…people can be drawn into prominence by attaching themselves to a great cause. Causes stir the world. It is because it goes deep. It is because it extends wide, and because it reaches into the future beyond the power of man to see. – From the last speech of Guest Prosecutor William Jennings Bryan after he “won” the Scopes trial, in Dayton, Tennessee, 1925. And just before he stroked out.
William Jennings Bryan believed that his – inflicting the bible upon Tennessee’s hapless public school students as literal truth – was the Great Cause. But the Great Cause was not Bryan’s. It was heroic young John Scopes, the teacher who volunteered to be the defendant in support of Charles Darwin and evolution, and for his courageous efforts was convicted. Found guilty.
The Scopes trial transcript is a better read than the script of Inherit the Wind. And the courtroom where the trial was held is far more dramatic than any set designed for play or movie. I wrote about my discovery in At the True ‘Trial of the Century’ – NYTimes.com.
Thus, it was John Scopes, not Bryan and the bible, who changed the world.
Wouldn’t you love to change the world? It’s a grand reason to sue.
We all have a solid chance to participate in this great democratic experiment of changing the world because decades of bad government and anti-government politics have severely damaged those government agencies upon which we all depend for our vital needs, protection, security and civil rights, and even more severely damaged trust in good government. And it will take decades before presidential administrations will be able to restore this trust, as well as restoring these federal agencies to strength and efficacy. We help to strengthen them by suing.