L.A. Natural History Museum removes ‘God’s Creatures’ plaque

Polluting the nature of science

 

The offensive plaque

The offensive plaque

The following comes from a Dec. 17 story on the Christian Post.

The Museum of Natural History in Los Angeles has removed a donor’s plaque referring to “God’s creatures” after receiving a complaint from an evolution professor and outspoken proponent of atheism.

The museum’s Nature Lab previously included a plaque with a quote attributed to an anonymous donor that read: “The Nature Lab is a gift to Los Angeles to celebrate all of God’s creatures and enable [Natural History Museum] to broaden our understanding of the natural world through the process of scientific discovery.” The Nature Lab allows visitors of all ages to participate in hands-on science projects and multimedia exhibits.

The plaque was reportedly removed Monday, according to Southern California’s KPCC┬ápublic radio station, after some viewers, including Jerry Coyne, took issue with the reference to “God’s creatures” in a museum that highlights the importance of evolution and scientific discovery. Coyne is a professor in the Department of Ecology and Evolution at the University of Chicago, and runs the blog “Why Evolution Is True.”

Earlier in December, Coyne posted about the plaque on his blog, saying a reader had sent him a photo of the quote on the wall of the Nature Lab shortly after visiting the museum. Coyne argues that the museum is public, and the quote’s wording and use of quotation marks is deceiving as to whether the museum or the anonymous donor is endorsing the reference to God. Additionally, Coyne argues that the museum probably allowed the donor to pick the quote because it needed the donation money, calling the plaque a “cowardly capitulation of religion.”

The professor then provides the email he sent to Dr. Jane Pisano, the president and director of the museum, in which he explains why he takes issue with the donor’s sign. “I recognize that Museums are strapped for funding, and do think that Nature Lab is a good thing. But I don’t think it’s worth kowtowing to religious sentiments, and polluting the nature of science, simply to get money.”

On Monday, Kristin Friedrich, director of communications at the museum, released a statement saying the museum has chosen to remove the quote after consulting with staff members. “Upon further reflection and after discussion with our staff, and in conversation with the donor, the Museum has determined that acknowledging donors by including personal statements in such a manner has the potential to cause confusion.”

To read the entire story, click here.

 

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Comments

  1. They never sleep, and never cease to be offended. Their name is Legion!

  2. The atheists and evolutionists have zero tolerance for Christians and anyone who doesn’t agree with them. First, we must remember that no one has been able to prove that evolution is a fact; it’s still only a theory, despite their claims. Second, no one can prove there isn’t a God. As Christians, we must demand the truth and our rights. We must protest all criticism and discrimination against Christians and our beliefs. If necessary, boycott all organizations that favor atheists and other ungodly groups.

    • The Earth is a little older than 6,000 years. In fact it is 4.5 billion years old. We have an abundance of proof just from our human ancestors cave paintings in France and Spain. They range from 20 to 40 thousand years ago. Did God create The Earth in 6 days and rested on the 7th day 6,000 years ago? No. Did man co-existed with Tyrannosaurus Rex, 67 million years ago. No.

  3. Michael McDermott says:

    As author Chesterton once observed – an Atheist is one who as a matter of Faith claims God Doesn’t exist, and that absolutely everything came from absolutely nothing.

    Darwin mislabeled his work as “The Origin of Species” – when he had no more conception of the Origination of Anything than the clown quoted in the tantrum theater capitulation drama, but instead Implies that based on some adaptive mutations (entirely at random – no Intelligence Allowed) – that a God he pretends not to believe in – shouldn’t be acknowledged (even in a non-sectarian generic manner) by Any of the Rest of Us.

    Faith in Nothing – is the demanded ‘ psuedo-scientific’ response – to Faith in the Father of All Things… Probably also a requirement for the ‘tenure track’ in the pathetic farce of Academenita.

  4. Janine Moto from Valparaiso says:

    This is disgusting…utter total balderdash…I love this museum, and it’s stock has now plummeted…one of the malacologists in residence at this museum was/is a flaming queen…nothing surprises me any more from this new cesspool of natural history..

  5. Anton L Seidl says:

    Shameful capitulation by the curators of the museum.

  6. Silly. Even if you’re an atheist, ‘God’s creatures’ in that context is a figurative expression synonymous with nature, Earth, the universe. The objective of secularism should never be to erase traces of culture. That’s not advantageous to anyone.

    There’s an Egyptian obelisk (Cleopatra’s Needle) in Central Park covered in hieroglyphics invoking Osiris and Ra. It’s a cultural artifact precisely for that reason.

    Museums these days are in the business of private fundraising, and offer in exchange some space for high-end graffiti. That’s a form of (probably protected) speech. This would be an interesting case to give to the ACLU.

  7. Father Karl says:

    And where is the outcry of the archbishop, and other members of the clergy? They are too busy worrying about the rights of illegal aliens, while the culture sinks deeper and deeper into the sewer and the bog of immorality!

  8. So this guy is a professor in the Department of Ecology and Evolution at the University of Chicago and doesn’t even live here – perhaps they should give the donor back his money? This is also the first time I’ve heard of such a department in a college or university (notice I did not call it higher learning). Perhaps we’ll just have to be content in knowing that there were far smarter people who were Catholic in the sciences than the current crop.

  9. LA is turning its back on God, and God is turning His back on LA! When will Nature strike back with the Big One?

  10. Tolerance is just a buzz word for liberals till they get control!

  11. John Patrick says:

    Science is based on experimentation, not doctrine. Apparently, what we have here is some person posing as a professor in a scientific area, giving his own opinion, not based on any experimental data.

  12. Well, I read the entire original article, and a string of discussion by a moderator on the original article, and that moderator made an excellent comment that is worth passing on to our community. For the most part, we believers in God have allowed ourselves to be pulled and pushed around for a while. What we are trying to do is to be examples of Christian Charity, at least that is what I think is happening, by “turning the other cheek”. The moderator in that string of comments decided to allow persons who disagreed with his own beliefs in God to vent their offence at God and their idea that Nature has nothing to do with God. We all know that to be a false idea. Nature has everything to do with God, as He is the Author of Nature, the Creator of all that has been created, no matter how limited our own understanding of His creations. But the moderator stood his ground, did not back down, and even wished his most strident critic a good day. We all can do the same, inspite of our initial emotional responses to the idea that God has nothing to do with Nature. We can say, “well, that IS your opinion, and you are welcome to it. If the idea of God makes you fearful, I will pray for you, so that you can feel some comfort in your obvious discomfort in the existence of God. Have a great day.” We can stand our ground. It takes nothing away from us if others are fearful, but we can have some charity for that fear-filled person, no matter how angry they get, and pray for them, and let them know that they are welcome to disagree, since it is our right, as given to us by God, to freely love Him or not. Great lessons come as a surprise sometimes, and often when I most need the lesson. God is so good!

  13. What is this prof. really afraid of? Will Los Angeles have to change the city’s name for him next?

  14. Steve Seitz says:

    Thid is about promoting athiesm rather than denigrating religion. The reason is that the god spoken of in philosophy is completely neutral and is stripped of all doctrinal descriptors. Therefore, the only religion that it offends is athiesm.

  15. John Feeney says:

    The Museum of Natural History in Los Angeles has obviously decided to become part of the Gigantic Left Wing Freak Show!

  16. Maryanne Leonard says:

    Okay, if they don’t want to kowtow to those of us who believe that all creatures are God’s creatures, and to those of us who do not believe that everything came from nothing, what about the concept of kowtowing to God rather than mammon?

  17. good cause says:

    Scratch the Museum of Natural History from our donation lists…..

  18. Edward Kristy says:

    TD I would like you to prove ” In fact it is 4.5 billion years old. We have an abundance of proof just from our human ancestors cave paintings in France and Spain. They range from 20 to 40 thousand years ago. Did God create The Earth in 6 days and rested on the 7th day 6,000 years ago? No. Did man co-existed with Tyrannosaurus Rex, 67 million years ago.” Please prove to me scientifically that the world is exactly 4.5 billion years old. Maybe it is just 4.5 billions years old less a few seconds. Or – probably a lot fewer years.

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