Settlement Reached In Viewpoint Discrimination Suit

A documentary on intelligent design can be shown at the California Science Center, although the group that sued the center after a scheduled screening was canceled in 2009 immediately declined under terms of a settlement announced on August 29, 2011. The Associated Press reported that the California Science Center Foundation and its insurer have paid $110,000 to the American Freedom Alliance as part of a settlement reached last month in which neither side admitted wrongdoing.

The AFA rented the science center’s IMAX theater in 2009 to show the film “Darwin’s Dilemma: The Mystery of the Cambrian Fossil Record,” but the center canceled the contract after learning that the Discovery Center, a third party which supports intelligent design, was hyping the event in violation of the contract. The AFA filed suit in California Superior Court alleging viewpoint discrimination and breach of contract.

The AP reported that “Darwin’s Dilemma” examines Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution, raising questions about its validity in light of the Cambrian Explosion, which marked the sudden appearance of several major animal groups in fossils during a period 545 million years ago. The AFA had scheduled the private screening to coincide with the 2009 bicentennial of Charles Darwin’s birth.

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