than I could have to answer
now. There is a difference between teaching religion and
Q. Do you use audio-visual aids when you teach?
Q. Are they furnished by your school?
Q. Are you free to rent whatever audio-visual aids you
A. I don't know where the money would come from.
Q. Is there any budget for renting films?
A. Not that's open to me.
Q. Do you borrow films from other schools or school
Q. You told me earlier that your interpretation
of Act 590 was that a teacher either had to give balanced
treatment of creation science and evolution or had to
refrain from teaching evolution.
A. That's true.
Q. Do you believe that any -- that teachers will stop
teaching evolution because of the balanced treatment
A. It's possible.
Q. Have you heard any teachers say that they would
Q. Have you discussed that with any teachers?
MR. WILLIAMS: He's asked and answered
MS. FERBER: I don't believe he's
discussed that -- told me whether he discussed that
MR. WILLIAMS: Well, I think he said
that it has been discussed, but I earlier testimony
was that nobody has told him that they will not teach it.
BY MS. FERBER:
Q. That accurate?
MS. FERBER: Thank you Mr. Williams,
appreciate your testimony.
Q. Does Fort Smith Special School District have a
curriculum development committee?
A. I think so.
Q. Do you know what the responsibilities of that
A. Well, the name implies develop curriculum.
Q. Do they develop curriculum in the science area?
A. And I said, as far as I know, there's not curriculum
in chemistry so....
Q. Are there any guidelines from the State as far as,
you know, that apply to what you teach?
A. None that I've seen.
Q. Is there some process whereby scientific theories
gain acceptance in the scientific community before they're
taught in schools?
A. Well, most theories are not taught unless there's
some belief in the scientific community by a portion of
the scientific community that they're possible.
Q. For the most part are the theories, scientific
theories which you teach, scientific information which you
teach in your classes, reflected in textbooks?
Q. And is there some process whereby scientific theory
gains acceptance or the scientific community before it's
incorporated into textbooks?
A. Again, I'd have to say that it's believed by the
majority of scientists before --
Q. Do you have an opinion as to why Creation Science
doesn't appear in textbooks?
MR. WILLIAMS: That supposes that
it does not.
MS. FERBER: I believe Mr. Townley
testified that he does not know of any textbooks which
include Creation Science.
MR. WILLIAMS: In his district, You're
saying all textbooks.
BY MS. FERBER:
Q. Do you know of any text books which include
A. Unless you're talking about those sitting on the table.
Q. Textbooks -- all right. do you know of any
textbooks that you have seen which would be used in the
public schools that include Creation Science?
A. Of course, I also told you that I've only viewed
about three books, you know. So, that --
Q. Have you seen a lot of chemistry textbooks in your
A. That have Creation Science? No, I haven't.
Q. Have you seen -- and you have reviewed many
chemistry textbooks in your many years of teaching
A. That's true.
Q. And you've never seen one that includes Creation
A. That's true.
Q. Okay. Do you believe that it's professionally
responsible to teach theories or information which have
not gained acceptance in the scientific community?
A. Well, if it wasn't then we would have had -- we
would still be back believing that the sun went around
the earth. We'd still believe that the blood ebdon
[sic.] flowed in the body because the vast majority of
the teachers, during those times, believed that the blood
ebdon flowed in the body.
Q. I didn't ask you whether scientists could study and
teach us new information. Are you suggesting to me
that people were teaching that in the schools at the same
A. No, they weren't. They were not.
Q. That's not my question then Mr. Townley, sorry.
What I asked you was whether it was professionally
responsible to teach theories or scientific information
which have not yet gained acceptance in the scientific
A. I'm not sure I can answer that question.
Q. Do you teach scientific theories which have not
gained acceptance in the scientific community?
Q. Do you believe that Creation Science has gained
acceptance in the scientific community?
A. By a segment of it.
Q. How big a segment a segment of scientific community
has to accept a theory before you think it ought to be
taught in schools?
A. I really don't know.
Q. So, if you read it in a couple of books, is that
enough to convince you that you ought to teach it?
A. No. But when I see the people that have -- the
number of people that are writing books, the number of
scientists that are doing research on it; such as in
England, such as in Michigan, such as in California and
when I read their credentials, as I've already
Q. If they have P.h.D. after their name and they're
from a school that you recognized?
A. That are highly recognized.
Q. Highly recognized.
A. That's the only judgment or criteria that I have
to go on. Since I'm not an expert in those fields, I
do not do research. I can only make judgment values
based on what I read.
Q. Do you know who published the books that you
A. At the time that I read them I looked at the
authors and -- and looked at them, as I have stated.
Q. Did you have any information about those publishers?
A. I don't have any information about the people that
currently or in any other time I've looked at textbooks.
That's a question which I've already answered also.
Q. How would you feel if you knew that the companies
that published the Creation Science books that you
reviewed were connected to church organizations?
A. I don't think that would bother me.
Q. It wouldn't, in any way, influence your opinion as
to the size of the validity?
A. I don't think so. They're just publishing
Q. Once again, we've talked about the option of
avoiding teaching Evolution Science. Is that an option
that's open to you? Rather than teaching Creation
Science, could you excise from your course that part of
the curriculum which has to do with Evolution Science?
A. I could.
Q. Without doing any damage to the information that you
should be teaching to your students?
A. That's a question which is speculative. I don't if
I -- you know, if you're saying by not telling them or
giving them all the information you have could harm them
or not harm them, that's an opinion.
Q. Do you believe that you should have that option to
stop teaching a part of your curriculum?
A. I didn't say I was going to stop teaching that.
Q. I asked if you should have the option of doing
A. I believe in our democracy. And I believe that
there are -- in the process that we have that if -- if
various committees throughout our lands decide that
we shouldn't teach it, that we should (1) either not
teach it or we should get out of the profession.
Q. The Balance Treatment For Creation Science And
Evolution Science Bill gives you two options. Or the
Attorney General's office tells you there are two options.
A. Right. And if I don't wish to teach those -- if I
don't wish to do one or the other -- If I wish to teach
one without the other, then I'm breaking the law. And
then I either must move to a state to where -- that I can
do that or I should have to get out of teaching. We have
to obey the laws of our land.
Q. What I want to know is, whether you believe that
you ought to have that option -- or whether you have a
right to exercise that option to stop teaching a portion
of the curriculum which you've determined ought not to
A. If the law says that I should, then I should.
Q. According to the information you've given me, in
some areas of your curriculum now you will be teaching
two alternative theories of how something occurred.
Do you believe that students have the academic background to
weigh the relative merit of the two different theories that
you will be presenting?
A. I have presented different theories as to why
things have occurred in other areas in science and
haven't seen that harm them.
Q. What areas have you presented different theories in?
A. Such as in geology where -- in mountain building
you raise several possibilities, several theories of why
mountains are built, raised.
Q. Do you think any of that area in any way requires
students to choose between the different models you
present of reconcile.?
A. No, I don't think it makes them choose between them.
They recognize that they are models, they recognize
that there are different possibilities.
Q. Do you believe that presentation of Evolution
Science and Creation Science might cause students to have
to choose between the two models in order to reconcile?
A. I don't think they have to choose between the two
models. I don't have to choose between the two models.
And I'm just as -- I would have to consider myself as the
only place I can make the value judgment.
Q. So, students who are many years younger than
you lack your academic rating?
A. Would not have to make a value judgment, no.
Q. Is it too conceivable to you that because of the
religious training they get at home --
A. They might.
Q. -- they might have to reconcile with inconsistent
MR. WILLIAMS: Calls for speculation
Q. You don't know?
A. I --
Q. You don't know, is that the shrug?
A. Obviously --
Q. The reporter can't report a shrug.
A. Well, the reporter can report that I stated
previously and which I've answered many times. You know,
I seems like many of these questions I'm answering for
the fourth or fifth time.
Q. I think the questions have been slightly different.
And I need the answers. I apologize to for --
A. Would you want to rephrase the question again?
We'll see if it's rephrased in the same way.
Q. I will ask the question. Thank you.
A. Okay. Let me hear it again.
Q. Is it conceivable to you that because of religious
training, religious beliefs, students may feel compelled
to reconcile the two models you present or feel confused
by the two models?
MR. WILLIAMS: That's still --
A. You ask me if it's possible, of course, anything is
MR. WILLIAMS: That's still speculative
and I object.
Q. Okay. Can chemistry be taught without teaching the
origin of life, man, the earth, and the universe at
Q. How much of your curriculum would you be excising
to do that?
A. Not much. Again, it's very difficult for me to say
because you -- as before, you brought up an area which I
hadn't thought of, so it's difficult for me to say. It's
difficult for me to say. Not much. There aren't too
many areas that are -- that involve creationism vs
evolution in chemistry. Chemistry is the study of
particles and how they interact
with each other. The mechanisms, how they interact with
each other. The products by which are produced by these
mechanisms. When we get into -- only when we get into the
area of the production of extremely long polyatomic
molecules and the probability statistically of informing do
we get in on the -- the basement of both theories. I'm sure
that there are probably other areas to where you could draw
parallels in some way.
Q. So, you do not know exactly what part of your
curriculum you'll have to alter to comply with that?
A. I would have to give it more time than the five
minutes that we're talking about here. I would have to
go home and look through my curriculum, look through the
textbooks, try in the best of my judgment to come up
with all the areas that would have to be involved.
Q. So, when you said Creation Science should be taught
in your chemistry class you didn't know what part of your
curriculum that would affect and how much additional time
it would take?
A. I have not looked because the only areas that I wish
to cover in that area, under my own personal opinion at
this time, was that which was the formation of long
Q. Is your personal opinion what is going to determine
what you have to do under Act 590?
A. Under Act 590?
A. I hadn't -- what I requested hadn't been relative to
Act 590. Act 590 hasn't been passed or not passed yet.
When Act 590 comes up then I'll have to look through the
whole text to find out what areas are involved, but at
this time that hasn't.
Q. Are you familiar with the Arkansas Science
A. No, I'm not.
Q. Are you required to file lesson plans?
Q. What does the term model mean to you?
A. A model is a -- if you're talking about a scientific
model it's a mechanism by which something can take
place, explain something. It helps to get insight
to -- to how something takes place.
Q. Do you have to file copies of tests that you give?
Q. Do you --
A. We do have to file copies of -- we have to submit
semester and year examinations, but those are the only
copies we have to submit.
Q. Have you reviewed the four takes that you brought with
Q. Have you listened to any of them?
Q. What -- which have you listened to?
A. "Dinosaurs And -- whatever the name of it is.
"Dinosaurs And Deluge."
Q. By Henry Morris?
Q. Does it contain any biblical references?
A. It certainly does.
Q. Does this tape discuss any information which you --
which is taught in your chemistry course?
Q. Or which would be -- which would require --
A. None that I remember.
Q. Or does it touch on subjects -- would it provide
the balanced treatment for subjects that you teach
Q. Have you ever heard of the Arkansas Citizens
For Balance Education And Origin, or Arkansas Citizens
For Fairness In Education?
Q. Act 590 prohibits religious instruction. What does
religious instruction mean to you?
A. I guess I better find out what religious instruction
means if the bill passes. But to me, of course, I refer
only to my own Christian Religion. And my Christian
religion, it means I believe in Jesus Christ as my savior.
To me it believes that I should act as he acted, that he is
the model by which I should live by.
Q. Is that -- do you mean that only if you instruct
about Jesus Christ the savior that you're giving religious
A. No. There are other aspects of the Christian
religion, sure. As I said before, if you want me to go
into what is religion, I guess I better get me out some
books and start finding out what religion that you're
Q. Are you currently prohibited from teaching religion
in the public schools?
A. I do not teach religion in the public schools. I
teach chemistry. Chemistry is the interaction of matter
with itself, particulate interactions.
Q. Do you mean to tell me that you have no opinion
as to what religion instruction means?
A. Yes. I just told you I assume religious instruction
would be that they're referring to biblical religious
instruction. I'm sure that there are probably other
religious instructions that they're referring to.
Q. Act 590 prohibits reference to religious writing.
A. That's true.
Q. Does this mean merely that the teacher can't refer
to the Bible?
A. I would assume that they can't refer to Buddhism,
Hinduism, any other religions of the world of which I'm not
Q. Did that mean just that you can't quote scriptures?
A. I would assume that it means that you can't refer
to the basic beliefs of those religions. And since I'm
not familiar with the basic beliefs of all the religions
of the world it would be very....
Q. Mr. Townley, what I was focusing on was the
prohibitions against reference to religious writings and
asking you whether you thought that religious writing
meant only the Bible or other scripture?
A. I'm sure it means other religious group's writings
Q. What does creation mean?
A. Made from, created. It's been made, put together,
Q. Does the term Creation Science -- does the term
creation, as used in reference to Creation Science, mean
the act of a supernatural creator?
A. Creation means that that a supernatural power
above and beyond our intelligence has created life.
That's the way I would read Creation Science.
Q. Okay. Mr. Townley, I'd like to show you the
definition of Creation Science contained in Act 590 which
you've told me you have read before. It's Section 4A,
A. It means the scientific evidences of creation --
would you like for me to read that to you?
Q. You don't need to read it into the record.
A. Okay. For the record, that after being on this for
over five hours, it seems like, that one does get tired. And
I'll put that in the record.
Q. I appreciate that and I am trying to wind it up.
A. And one who reads the record can obviously see how
many times the questions have been repeated, how tired
one can get.
Q. We'll try not to test your patience much longer.
A. I would hope so.
Q. In the mean time, I'd like to get through the
questions so we can all get out of here.
A. That's very good. As long as we only ask them one
time it seems like we could get through them in less than
Q. Mr. Townley, had you read the definition of
Creation Science before I questioned you about it?
A. Yes, I have. That does not mean that I remember Act
590 and what they wrote as their definition.
Q. I am asking you just to read it right now.
A. All right. I've read the definition of Creation
Q. Where would one go to find the scientific evidences
for creation as it's defined in that section of the Act?
A. I imagine one would have to do research through
various materials that have been written.
Q. Do you know where the six elements of that
definition of Creation Science come from?
A. No, I do not.
Q. Are you familiar with the Genesis account of
A. I am -- unless somebody asks me to quote it word
for word I am fairly reasonable to the Genesis account,
Q. Are those six elements of the definition of Creation
Science found in Genesis?
A. I don't remember that the Genesis account uses the
terms energy, insufficient mutation, natural selection.
Q. I doubt very much that it does.
A. Separate ancestry, earth's geology catastrophism.
Q. Do you believe that the concepts implicit in those
six definitions are found in Genesis?
A. It's quite possible. It's quite possible that
Christian religion would relate more to one theory than
to another. In fact, it would almost have to relate more
to one than another.
Q. Is that listing of the six elements of Creation
Science inclusive as far as you're concerned? Or could
other evidences for creation be taught?
MR. WILLIAMS: Could you -- am I
understanding the question correctly? Do you mean
are those six the only evidences that are being taught?
MS. FERBER: No. I'm asking him
whether he knows of other evidences that could be taught.
A. Well, it's possible that there are other evidences
that could be taught.
Q. What are kinds?
A. I would assume that kinds means similar.
Q. Number 3 in that definition says, "changes only
within fixed limits of originally created kinds of plants
A. Similar kinds of plants and animals.
Q. What is a kind?
A. Or if it changes only within fixed limits that were
originally created kinds.
Q. Do you recognize --
Q. Types. Is that word used any place else to
describe groups of plants and animals or living kinds?
A. I wouldn't know.
Q. Is that word used in the Bible?
A. I wouldn't know. Maybe, quite possible.
Q. Number 4 says, "separate ancestry for man and
apes." Why does creation theory require separate
ancestry for man and apes?
A. It's my understanding that through Creation Science
God created all basic life forms as they are basically in
their form today. That there may have been slight
changes within those life forms today, but basically they
have remained the same. Therefore, since an ape being
different from a man it would require that they have
Q. Why can't man and apes be part of the same kind?
A. They're different. They have different
Q. Are you offended by the concept that man and apes
A. Offended, what do you mean offended? In what way
Q. Does it bother you to believe that man and apes
A. If that's the mechanism that God wanted to create man
by, no it doesn't offend me.
Q. What does catastrophism mean?
A. A catastrophy would mean a violent or sudden
Q. So, what does it mean to say, "explanation of the
earth's geology by catastrophism"?
A. It means that the forms on the earth, that is --
again, I'm giving you my opinion. I would certainly read
further if I were going to teach the science, Creation
Science. But my understanding of catastrophe would
be that you could explain various geological forms due to
catastrophe rather than to slow processes. And in fact,
that many things that are seen in geology could be
explained better by that than possibly by the other.
Q. Number 5 refers to the occurrence of a worldwide
flood. Is this the same flood referred to in the
bible as involving Noah's ark?
A. I wouldn't know. There is theory which also
states that the world -- and I don't know where I've
heard this theory, so you can't ask me to give it in any
book. There is a theory that says the world was -- above the
atmosphere of the world there was an envelope of water,
which completely surrounded the earth. That some major
event caused the piercing of that envelope of water, such as
a huge meteorite hitting it causing the vortex to pull the
water from the envelope towards the earth. Once that vortex
was broken, the envelope of water and the water
cascaded down upon the earth that created a catastrophe,
creating geologic forms because of that catastrophe. That
theory is not a Noah's flood theory as far as I know. And
yet, it is a different view of flood mechanism. I don't
teach it by the way.
Q. Do you --
A. And I don't believe it either, but anyway....
Q. Do you know what -- but you do believe in the
occurrence of a worldwide flood?
A. Yes, I do believe in the occurrence of a worldwide
Q. What does that have to do with origins, the subject
of Act 590?
A. I'm not sure that it has any -- you asked me if I
believe it. I do believe it because of my obvious
Q. I am referring to the fact that, the definition of
Creation Science as contained in Act 590 includes the
scientific evidence and related inferences that indicate
the occurrence of a worldwide flood.
MR. WILLIAMS: Catastrophism including
the worldwide flood.
MS. FERBER: Catastrophism, that's
Q. And I'm asking what that has to do with the subject
A. Well, I think it has to do with explaining why that
certain features of the earth are as they are. Or it
has -- I think that Creation Science uses this as a
mechanism by which they explain the finding of certain
fossil evidence such as dinosaur-bones, why that they --
why that certain species of life here on earth have
disappeared rapidly rather than to have a slow
disappearance. Again, that assumption can be wrong,
but that's my own understanding of Creation Science.
Q. Section 4B of Act 590 merely defines Evolution
Science and lists six scientific evidences and related
inferences for Creation Science.
A. I have to --
Q. I'll let you read it first. What I want to know
is whether you think that you have to teach all six
elements before the balanced treatment requirement is
triggered or if you just mention one of them whether you
have to balance it with something about Creation Science?
A. If I only mention one I think I'd only have to
balance with it with one from the other.
Q. Do you believe that presentation of evolution alone
undermines the religious convictions, and morals of
philosophical values of students and parents.
A. For the second time at least, the answer is no.
Q. Do you believe the presentation of evolution alone
hinders religious training and moral training by parents?
MR. WILLIAMS: I want to object. I think
it's irrelevant whether he believes it. It's whether the
legislature believes it or not is what's important.
MS. FERBER: I'm entitled to it if it's
A. You want to repeat that again. I'm getting rather
tired, but -- I'm having trouble concentrating.
Q. Do you believe that presentation of evolution
alone hinders religious training and moral training by
A. I think in some cases it might, it's possible.
Q. Do you believe that presentation of evolution
alone produces hostility toward atheistic religions?
MR. WILLIAMS: I just want to enter a
continuing objection to all these questions based upon the
findings of fact.
A. I don't know. I guess it -- you know, anything is
possible. It's possible.
Q. Can you imagine any scientific evidence that would
cause you to give up your belief in creation as described
Q. Let's take a brief break.
Q. Do you discuss fossils and fossil records in your
Q. Do you discuss the geologic column?
Q. Do you talk about the speed of light?
Q. Are you aware of any Creation Science theories which
contradict the evidence which you currently teach about
the speed of light?
A. I'm not aware of it. There may be, but I'm not
aware of it.
Q. In a science class, can you attempt to explain
things other than by natural laws?
A. No, I don't try to.
Q. Did you ever contact anyone in regards to Act
A. What do you mean by that?
Q. To support the bill?
A. On my own initiative, no. In fact, and I may get
hot water here, but I'm going to go ahead and state it.
As part of the A.E.A. I spoke against the Act. Not because I
disbelieved in Creation Science because I did believe in
Creation Science. And I'm on record in front of the entire
elected delegates to the National Education Association in
being in favor of the fact that creation should be taught.
My original understanding of the Act was incorrect. And
after I had discussed with teachers, and people, and so
forth, my understanding and found out that I was incorrect,
I wasn't against the Act.
Q. What was your understanding?
A. As I said, it would probably get in trouble, right.
That every dotted "i" had to be exactly the same. And
that's no longer my understanding, so I'm not against the
Q. Could you explain a little more fully what your
understanding was, other than the dotted "i's"?
A. That every single -- that every single second that
was spent on creation would have to be spent on
Q. Okay. And when did you get disabused of this
A. I knew see that you'd call back something that I
don't really want to remember or have remembered or
whatever. But I no longer have that view of it and I no
longer support that it shouldn't be taught. Well, I
didn't ever -- as I said, didn't ever support that it
shouldn't be taught, but I was against the law because
of a misunderstanding. And I further confirmed that
misunderstanding through the Attorney General's office.
And it is -- in fact, I was in error.
Q. Mr. Townley, I've asked you to furnish me with a list
of the Creation Science materials that you've consulted in
the past year.
A. And as best as I can I will furnish it.
MS. FERBER: Mr. Williams, if you plan
to have Mr. Townley refer to the materials he's consulted
anywhere in his testimony, I would request that we be
furnished with that answer within five days.
MR. WILLIAMS: I don't plan, nor
have I ever planned to have him refer to that material.
MS. FERBER: So, you will not in anyway
ask him what materials on which he bases his opinion that
he can teach Creation Science?
MR. WILLIAMS: No. If I should change
my mind, I will let you know.
MR. CEARLEY: And furnish the materials
I hope, or names.
BY MS. FERBER:
Q. Do you teach about DNA?
Q. I understand that you may have answered some version
of a couple of questions early in the record. And if you
want we can take the time to go back and read the entire
transcript and find the answers.
A. I should make you do that, shouldn't I?
Q. If not, we can just very quickly go through them.
A. I should make us sit here and go through them.
Q. If you would like to sit here and go through it
I would be more than glad to. But if not, I would just
like to know when your first contact with the Attorney
General's office was?
A. Time within the past two months.
Q. And how many conversations have you had with the
Attorney General's office?
A. Several. I can't count them. Several.
Q. More than five?
A. Maybe five, maybe six.
Q. Have you ever read Act 590?
Q. And you read it subsequent to your first contact
with the Attorney General's office?
A. I may have because we had it -- it was brought up
at the A.E.A. But I don't remember if I read it fully at
that time, I really don't.
Q. I'm sorry, was that after you talked with?
A. No. At A.E.A. we voted to go -- that we spoke
against Act 590. Okay. Arkansas Education Association.
At that time I think I read it, okay? And at that
time I interpreted it differently than what I've come to
interpret it as now, and what the Attorney General has
Q. Have you reread Act 590 since you were contacted by
the Attorney General's office?
A. Yes, I have.
Q. Have you discussed the substance of your testimony
with the Attorney General's office?
A. At least some of it. I obviously do not know -- I
did not know what you were going to ask today. Okay.
Q. I'm asking whether you discussed the substance of
your testimony at trial with the Attorney General's
A. I've discussed some things which I've been told
would be brought up.
Q. And when were those discussions?
A. Sometime within the past two months.
Q. And in all of those several discussions?
Q. How many times did you discuss the substance of your
A. I don't know.
Q. And with whom did you discuss it?
A. I don't know that either.
Q. Did you discuss the area of your expertise?
A. I informed them on the phone that I was a chemistry
Q. Did you discuss the substance of the opinion which you
would express at trial?
A. I think so.
Q. Did you discuss the basis of the opinion which you
would express at trial?
A. Of whatever we discussed, I guess we did.
Q. Have you ever seen plaintiffs first set of
A. I do not even know what an interrogatory is.
Q. I assume from that that you've not discussed the
interrogatories with the Attorney General's office?
A. We may have.
Q. Okay. Are you aware that your name was disclosed
to plaintiffs and to the press as a witness in this
case on October 26th?
A. Am I aware of it? Yes, I'm aware of it.
Q. And that was subsequent to your discussions with
the Attorney General's office?
A. I don't know if we discussed it or not.
MR. WILLIAMS: Certainly, we contacted
him before we disclosed his name.
Q. Have you discussed the --
A. Oh, I was contacted before it went out in the
papers I guarantee you that.
Q. Had you discussed the substance of your testimony
and the opinion which you would express at trial prior to
A. The first time that they contacted me they did not
ask me what would -- how I would be used in the trial.
They only said that they had heard that I would be
willing to teach Creation Science.
Q. Did they tell you how they'd heard that, how they
got your name?
A. I don't remember.
Q. I have no further questions.
MR. WILLIAMS: I have none.
MS. FERBER: I have no further
questions, and Mr. Williams has indicated that he has no
questions for the witness. The deposition is continued
until such time as counsel has an opportunity to review
the tapes which were furnished today.
MR. WILLIAMS: Defendants did not
agree to continue the deposition. They have voiced their
objection particularly in view of the fact that we began
at approximately 9:00 with a short break for lunch and
worked until 4:00. So we have been here approximately
eight hours or seven and a half hours on a witness whose
testimony will probably take fifteen minutes.
MS. FERBER: Counsel's approximations
are just that and I --
MR. CEARLEY: I would like to state for
the record too that we would know the bounds of this
witnesses' testimony had the interrogatories been
responded to and had we been given any -- any notice of
the areas of his testimony and basis for any opinions and
so forth, which was the reason for our interrogatories.
[Thereupon the above styled deposition
was concluded at 4:50 p.m.]
* * * * * * *
C E R T I F I C A T E
STATE OF ARKANSAS}
COUNTY OF PULASKI }
RE: MR. JIM TOWNLEY
I, MICHELL R. NIENSTEDT of LAURA BUSHMAN COURT
REPORTING SERVICE, a Notary Public in and for Pulaski
County, Arkansas do hereby certify that the facts stated
by me in the caption on the forgoing deposition are
true; and that the foregoing deposition of the witness
wastranscribed by me or under my supervision on the
STENO-CAT Computerized Transcription System from my
machine shorthand notes taken at the time and place set
out in the caption hereto, the witness being first duly
cautioned and sworn to tell the truth, the whole truth
and nothing but the truth.
GIVEN UNDER MY HAND AND SEAL OF OFFICE on this
the 17th of November, 1981.
Michelle R. Nienstedt, Notary Public
in and for Pulaski County, AR
My commission expires 1-13-85
LAURA BUSHMAN COURT REPORTING SERVICE
1100 N. University, Suite 223
Little Rock, Arkansas 72207