Following criticism from atheists, a California science center has reportedly removed a disclaimer about evolution that it placed on a poster advertising one of its public shows.
CuriOdyssey, a science and wildlife center in San Mateo, Calif., used language to let parents know that the subject of evolution would be discussed in “Animal Connections,” a live animal demonstration. A line on the poster read, “This program may discuss the topic of evolution.”
After noticing the disclaimer, Adam Rogers, an editor and writer at Wired, tweeted a picture of the sign, writing, “Apparently evolution is something they warn you about now, like smoke effects in the theater.”
Apparently evolution is something they warn you about now, like smoke effects in the theater. pic.twitter.com/B5EwHtB0WG
— Adam Rogers (@jetjocko) April 5, 2014
Atheists who noticed the picture soon spoke out against CuriOdyssey’s warning, reportedly leading the science center to remove the line about evolution.
“It’s like a warning sign… But for whom? Did someone attend the program, hear the “E” word come up, and go, ‘Oh s***! I didn’t know this was that kind of museum!?,’” wrote Friendly Atheist blogger Hemant Mehta. “Since when does a science museum need to warn people that a science presentation will include science?”
And Jerry Coyne, an atheist biologist at the University of Chicago, sent the museum a letter, calling the evolutionary warning “unnecessary” and writing that there’s no need for scientific institutions to cater to faith-based opposition to evolution.
“Evolution happens to be true, and people need to learn about it,” Coyne wrote. “Making it seem ‘scary’ in this way only adds to the bad feelings people have about such a marvelous view of life, and deprives children of a proper grounding in biology.”
According to Mehta, a spokeswoman for CuriOdyssey told him that the evolution line will now be removed following public response.
Mehta said he was told that the science center put the disclaimer on the poster to accommodate religious visitors who were surprised that evolution was discussed during “Animal Connections.”
“But after hearing feedback from science advocates, they decided the disclaimer didn’t align with their mission and they will no longer be including it on any promotional materials,” Mehta wrote.
(H/T: Friendly Atheist)
Featured image via @jetjocko’s Twitter account