The Second Inquisition Starts Tomorrow

Bush Theocrats Censor Grand Canyon Geology, Insist It Was Formed by Noah’s Flood
Posted by Jon Ponder | Jan. 3, 2007, 9:03 am

From Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER):

Grand Canyon National Park is not permitted to give an official estimate of the geologic age of its principal feature, due to pressure from Bush administration appointees. Despite promising a prompt review of its approval for a book claiming the Grand Canyon was created by Noah’s flood rather than by geologic forces, more than three years later no review has ever been done and the book remains on sale at the park, according to documents released today by [PEER].

PEER says the new director of the National Park Service (NPS), Mary Bomar, has been stalling requests to remove a book that presents the Creationist version of the formation of the Grand Canyon titled, “Grand Canyon: A Different View,” by Tom Vail. The group also says that the park’s interpretive rangers are forbidden from providing the age of the canyon based on its geology.

In August 2003, Park Superintendent Joe Alston attempted to block the sale at park bookstores of [Vail’s book]. NPS Headquarters, however, intervened and overruled Alston. To quiet the resulting furor, NPS Chief of Communications David Barna told reporters and members of Congress that there would be a high-level policy review of the issue.

According to a recent NPS response to a Freedom of Information Act request filed by PEER, no such review was ever requested, let alone conducted or completed.

Bush appointees in the NPS defend selling the book by saying that bookstores are like libraries and should present a variety of different views. PEER says that “both law and park policies make it clear that the park bookstores are more like schoolrooms rather than libraries. As such, materials are only to reflect the highest quality science and are supposed to closely support approved interpretive themes.” PEER has obtained records showing that during 2003, park officials rejected 22 books and other products for the park’s bookstore and approved only one new sale item — the book presenting the creationist version of the canyon’s origins.

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