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John Scopes Trial Essay

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One of the most well-known court cases in U.S. history is that of the controversial John Scopes Trial. In 1925 the Butler Act, which forbid the teaching of evolution in public schools, was passed in Tennessee with the hopes of upholding biblical traditions and beliefs. The new law sparked immediate controversy and was challenged publicly by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). Shortly after the law was passed a man by the name of John Thomas Scopes, a public substitute school teacher in Dayton, Tennessee, decided to challenge the law and turned himself in; he was subsequently arrested for his teaching of Darwinism. A trial ensued soon after and began to draw national media attention as millions of people tuned in daily to follow along…show more content…
John Thomas Scopes’ and ‘The Monkey Trial’. In 1925, a good portion of the people in Tennessee were church goers and consequently had a preconceived notion about Thomas Scopes and what the outcome of the trial should look like. Similarly, a lot of the newspapers covering the debate had an unfavorable bias towards Mr. Scopes. The Chicago Daily Tribune and The New York Times depicted John Thomas Scopes as a villain, who was poisoning the minds of the youth in America. Along with Mr. Scopes, his defense lawyer, Clarence Darrow, was portrayed as a sly lawyer who defended murderers and wanted to abolish traditional beliefs of the Bible. On the other hand, these newspapers displayed William Jennings Bryan, the lawyer for the prosecution, as a man of the Bible who wanted to uphold the traditions and beliefs of the people in…show more content…
John Thomas Scopes Case was William Jennings Bryan. Naturally, because so many people in Tennessee believed in the Bible they revered the man defending it in the trial. Upon arrival in Dayton, “Mr. Bryan was at once the hero of the community,” as he was a voice for the people and fought to keep biblical traditions established and stamp out evolution. The people of Dayton welcomed Bryan with open arms and even had “a dinner given in his honor by the Progressive Dayton Club” prior to the trail. Bryan was ultimately a loved person and very large-hearted. Even after his sudden death shortly after the trial ended, his political enemies “were shocked and saddened by the news of his
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