Dover, PA — A federal judge in Pennsylvania began hearing arguments last Monday in a lawsuit that legal experts say could allow employers to finally rid themselves of problem employees without fear of being sued for religious-based discrimination. At issue is whether intelligent design theory is a religious belief protected by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 or whether it is a scientific theory entitled to no protection under current workplace anti-discrimination statutes.
Proponents of intelligent design believe that the structure of life on Earth is too complex to have evolved through natural selection, challenging a core principle of the biological theory launched by Charles Darwin’s “The Origin of Species” in 1859. According to the National Private Employer’s Council, a Washington D.C. based research group, proponents of intelligent design are among the worst employees in the country. An NPEC press release stated that “[o]n average these employees use twice as much sick leave as other employees, are involved in three times as many workplace accidents, usually involving staplers, and demonstrate relatively poor personal hygiene.” Until now, employers have been hesitant to dismiss these employees for fear of being sued under Title VII. One CEO, speaking anonymously stated “if the court rules that intelligent design is a scientific theory and not a religious belief, we’ll have the pink slips ready to go out within 24 hours.”
The aspect of the case most puzzling to legal scholars is that the attorneys representing the intelligent design movement are arguing against Title VII protection for employees espousing intelligent design. Professor Gary Stimson of Cornell Law School stated that the intelligent design side “appears to be undercutting its own case when they could easily admit to being creationists and thereby receive the full protection of Title VII.”
Attorneys for the intelligent design movement refused to comment on this story. However, one attorney speaking anonymously admitted “we were so focused on getting this stuff into public schools that we didn’t even consider the workplace discrimination issues, obviously we f-cked up.”