Creation Museum Denied Membership By San Diego Museum Council
Wednesday, November 13, 2013
Santee is home to one of the few creationist museums in the country. Last week, the San Diego Museum Council voted not to allow The Museum of Creation and Earth membership into its group.
Aired 11/13/13 on KPBS News.
The San Diego Museum Council has voted to reject the membership application of the Museum of Creation and Earth, located in Santee.
The creation museum needed 21 "yes" votes to become a council member. They lost by only two votes.
The museum presents a biblical account of creation through its exhibits and education programs.
Danielle Susalla Deery is president of the San Diego Museum Council. She said the museum's membership was not rejected because of its mission but because of other factors.
"Like their animal care and the protocol and care of their exhibitions and storage. They had a lot of areas that were not in line with membership guidelines. They have a staff member on the board of directors and that’s not good governance," Deery said.
As part of the application process, members of the council's membership committee visited the Santee-based Creation Museum. They recommended that the council accept the museum's application and grant it membership. But when it came time to vote, the "yes" votes weren’t there.
Museum of Creation and Earth president Tom Cantor said he’s not happy with the result.
"I’m afraid we are being opposed for nothing more than the old prejudice against God," Cantor said.
He went on to make a comparison between the museum's fight for respect and a moment in history.
"It’s like we’re in Selma, Alabama in the 1950s and I want to have a museum on black Americans," he said. "Do you think I’ll be accepted by the council of museums in Selma, Alabama?"
Membership on the Museum Council comes with marketing support and exposure, as well as training. There are currently 39 members, including the museums in Balboa Park.
The Creation Museum was founded in 1992 and averages 30,000 visitors annually.
Cantor said despite his frustration, the museum will make the recommended improvements and reapply for membership next year.