January 19, 2011

UNIVERSITY OF KENTUCKY settles religious-discrimination lawsuit brought by Christian astronomer. I had an earlier post on this case here. It seems that this is a black eye for the Kentucky biology department, too. And a note to P.Z. Myers — nobody was saying the world was flat. This guy’s not even a young-earth creationist. He just thinks the Big Bang might have been divinely inspired. At any rate, applying “collegiality” to beliefs on religion is a dangerous business, as a few moments’ reflection might suggest.

UPDATE: Reader Matthias Shapiro offers a sort-of-defense for the university:

It seems that the researchers at University of Kentucky weren’t even really that concerned about Mr. Gaskell’s Christian worldview. (Incidentally, Gaskell’s views are actually pretty mainstream. I’ll bet he and Francis Collins – a Christian geneticist appointed by President Obama as director of the NIH and author of The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief– would probably have a grand old time talking science and religion.) Their biggest concern was that the media wouldn’t be able to understand the subtleties of Mr. Gaskell’s line of argumentation and would interpret any discussion about evolution coming from a Christian as “creationism”. These idiots looked at Gaskell’s views, and imagined that the media wouldn’t be able to comprehend a calm, intelligent discussion about science and religion.

Where ever would they have gotten that idea?

Where, indeed?

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