The Badlands region in the American West is famous (or infamous) for its arid and unforgiving landscape, which is decorated by sharp and eroded spires of stone. If you catch it at just the right moment and in the right conditions, however, these apparent wastelands can give birth to an extraordinary explosion of color and life in the form of beautiful wildflowers.
The Heartland Institute, a prominent, Chicago-based organization opposing climate science, has teamed up with the creationist Discovery Institute to launch a smear campaign against a group promoting the nationwide adoption of updated science education guidelines.
The guidelines in question are the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), adopted so far by 11 states and the District of Columbia. The National Research Council, the National Science Teachers Association and the American Association for the Advancement of Science—working with 26 state governments—developed the NGSS to update K-12 science education in schools for the first time since 1998.