A professor passed over for a job because he questioned evolution sued for religious discrimination. The university has settled:
The University of Kentucky will pay $125,000 to an astronomy professor who sued the school for religious discrimination.
A motion filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Lexington said that both UK and C. Martin Gaskell, a research fellow at the University of Texas-Austin, now want the lawsuit thrown out. It had been scheduled to go to trial on Feb. 8.
The lawsuit had provided fodder for Internet news and blog sites discussing religious faith versus academic reasoning.
Gaskell claimed that he was passed over for a job as director of UK’s MacAdam Student Observatory three years ago because of his religion and statements that were perceived to be critical of evolution. He was being represented in the case by attorneys from the American Center for Law and Justice.
Gaskell was a top candidate for the job, according to court filings, but some UK professors called him “something close to a creationist” and “potentially evangelical” in department e-mail messages.
I suspect Prof. Gaskell maintains his beliefs are scientific rather than religious, but surely the University was discriminating against him on the grounds of religion. The very possibility that he was “potentially evangelical” was enough for the school to blackball him.