YECs appear not to be a particularly bright group, so it seems unlikely that many budding geniuses are being misled into ignorance. However, this is no reason not to decry the damage done to average children by causing deliberate confusion about science and reality.
The Founding Fathers were wise to separate Religion and the State, though not necessarily for prescient reasons. Whether or not they foresaw the likelihood that organized stupidity would attempt to undermine education, the Constitution should be used to protect education from superstition and ignorance. The mere fact of "scientists'" having signed a document against Darwinism demonstrates the desecration of science, critical thinking, and logic wrought by religious dogmatists. Polls indicate that far too high a percentage of Americans are so ignorant of the facts on which scientific theories are based that they hold a strict creationist view of origins.
Modern politicians, concerned more for their political ambitions than for truth, are all too aware of the vocal agitators who sway religious dogmatists on voting day, so they abrogate their responsibility to uphold the Constitution. To make matters worse, the most stupid president ever not-to-actually-be-elected resorts to claims of communication with God. It's intriguing to ponder how America came to be a nation that largely reviles knowledge while protecting organized stupidity. America has not come very far since 1925!
Statement of Concern
"We, the undersigned scientists at universities and colleges in Kentucky, Ohio, and Indiana, are concerned about scientifically inaccurate materials at the Answers in Genesis museum. Students who accept this material as scientifically valid are unlikely to succeed in science courses at the college level. These students will need remedial instruction in the nature of science, as well as in the specific areas of science misrepresented by Answers in Genesis."
National Center for Science Education petition: http://www.sciohost.org/states
"One of the petitions, started by the Campaign to Defend the Constitution, a Washington, D.C., group that focuses on church and state issues, says the museum is part of a "campaign by the religious right to inject creationist teachings into science education."'
Campaign to Defend the Constitution: http://www.defconamerica.org/
Elsewhere: Gallup Poll on Evolution, which reveals that the overwhelming majority of religious fundamentalists are ignorant of the fact of biological evolution : comment on Pharyngula : Religion—our maelstrom of ignorance: "Maybe we need to start picketing fundamentalist churches. Maybe it's about time that we recognize religious miseducation as child abuse."