Rally for Reason Updates and Parking for Rally

Here is the latest on the Rally for Reason.

Also, please see: www.rallyforreason.com

Y’all come y’hear.

Edwin.

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From:

A M E R I C A N A T H E I S T S

A A N E W S

#1235 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 5/25/07

http://www.atheists.org

http://www.americanatheist.org

http://www.atheistviewpoint.tv

PRO-SCIENCE GROUPS TO RALLY THIS WEEKEND AT OPENING OF

ANSWERS IN GENESIS CREATIONIST MUSEUM

It’s “Yabba-dabba-doo!” versus empirical science, good teaching

Eighty-two years after the infamous “Scopes Monkey Trial,” the issue

of Darwinian evolution versus fundamentalist religious accounts of how

the universe and human life came to be is still being debated.

Contrary to the expectation of most scientists, museum officials and

cultural historians, creationism — the Christian doctrine that claims

Jehovah fashioned the Earth and human beings about 6,000 years ago as

vividly described in the book of Genesis — remains a belief embraced

in some form by a near-majority of Americans. A 2004 CBS News poll,

for instance, revealed “Americans do not believe that humans evolved,

and the vast majority says that even if they evolved, God guided the

process.” Worse yet, and reflecting widespread scientific illiteracy,

“Just 13 percent say that God was not involved.”

Once shunned as a form of fringe belief confined only to back-woods

evangelical Christians and cranks, acceptance of creationism has

become wide-spread and even mainstream. This weekend, for instance,

creationist advocates along with international media and protesters,

will be arriving in Boone County, Ky. for the opening of the “Answers

in Genesis Creation Museum.” The 69,000-square-foot facility, built

at the cost of over $27 million, boasts state-of-the-art exhibits, a

gift and book shop, and meeting space all designed to counter current

scientific findings about evolution. According to founder Ken Ham,

the museum is firmly based on “biblical supremacy,” and hopes to cater

to the growing number of Christian Americans who see evolution as the

root of all evil, a curse identified with Atheism, Humanism and a

potpourri of social and cultural problems.

For Ham, acceptance of evolution lurks as the cause of everything from

rampant feminism and gay rights to abortion, gangs, war and … well,

you name it.

Not so, says Edwin Kagin, a Boone County resident who lives within a

short drive of the new AIG museum, and is a long-time opponent of

creationism. Kagin serves as National Legal Director for American

Atheists, and is co-founder Camp Quest, an initiative to provide

Atheist and other non-believer youngsters with summer camp learning

and fun.

Along with a network of sympathetic Atheists, Freethinkers and

Humanists — and even local clergy and religious groups — Kagin has

put together a “Rally for Reason” (http://www.rallyforreason.com) that

will take place this Memorial Day, Monday, outside of the grand

opening of the AIG Creation Museum.

“We’re not challenging the right of Answers in Genesis to promote

their views,” said Kagin. “But we are saying that Creationism is a

doctrine not based on science and empirical evidence, and that people

should be cautious before they accept this religious belief as the

truth.”

For Kagin and others, much of the Creation Museum sounds like a trip

to the religious version of Oz. Mr. Ham and his associates, thanks to

plenty of funding, have skillfully blended the language of science

with high-tech, sophisticated exhibits to promote a theological

fantasy. Critics cite one claim made by the creationists, that

dinosaurs once co-existed on the Earth with human beings.

The weekend promises to be “interesting,” said Mr. Kagin. Media

organizations from around the world including the BBC are dispatching

crews to cover to the protest and opening of the AIG museum.

Hundreds, maybe even thousands of demonstrators are expected to show

up for a peaceful protest, including a program of speakers, and

entertainment by the Smalkowski family Blue Rocket Band.

On Sunday night, May 27, the Free Inquiry Group of Cincinnati and

Northern Kentuc
ky will host a “Rally for Reason Speak-Out” with

lectures and an open microphone.

Kagin suggests that people on all sides of this issue come to the

Speak-Out and protest, and even visit the Creation Museum to see the

evidence (or lack of evidence) for themselves.

**

WORTH NOTING — THE LATEST PRESS COVERAGE, CREATIONSIM v. SCIENCE

AND THE OPENING OF THE “ANSWERS IN GENESIS CREATION MUSEUM”

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2004/11/22/opinion/polls/main657083.sht

ml

POLL: CREATIONISM TRUMPS EVOLUTION

http://news.cincypost.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070525/NEWS02/7

05250343

CREATING DEBATE

A glimpse inside the new Answers in Genesis Creation Museum along with

coverage of this weekend’s RALLY FOR REASON.

http://www.wcpo.com/news/local/story.aspx?content_id=10e52ca0-e251-44f

4-8205-224c55703178

PROTESTORS EXPECTED AT CREATION MUSEUM OPENING

“The opening of Boone County’s Creation Museum later this month won’t

come without protests…”

http://blog.sciam.com/index.php?title=new_creation_museum_mostly_illus

trates_t&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1

NEW CREATION MUSEUM MOSTLY ILLUSTRATES THAT CREATIONISTS HAVE LOTS OF

CASH

“The guy who developed the Jaws and King Kong rides at Universal

Studios is behind the new Creation Museum…”

http://news.kypost.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070525/NEWS02/7052

50344/1014/NEWS02

PREACHING CHAPTER ONE AS LITERALLY TRUE

“Where did it all come from? For the answers, the folks at Answers in

Genesis look no further than the Bible’s first book, Genesis…” An

excellent article with great pics on the opening of the AIG Creation

Museum.

http://www.insidebayarea.com/argus/oped/ci_5985119

YABBA-DABBA SCIENCE

Fred Flintstone meets Genesis?

http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/nationworld/bal-te.creationist20may20

,0,7993512.story?coll=bal-nationworld-headlines KY.

CREATION MUSEUM GOES HIGH TECH

“Flat-screen TVs, special effects used to tell Bible’s history…”

http://www.newsobserver.com/105/story/576084.html

MUSEUM PUTS DINOSAURS IN EDEN

“Tyrannosaurus rex was a strict vegetarian, and lived with Adam and

Eve in the Garden of Eden… Exhibits showing all this and more will

be at the Creation Museum, a $27 million religious museum set to open

next week in northern Kentucky…”

**

SILVERMAN TO HOST SPEAKER

LINE-UP AT MONDAY

RALLY FOR REASON

Smalkowski Family Rock Band, Zindler, Kritsky & More

http://www.rallyforreason.com

FREETHOUGHT activist Herb Silverman will MC Monday’s giant “Rally for Reason” events as we gather outside the gates of the new Answers in Genesis Creation Museum (see the op-ed piece below from the Los Angeles Times for background.)

Herb is a long-time rabble-rouser and articulate spokesperson on behalf of Atheism, good science, and the separation of church and state.

Others tapped for the speaker roster at the Memorial Day event include:

* DR. LAWRENCE M. KRAUSS, Professor of Astronomy and Physics, Case Western Reserve University, author of numerous article and books including “The Physics of Star Trek,” columnist; member of the advisory boards of the Campaign to Defend the Constitution, an organization dedicated to opposing the religious right, and Scientists and Engineers for America which focuses on promoting sound science in public policy.

* FRANK ZINDLER, Editor of American Atheist Press, biologist and science writer, and a nationally-prominent figure in the debate over evolution v. Christian creationist pseudo-science.

* CHUCK SMALKOWSKI AND FAMILY. Daughter Nicole Smalkowski was expelled from her high school in Hardesty, Oklahoma for refusing to join in a recitation of the “Lord’s Prayer” after a basketball game. Her father, Chuck Smalkowski, was dragged into court on trumped-up charges. Defended by Edwin Kagin and American Atheists, Chuck was found “not guilty.”. The Smalkowskis have a lawsuit pending in Federal Court in Oklahoma City. Their BLUE ROSE ROCKET BAND will be performing at the Rally for Reason demo!

* DR. GRETCHEN MANN, physician, outspoken opponent of creationism.

* CARLY NICHOLS, a housewife and mother from Northern Kentucky, Carly is one of the organizers for the Rally for Reason.

* DR. GENE KRITSKY is an evolutionary biologist from Cincinnati, author, and expert on the life of Charles Darwin.

* DR. HELEN KAGIN is a retired physician, and Co-director/Co-Founder of Camp Quest, a nationwide summer camp for non-believing youngsters.

* REV. MENDLE ADAMS, ordained Christian Minister, and Pastor of the United Church of Christ in Cincinnati. Rev. Adams is a supporter of sound science and has spoken out against creationism for years.

* HEMANT MEHTA, freethought activist representing the Secular Student Alliance.

* ARLENE-MARIE, Michigan State Director for American Atheists and President of Michigan Atheists.

* BLAIR SCOTT, Alabama State Director for American Atheists.

* MELISSA HARTMAN, Rally for Reason

* FRANK BICKNELL, member of the Free Inquiry Group of Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky

* EDWIN KAGIN, Rally for Reason, National Legal Director for AMERICAN ATHEISTS, Co-founder of Camp Quest.

**

From the L.A. Times

http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/la-ed-round24may24,0,7881591.story?coll=la-opinion-leftrail

Yabba-dabba science

Note to would-be Creation Museum visitors: the Earth is round.

May 24, 2007

THE CREATION MUSEUM, a $27-million tourist attraction promoting earth science theories that were popular when Columbus set sail, opens near Cinc
innati on Memorial Day. So before the first visitor risks succumbing to the museum’s animatronic balderdash — dinosaurs and humans actually coexisted! the Grand Canyon was carved by the great flood described in Genesis! — we’d like to clear up a few things: “The Flintstones” is a cartoon, not a documentary. Fred and Wilma? Those woolly mammoth vacuum cleaners? All make-believe.

Science is under assault, and that calls for bold truths. Here’s another: The Earth is round.

The museum, a 60,000-square-foot menace to 21st century scientific advancement, is the handiwork of Answers in Genesis, a leader in the “young Earth” movement. Young Earthers believe the world is about 6,000 years old, as opposed to the 4.5 billion years estimated by the world’s credible scientific community. This would be risible if anti-evolution forces were confined to a lunatic fringe, but they are not. Witness the recent revelation that three of the Republican candidates for president do not believe in evolution. Three men seeking to lead the last superpower on Earth reject the scientific consensus on cosmology, thermonuclear dynamics, geology and biology, believing instead that Bamm-Bamm and Dino played together.

Religion and science can coexist. That the Earth is billions of years old is a fact. How the universe came into being and whether it operates by design are matters of faith. The problem is that people who deny science in one realm are unlikely to embrace it in another. Those who cannot accept that climate change may have caused the extinction of dinosaurs 65 million years ago probably don’t put much stock in the fact that today it poses grave peril to the Earth as we know it.

Last year, the White House attempted to muzzle NASA’s top climatologist after he called for urgent action on global warming, and a presidential appointee in the agency’s press office chastised a contractor for mentioning the Big Bang without including the word “theory.” The press liaison reportedly wrote in an e-mail: “This is more than a science issue, it is a religious issue. And I would hate to think that young people would only be getting one-half of this debate from NASA.”

With the opening of the Creation Museum, young people will be getting another side of the story. Too bad it starts with “Yabba-dabba-doo!”

**

FREE INQUIRY GROUP OF CINCINNATI TO HOST

RALLY FOR REASON “SPEAK OUT”

Sunday, May 27, 2007 ~ 7:00 PM EDT

http://www.gofigger.org

The Free Inquiry Group of Cincinnati will host a special “Speak Out”
event the evening before the Rally for Reason demo.

Rally for Reason will take place the following day (Memorial Day,
Monday 5/28) at the opening of the “Answers in Genesis” Creation
Museum in neighboring Boone County, KY.

The Speak-Out will feature talks by Arlene-Marie (Michigan Atheists);
Frank Zindler (American Atheists); Rev. Mendle Adams (Minister and
critic of creationism); evolutionary biologist Gene Kritsky; former
physician and Camp Quest co-founder Helen Kagin and others. There
will be an open mike after the formal presentations, and the news
media has been invited.

WHAT: RfR “Speak Out” hosted by the Free Inquiry Group, Cincinnati

WHEN: Sunday, May 27, 2007, 7:00 PM EDT

WHERE: Hilton Hotel, Cincinnati Airport, 7373 Turfway Rd., Florence,
KY. Phone 859-371-4400

MORE INFO: http://www.gofigger.org and Rally for Reason.
http://www.rallyforreason.com .

**

The RALLY FOR REASON

http://www.rallyforreason.com

Media: Edwin Kagin

859-384-7000 or

[email protected]

COALITION SUPPORTING GOOD SCIENCE, SOUND TEACHING

TO SPEAK OUT AT OPENING OF CREATIONIST MUSEUM

Sun-Mon. May 27-28, 2007

A broad coalition of secularist, religious, and educational groups and other advocates of “good science” will be protesting this Memorial Day weekend at the opening of a Creationist Museum in Kentucky.

The Answer in Genesis Creationist Museum is a 60,000-square-foot facility that will feature state of the art exhibits and other presentations arguing on behalf of an Old Testament view of how human beings and the universe came into existence. It is meant as a statement against Darwinian evolution, and scientific findings that the cosmos is billions of years old, and that human beings evolved, along with other present-day creatures, from earlier life forms. Instead, “young Earth” creationist groups like AIG preach that the Earth is only about 6,000 years old. The museum will reportedly have exhibits reflecting the dubious claim that dinosaurs and human beings co-existed, contrary to scientific evidence.

The RALLY FOR REASON includes groups and individuals who support objective science and high standards for science instruction in public schools. It includes religious and non-religious groups ranging from the Clergy Letter Project to the Institute for Humanist Studies and American Atheists.

Edwin Kagin, organizer of the Rally stated that the protest does not challenge the right of AIG to present its views. “They can teach that things fall up if they wish,” said Mr. Kagin. “We’re simply trying to show that their views are based on a particular and narrow religious doctrine, not on good scientific evidence.”

The RALLY FOR REASON will take place on Monday, May 28 2007 beginning at 9:00 AM in front of the Creation Museum, Petersburg Rd., Boone County, KY. More information can be found at http://www.rallyforreason.com.

There will be a RALLY FOR REASON SPEAK-OUT hosted by the Free Inquiry Group of Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky on Sunday, May 27, 200 at the Hilton Cincinnati Airport Hotel, 7373 Turfway Rd., Florence, KY beginning at 7:00 PM. Speakers will include Rev. Mendle Adams; Frank Zindler (biologist, geologist); Dr. Gene Kritsky (evolutionary biologist); Helen Kagin, physician and others. For info on that event, visit http://www.gofigger.org .

Media: For commentary and further information on the RALLY FOR REASON, contact Edwin Kagin ([email protected]) — phone: 859-384-7000 or visit http://www.rallyforreason.com

**

AMERICAN ATHEISTS

http://www.atheists.org

RALLY FOR REASON update

DR. LAWRENCE M. KRAUSS JOINS SPEAKER

ROSTER — RALLY FOR REASON — SLATED FOR

MEMORIAL DAY (THIS MONDAY) May 28, 2007

http://www.rallyforreason.com

The RALLY FOR REASON announced today that Dr. Lawrence M. Krauss, Professor of Astronomy and Physics at Case Western Reserve University, has joined the speaker roster for Monday’s demonstration outside the gates of the Answers in Genesis Creation Museum in Boone County, KY.

RALLY FOR REASON is a coalition of secular, religious, educational and other groups defending “good science and the teaching of good science in public schools” against religion-based attacks on evolution and other areas of the scientific enterprise. The Rally will begin at 9:00 AM on Memorial Day (this Monday) May 28, 2007.

Dr. Krauss is the author of several best-selling books including “The physics of Star Trek,” “Fear of Physics,” and “Quintessence.” He was born in New York City, and received undergraduate degrees in Mathematics and Physics from Carleton University. In 1982, he received his Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He has appeared regularly in national media as a staunch advocate for science, and spoken out against so-called “intelligent design” and Old Testament-based “creationist” accounts.

Dr. Krauss joins an already-impressive line-up of scientists, civic activists, educators and others who will be speaking at Monday’s rally.

THOUSANDS OF Atheists, Freethinkers, and Humanists will be joining other advocates of secular education and good science to protest at the opening of the “Answers in Genesis” Creationist Museum in Boone County, KY. on Memorial Day — Monday, May 28, 2006. We do not oppose the right of AIG or other religious groups to express their opinions, no matter how inaccurate or fanciful. We do support the scientific enterprise, and the teaching of good science.

THE EVENING BEFORE this historic event, the Free Inquiry Group of Cincinnati will host a “Rally for Reason Speak-Out”at the nearby Hilton Cincinnati Airport Hotel. Speakers will include Arlene-Marie (Michigan Atheists); Rev. Mendle Adams, opponent of Creationist fantasy and misinformation; Frank Zindler (American Atheists Science Policy Advisor); Dr. Gene Kritsky, evolutionary biologist; Dr. Helen Kagin, physician and many others. There will be an open microphone for comments and Q&A. The FIG web site is at http://www.gofigger.org .

UPDATES…

* The Rally for Reason will take place beginning at 9:00 AM, Monday (Memorial Day) May 28, 2007 outsides the gates of the “Answers in Genesis Creation Museum,” set to open that very day. The venue is Bullittsburg Church Road, Exit 11, off of 275 West from I-75, Petersburg Road in Boone County, KY.

* Lodging and other services are within a few minutes drive, so check the RfR web site at http://www.rallyforreason.com . We suggest, though, that you bring water, some food, and dress appropriately for the event.

* Bring signs and banners. We urge you to keep the message polite and simple. Visit http://www.rallyforreason.com web site for more.

* Endorse the Rally for Reason! Local, regional and national groups are supporting this important protest on behalf of good science and sane public policy. Give your endorsement, and send your logo, to the RfR web master at [email protected] .

* If you need directions or other information, visit http://www.rallyforreason.com . You may also contact Mr. Edwin Kagin, Kentucky State Director for American Atheists at [email protected]

* The RALLY FOR REASON Speak-Out will be held the night before the rally and is hosted by the Free Inquiry Group of Cincinnati. Get more information at http://www.gofigger.org.

WHAT: The RALLY FOR REASON Speak-Out

WHEN: Sunday, May 27, 2007 (the night before the Rally), 7:00 PM EDT

WHERE: The Hilton Cincinnati Airport Hotel, 7373 Turfway Road, Florence, KY. (Yes, the Cincinnati Airport is actually located in Kent
ucky, but is right across the Ohio state line and near Cincinnati. The Speak-Out and Rally are all taking place within a proximate area.).

MORE INFO: http://www.gofigger.org and http://www.rallyforreason.com

PLEASE make plans now to attend these historic events… We’ll see you at the Rally for Reason demo and speak-out!


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The Cincinnati Enquirer, May 25, 2007.

http://news.enquirer.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070525/NEWS0103/705250385/1077/COL02

Museum’s unveiling days away

Believers and opponents expect to attend Monday’s opening

BY RYAN CLARK

When the gates of the new Creation Museum in Petersburg open Memorial Day, several groups will be inside – and outside – waiting to see what all the fuss is about.

Many of those people will be followers of the creationist faith, believing in the literal Bible. They think the world is about 6,000 years old, that dinosaurs and man co-existed and Noah built an ark to save God’s creatures from a massive flood.

Others will be there to protest the museum and its ministry, Answers in Genesis. Some will have religious and political agendas, while others do not believe in God at all. Some are concerned the museum’s teachings will warp children, while others say the ministry uses bad science.

All protesters will remain outside the gates, according to museum officials.

Mark Looy, vice president of outreach for Answers in Genesis, said this week there is no way to determine how many visitors will turn out on opening day. But 2,000 people came to a “behind the scenes” tour given to charter members a few months ago. Looy said they could expect at least that many for the opening.

No one knows how many protesters will show up.

Because of the media attention the museum already has received – from CNN, “NBC Nightly News,” PBS, the BBC and Thursday’s New York Times – a spirited plethora of protest is expected.

Some, like Martha Heil, editor and strategic planner of the 140,000-member American Institute of Physics based in College Park, Md., hope to talk to the media about science.

“We don’t want to be there screaming that it’s wrong,” said Heil, who plans to attend the opening with area physicists. “We are not against religion or houses of faith. We are against the misuse of science in religion, and you don’t have to go through the museum to see it. You can see it on (the Answers in Genesis) Web site.”

Her group wants to teach – not preach – to the crowd. Though there’s also nothing wrong with preaching, they say.

“Others may be anti-religious, but we are not,” she said. “We’re very modest, and we want to be unified and talk to reporters about how (Answers in Genesis) are using deliberate scientific untruths.”

Inevitably, Heil will be surrounded by others who will be more vocal.

The Campaign to Defend the Constitution, a national group that opposes the religious right, drafted petitions against the museum. They claim Answers in Genesis markets its unscientific ideas to children, much in the same way R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. used its “Joe Camel” cartoon character to promote Camel cigarettes. The group says so far 3,000 people have signed its petitions.

“We agree they can build this museum and believe what they wish,” said Clark Stevens, co-director of the Washington-based group, which claims 125,000 members nationwide and 7,000 members in the region. “But we feel they can’t try to convince children that this is true.”

Atheists and those Christians who are not creationists could be standing side-by-side Monday, and for once they will believe the same thing: that the Creation Museum is bad for the area.

Edwin Kagin, a Union lawyer and the national legal director of American Atheists, is urging members of his group to walk through the museum.

“We want to let the world know that most rational people do not share the primitive world view of creationists that the Earth is only a few thousand years old, and that humans and dinosaurs existed at the same time,” he said. “Various groups, representing both religious and secular orientations, will join together to protest this destructive world view.”

Others will stay home – and protest in their own ways.

“We don’t get into protests,” said Frank Traina, of Wilder, who is vice president of the nonprofit Society for Evolution Education, or SEE. “But we were rather inspired by the Creation Museum’s presence.”

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The following letter was received by Rally for Reason. It is representative of a criticism we have heard of our effort.

My answer follows.

The name of the sender has been redacted.

Edwin.

—————————————————————————————-

Hello,

I have been following the planning and building of this “museum” since

the beginning. I am equally dismayed that visitors will be mis-informed

by the exhibits, but what are you going to do? People will believe

what they want to believe, what they are taught to believe. And they

have already been taught these un-truths in their churches and in their

homes. At least the children will hear the other side of the story at

school and will have the opportunity to choose for themselves.

I firmly believe that this too will pass. Many fine, respected museums

are struggling financially to stay open. The Freedom Center in

Cincinnati for one. The Creation Museum will not be around for long.

Too few people will take it seriously. As long as government money is

not involved in keeping it open, I plan to ignore it. I’ll laugh when

people bring it up, but I will save my anger and passion for greater threats to the Constitution.

Thank you for your good work.

(Senders Name Redacted)

————————————————————

(Redacted),

You are quite correct when you say that people will believe as they will.

And we do not in any way contest their right to do so. They can believe that things fall up when dropped with no complaint from me.

The “Rally for Reason” is to let people know we will not permit this mythical world view to take us back to another Dark Ages.

It is to let legislators, who may be toying with the idea of teaching religious fundamentalism as science, that there are educated adults who intend to prevent them from doing so.

Government money is already being spent to advertise the museum of nonsense that Ken Ham built.

Consider just why, as you say, “Many fine, respected museums are struggling financially to stay open,” while the “Creation Museum” has raised 27 Million dollars and will open debt free.

At this moment, bills are pending in both Ohio and Kentucky to teach Bronze Age mythology in science classes.

That is a substantial threat to our Constitution.

Come and join us in saying that we do not want to have to retake the same ground that knowledge has previously so painfully won.

Come and help us say NO to the idea that science is bad.

Come and help us hold back the darkness.

Edwin.

Edwin Kagin

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http://www.ncseweb.org/resources/news/2007/KY/563_reactions_to_creation_museum_5_25_2007.asp

National Center for Science Education

Reactions to creation “museum”

With the young-earth creation ministry Answers in Genesis scheduled to open its lavish creation museum in northern Kentucky over the Memorial Day weekend, there is a great deal of concern among the scientific and educational communities in the adjacent states about its impact on the public understanding of evolution. NCSE executive director Eugenie C. Scott told ABC’s Good Morning America (May 25, 2007) that her fear is that students will “show up in classrooms and say, ‘Gee, Mrs. Brown, I went to this spiffy museum last summer and they say that everything you’re teaching me is a lie.’”

Early reports from the museum suggest that its exhibits are just as scientifically misleading as expected. Edward Rothstein of The New York Times (May 24, 2007) offered a bemused review of the museum, which impressed him with its “sheer weirdness and daring.” In a report in the eSkeptic newsletter (May 23, 2007), Stephen T. Asma, the author of a book on the history of natural history museums, said that skeptics will find the museum quirky and amusing, but added, “When I think, however, of the young children who are unprepared to critically assess the museum, my sense of humor fades.”

Over 800 scientists in the three states surrounding the museum — Kentucky, Indiana, and Ohio — have signed a statement sponsored by NCSE reading, “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.”

Additionally, the Campaign to Defend the Constitution (or DefCon) is sponsoring two petitions denouncing the creationist pseudoscience on display at the museum: one for educators, signed by over 3500 teachers, and one for the general public, signed by over 15,000 signatories. “The main problem,” Lawrence Krauss, a professor of physics and astronomy at Case Western Reserve University and a member of DefCon’s advisory board, told the Lexington Herald-Leader (May 25, 2007), “is that this is a museum of misinformation.” In his opinion column in the Louisville Courier-Journal (May 22, 2007), Krauss was similarly outspoken, describing the museum as “an educational travesty.”

And a protest called Rally for Reason is scheduled to take place outside the museum on Memorial Day, with a press event to be held on the preceding Sunday. Rally for Reason’s organizer Edwin Kagin told the Cincinnati Enquirer (May 25, 2007), “We want to let the world know that most rational people do not share the primitive world view of creationists that the Earth is only a few thousand years old, and that humans and dinosaurs existed at the same time.” “Various groups, representing both religious and secular orientations, will join together to protest this destructive world view” at the rally, he added.

The editorialist for the Los Angeles Times (May 24, 2007) cut to the heart of the matter, lamenting, “Young Earthers believe the world is about 6,000 years old, as opposed to the 4.5 billion years estimated by the world’s credible scientific community. This would be risible if anti-evolution forces were confined to a lunatic fringe, but they are not,” citing the political influence of creationism. The editorial concluded, “With the opening of the Creation Museum, young people will be getting another side of the story. Too bad it starts with ‘Yabba-dabba-doo!’”

May 25, 2007

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TOP SECRET INFORMATION ON PARKING AT RALLY FOR REASON

Warning: If you are a religious fundamentalist who believes the earth is only some 6,000 years old and that humans were made from dirt, please do not read further in this message!

Through scientific methods that would be baffling and inexplicable to you, and by using an ancient Babalassian Methodological Interface, we have spotted you and programmed your computer to do bad things if you proceed further, like wiping out all of your data and sending all of those things you don’t want anyone to know you have in your computer to everyone in your church.

So, for your own good, do not proceed. You have been warned!

For those remaining, here is how you park at the Rally for Reason.

1) Under Kentucky law, there is no off road parking on any of the roads leading to Answers in Genesis. This will be enforced by the Boone County Sheriff’s Office. They will cooperate with us in every way possible, but who will also uphold the law.

2) It is strongly suggested that you car pool as much as you can. Get as many people as lawfully possible into one car and leave the other cars at your motel or wherever.

3) The driver of your car should let everyone off as near to the entrance to Answers in Genesis as possible. See directions and map here: http://rallyforreason.com/Rally_4_Reason_files/R4R.htm

4) As a practical matter, the closest you may be able to reasonable get is the intersection of Highway 8 and Bullittsburg Church Road. Once they are let off, the persons in your car can walk the fairly short distance to the Iron Age gates that hold the Bronze Age fantasies of the “Creation Museum.” It is important that they walk on the edge of the road and not in the road.

5) The Rally for Reason will take place in the area to the left of Bullittsburg Church Road just across Deck Lane, which runs parallel to the gates of AiG. Stay within the area that should be marked with yellow caution tape.

6) After letting off passengers, the driver of the car should continue along Hwy 8 to Stevens Road. Stevens Road is one mile on the right after you get off at Exit 11 (Petersburg) off of 275. So, if you are going West from 1-71 / I-75, take Exit 11, turn right, stop at Bullittsburg Church Road (which will be on the left), and then proceed without passengers to Stevens Road.

7) At Stevens Road, turn right and go about one mile to First Farm Inn. That is where we will be parking. The address is: 2510 Stevens Road, Petersburg, KY 41080. It can be identified by white fences on the right side of the road.

8) Turn right in the parking area indicated. There should be signs and volunteers to help if needed.

9) A car driven by a Rally for Reason volunteer will then take you back to the Rally for Reason.

10) When your party is ready to leave, you can get a ride back to the parking area with a Rally for Reason driver, get your car, and then pick up your passengers.

11) There will be volunteers for the Rally for Reason wearing brightly colored safety vests with Rally for Reason on the back (see photo on www.rallyforreason.com) to help you out and to answer your questions after you fail to carefully read these instructions.

12) This should work. Can’t think of any reason why it should not.

13) However, it has been said that if you want to make god laugh, tell him your plans.

Oh, and please do not forget to bring water, snacks, something to sit on, a hat, and rain gear.

May random chance operate in your favor.

Edwin.



Lawrence M. Krauss to Speak at Rally for Reason

AMERICAN ATHEISTS

http://www.atheists.org

RALLY FOR REASON update

DR. LAWRENCE M. KRAUSS JOINS SPEAKER

ROSTER — RALLY FOR REASON — SLATED FOR

MEMORIAL DAY (THIS MONDAY) May 28, 2007

http://www.rallyforreason.com

The RALLY FOR REASON announced today that Dr. Lawrence M. Krauss, Professor of Astronomy and Physics at Case Western Reserve University, has joined the speaker roster for Monday’s demonstration outside the gates of the Answers in Genesis Creation Museum in Boone County, KY.

RALLY FOR REASON is a coalition of secular, religious, educational and other groups defending “good science and the teaching of good science in public schools” against religion-based attacks on evolution and other areas of the scientific enterprise. The Rally will begin at 9:00 AM on Memorial Day (this Monday) May 28, 2007.

Dr. Krauss is the author of several best-selling books including “The physics of Star Trek,” “Fear of Physics,” and “Quintessence.” He was born in New York City, and received undergraduate degrees in Mathematics and Physics from Carleton University. In 1982, he received his Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He has appeared regularly in national media as a staunch advocate for science, and spoken out against so-called “intelligent design” and Old Testament-based “creationist” accounts.

Dr. Krauss joins an already-impressive line-up of scientists, civic activists, educators and others who will be speaking at Monday’s rally.

THOUSANDS OF Atheists, Freethinkers, and Humanists will be joining other advocates of secular education and good science to protest at the opening of the “Answers in Genesis” Creationist Museum in Boone County, KY. on Memorial Day — Monday, May 28, 2006. We do not oppose the right of AIG or other religious groups to express their opinions, no matter how inaccurate or fanciful. We do support the scientific enterprise, and the teaching of good science.

THE EVENING BEFORE this historic event, the Free Inquiry Group of Cincinnati will host a “Rally for Reason Speak-Out”at the nearby Hilton Cincinnati Airport Hotel. Speakers will include Arlene-Marie (Michigan Atheists); Rev. Mendle Adams, opponent of Creationist fantasy and misinformation; Frank Zindler (American Atheists Science Policy Advisor); Dr. Gene Kritsky, evolutionary biologist; Dr. Helen Kagin, physician and many others. There will be an open microphone for comments and Q&A. The FIG web site is at http://www.gofigger.org .

UPDATES…

* The Rally for Reason will take place beginning at 9:00 AM, Monday (Memorial Day) May 28, 2007 outsides the gates of the “Answers in Genesis Creation Museum,” set to open that very day. The venue is Bullittsburg Church Road, Exit 11, off of 275 West from I-75, Petersburg Road in Boone County, KY.

* Lodging and other services are within a few minutes drive, so check the RfR web site at http://www.rallyforreason.com . We suggest, though, that you bring water, some food, and dress appropriately for the event.

* Bring signs and banners. We urge you to keep the message polite and simple. Visit http://www.rallyforreason.com
web site for more.

* Endorse the Rally for Reason! Local, regional and national groups are supporting this important protest on behalf of good science and sane public policy. Give your endorsement, and send your logo, to the RfR web master at [email protected] .

* If you need directions or other information, visit http://www.rallyforreason.com . You may also contact Mr. Edwin Kagin, Kentucky State Director for American Atheists at [email protected]

* The RALLY FOR REASON Speak-Out will be held the night before the rally and is hosted by the Free Inquiry Group of Cincinnati. Get more information at http://www.gofigger.org.

WHAT: The RALLY FOR REASON Speak-Out

WHEN: Sunday, May 27, 2007 (the night before the Rally), 7:00 PM EDT

WHERE: The Hilton Cincinnati Airport Hotel, 7373 Turfway Road, Florence, KY. (Yes, the Cincinnati Airport is actually located in Kentucky, but is right across the Ohio state line and near Cincinnati. The Speak-Out and Rally are all taking place within a proximate area.).

MORE INFO: http://www.gofigger.org and http://www.rallyforreason.com

PLEASE make plans now to attend these historic events… We’ll see you at the Rally for Reason demo and speak-out!

American Religious Civil War Action Alert

The RALLY FOR REASON

http://www.rallyforreason.com

Media: Edwin Kagin

859-384-7000 or

[email protected]

COALITION SUPPORTING GOOD SCIENCE, SOUND TEACHING

TO SPEAK OUT AT OPENING OF CREATIONIST MUSEUM

Sun-Mon. May 27-28, 2007

A broad coalition of secularist, religious, and educational groups and other advocates of “good science” will be protesting this Memorial Day weekend at the opening of a Creationist Museum in Kentucky.

The Answer in Genesis Creationist Museum is a 60,000-square-foot facility that will feature state of the art exhibits and other presentations arguing on behalf of an Old Testament view of how human beings and the universe came into existence. It is meant as a statement against Darwinian evolution, and scientific findings that the cosmos is billions of years old, and that human beings evolved, along with other present-day creatures, from earlier life forms. Instead, “young Earth” creationist groups like AIG preach that the Earth is only about 6,000 years old. The museum will reportedly have exhibits reflecting the dubious claim that dinosaurs and human beings co-existed, contrary to scientific evidence.

The RALLY FOR REASON includes groups and individuals who support objective science and high standards for science instruction in public schools. It includes religious and non-religious groups ranging from the Clergy Letter Project to the Institute for Humanist Studies and American Atheists.

Edwin Kagin, organizer of the Rally stated that the protest does not challenge the right of AIG to present its views. “They can teach that things fall up if they wish,” said Mr. Kagin. “We’re simply trying to show that their views are based on a particular and narrow religious doctrine, not on good scientific evidence.”

The RALLY FOR REASON will take place on Monday, May 28 2007 beginning at 9:00 AM in front of the Creation Museum, Petersburg Rd., Boone County, KY. More information can be found at http://www.rallyforreason.com.

There will be a RALLY FOR REASON SPEAK-OUT hosted by the Free Inquiry Group of Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky on Sunday, May 27, 200 at the Hilton Cincinnati Airport Hotel, 7373 Turfway Rd., Florence, KY beginning at 7:00 PM. Speakers will include Rev. Mendle Adams; Frank Zindler (biologist, geologist); Dr. Gene Kritsky (evolutionary biologist); Helen Kagin, physician and others. For info on that event, visit http://www.gofigger.org .

Media: For commentary and further information on the RALLY FOR REASON, contact Edwin Kagin ([email protected]) — phone: 859-384-7000 or visit http://www.rallyforreason.com

Rally for Reason vs Creationism Nonsense

From American Atheist News:
CP
CREATIONIST MUSEUM SET TO OPEN: HAS BIBLICAL LITERALISM PERMEATED
MAINSTREAM AMERICAN CULTURE, REPLACED SCIENCE?
Raquel Welch, Barney Flintstone Meet Genesis

It was once only a fantastic belief preached in fundamentalist and
evangelical churches, tent-revival meetings, and the most hard-shell
Baptist seminaries and other religious schools.

Now, though, creationism — the belief that human and other life on
our planet, along with everything we know to constitute the observable
universe, was recently created by a supernatural deity, and the
literal account revealed in passages from the Old Testament — is
rapidly going mainstream. The teaching of creationism and similar
accounts like “Intelligent Design” in public schools has become a
culture war skirmish playing out across the country. Authors and
lecturers regularly debate the topic in the media and even college
campuses as they attempt to “challenge” and refute Darwinian
evolution. Personal opinions about evolution and creationism were
even solicited during last week’s nationally televised debate among
the major Republican contenders seeking their party’s nomination for
the presidency.

And what may be a high water mark in the public relations campaign to
showcase creationist doctrine is slated to occur on Memorial Day,
Monday May 28, 2007 when the group “Answers in Genesis” opens its $27
million, 60,000-square-foot Creation Museum in Petersburg, Ky.

Supporters pray that the museum will present an “alternative” to
scientific evolution. The core audience is expected to be the
millions of Christian evangelicals and fundamentalists who look to the
Bible as a literal, true and reliable source. Other visitors, though,
may agree with much of the message being promoted by “Answers in
Genesis” and its president, Ken Ham. A Gallup Poll released in March
showed that 47% of Americans believe a supernatural deity created
humans similar to their present form within the last 10,000 years.
This belief contradicts findings in geology, biology, astronomy and
other sciences that indicate life and the present condition of our
universe to be the result of long evolutionary processes taking place
over “deep time,” millions and even billions of years.

The museum is strategically located. Ham boasts that the facility is
within one day’s drive of 60% of the U.S. population, and expects to
draw over 250,000 visitors in the first year. AIG has spared little
expense in putting together what is described as a first-class
exposition. A second construction phase is now underway, adding
another 10,000 square feet of space. Crosswalk.com reporter Michael
Ireland described the project as “a one-of-a-kind, high-tech museum
filled with animatronic displays (e.g., moving dinosaurs), striking
videos, a state-of-the-art planetarium, Special Effects Theater, etc.
that is spread over 60,000 square feet incorporating up to 40-foot
ceilings to contain some of its massive exhibits.”

“The museum will go beyond telling the compelling story of the
creation of life on this planet,” Ireland added, “to proclaiming the
Bible as supreme authority in all matters in addresses.”

The expansive undertaking was possible thanks primarily to AIG’s 8,500
charter members and tens of thousands of other donors. There has been
considerable media coverage of the museum project on the major
television networks, PBS and print media including The Washington
post, The New York Times and Discover Magazine. International media
from Australia, Europe and elsewhere have also covered the story.

“Answers in Genesis” — Crankery to Mainstream

“Answers in Genesis” has evolved from humble beginnings into one of
the nation’s leading crusaders on behalf of Biblical literalism and
supremacy. Its roots go back to the Creation Science Association
which, in 1980, became the Creation Science Foundation. Ken Ham, born
in Australia in 1951, moved to the U.S. in 1987 after earning a
bachelor’s degree in science. In 1993, he was granted an honorary
doctorate of literature from Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University.
During this period he worked at the Institute for Creation Research,
and in 1994 established the “Answers in Genesis” Christian ministry.

Ham and his organization expound a religious doctrine known as “young
Earth creationism.” This belief rejects Darwin’s Theory of Evolution,
along with most mainstream scientific findings about the origins of
life and the rest of the universe. Instead, believers point to select
passages in the book of Genesis, taking as literal truth stories that
Jehovah created everything in six days, along with the tale of Noah
and his ark. In lectures and debates, Mr. Ham and other advocates of
creationism often attempt to discredit evolution by asking, “Were you
there?” They also claim to find evidence of flaws or shortcomings in
evolutionary evidence, or take the position that “fairness” and free
speech require creationism be given equal time in public school
classrooms.

Not all Christians, of course, accept Biblical literalism or oppose
the science behind evolution. There are also advocates of so-called
“Intelligent Design” who reject the proposition that the universe is
the result of recent divine creation, but instead claim that physical
laws and other scientific findings are evidence of deity who played a
role of “first mover” in bringing life and the universe into existence
at some point in the distant past. Like the “young Earth”
creationists at AIG, supporters of “ID” claim to challenge mainstream,
evolution-based scientific findings, and promote themselves as a
legitimate “alternative,” especially in public school classrooms.

Blaming Darwin

Just as they promote a Biblical-supremacist theology, Mr. Ham and
other creationists condemn evolution as a pernicious force in human
history. Wikipedia notes, “Ham believes the Theory of Evolution
indirectly caused or heavily contributed to the rise of humanism,
racism, eugenics, euthanasia, pornography, homosexuality, family
breakup, abortion, and more by increasing the influence of atheism.”
Like others on the religious right, Ham also links the teaching of
evolution with increased secularization and social changes. Reacting
to the recent shootings at Virginia Tech, Ham posted an opinion piece
on the “Answers in Genesis” web site declaring, “We live in an era
when public high schools and colleges have all banned God from science
classes,” presumably resulting in “a culture (that) allows the killing
of the unborn” and the perception that human life is “cheap.”

GENESIS AND RAQUEL AND BARNEY, OH MY!

As creationism has become a major cultural project for many
evangelical Christians wary of secular science, the academic community
has managed to respond with books, articles, web sites and
conferences. The fact that anti-evolution activists have taken over
local and, in some cases like Kansas, even state school boards and
education departments has also generated concerns about the status of
science education in America. Meanwhile, creationists and Intelligent
Design proponents have become more sophisticated in getting their
message out to the public.

Despite a more polished and sophisticated message, many of the claims
of “young Earth creationists” remain difficult to defend. That will
not stop the Creationism Museum from presenting every detail of the
literal Genesis story as truth — such as the claim that dinosaurs
co-existed with our early human ancestors. Dioramas and 3-D exhibits
at the museum will reportedly depict dinosaurs and humans living in
the same environment. It may not be as titillating as the 1966 film
hit “One Million Years B.C.” starring a buxom Raquel Welch and other
humans who battle their monstrous reptilian neighbors. Fossil and
other evidence points to a different sort of time-line, where
dinosaurs became extinct about 60 million years before human beings
made their appearance. Film producers and executives at Hammer
Studios made no claim to scientific accuracy, though, and instead
indulged in fantasy, violence and, of course, titillation in the form
of a sexually-charged heroine.

The AIG may also have to deal with charges that it is simply blending
ancient Bible-based allegory with American pop-culture, especially the
Hanna-Barbera Production animated sitcom, “The Flintstones.” The show
ran from 1960-1966 on the ABC television network, and portrayed the
travails and triumphs of a stone-age, working class family living in
the imaginary town of Bedrock. “Friendly” cartoon-style dinosaurs
were part of the natural environment, and the show skillfully
amalgamated a semblance of contemporary technology built from
stone-age implements often powered by animals.

While pop-culture entertainment like “The Flintstones” or movies
featuring ancient monsters and distressed fashion models make no
pretense to scientific or historic accuracy, creationists are serious
in citing the Bible as a literal, accurate answer to complex questions
about human origins. As Biblical supremacists, they embrace the works
found in the Old and New Testaments as revealed truth from God. AIG
and other creationist groups, for example, not only reject evolution
as an explanation of how life appeared on Earth, they also expand
their theology to reject much of contemporary cosmology. Their “young
universe” — only 6,000 or so years old — still betrays compelling
evidence that it is much larger and far more ancient. Creationists
have invented interesting but nevertheless flawed arguments to explain
this discrepancy, including claims that God created light “en-route,”
or that the speed of light was considerably greater in the
not-too-distant past.

Collision in the Classrooms

Creationists not only argue the validity of the Biblical account in
Genesis, but also insist that their views are at least as “valid” as
contemporary science, and thus worthy of “equal time” in school
science classes. They also oppose efforts to censor teachers who want
to introduce creationist ideas, especially as “an alternative” to most
science texts now used.

Because of its stance on behalf of “Biblical Supremacy,” AIG also
opposes any pro-life position in respect to abortion rights, and
challenges homosexuality as a violation of Christian teaching. It
also maintains that Darwinism and evolutionary teachings have been the
basis of destructive racial theories and eugenics. They cite the
Holocaust and the rampages of Stalinism as examples. According to
Wikipedia, “In dealing with Christendom’s own violent history, AIG
asserts that anyone using the Bible to justify atrocities (such as the
Crusades, the colonization of the New World, pogroms, the burning of
‘witches,’ the Wars of Religion etc.) are ‘completely contrary to the
teachings of Christ.’ “

Critics, though, see creationist undertakings like the Answers in
Genesis Creation Museum as destructive; they worry that young children
may be influenced by such ideas at the expense of scientific literacy.
Several hundred people are expected to join a “Rally for Reason”
outside the gates of the AIG museum on Memorial Day, May 28 during the
facility’s grand opening. “Many educated people realize that
creationism is a myth,” said Edwin Kagin, Kentucky State Director for
American Atheists and an organizer of the Rally For Reason in an
interview with Associated Press. “Myths aren’t necessarily untrue,
but they aren’t literal, either.”

For further information:
http://www.atheists.org/flash.line/evol20.htm
“Federal judge bars ‘Intelligent Design’ from classrooms (12/20/05)

http://www.atheists.org/evolution/
(Numerous articles on creationism, evolution)

http://www.atheists.org/flash.line/evol4.htm
(Nearly half of Americans accept creationist accounts over scientific
evolution.)

Atheists on 20-20. AiG & Edwin Kagin Op-Ed Pieces

American Atheists Media Alert

http://www.atheists.org

“OKLAHOMA OUTRAGE,” DISCRIMINATION

AGAINST ATHEISTS TOPIC OF ABC PROGRAM

This Friday, May 11, 2007 ~ Kagin, Smalkowski Family

WHAT: A special two-hour ABC Network program scheduled to air this Friday, May 11 will discuss prejudice against Atheists in America, particularly in the city of Hardesty, Oklahoma, where Nicole Smalkowski was expelled from public school on false charges when she refused to stand in a circle on the auditorium floor with the girls’ basketball team and recite the “Lord’s Prayer.”

Her father Chuck Smalkowski was falsely indicted on criminal charges, all because of prejudice against their assertion of their rights as Atheists. American Atheists participated in Chuck’s criminal trial that resulted in three “Not Guilty” verdicts by a jury. Edwin Kagin, National Legal Director for American Atheists, persuaded the jury to swear to believe an Atheist under oath over a Christian if the facts so warranted. Following the verdict, American Atheists and the Smalkowski family filed a lawsuit for civil rights violations by state actors, under color of state law, in the Federal Court of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The Smalkowskis, Edwin Kagin, and Richard Dawkins share a nine minute segment of this program that was recorded in ABC’s studios in New York City, and on location in Hardesty and Guymon, Oklahoma. Richard Rice, a Christian, who has agreed to serve as Oklahoma local counsel in the lawsuit, was interviewed on camera in Oklahoma. The four days of filming, condensed to nine minutes, will of necessity omit many things and one or more of the persons filmed may be cut.

WHO: American Atheists members Nicole Smalkowski and Chuck Smalkowski and Edwin Kagin, National Legal Director for American Atheists.

WHEN: Friday, May 11, 2007 for two hours, starting at 9:00 pm (EDT).

WHERE: 20-20 show on ABC television, thought to be titled “Religion in America.”

MORE INFO:

www.atheists.org/flash.line/smalko1.htm

www.atheists.org/flash.line/smalko3.htm

(AMERICAN ATHEISTS is a nationwide movement that defends civil rights for Atheists; works for the total separation of church and state; and addresses issues of First Amendment public policy.)

==============================================================================================================

The following two op-ed pieces appeared in the Boone County (Kentucky) Recorder on May 10, 2007:

http://news.communitypress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070508/EDIT/705080303/1076/Local

God and natural law

JASON LISLE, PH.D. | COMMUNITY RECORDER GUEST COLUMNIST

It is common today for people to attemp
t to use science to disprove the Bible, especially its creation account of origins. Many have claimed, for example, that science supports evolution. Some have suggested that science requires a belief in naturalism – the notion that nature is “all that there is.”

In reality, however, and as we will proclaim in our new Creation Museum, science comes out of a biblical worldview. It is because the biblical God created an orderly, logical universe, and made our minds able to reason, that science is possible. Science works because the Bible is true. If the universe were merely the accidental by-product of a big bang, then why should it obey orderly principles – or any principles at all for that matter?

The Law of Life (Biogenesis): The law of biogenesis states simply that life always comes from life. This is what observational science tells us: organisms reproduce other organisms after their own kind. Historically, Louis Pasteur disproved one alleged case of spontaneous generation; he showed that life comes from previous life. Since then, we have seen that this law is universal – with no known exceptions.

This is, of course, exactly what we would expect from the Bible. According to Genesis 1, God supernaturally created the first diverse kinds of life on earth and made them to reproduce after their kind. Notice that molecules-to-man evolution violates the law of biogenesis. Evolutionists believe that life (at least once) spontaneously formed from nonliving chemicals. But this is inconsistent with the law of biogenesis.

Indeed, real science confirms the Bible.

The Laws of Physics: Life depends on chemistry, which is based on physics. The science of physics describes the behavior of the universe at its most fundamental level. Laws of physics describe the way the universe operates today. Some laws describe how light propagates, how energy is transported, how gravity operates, how mass moves through space, and many other phenomena. The laws of physics are usually mathematical in nature; some laws of physics can be described with a concise formula, such as E=mc2. The simple formula F=ma shows how an object with mass (m) will accelerate (a) when a net force (F) is applied to it.

It is amazing that every object in the universe consistently obeys these rules. If the laws of quantum physics were just slightly different, atoms might not even be possible. God designed the laws of physics just right so that the laws of chemistry would be correct so that life would be possible.

Laws of nature do not make sense in a big bang/evolution-driven worldview. However, the consistent Christian would expect the universe to be organized in a logical, orderly fashion and to obey uniform laws because the universe was created and is upheld by the power of God. Furthermore, whether the field is astronomy, geology, or biology (see www.CreationMuseum.org), the creation account in Genesis – as we will show in our museum – explains the facts better than evolution.

Dr. Jason Lisle is director of the planetarium at the Creation Museum set to open May 28 in Petersburg. He received his Ph.D. in astrophysics from the University of Colorado.

————————————————————————————————————-

http://news.communitypress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070508/EDIT/705080302/1076/Local

Dumbing down of society

EDWIN KAGIN | COMMUNITY RECORDER GUEST COLUMNIST

Throughout human history, people have queued up into one of two great lines. The first is composed of those who understand that science, reason, and critical thinking lead to meaningful lives and healthy communities. In the other line are those who hold that their religious views should be made law universal. If their particular revealed dogma and ancient sacred text conflicts with the discoveries of reason and science, then the dogma should win and the facts should lose.

Those in the first line have brought us civilization and progress, while those in the second line have attempted to hold us back, insisting we accept their mythologies. If those in the second line had won in the past, people would be taught that the earth is flat, they would write on rocks, huddle by fires at night, and tell stories of how people were magically made from dirt. Great courage and sacrifice has been required of those who dare defy those in the second line.

Charles Darwin was studying to be a cleric when he discovered the fact that all living things had evolved from simpler forms of life. This had occurred by a process known as “natural selection,” over billions of years of very slow change. Those creatures that were better adapted to their environment lived and reproduced, while those life forms not so well adapted did not.

This process is seen in the fact that some bacteria that make us sick – that were once cured by a shot of penicillin – are now immune to penicillin. This is because when penicillin was effective against most infections, a few bacteria, which were slightly different from the bacteria penicillin could kill, survived and reproduced to the degree that a whole new life form evolved that could eat penicillin for breakfast. There are many such examples.

The theory of evolution is the foundation of all modern medicine, and it is confirmed by all sciences. Without the knowledge evolution has provided, people would die while some religious medicine man chanted over them. A “theory” in science is not a wild guess. It is a complex body of knowledge. Gravity is a “theory.” Most people do understand that things will not fall up, no matter what their religion might say. Evolution is not so obvious. But it is just as true. Some details regarding evolution are still open to debate. The fact that evolution occurred is not.

Yet some still want everyone to believe that science is wrong and that Bronze Age myths are true. They have built a multimillion dollar sideshow called “Creation Museum.”

We who object to this dumbing down of our society do not contest creationists’ rights to believe what they will. We find it offensive that nonsense is taught as truth, supported by stupid arguments like, “Were you there?”

However, those who fear that they would rob, rape, and kill if they accepted evolution should go right on believing humans were magically made out of dirt.

Which line are you in?

Edwin Kagin of Union is a local attorney.

American Religious Civil War news

American Atheists Media Alert

http://www.atheists.org

“OKLAHOMA OUTRAGE,” DISCRIMINATION

AGAINST ATHEISTS TOPIC OF ABC PROGRAM

This Friday, May 11, 2007 ~ Kagin, Smalkowski Family

WHAT: A special two-hour ABC Network program scheduled to air this Friday, May 11 will discuss prejudice against Atheists in American, particularly in the city of Hardesty, Oklahoma, where Nicole Smalkowski was expelled from public school on false charges when she refused to stand in a circle on the auditorium floor with the girls’ basketball team and recite the “Lord’s Prayer.”

Her father Chuck Smalkowski was falsely indicted on criminal charges, all because of prejudice against their assertion of their rights as Atheists. American Atheists participated in Chuck’s criminal trial that resulted in three “Not Guilty” verdicts by a jury. Edwin Kagin, National Legal Director for American Atheists, persuaded the jury to swear to believe an Atheist under oath over a Christian if the facts so warranted. Following the verdict, American Atheists and the Smalkowski family filed a lawsuit for civil rights violations by state actors, under color of state law, in the Federal Court of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The Smalkowskis, Edwin Kagin, and Richard Dawkins share a nine minute segment of this program that was recorded in ABC’s studios in New York City, and on location in Hardesty and Guymon, Oklahoma. Richard Rice, a Christian, who has agreed to serve as Oklahoma local counsel in the lawsuit, was interviewed on camera in Oklahoma. The four days of filming, condensed to nine minutes, will of necessity omit many things and one or more of the persons filmed may be cut.

WHO: American Atheists members Nichole Smalkowski and Chuck Smalkowski and Edwin Kagin, National Legal Director for American Atheists.

WHEN: Friday, May 11, 2007 for two hours, starting at 9:00 pm (EDT).

WHERE: 20-20 show on ABC television, thought to be titled “Religion in America.”

MORE INFO:

www.atheists.org/flash.line/smalko1.htm

www.atheists.org/flash.line/smalko3.htm

www.atheists.org/legal/Smalkowski/Entry%20of%20Appearance%20Kagin%20filed%2024%20Aug%202006.pdf

(AMERICAN ATHEISTS is a nationwide movement that defends civil rights for Atheists; works for the total separation of church and state; and addresses issues of First Amendment public policy.)

=============================================================================================================

American Religious Civil War news.

Answers in Genesis is finally ready to open their much mouthed “Creation Museum.”

This monumental tribute to nonsense, this world class ignorance, will open on Memorial Day, May 28th, 2007 in Northern Kentucky, as, with drums beating and banners waiving, they encourage a march backwards into the dark past of the mind from which we have so painfully and so recently evolved.

In one generation, it might be actually possible to cause humankind to forget science and to once again cower under a miasma of myth.

It is stunning how many similar facilities dedicated to destroying our civilization have sprung up like turd blossoms across our free land.

See: http://www.nwcreation.net/museums.html

Edwin.

==============================================================================================================

On Mi
racles and Microchips

It’s a miracle. Overworked monastic scrivener, in T.V. commercial, upon

introduction to Xerox electronic copier.

The Reverend Gilder Smelt, of the Mail Me Magic Money Miracle Missions Movement, had been blessed with the gifts of miracle healing and of prophecy, but, regrettably and inexplicably, had been denied the gift of correct grammar. He was held a prophet of God by his followers when he spoke on the 7Ms Club’s vast radio and television network. He had succeeded the movement’s founder, Dr. Ducworth Bliss, after the latter had been, according to Rev. Smelt, translated directly into heaven like Elijah and the BVM.

Secular authorities held the less metaphysical view that Dr. Duck, as they termed him, had faked his death in a plane crash in Brazil, where he then proceeded to reside, safe from secular extradition, among fellow travelers of Nazi persuasion. Authorities also cynically believed that Bliss had taken with him a large quantity of mailed miracle money, sent him by the gullible who accepted the teaching that the last dollar of the starving, if sent as magic seed money in cash to 7Ms, would be multiplied and returned by God to the sinning sender seven times seventy fold. Because 7Ms was an officially recognized church, it paid no taxes and could not be made to disclose how much money it received, or how much was missing, assuming anyone really knew.

Dr. Duck’s disappearance permitted the grammatically challenged Smelt to expand upon the mendacity of his mentor, and added a certain irony to 7Ms’ theme song, “More More Money Makes Miracle Missions Move.” Previously satisfied with receiving the last mites of the hopeless, whose faith usually proved inadequate, after the transfer of funds, to achieve the miracles sought, the 7Ms Club, under Smelt, tooled up for serious electronic chautauqua.

With the compensated aid of shills, and the uncomprehending cooperation of the habitually hysterical and hypochondriacal, 7Ms’ fortune and fame flourished. The only real problem Rev. Smelt encountered was deciding whether to condition members of his audience—of the soon to be miraculously cured—to fall backwards or forwards following his heavenly healing touch. He settled on forwards. Some of the fallees seeking the strong arms of salvation were attractive, full bosomed young women.


None of Brother Smelt’s miracles, whether calling on the power of God to produce healings or to prevent hauntings, were ever verified by competent skeptics. Why permit the damned to question the ordained? What, Smelt unartfully argued, could science, or logic, or reason hope to provide the human spirit that could possibly compare or compete with faith, with the promise that all things hoped for would be provided, if not immediately, then in an invisible future world where you don’t get hurt if you fall on your face. When asked by a godless cynic why so many people sent so much money they didn’t have for miracles that didn’t happen, Gilder Smelt replied, “We done it for God.” And, as predictably as a Harvard graduate telling you he is one, the insecure and the frightened lined up to fall down.

7Ms’ miracle mania swept the world. Audio tapes, videos, CDS, interactive CD-ROMs, tee shirts, bumper stickers, mugs, and every conceivable sort of bizarre religious kitsch was sent out for free to believers who sent in love gifts of magic miracle seed money. One popular item, the Ye-are-the-salt-of-the-earth, glow-in-the-dark, seashell salt shaker, formed in the image of the translated to heaven Ducworth Bliss, was sent without charge to those who made heroic love gift payments on their eternal life insurance policies. Often this variegated shaker became the centerpiece on altars of families whose polluted water supply would prematurely merge them with The Eternal Bliss.

Sufficient funds were received to permit Miracle Missions to expand into world wide real estate holdings. Miracle theme parks, hotels, office buildings, campgrounds, and even Miracle Meals fast food restaurants became common throughout America and most foreign countries. Gilder’s favorite dish, grilled Spam and Velveeta cheese with onion, lettuce, mayonnaise and ketchup on white bread, was sold by the billions as the Miracle Smelt Melt. 7Ms was ready to control the world.

Almost as fast as a priest on a choirboy, individual religions lost their identities. When a denomination discovered 7Ms suddenly owned even its church properties, rather than be evicted, the elders usually agreed to change their signs. Eventually, and not altogether bloodlessly, 7Ms came to hold solid supernatural superiority on earth. When only the conventicles and those pesky Atheists seemed beyond their reach, 7Ms decided to change some laws.

The previously shepherdless sheep, who now consumed Smelt Melts, willingly elected religious bigots and scientific illiterates to all public offices. School teachers taught children the More More Money song, and all learning became dedicated to the proposition that one lived only for 7Ms, so that one could live blissfully after death. All knowledge was held electronically and dispensed electronically, by video while awake, and by audio while asleep. Creationism and faith classes replaced the teachings of outlawed scientific heresies that had claimed it was possible to find out how the world really worked, or where humans really came from. The libraries of the older learning were destroyed.

Years passed. Everywhere was seen the fixed smile and thousand yard stare of the fanatically faithful. There was the occasional stoning of someone who claimed the fixed earth moved, and every so often children were reassigned, and their parents re-educated, if their traditional family was found to be practicing home schooling in science, or sex education, or teaching the heresy of reason. But, in general, life was good. For a while.

Suddenly, things fell apart. Viruses evolved that didn’t know there was no evolution, nor that they could be stopped by faith. Almost simultaneously, the equipment that directed electrons to become images and voices failed. Secular scientists and science had been outlawed. Anyone who remembered and practiced the old ways, who knew how to repair or create a computer or a microchip, was in hiding or dead. 7Ms could neither deal with the plague, nor get their messages on line. Everyone was sick or dying; no miracle worked, and the voice of god in the machine was silent. A fortiori, faith failed.


Blame for these happenings was imputed to the Atheists. The Blissful Judgement was upon the faithful, because they had been meek and gentle with those who had sought to control nature and deny god’s plan.

Darkness and death covered the land. The dead were left to bury the dead. No invisible electron could be controlled. Faith was swallowed up in viruses. The unseen world had triumphed over the seen.

Some time passed before the first of the Atheists emerged. He was an ancient, gaunt man; his hand held the hand of a beautiful young woman. They had received inoculations, from their people, before their own computers had fallen silent in their secret places. All electronic information in the world was now forever lost. The destruction was as complete as that of the righteous fires that once consumed the collected knowledge of the Maya. This time, religion had destroyed itself in its own temple, using its own rules.

“Hypatia,” the old man said, “I want to show you something.” They walked in silence, until they reached an outdoor Altar of Bliss. He swept away the salt shaker, and shells and salt splattered as the icon smashed on the marble. He withdrew a package from his bag, and placed it on the altar. When the tattered, watertight wrappings were removed, he stood back and let the child gaze in wonder at the treasure. After some moments she said, “Grandfather, it’s beautiful. What is it?”

He looked deeply into the health, and strength, and creativity, and intelligence, and curiosity of her human eyes, unglazed by grace, and said, “It’s a book.”

Edwin Kagin (from Baubles of Blasphemy)

==============================================================================================================

Rally for Reason

www.rallyforreason.com

If you think being outdoors in response to a threat to the foundations of knowledge is too much trouble, do not worry. Those who would establish a theocracy over us have promised to attack only when it is convenient for you, when it is not raining, when you can be warm, dry, safe, well fed, and have had plenty of time to engage in Liberal Angst over just what to do. Meanwhile, others will fight the American Religious Civil War and protect your freedoms for you.

Do you have something more important to do this Memorial Day?

Edwin

Rally for Reason

Y’all come to Kentucky y’hear.

Do you have something more important to do this Memorial Day?

See: www.rallyforreason.com

Edwin.

==============================================================================================================

From:

A M E R I C A N A T H E I S T S

A A N E W S

#1232 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 5/8/07

http://www.atheists.org

http://www.americanatheist.org

http://www.atheistviewpoint.tv

Feel free to distribute, AANEWS update on Memorial Day RALLY FOR REASON

CREATIONIST MUSEUM SET TO OPEN: HAS BIBLICAL LITERALISM PERMEATED

MAINSTREAM AMERICAN CULTURE, REPLACED SCIENCE?

Raquel Welch, Barney Flintstone Meet Genesis

It was once only a fantastic belief preached in fundamentalist and evangelical churches, tent-revival meetings, and the most hard-shell Baptist seminaries and other religious schools.

Now, though, creationism — the belief that human and other life on our planet, along with everything we know to constitute the observable universe, was recently created by a supernatural deity, and the literal account revealed in passages from the Old Testament — is rapidly going mainstream. The teaching of creationism and similar accounts like “Intelligent Design” in public schools has become a culture war skirmish playing out across the country. Authors and lecturers regularly debate the topic in the media and even college campuses as they attempt to “challenge” and refute Darwinian evolution. Personal opinions about evolution and creationism were even solicited during last week’s nationally televised debate among the major Republican contenders seeking their party’s nomination for the presidency.

And what may be a high water mark in the public relations campaign to showcase creationist doctrine is slated to occur on Memorial Day, Monday May 28, 2007 when the group “Answers in Genesis” opens its $27 million, 60,000-square-foot Creation Museum in Petersburg, Ky.

Supporters pray that the museum will present an “alternative” to scientific evolution. The core audience is expected to be the millions of Christian evangelicals and fundamentalists who look to the Bible as a literal, true and reliable source. Other visitors, though, may agree with much of the message being promoted by “Answers in Genesis” and its president, Ken Ham. A Gallup Poll released in March showed that 47% of Americans believe a supernatural deity created humans similar to their present form within the last 10,000 years.

This belief contradicts findings in geology, biology, astronomy and other sciences that indicate life and the present condition of our universe to be the result of long evolutionary processes taking place over “deep time,” millions and even billions of years.

The museum is strategically located. Ham boasts that the facility is within one day’s drive of 60% of the U.S. population, and expects to draw over 250,000 visitors in the first year. AIG has spared little expense in putting together what is described as a first-class exposition. A second construction phase is now underway, adding another 10,000 square feet of space. Crosswalk.com reporter Michael Ireland described the project as “a one-of-a-kind, high-tech museum filled with animatronic displays (e.g., moving dinosaurs), striking videos, a state-of-the-art planetarium, Special Effects Theater, etc.

that is spread over 60,000 square feet incorporating up to 40-foot ceilings to contain some of its massive exhibits.”

“The museum will go beyond telling the compelling story of the creation of life on this planet,” Ireland added, “to proclaiming the Bible as supreme authority in all matters in addresses.”

The expansive undertaking was possible thanks primarily to AIG’s 8,500 charter members and tens of thousands of other donors. There has been considerable media coverage of the museum project on the major television networks, PBS and print media including The Washington post, The New York Times and Discover Magazine. International media from Australia, Europe and elsewhere have also covered the story.

“Answers in Genesis” — Crankery to Mainstream

“Answers in Genesis” has evolved from humble beginnings into one of the nation’s leading crusaders on behalf of Biblical literalism and supremacy. Its roots go back to the Creation Science Association which, in 1980, became the Creation Science Foundation. Ken Ham, born in Australia in 1951
, moved to the U.S. in 1987 after earning a bachelor’s degree in science. In 1993, he was granted an honorary doctorate of literature from Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University.

During this period he worked at the Institute for Creation Research, and in 1994 established the “Answers in Genesis” Christian ministry.

Ham and his organization expound a religious doctrine known as “young Earth creationism.” This belief rejects Darwin’s Theory of Evolution, along with most mainstream scientific findings about the origins of life and the rest of the universe. Instead, believers point to select passages in the book of Genesis, taking as literal truth stories that Jehovah created everything in six days, along with the tale of Noah and his ark. In lectures and debates, Mr. Ham and other advocates of creationism often attempt to discredit evolution by asking, “Were you there?” They also claim to find evidence of flaws or shortcomings in evolutionary evidence, or take the position that “fairness” and free speech require creationism be given equal time in public school classrooms.

Not all Christians, of course, accept Biblical literalism or oppose the science behind evolution. There are also advocates of so-called “Intelligent Design” who reject the proposition that the universe is the result of recent divine creation, but instead claim that physical laws and other scientific findings are evidence of deity who played a role of “first mover” in bringing life and the universe into existence at some point in the distant past. Like the “young Earth”

creationists at AIG, supporters of “ID” claim to challenge mainstream, evolution-based scientific findings, and promote themselves as a legitimate “alternative,” especially in public school classrooms.

Blaming Darwin

Just as they promote a Biblical-supremacist theology, Mr. Ham and other creationists condemn evolution as a pernicious force in human history. Wikipedia notes, “Ham believes the Theory of Evolution indirectly caused or heavily contributed to the rise of humanism, racism, eugenics, euthanasia, pornography, homosexuality, family breakup, abortion, and more by increasing the influence of atheism.”

Like others on the religious right, Ham also links the teaching of evolution with increased secularization and social changes. Reacting to the recent shootings at Virginia Tech, Ham posted an opinion piece on the “Answers in Genesis” web site declaring, “We live in an era when public high schools and colleges have all banned God from science classes,” presumably resulting in “a culture (that) allows the killing of the unborn” and the perception that human life is “cheap.”

GENESIS AND RAQUEL AND BARNEY, OH MY!

As creationism has become a major cultural project for many evangelical Christians wary of secular science, the academic community has managed to respond with books, articles, web sites and conferences. The fact that anti-evolution activists have taken over local and, in some cases like Kansas, even state school boards and education departments has also generated concerns about the status of science education in America. Meanwhile, creationists and Intelligent Design proponents have become more sophisticated in getting their message out to the public.

Despite a more polished and sophisticated message, many of the claims of “young Earth creationists” remain difficult to defend. That will not stop the Creationism Museum from presenting every detail of the literal Genesis story as truth — such as the claim that dinosaurs co-existed with our early human ancestors. Dioramas and 3-D exhibits at the museum will reportedly depict dinosaurs and humans living in the same environment. It may not be as titillating as the 1966 film hit “One Million Years B.C.” starring a buxom Raquel Welch and other humans who battle their monstrous reptilian neighbors. Fossil and other evidence points to a different sort of time-line, where dinosaurs became extinct about 6o million years before human beings made their appearance. Film producers and executives at Hammer Studios made no claim to scientific accuracy, though, and instead indulged in fantasy, violence and, of course, titillation in the form of a sexually-charged heroine.

The AIG may also have to deal with charges that it is simply blending ancient Bible-based allegory with American pop-culture, especially the Hanna-Barbera Production animated sitcom, “The Flintstones.” The show ran from 1960-1966 on the ABC television network, and portrayed the travails and triumphs of a stone-age, working class family living in the imaginary town of Bedrock. “Friendly” cartoon-style dinosaurs were part of the natural environment, and the show skillfully amalgamated a semblance of contemporary technology built from stone-age implements often powered by animals.

While pop-culture entertainment like “The Flintstones” or movies featuring ancient monsters and distressed fashion models make no pretense to scientific or historic accuracy, creationists are serious in citing the Bible as a literal, accurate answer to complex questions about human origins. As Biblical supremacists, they embrace the works found in the Old and New Testaments as revealed truth from God. AIG and other creationist groups, for example, not only reject evolution as an explanation of how life appeared on Earth, they also expand their theology to reject much of contemporary cosmology. Their “young universe” — only 6,000 or so years old — still betrays compelling evidence that it is much larger and far more ancient. Creationists have invented interesting but nevertheless flawed arguments to explain this discrepancy, including claims that God created light “en-route,”

or that the speed of light was considerably greater in the not-too-distant past.

Collision in the Classrooms

Creationists not only argue the validity of the Biblical account in Genesis, but also insist that their views are at least as “valid” as contemporary science, and thus worthy of “equal time” in school science classes. They also oppose efforts to censor teachers who want to introduce creationist ideas, especially as “an alternative” to most science texts now used.

Because of its stance on behalf of “Biblical Supremacy,” AIG also opposes any pro-life position in respect to abortion rights, and challenges homosexuality as a violation of Christian teaching. It also maintains that Darwinism and evolutionary teachings have been the basis of destructive racial theories and eugenics. They cite the Holocaust and the rampages of Stalinism as examples. According to Wikipedia, “In dealing with Christendom’s own violent history, AIG asserts that anyone using the Bible to justify atrocities (such as the Crusades, the colonization of the New World, pogroms, the burning of ‘witches,’ the Wars of Religion etc.) are ‘completely contrary to the teachings of Christ.’ “

Critics, though, see creationist undertakings like the Answers in Genesis Creation Museum as destructive; they worry that young children may be influenced by such ideas at the expense of scientific literacy.

Several hundred people are expected to join a “Rally for Reason”

outside the gates of the AIG museum on Memorial Day, May 28 during the facility’s grand opening. “Many educated people realize that creationism is a myth,” said Edwin Kagin, Kentucky State Director for American Atheists and an organizer of the Rally for Reason in an interview with Associated Press. “Myths aren’t necessarily untrue, but they aren’t literal, either.”

For further information:

http://www.atheists.org/flash.line/evol20.htm

“Federal judge bars ‘Intelligent Design’ from classrooms (12/20/05)

http://www.atheists.org/evolution/

(Numerous articles on creationism, evolution)

http://www.atheists.org/flash.line/evol4.htm

(Nearly half of Americans accept creationist accounts over scientific

evolution.)

**

“RALLY FOR REASON” COALITION PLANS MASSIVE PROTEST DEMO

AT MAY 28th OPENING OF CREATIONIST MUSEUM

When “Answers in Genesis” opens its $27 million Creation Museum to the public this Memorial Day (Monday, May 28, 2007), hundreds — maybe even thousands — of demonstrators are expected to gather outside to challenge the message AIG is sending to the public.

“The Creation Museum is a charming fantasy,” Edwin Kagin told the Cincinnati Inquirer newspaper. “They are helping to dumb down society and we have to make a response.”

Kagin is National Legal Director for American Atheists, and has watched over the years with alarm as religious fundamentalist have tried to smuggle their doctrines into the public schools under the guise of challenging evolution. He has also monitored the construction of the state-of-the-art museum being built by the creationist group “Answers in Genesis” not too far from his residence in Union, Kentucky. Both critics and supporters say that the 60,000-square-foot museum is an impressive undertaking, complete with lavish exhibits (some reportedly depict dinosaurs and human beings living together in a Garden of Eden-style setting), cafeteria, gift shop, planetarium and much more.

Even some mainstream religious groups are upset at the progress being made by evangelical and fundamentalist brethren who, they insist, wrongly interpret the Bible as a literal text revealed word-for-word by Jehovah. The Rev. Mendle Adams, pastor of St. Peter’s United Church of Christ in Cincinnati, plans to be one of the protesters outside the museum gates and is urging fellow clergy to join in.

“The views (of AIG) are homophobic and anti-science,” Adams told reporters. “It’s what I consider to be dishonest to people regarding science. It’s anti-reason and plain goofiness.”

Adams says that those who use scriptural texts like the bible to dispute scientific evidence embarrass other Christians.

“They (creationists) make us a laughingstock,” he groused.

Kagin has organized the “Rally for Reason” which he describes as an ad hoc coalition of secular and religious groups who oppose creationism, and don’t want to see the Bible or other religious texts used in public schools — particularly science classes — for fear of promoting a sectarian agenda.

Atheists, Freethinkers, Secular Humanists and other nonbelievers will be on the picket line alongside progressive religious groups, all speaking out against the Answers in Genesis museum. Kagin emphasized that “Rally for Reason” was not disputing the right of AIG or other creationist groups to speak out and spread their message.

Here’s the official announcement, plus updates on lodging and other protest details, from Rally for Reason:

ANNOUNCEMENT of RALLY for REASON

Did you miss Woodstock? Did you miss Stonewall? Did you miss Selma?

Did you miss People’s Park? Did you miss the 60s?

Don’t miss this! Y’all come, y’hear!

WHO: People who accept evolution over superstition and myth.

WHAT: Rally for Reason.

WHEN: 9:00 am (EDT) Monday, May 28, 2007 (Memorial Day)

WHERE: Outside the gates of “Answers in Genesis,” Bullittsburg Church Road, Exit 11 (Petersburg Road), off of 275 in Kentucky, Boone County, Kentucky

Please note: The “Creation Museum” of Answers in Genesis is in a rural area. There are motels and restaurants within a few miles from the site, however. You can also go inside the Creation Museum for facilities. We recommend that you buy a ticket and see it.

People from all over the country are invited to join outside of the gates of “Answers in Genesis” (AIG) in Northern Kentucky. We want to let the world know that most rational people do not share the primitive world view of Creationists that the Earth is only a few thousand years old, and that humans and dinosaurs existed at the same time. This is the story that will be actually presented as true by the 27 million dollar plus “Creation Museum” opening Memorial Day, May 28, 2007. Various groups, representing both religious and secular orientations, will join together to protest this destructive world view.

The organizers stress that they do not challenge the right of AIG to present their worldview. “They can teach that things fall up if they wish,” said Edwin Kagin of Union, Kentucky. “We are simply trying to show that the nonsense they are vending is not accepted by those who do not share their fundamentalist religious views, and their effort to sneak those teachings into the public schools.”

AIG believes that the book of Genesis in the Bible is literally correct. See: www.AnswersInGenesis.org .

For contrast see:http://www.talkorigins.org ; http://home.austarnet.com.au/stear/default.htm

More details will be provided as they become available. So pay attention, make some signs, bring your musical instrument, water bottle, and trail mix, and plan to come to Kentucky y’all.

See: http://rallyforreason.com

For more information contact: [email protected]

If you plan to attend, please try to let us know about how many will be joining us.

**

Notes on the Announcement of Rally for Reason

By Edwin Kagin

Several well meaning people, for whom I have great respect, have expressed their opinion that it is a mistake to give any attention or press to something as unacceptable to rational persons as the idea of “Creationism” and the “Creation Museum” dedicated to forwarding this mythology.

Ordinarily, I would agree with this analysis. We need not protest those who hold to a Flat Earth “theory,” etc. However, the situation in Northern Kentucky is different. “Answers in Genesis” has managed to get world wide press for their fantasy presentations. The “Creation Museum” is being endorsed by official convention and tourist outlets for the Commonwealth of Kentucky. The Governor of Kentucky has expressed support for teaching Bible stories in public schools, and Boone County, Kentucky is giving breaks on laws and taxation, denied others, to the vendors of religious dogma. The temporary President of the United States has even opined that the jury is still out on evolution.

Foolish ideas can come dressed up, just as there can be dressed up fools. And the presentations of the “Answers in Genesis”

(www.AnswersInGenesis.org) outfit are well dressed indeed – yes, this is a compliment to their marketing. But such well dressed ideas can deceive many to their great cost. Just ask some Germans and Italians whether they would rather their country had not been treated to, much less accepted, the dressed up ideas of Hitler and Il Duce.

If, given all of the publicity that ha
s been generated, nothing supporting science and evidence is offered, the impression will be given to the public, the press, and lawmakers that no one objects, and that if fancy, growling, expensive, mechanized displays of dinosaurs and humans living at the same time, and sharing “Noah’s Ark,” are presented as true, with no word to the contrary, then it must be so.

Discussing these matters learnedly in secular groups that are attended by few, and snickering at those who think it is only fair to teach creationism in public schools, does not get the message to well meaning, but misinformed, people who will visit the “Creation Museum”

to view displays and dioramas slickly designed to “prove” the Earth is only some 6,000 years old. And thus will our society become a bit more “dumbed down,” and will in consequence be internally weakened.

The attitude that it is best not to give nonsense credit by opposing it can be quite dangerous. School boards and legislators might well conclude, without further information, that if scientists, teachers, and the public are not opposed to the well publicized idea of teaching Bronze Age myths as fact, then such misinformation is permissible.

As unpleasant as such may appear, the appropriate way to respond is to be there, and to go through the “Creation Museum.” Get over the idea that you are helping to fund them by buying a ticket. This is the only way to obtain the knowledge needed to help save the scientific method and civilization from returning to another Dark Age. You should see it, if for no other reason than to know what you are talking about.

We can politely, and with dignity, carry signs, perhaps humorous ones, and pass out serious literature, and listen to entertaining talks, all designed to inform, to present fact over fantasy, truth over dogma, light over darkness. We can help those, who do not know, understand that evolution is a “theory” in the same manner that gravity is a “theory.” People do understand that things do not fall up when dropped.

And you can meet some nice people.

While the site is quite rural, with no facilities, do not despair.

There are motels, restaurants, gas stations, etc. within a very few miles from the site. And it you need to go inside, this might be a good time to inspect the Creation Museum.

Here is our website with more information: http://rallyforreason.com

And, if you think being outdoors in response to a threat to the foundations of knowledge is too much trouble, do not worry. Those who would establish a theocracy over us have promised to attack only when it is convenient for you, when it is not raining, when you can be warm, dry, safe, well fed, and have had plenty of time to engage in Liberal Angst over just what to do. Meanwhile, others will fight the American Religious Civil War and protect your freedoms for you.

Edwin Kagin

Organizer

Rally for Reason

* In Re: getting to the “Creation Museum” of Answers in Genesis and Housing.

It is recommended that you arrive on Sunday, May 27th. This is so you can maybe go to the “Rally for Reason Speak-Out,” being generously sponsored by the Free Inquiry Group of Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky (FJIG) the evening before the event.

You can perhaps stay on the ground outside of Answers in Genesis in a sleeping bag if you wish. Maybe even in a tent. But you must bring everything you need.

* To get here, you must first figure out how to get to Kentucky, or, if already in Kentucky, how to get to Exit 11 off of I-275, which can be gotten to from I-71/I-75 or from 1-74.

* The Cincinnati Airport (yes, the Cincinnati Airport is in Kentucky-don’t worry about it. The Cincinnati IRS is in Kentucky too, and Kentucky owns the Ohio River. It is a long story) is quite close to Answers in Genesis.

* These are the official AiG directions to the Creation Museum and AiG-USA headquarters, borrowed with our thanks from their website:

http://www.answersingenesis.org/feedback/directions_aigus.aspx

From south

. Take I-75/71 north.

. Go west on I-275 for about 11 miles.

. Take the Petersburg exit (exit 11), bear right.

. Go south (under I-275 overpass)-this is route 8.

. Take the first left (Bullittsburg Church Rd.) and go about

1/3

mile.

From north

. Take I-75/71 south to the lower part of the

I-275 loop.

. Go west on I-275 for about 11 miles.

. Take the Petersburg exit (exit 11), bear right.

. Go south (under I-275 overpass)-this is route 8.

. Take the first left (Bullittsburg Church Rd.) and go about

1/3

mile.

From west (Indianapolis)

. Take I-74 east.

. Go south on I-275 for about 10 miles.

. Take the Petersburg exit (exit 11), bear right.

. Go south-this is route 8.

. Take the first left (Bullittsburg Church Rd.) and go about

1/3

mile.

Once at the site, you should be able to park off of the road on Bullittsburg Church Rd.

Now, if you wish to get here on Sunday, May 27th and have some sleep and food (all three are recommended) before the beginning of this event at 9:00am.on Memorial Day, Monday, May 28th, 2007, here are some motels and their contact information:

Airport Inn

648 Donaldson Rd./Rt. 236

Erlanger, KY 41018

Phone: 859.342.6200

Fax: 859.342.6077

Comfort Inn Erlanger

630 Donaldson Road

Erlanger, KY 41018

Phone: 859.727.3400

Fax: 859.727.1378

Email: [email protected]

www.choicehotels.com

Days Inn Cincinnati Airport

599 Donaldson Road

PO Box 18549

Erlanger, KY 41018

Toll Free: 877.237.1834

Phone: 859.342.7111

Fax: 859.342.6098

[email protected]

Econo Lodge

633 Donaldson Road

Erlanger, KY 41018

Fax / Phone: 859.342.5500

www.choicehotels.com/hotel/ky077

All of these are within sight and easy walking distance of each other and they are all reasonably close to I-71 and I-75 (which run together at the point they intersect with I-275) and to the airport. Some of them have shuttles to and from the airport. A wide variety of restaurants of every type are just down the road, as is the famous Turfway Race Track, and lots of other stuff. You are of course welcome to come a few days earlier and to stay a few days thereafter.

There is quite a bit to do and see in Kentucky and in that city just north of our Ohio River, Cincinnati, Ohio.

Here is some wonderful news about a place to stay. Jen Warner owns a beautiful bed and breakfast, complete with acreage and horseback riding, named “First Farm Inn.” It is two miles from Answers in Genesis. When I was less aged, I could have walked that easily and so can some of you. Biking would be even easier. Jen has a limited number of bed and breakfast rooms available for May 27th and thereabouts. And, she has graciously agreed to let people coming for the Rally for Reason do primitive tent camping on her property for a much reduced fee. The term “primitive camping,” as used herein, means you may sleep on the ground in a sleeping bag or cot and you may put up a tent. However, you may not have a fire. There will not be bathroom facilities.

For more information, call Jen. Tell her Edwin sent you. Here is the contact information:

http://www.firstfarminn.com

First Farm Inn

2510 Stevens Road

Petersburg, KY 41080

Jen ([email protected])

859 586 0199

Because the event is on Memorial Day, if you are planning to attend it is recommended that you make reservations NOW. If you can get a number of folks to agree to group together, you may be able to (probably can) get a group rate. Ask the motel.

There is a suggested list of what to bring and what not to bring on our website:

www.rallyforreason.com

PLEASE NOTE: You have to get to the site and get back to wherever you are going next on your own. There are no buses, cars, bikes, rickshaws, mules, or any such whatsoever provided by the organizers to transport you. It is strongly suggested that you make arrangements with someone with a car for a ride. Failing this, you could take a cab.

This rally is an exercise in self reliance and in independence and mastery. It should be great training for surviving the American Religious Civil War.

Edwin Kagin, “Rally for Reason”

**

FIG TO HOST “RALLY for REASON SPEAK-OUT” SUNDAY, MAY 27

WHO: The Free Inquiry Group of Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky (FIG)

WHAT: “Rally for Reason Speak-Out”

WHEN: Sunday, May 27th, 2007, at 7:00 pm. (EDT)

WHERE: Hilton Cincinnati Airport, 7373 Turfway Road, Florence, Kentucky. Phone (859) 371-4400.

The hotel is easy to get to. It is just off of the Turfway Exit on

I-71 / I-75 in Northern Kentucky.

The Hilton is also holding us some rooms at a group rate. Tell them you are coming for the Rally for Reason.

This meeting will be the evening before the Rally for Reason, set for outside of the gates of Answers in Genesis, on Monday, Memorial Day, May 28th, 2007.

Come and meet others, and hear such speakers as Arlene-Marie, President of Michigan Atheists; Rev. Mendle Adams, a Christian minister; Frank Zindler, author and scientist, Dr. Gene Kritsky, an evolutionary biologist; Helen Kagin, a retired physician and many others.

Yes, there will also be an open mike and an opportunity for those of you who have come for the Rally for Reason to speak out as well. The press has been invited. Some folks are making a documentary of this event.

Details for the Rally for Reason will be discussed.

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Feel free to distribute, AANEWS update on Memorial Day RALLY FOR REASON

Atheists and Believers Join to Oppose Nonsense

ANNOUNCEMENT of RALLY for REASON

WHO: People who accept evolution over superstition and myth.

WHAT: Rally for Reason.

WHEN: 9:00 am (EDT) Monday, May 28, 2007 (Memorial Day)

WHERE: Outside the gates of “Answers in Genesis,” Bullittsburg Church Road, Exit 11, off of 275 from 1-71/I-75, Petersburg Road, Boone County, Kentucky

Please note: This is a very rural area. No motels, no department stores, no nothing. No facilities, no food or drink, no shelter, open air only, no protection, chances of survival doubtful. (Okay, we will provide port-o-potties, and there are restaurants and such only a short distance away).

People from all over the country are invited to join outside of the gates of “Answers in Genesis” (AiG) in Northern Kentucky to let the world know that many rational Americans do not share the primitive world view that the Earth is only a few thousand years old, and that humans and dinosaurs existed at the same time, as presented by the 27 million dollar plus “Creation Museum,” opening Memorial Day, May 28, 2007.Various groups, representing both religious and secular orientations, will join together to protest this destructive world view.

The organizers stress that they do not challenge the right of AiG to present their worldview. “They can teach that things fall up if they wish,” said Edwin Kagin of Union, Kentucky. “We are simply trying to show that the nonsense they are vending is not accepted by those who do not share their fundamentalist religious views, and their effort to sneak those teachings into the public schools.”

AiG believes that the book of Genesis in the Bible is literally correct. See: www.AnswersInGenesis.org . For contrast see:http://www.talkorigins.org ; http://home.austarnet.com.au/stear/default.htm

More details will be provided as they become available. So pay attention, make some signs, bring your musical instrument, water bottle, and trail mix, and plan to come to Kentucky y’all.

See: http://rallyforreason.arkonuts.com

For more information contact: [email protected]

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ANNOUNCEMENT OF “RALLY for REASON SPEAK-OUT”

WHO: The Free Inquiry Group of Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky (FIG) will sponsor\

WHAT: “Rally for Reason Speak-Out”

WHEN: Sunday, May 27th, 2007, at 7:00 pm. (EDT)

WHERE: Hilton Cincinnati Airport, 7373 Turfway Road, Florence, Kentucky. Phone (859) 371-4400.

The hotel is easy to get to. It is just off of the Turfway Exit on I-71 / I-75 in Northern Kentucky.

The Hilton is also holding us some rooms at a group rate. Tell them you are coming for the Rally for Reason.

This meeting will be the evening before the Rally for Reason, set for outside of the gates of Answers in Genesis, on Monday, Memorial Day, May 28th, 2007.

Come and meet others, and hear such speakers as Arlene-Marie, President of Michigan Atheists; Rev. Mendle Adams, a Christian minister; Frank Zindler, author and scientist, Dr. Gene Kritsky, an evolutionary biologist; Helen Kagin, a retired physician and many others.

Yes, there will also be an open mike and an opportunity for those of you who have come for the Rally for Reason to speak out as well. The press has been invited. Some folks are making a documentary of this event.

Details for the Rally for Reason will be discussed.

Did you miss Woodstock? Did you miss Stonewall? Did you miss Selma? Did you miss People’s Park? Did you miss the 60s?

Don’t miss this! Y’all come, y’hear!

Edwin.