Mayors of Saint Paul and Minneapolis Sign Darwin Day Proclamations
Minnesota Atheists president, August Berkshire, drafted a Darwin Day Proclamation which was signed by Saint Paul Mayor, Chris Coleman and Minneapolis Mayor R. T. Rybak. Coverage of the proclamations can be found at the Pioneer Press and City Pages. An image of the Saint Paul proclamation can be found here. The Minneapolis proclamation can be found here.
The text of the Saint Paul proclamation is as follows:
City of Saint Paul Proclamation
Whereas, Charles Darwin was born on February 12, 1809; and
Whereas, from 1831-1836 he explored diverse ecological systems while traveling on the H.M.S. Beagle; and
Whereas, his observations led him to conclude that species change over time, due to random mutations, the selective pressures of the environment, and the inheritance of traits favorable to survival; and
Whereas, these adaptations of species to their environments led him to formulate his theory of evolution by means of natural selection, which is explained in his book, On the Origin of Species, published in 1859; and
Whereas, this concept of evolution remains the unifying principle of biology and is supported by the National Academy of Sciences, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Science Museum of Minnesota, and the Bell Museum of Natural History at the University of Minnesota; and
Whereas, the teaching of evolution is supported by a broad range of scientific, educational, religious, and non-religious organizations; and
Whereas, the year 2009 marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of Charles Darwin and the 150th anniversary of the publication of, On the Origin of Species; and
Whereas, Saint Paul prides itself on its educational excellence;
Now, Therefore, I, Christopher B. Coleman, Mayor of the City of Saint Paul, do hereby proclaim Thursday, February 12, 2009, to be: Darwin Day in the City of Saint Paul.
In Witness Whereof I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Seal of the City of Saint Paul to be affixed this Twelfth Day of February in the Year Two Thousand Nine
Christopher B. Coleman, Mayor