Oh, the sensation, the media frenzy,
The spotlight, the fame, the hullabaloo,
When anti-evolution laws
Were challenged by the ACLU!
The year: 1925.
The place: Dayton, Tennessee.
To say it was an extravaganza
Wouldn't be hyperbole.
For many people it was hard
To find a way to reconcile
Biblical accounts with science,
So science found itself on trial.
A young teacher, John T. Scopes,
Was willing to face prosecution
For breaking a Tennessee law for having
Given a lesson on evolution.
The "Monkey Trial" it was called.
The challenge meant swimming upstream
For the feisty lawyer Clarence Darrow,
Who helped to lead the defense team.
A prosecutor was William Jennings
Bryan, who with no apology
Loved to stir up outrage against
Defendant Scopes quickly found
It wouldn't take long for him to know
What it was like to have a part
In a multimedia reality show.
The courthouse received a make-over:
Platforms for newsreel cameras were built;
Extra spectator seats were added.
They were playing the trial to the hilt.
Concession stands sold food and drinks;
Toy monkeys were on display;
A chimp was dressed in a suit and fedora;
The clergy also joined the fray.
The media and the public loved it!
The country watched the trial progress.
What would win: science or scripture?
The answer was probably easy to guess.
After an eight-day trial, the jury
Deliberated. Nine minutes later
They had their verdict: guilty! How
Could someone question THEIR creator?
Scopes had actually never given
The lesson. That's what he later said.
Strangely, five days after the trial,
Williams Jennings Bryan dropped dead.
Laws later changed, but even during
Current times, some people feel
That stories from the Bible should be
In science textbooks. Now THAT'S surreal!
-by Bob B (11-6-18)