It’s the end of another day of trial involving the suit filed by David Coppedge, the creationist who claims he was wrongfully demoted (and later fired) by his employer because he was promoting Intelligent Design (ID) on the job. As you recall, he used to work as a computer technician for Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), which is part of Caltech. He also maintains a creationist website: Creation-Evolution Headlines — which was recently moved here.
When the action ended yesterday, it was pretty much the end of JPL’s cross-examination of Coppedge. Becker (Coppedge’s lawyer) was going to put his client back on the stand for re-direct — in an attempt to clear up any blunders that may have been committed during cross. We suspected that might encourage another post from the neo-theocrats at the Discovery Institute‘s creationist public relations and lobbying operation, the Center for Science and Culture (a/k/a the Discoveroids, a/k/a the cdesign proponentsists).
And we were right. They’ve just posted Employment Reviews Support David Coppedge’s Claim that NASA Punished Him for Supporting Intelligent Design, by David Klinghoffer. We can’t find any other news, so that’s what we’ll go with.
Unfortunately, Klinghoffer doesn’t report a single thing that occurred at the trial — not one. Instead, presumably to avoid discussing embarrassing facts that are leaking out, he gives us his own one-sided review of some of the exhibits. In other words, his post isn’t worth very much, but it’s all we’ve got at the moment. To the extent that Klinghoffer’s post tells us anything, it’s that there was nothing in court today that the Discoveroids want to talk about. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us:
Reading over David Coppedge’s Employee Contribution Assessment and Planning (ECAP) reports, from his tenure as a 14-year veteran computer specialist for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab, is exactly like reading a kid’s report cards. Having now reviewed his ECAPs, I can tell you that Coppedge received fine marks right up until the moment that supervisors turned their attention to his support for intelligent design.
Somehow, we’re not quite ready to take Klinghoffer’s word for it. He continues.
In a brutal take-no-prisoners style, JPL’s team has done everything it can to impeach Coppedge’s account of himself, even accusing him of an ethics violation for selling the occasional pro-ID DVD to interested co-workers and neglecting to report it as doing other business while on the job. Next thing you know they’ll make it an issue that he took home a ballpoint pen to work the Sunday crossword puzzle.
A “brutal take-no-prisoners style”? Really? We doubt that it’s as brutal as the way the Discoveroids treat the reputation of Charles Darwin. Oh, you noticed, of course, that Klinghoffer failed to mention what one news account told us came out at trial yesterday — Coppedge not only didn’t inform JPL of his DVD sales, he also failed to report his DVD revenue to the IRS.
Then Klinghoffer spends a few paragraphs reviewing those employee reports. We won’t bother with his description because we assume he’s cherry-picking the items he writes about. Let’s read on:
Suddenly, we find another supervisor, Greg Chin, weighing in. Chin admits Coppedge’s technical competence, his “accuracy, thoroughness and orderliness,” but out of nowhere lays into his “interpersonal and communications skills.” The very skills that previously had met or exceeded expectations were now the subject of scathing and ominous criticism.
Why is that difficult to accept? Maybe Coppedge had recently lost control of himself, or maybe Chin was the first objective supervisor to take a look at what was going on. Rather than accepting Klinghoffer’s interpretation of things, we’ll wait to see how the facts come out in court. His article continues:
The date of the document, April 1, 2009, when it was signed by Burgess and Coppedge, is important because it’s barely a month after the March 2 confrontation when Chin shouted at Coppedge to “stop pushing your religion,” intelligent design. That was after a colleague complained about a pro-ID DVD that Coppedge lent her. Stirred up by Greg Chin, a Human Resources investigation had already begun assembling further criticisms that somehow never made it into all those previous years of quite satisfactory ECAPs.
All we can determine from this is that Klinghoffer and Coppedge have the same interpretation of events. The judge will decide, after hearing both sides, whether to accord any credibility to Coppedge’s version. As for Klinghoffer’s version, that has no significance whatsoever. For what it’s worth, here’s Klinghoffer’s conclusion, which comes as no surprise:
At JPL, as at other academic institutions and not least those associated with the federal government, ID is a red flag. You can’t bring it up for discussion, except to condemn it, without the expectation of being gored or trampled to death. That’s how the “scientific consensus” in favor of Darwinian evolution and materialist orthodoxy actually works.
So there you are. Another day of trial has ended, and we don’t know any more than we did when it began. But we can guess that things didn’t go well for Coppedge.
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