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[Audio] WKMS Documentary "I Am John Scopes"

What makes a person voluntarily step into the middle of one of the most controversial and contentious issues of modern times? And what makes them voluntarily step back out?

Western Kentucky native John Thomas Scopes volunteered to be the defendant in a much-ballyhooed trial testing a law he opposed, a law banning the teaching of human evolution in Tennessee. He stood on principle in an intense spotlight... and when the trial was over, he stepped back out, determined to live his own life. But, history was not finished with him just yet.

The new WKMS News documentary, I Am John Scopes, unfolds the life of this remarkable and private man using archival interviews, and conversations with Scopes’ friends and family as well as with those who’ve studied the 1925 Scopes “Monkey Trial.” Together they portray a complex person who always seemed to step up when history found him in the right place at the right time.

This latest entry from the award-winning WKMS News department shows that John Scopes still matters, as the issues his name is linked with still spark debate today.

The WKMS News documentary "I Am John Scopes" was broadcast Friday, July 31st, at noon and Sunday, August 2 at 9 am

"What is Evolution?" by Stated Clearly

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In addition to the Scopes Trial, the place of evolution and creationism or intelligent design has been litigated for almost five decades.  You can find a list of these cases here at the website for the National Center for Science Education.  They also have a comprehensive list of "academic freedom" bills in the various state legislatures.

The NCSE'swebsite has many more resources and information for anyone interested in the promotion of science education in America.

Matt Markgraf joined the WKMS team as a student in January 2007. He's served in a variety of roles over the years: as News Director March 2016-September 2019 and previously as the New Media & Promotions Coordinator beginning in 2011. Prior to that, he was a graduate and undergraduate assistant. He is currently the host of the international music show Imported on Sunday nights at 10 p.m.
Todd Hatton hails from Paducah, Kentucky, where he got into radio under the auspices of the late, great John Stewart of WKYX while a student at Paducah Community College. He also worked at WKMS in the reel-to-reel tape days of the early 1990s before running off first to San Francisco, then Orlando in search of something to do when he grew up. He received his MFA in Creative Writing at Murray State University. He vigorously resists adulthood and watches his wife, Angela Hatton, save the world one plastic bottle at a time.
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