T-shirts worn by the Smith-Cotton High School band have evolved into an issue among parents.

The shirts, which were designed to promote the band’s fall program, are light gray and feature an image of a monkey progressing through stages and eventually emerging as a man. Each figure holds a brass instrument. Several instruments decorate the background, and the words “Smith-Cotton High School Tiger Pride Marching Band” and “Brass Evolutions 2009” are emblazoned above and below the image.

Assistant band director Brian Kloppenburg said the shirts were designed by him, band director Jordan Summers and Main Street Logo. Kloppenburg said the shirts were intended to portray how brass instruments have evolved in music from the 1960s to modern day. Summers said they chose the evolution of man because it was “recognizable.”

The band debuted the T-shirts when it marched in the Missouri State Fair parade. Summers said he was surprised when he received a direct complaint after the parade.

Although the shirts don’t directly violate the district’s dress code, Assistant Superintendent Brad Pollitt said complaints by parents made him take action.

“I made the decision to have the band members turn the shirts in after several concerned parents brought the shirts to my attention,” Pollitt said.

Pollitt said the district was required by law to remain neutral on religion.

“If the shirts had said ‘Brass Resurrections’ and had a picture of Jesus on the cross, we would have done the same thing,” he said.

Band parent Sherry Melby, who is a teacher in the district, stands behind Pollitt’s decision. Melby said she associated the image on the T-shirt with Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution.

“I was disappointed with the image on the shirt,” Melby said. “I don’t think evolution should be associated with our school.”


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Replies to This Discussion

I believe the point being missed here is that evolution is not a religion, and can not be equated with wearing a T-shirt with a cross on it. Evolution is in fact a proven fact! A point I know is already known by most that will read this, but a FACT none the less!
That's absurd. I wish someone would fund a series of public service announcements explaining that evolution has nothing to do with religion.
When will a school/town/judge stand up to these morons?
Since when the hell did evolution become religious? This is simple pandering to the religious people out there in society. No more no less. “I don’t think evolution should be associated with our school.” The hell kind of comment is this coming from a teacher no less? I mean seriously folks. What is the teacher talking about, does she have an afront to the entire science department? And then we wonder each year why math scores and science scores are constantly in the toilet as a collective nation because people want to believe that 7+ billion people came from 2. This is just one of the more reasons why at soon to be 26 I do not see myself having kids. I couldn't possibly fathom bringing them into an educational environment with this kind of crap floating around out there.
"Since when the hell did evolution become religious?"

The existence of airplanes able to fly above clouds proves that clouds aren't God's dusty footprints on heaven's floor. Yet I don't see anyone clamoring to ban t-shirts with airplanes on them. It's out and out stupidity and you're right Dre - when the hell are we going to stop pandering to the nutters?
I'm still waiting for that rapture they keep talking about...
I've tried that argument with a few of them. "You're going to be raptured any second now. So why do you care what we teach in schools, who we elect, whether or not we pass health care? You're going to heaven in like 30 minutes, right? Right?

No? Where's your faith? Don't you trust God to not let this planet implode before the rapture?
to rue Mary!! Dre is also very correct that evolution is NOT a religion. but the perceptions have been laid out there. it only takes a couple of rents to complain and they piss their pants!
So sad. Can we find out who complained so we can spam them with many individual letters each containing a single page of Origin of Species?




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