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Atheist Group: Students' Creation Museum Visit Violates Constitution

Atheist Group: Students' Creation Museum Visit Violates Constitution

An atheist organization has warned public schools that taking their students on a trip to Ken Ham’s Creation Museum would be a violation of the Constitution.

Christian Today reports that atheist organization Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) emailed letters to three public high schools, telling them that their planned trips to the Creation Museum violated the Constitution’s Establishment Clause.

"Public schools may not advance or promote religion. Bringing students on a field trip to a religious venue is a blatant promotion of religion," said FFRF Legal Fellow Madeline Ziegler in her letter to Nicholas Subashi, legal counsel for the Brookville Local Schools. 

The FFRF instead suggested that the public schools take their students on field trips to seculuar institutions instead.

"It is unconstitutional for a public school to take students on a field trip to a religious venue such as the Creation Museum, a Christian museum which promotes the religious doctrine of creationism and lists its mission as 'to point today's culture back to the authority of Scripture and proclaim the gospel message,'" the letters read, according to the Christian News Network.

However, Ken Ham, the Creation Museum’s founder, says that having public school students visit the museum on a field trip does not violate the Constitution as long as teachers present Creationism as one possible viewpoint.

"If public schools were bringing students here and their teachers were saying, 'THIS interpretation is the only truth that you should personally accept,' then that would be a violation of the Establishment Clause of the Constitution," he said. "Public school officials should neither personally endorse nor diminish the museum's view, but rather present our beliefs objectively.”

Ham also said that groups like the FFRF like to bully public schools because they don’t want students learning about alternate interpretations besides Evolution.

Photo courtesy: Wikipedia

Publication date: May 5, 2016