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Modernization brought social chaos between the traditionalist and the modernist. As conflicts were present from one to another, the Scopes Monkey Trial was the first head to head issue upon these two clashing social group. The Scopes Monkey Trial began in July 10, 1925 in Dayton, Tennessee in response to the passage of Butler Act, which prohibits the teachings of evolution. The trial was so-called because of the "man is descended from the Monkey" aspect of popular Darwinian belief.
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) was the backbone of this assault to the Butler Act. It is comprised of two (2) non-profit organizations namely: the ACLU Foundation, which is concerned with lawsuit efforts and the Americal Civil Liberties Union, in charge of legislative petitioning.
A New York citizen in the persona of George Rappalyea, who was 31 at the time and has a job in a coal company turned up at Robinson's drugstore with a paper containing an American Civil Liberties Union notice stating the organization's willingness to provide for any services to anybody who wants to challenge the Butler Act. Rappalyea is a modernist Methodist with a drive for the debunking of the Butler act and have persuaded town leaders that by provoking the Butler Act, Dayton, as a slow city would make a mark to the map, thus businesses will prosper. Being a friend to Rappalyea, John T. Scopes agreed to this attempt. John T. Scopes teaches general science and taught the theory of evolution to one of his classes, which was an attempt to challenge the Butler Act. The ACLU raised the issue on the grounds that it violated the teacher's individual rights and academic freedom as they were demanded to use a textbook that clearly illustrated and approved the theory of evolution, and was therefore unconstitutional. However, the underlying reason for this attack was to raise a worldwide issue that would promote Dayton, Tennessee's businesses that would boost the economy. This proved effective as the trial had been moved to the courthouse lawn to accommodate the crowds.
The Scopes Monkey Trial became a media circus as reports are much awaited all around the world. John Scope defense team consisted of John R. Neal, Clarence Darrow, Garfield Hays and Dudley Field Malone. On the other hand, the prosecution team consisted of Tom Stewart, Herbert and Sue Hicks, Ben Mckenzie and William Jennings Bryan. The trial soon became an issue between the conservatives and modernist. The trial influenced the new existing fight between faith and custom.
The Scope trial was an effective plot that not only increased Dayton, Tennesee's popularity in the business sector but also the debunking of the Butler Act, which later on proven to be unconstitutional. Although John T. Scope was found guilty with a fine of $100 which the ACLU paid for him, a year later, the Tennessee Supreme court reiterated their decision stating that the fine should have been imposed by the jury and not anybody else. Rather than sending the case back for further action, however, the Tennessee Supreme Court dismissed the case for the court didn't see the point on prolonging such issue. The Scopes trial put an end to the argument on whether or not it is just to teach revolution. However, anti-evolution forces faced the major setback as there were on-going legislations about restricting to teach evolution on fifteen (15) states. In the end, only two (2) states implemented the laws namely Arkansas and Mississippi. Scopes trial ended the war between what the bible teaches and that of science giving people the freedom to go with their own choice of belief.