Evolution has long been under attack in Kansas. The state school board voted in 1999 to ban the teaching of Darwinian theory. That board was soon ousted. But the current majority on the board is suggesting that evolution be paired with instruction in "intelligent design."

The board's deliberations have drawn national attention--and now the derision of a magazine devoted to science. For the third year now, Popular Science has ranked what it calls the worst jobs in scientific fields. This year, the list places "Kansas Biology Teacher" as the third-worst profession, better only than "Manure Washer" and "Human Lab Rat."

Obviously, the science mag is just trying to make a point. As one high school bio teacher told the Lawrence Journal-World : "That's a big exaggeration."

But others worry about the reputation their state may be getting among the science community. One state board of education member said of the ranking, "We've become a national joke."

We've talked a lot about the rise of conservatism in Kansas, both on the 13th Floor and in Governing.