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The Causes and Effects of the Scopes Trial
Transcript of The Causes and Effects of the Scopes Trial
After college, he took a job as Rhea County High School’s football coach and science teacher.
He was a willing participant in the trial, even encouraging his students to testify against him in court by stating that he did indeed teach evolution in class.
John Thomas Scopes Church-going farmer from Macon County.
Taught school for five years (teaching in the fall, planting crops in the spring).
Member of the Tennessee House of Representatives.
Wrote the Butler Act of 1925, which outlawed the teaching of evolution in public schools in Tennessee. John Washington Butler Three time presidential candidate for the Democratic Party.
Served as Congressman in Nebraska, and Secretary of State under Woodrow Wilson.
A devout Christian and antievolutionist.
Main prosecutor in the Scopes Trial. William Jennings Bryan He was a deeply religious man.
He was an antievolutionist.
Quoted scripture during the Scopes Trial.
Opened almost every proceeding with a prayer. Judge Raulston The Butler Act of 1925 Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Tennessee, That it shall be unlawful for any teacher in any of the Universities, Normals and all other public schools of the State which are supported in whole or in part by the public school funds of the State, to teach any theory that denies the story of the Divine Creation of man as taught in the Bible, and to teach instead that man has descended from a lower order of animals. Section 1: Be it further enacted, That any teacher found guilty of the violation of this Act shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction, shall be fined not less than One Hundred ($100.00) Dollars nor more than Five Hundred ($500.00) Dollars for each offense. Section 2: Leading member of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).
Well known for his wit and agnosticism.
One of the most famous American lawyers and civil libertarians.
Defended John Thomas Scopes in the Scopes Trial. Clarence Darrow Causes of the Scopes Trial To most of the people in Tennessee, Creationism was the only thing to believe.
The Butler Act was an answered prayer for most of these people, as they were worried about having their children turn towards a more modernist way of thinking.
William Jennings Bryan felt strongly that evolution had no place in public schools, and that is why he agreed to join in the trial. Religion The modernists in Tennessee (though few and far between) were outraged by the Butler Act.
How could their children be kept in the dark about something as important as evolution?
Clarence Darrow felt strongly that evolution should absolutely be taught in public schools, and that is why he decided to join the trial. Science Dayton, Tennessee (the hometown of the Scopes Trial) had been struggling financially for some time.
The townspeople hoped that an important and publicized trial would liven up their economy.
John Scopes’ friends and neighbors convinced him that the trial would benefit the entire town. Money & Publicity The ACLU had promised to give financial and legal aid to any Tennessee teacher willing to challenge the Butler Act in court.
This helped to convince John Scopes to participate in the trial. American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) The Trial Most people on the jury were churchgoing farmers (much more fundamentalist than modernist).
Judge Raulston started the court proceedings with a prayer.
He also read the first chapter of Genesis when relating to the jury the charges against John Scopes. The Trial Decided their best bet was to focus on the fact that a law had been broken.
The soundness of the law, and the soundness of the religious and scientific aspects of said law, weren’t in question.
John Thomas Scopes had taught evolution in a public school after the passage of the Butler Act, and so he should be responsible for his unlawful actions. The Prosecution Decided to focus on the religious and scientific aspects of the law.
Called expert witnesses that presented Darwinism as absolute fact.
Questioned the constitutionality of the Butler Act. The Defense John Scopes lost the case, and the Butler Act stood strong until 1967.
He was fined $100.00.
The Tennessee Supreme Court overturned the ruling on a technicality, so the fine was never paid. The Decision Effects of the Scopes Trial Because John Scopes lost the case, evolution was banned from the classrooms of public schools.
Creationism was the only theory that was taught in science classrooms for years after the Scopes Trial.
The decision in the case gave religion precedence over education. Religion Even though the evolutionists lost the case, they won the argument.
John Scopes and Clarence Darrow had successfully publicized scientific evidence for evolution.
They had also successfully gotten people across the nation talking about the controversial subject. Science Before the Scopes Trial, the majority of people didn’t really have an opinion on the teaching of evolution in schools.
The trial publicized the argument, and caused many people to start taking sides.
Because of the Scopes Trial, many attempts were made throughout the years to repeal laws like the Butler Act.
Not until 1968 were laws that stopped the teaching of evolution in public schools deemed unconstitutional by the Supreme Court. Publicity for Evolution Dayton, Tennessee was unceremoniously thrust into the spotlight once the Scopes Trial began.
The townspeople took advantage of their good fortune by peddling religious and monkey-inspired wares on the street leading to the courthouse.
Dayton was permanently linked to the famous, or in some cases infamous, theory of evolution. Publicity for Dayton The Scopes Trial generation was known for pushing boundaries and testing authority.
The Scopes Trial helped to encourage people to speak their mind and stand up for what they believed in. A New Generation Thank You! By: Olivia Dodd