We know you remember the Creation Scientist’s Grand Canyon Lawsuit that we wrote about a couple of months ago. Andrew Snelling was the plaintiff. He’s a creationist geologist employed by Answers in Genesis (AIG), the creationist ministry of Ken Ham (ol’ Hambo), the ayatollah of Appalachia.
Snelling wanted to collect rocks from the Grand Canyon, presumably for his creationist “research,” and his request was denied. So he sued the Park Service and others, claiming religious discrimination. Two weeks later we wrote AIG’s Grand Canyon Lawsuit May Fizzle Out, because the lawyers for both sides were talking about working out some kind of compromise.
Now we have the results, posted at ol’ Hambo’s website: Grand Canyon Scientist/Creationist Receives Permits. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis:
[G]eologist Dr. Andrew Snelling has finally received the research permits he had requested in 2013 from the Grand Canyon National Park to continue his field work inside the canyon. Dr. Snelling’s attorneys at Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) had uncovered evidence that the PhD geologist’s permits had been denied because of his religious and creationist beliefs. When evidence came to light that Dr. Snelling’s rights were being unconstitutionally denied, the Grand Canyon National Park and the Department of Interior changed course and issued the permits.
This is, of course, a one-sided account, but it’s all we’ve got so let’s stay with it. AIG says:
A letter to ADF attorneys from the park’s superintendent admitted the validity of Dr. Snelling’s proposed research: “The GRCA Research Permits program notes that Dr. Snelling’s proposal is well-stated with methods that are similar or equal to standard scientific practice to test the hypothesis provided.”
As a result, ADF voluntarily dismissed Snelling v. United States Department of Interior in federal court today. The park, via its attorneys, has issued both a research permit and a raft-launch research permit for on-site work in the canyon. Dr. Snelling’s next research project will occur later this summer.
After that, AIG quotes ol’ Hambo, who is overflowing with triumphant righteousness:
Ken Ham, president and CEO of Answers in Genesis, which employs Dr. Snelling, remarked that “my colleague was only asking for equal access to the canyon.” He added, “I trust that government officials and secular activists will think twice now before attempting to infringe on the religious liberty of Christians who are creationists and qualified scientists.”
Skipping several paragraphs of self-congratulatory blather, we’re told:
Dr. Snelling’s proposed research will examine the idea that is heavily promoted inside the Park: namely, that the canyon’s strata were formed over millions of years. With his newly issued permits, Dr. Snelling will be gathering samples at folds inside the canyon where all the layers were bent, but Dr. Snelling suspects that the layers were not shattered because the rocks were still soft as they folded. In the evolution scenario, these rocks must have supposedly remained soft for 450 million years. Dr. Snelling noted, “We expect debate about what the evidence means. In my lawsuit, I had merely been asking for fairness.”
The geological record has many examples of folded layers. Wikipedia has an article on such Folds. They’re found in several geological eras, but because creationists believe the world is only 6,000 years old, they claim that the folds are simultaneous, caused by a global flood. That’s what we expect from Snelling’s “research.”
We couldn’t find any independent news stories about this matter. It’s possible that the Park Service won’t issue a statement, so this may be all we’ll ever know. Snelling can go and collect his samples. Then he’ll claim that Noah’s flood is the cause of the Grand Canyon — and the government tried to block his research in order to suppress The Truth™. No one but other creationists will pay any attention.
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