Existence of God: Legal Issues
Two years after Ben Stein and Kevin Miller released the controversial movie Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed (Stein and Miller, 2008), which grossed nearly $7,700,000, the heated debate over discrimination towards those holding creationist beliefs continues. The Washington Post described astrophysicist Dr. Martin Gaskell as “uniquely qualified” for the position as director of the new, prestigious MacAdam Student Observatory at the University of Kentucky (UK). “He oversaw the design and construction of an observatory at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He also advised UK during the building of the MacAdam facility” (Lovan, 2010). However, although his credentials placed him “breathtakingly above the other applicants,” it seems that his Christian faith caused him to be rejected for the position. He, therefore, sued the university, “claiming lost income and emotional distress.” U.S. District Judge Karl S. Forester, who rejected a motion from the university concerning going to trial, said, “There is no dispute that based on his application, Gaskell was a leading candidate for the position” (Lovan).
Ironically, Gaskell does not even consider himself a creationist and does not believe the Earth to be “a few thousand years old.” However, apparently threatened by a lecture he gave in 1997 in which he stated that evolution has “significant scientific problems” and contains “unwarranted atheistic assumptions and extrapolations,” science professors believed “his Christian faith could conflict with his duties as a scientist” (Lovan). How unfortunate that many scientists are so quick to jump to conclusions about others before gathering all of the evidence. It is hardly unexpected, considering that they have done the same thing by jumping to wild, outlandish, unscientific conclusions in holding to evolutionary theory despite all scientific evidence that stands against it. The evolutionists are so stressed about the creationists’ arguments that they are now expelling people who even appear to be creationists. Contrary to open-minded, academically free expression of scientific thought, this sort of censorship provides a real barrier to scientific progress. Creationists must be making an impact with many in the debate if the evolutionary community is becoming so hyperactive in its decisions.
Lovan, Dylan (2010), “Scientist Alleges Religious Discrimination in KY,” The Washington Post, December 10, http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/12/17/AR2010121701178.html.
Stein, Ben and Kevin Miller (2008), Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed (Premise Media).