Eighth graders and the Grand Canyon controversy

27 March 2004

The eighth-grade class at Burlington Christian Academy of Burlington, North Carolina, USA used the controversial book, Grand Canyon: A Different View, in a recent worldview class. As we have reported (see Deluged with pro-Flood email!), prominent evolutionists have tried to have the text banned from bookstores at the Grand Canyon because it proposes an alternative view of the Canyon’s formation that does not fit with the institutionalized  evolutionary viewpoint that is entrenched in almost all US National Parks, science museums, and public schools.

Grand Canyon: A Different View

Grand Canyon: A Different View

This striking book presents an alternative scientific and philosophical viewpoint that runs contrary to evolutionary dogma that the Canyon was formed over millions of years.


After three weeks of studying whether or not the Canyon was carved slowly over millions of years or by the quick erosion of a massive flood, each student wrote to the book’s compiler, Tom Vail.

Many of their comments were quite insightful, especially for 14–15 year olds. Here are excerpts (permission was granted to post them here) of the reports of a few of the students who shared their views about the attempted censorship effort.

‘The problem [regarding the banning of the book] is just one of many issues within the confines of a larger scheme: the nullifying of the true meaning of freedom of speech and freedom of religion.  

‘There is now an even larger problem being raised: whether the government will simply support the SELLING of this book and others like it.’ – R. Michael Zalimeni

‘This cuts into freedom of speech. I feel that Christians, as well as everyone else, should be able to purchase books—this is freedom of religion.’ – Ryan Poser

‘People have been brainwashed over the years into thinking that it [evolution] is the only real science and everything else is just religion.  Evolution is a religion, which requires a huge amount of faith. Evolution is a twisted theory created by man in order to avoid having to answer to a superior God.

‘Christianity can’t be proven, but there is much scientific proof supporting it. In the end, it all comes down to faith. You can believe whatever you choose, but there is only one truth.’ – Zach Harrison

‘I believe that removing it [the book] completely from the store violates our freedom of religion and speech. If you are not allowed to express your opinion and belief, then what is to stop the government from doing this to all American citizens? If one person is denied their rights, more people can be denied them as well.’ – David Fraser

‘I believe that the people that are trying to stop you from selling your book are just afraid to accept scientific evidence that clearly points to Christianity.  They are being intolerant of your beliefs. This contradicts their belief that everyone must be tolerant of all religions.

‘Your book has impacted me and made me look at creation in a completely different way! I think that we could use a few more Christians expressing their beliefs to impact this lost and dying world. I would like you to know that I am praying for you and that your book will affect many other lives as it has mine! God Bless!’ – Kelley Rickman, Romans 8:38–39

‘It is so hard to believe evolution is becoming the “popular thing” to believe. The government has given us freedom of speech and of religion but, every time a Christian speaks out, they are pushed out of the way.’ – Aaron Cardwell

 ‘My class has been talking about what you have been going through as far as people trying to stop you from selling your creationist book in the Grand Canyon bookstore. I think the people trying to stop you are just scared of the truth. They are afraid that creation may be true, because if it is, then they just may be accountable to a Creator. I think what you are doing is a real ministry. I was encouraged by your testimony and I am praying for you!’ – Kara Brown

‘Thank you for paving the way for all who should stand up and talk about how we have the freedom of speech! Clearly the debate on this book shows that the government is just looking for an excuse not to support Christianity and by doing so they make it look as though they are supporting evolution—which I consider to be basically a religion.’ – Lauren Helton

 ‘From what I have read in your book and in articles about the debate, Grand Canyon officials are afraid they will be supporting Christianity if they sell your book in the Gift Shop. However, isn't the real issue what they will be supporting if they don't sell your book there? Technically, they would be supporting evolution (which is also considered a religion) if they don't sell your book in the shop.’ – Ashton Chatham

Isn’t it encouraging to know that amidst the heavy evolutionary indoctrination occurring in America’s schools, there are Christian schools who are learning that the Bible—from its very first verse—can be trusted?

[Editor’s note:  In a previous web article, our ministry relied on two sources in reporting that Grand Canyon: A Different View had been moved from the natural science section of Canyon bookstores to the inspirational shelves: 1. an article in the Los Angeles Times (7 January 2004) that reported this alleged switch, and 2. an eyewitness account from someone who shared with us that when he visited one of the Canyon bookstores, the book was not among the evolutionary science texts, this after an evolutionary scientist had observed in a letter to the US Park Service that Grand Canyon: A Different View was found in the same section as evolutionary books.  It now appears, however, that the book was never among the evolutionary texts to begin with (the National Park Service is adamant about this, and provided reliable evidence to this end), and so we regret repeating this erroneous claim. Almost three months after the controversy began, the US Park Service still has not made its final decision on whether the book will remain in Canyon bookstores.]

Published: 8 February 2006