Connecticut leads promotion of National Darwin Day

Charles Darwin

Charles Darwin

The American Humanist Association applauds two Connecticut legislators, U.S. Representative Jim Himes of the Fourth District and U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal, for their support for national Darwin Day, a celebration of the achievements of naturalist Charles Darwin and the contributions of scientists around the world.

Thanks to the work of these two legislators, House Resolution 67 and Senate Resolution 66 have been introduced in the U.S. Congress. The American Humanist Association worked closely with Rep. Himes and his staff to introduce H. Res. 67 on Feb. 2, 2015. The Secular Coalition of America, of which AHA is a coalition member, worked with Sen. Blumenthal and his staff to introduce S. Res. 66 on Feb. 4, 2015. Both resolutions would nationally recognize Feb. 12, 2015, Charles Darwin’s 206th birthday, as a day to honor the contributions of science to humanity and to advance scientific education and literacy.

“With our country’s leaders openly voicing support for anti-science measures such as teaching creationism or intelligent design in public schools and allowing parents to opt out of vaccinating their children, we are deeply grateful to both Rep. Himes and Sen. Blumenthal for standing up for scientific literacy,” said Roy Speckhardt, executive director of the American Humanist Association.

This is the fourth year in which the Darwin Day resolution has been introduced in the U.S. House. It was first introduced in 2011 by former Rep. Pete Stark (CA-13), the only member of Congress to serve as an open atheist, and introduced again in 2013 and 2014 by former Rep. Rush Holt (NJ-12). The American Humanist Association remains at the forefront of efforts to promote the Darwin Day resolution in the U.S. House. This is the first year that the Darwin Day resolution has also been introduced in the U.S. Senate.

Resolutions and proclamations commemorating Darwin Day have also been introduced at the state and local levels. This year, Governor Jack Markell of Delaware and Mayor John Watras of Garden City, New York, have both issued proclamations declaring February 12, 2015, to be Darwin Day. State Rep. Andrew Sherwood (AZ-26) also introduced a Darwin Day resolution in Arizona. Events in communities throughout the country and around the world are also planned to celebrate the day. The Humanist Association of Connecticut has organized a Birthday Bash for Charles Darwin in Hamden, Connecticut. Other proclamations, resolutions and events are planned through February 12.

Darwin Day, founded by Dr. Robert Stephens in 1993, is a project of the American Humanist Association. The American Humanist Association maintains the Darwin Day website, a resource for individuals seeking information about local Darwin Day events in their area, information about Charles Darwin’s life and scientific accomplishments and efforts at the state and local levels to have Darwin Day officially recognized.

The International Darwin Day Foundation, founded by Dr. Robert Stephens in 1993, is a project of the American Humanist Association. Its mission is to promote the public education of Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution and to encourage the celebration of science and humanity.

Founded in 1941 and headquartered in Washington, D.C., the American Humanist Association (AHA) works to protect the rights of humanists, atheists, and other non-religious Americans. The AHA advances the ethical and life-affirming philosophy of humanism, which—without beliefs in any gods or other supernatural forces—encourages individuals to live informed and meaningful lives that aspire to the greater good of humanity.

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