The Discovery Institute, a group in Seattle that supports an alternative theory, "intelligent design," is announcing on its Web site that it and the director of the museum "are happy to announce the national premiere and private evening reception" on June 23 for the movie, "The Privileged Planet: The Search for Purpose in the Universe."
News of the Discovery Institute's announcement appeared on a blog maintained by Denyse O'Leary, a proponent of the intelligent design theory, who called it "a stunning development." But a museum spokesman, Randall Kremer, said the event should not be taken as support for the views expressed in the film. "It is incorrect for anyone to infer that we are somehow endorsing the video or the content of the video," he said.
The museum, he said, offers its Baird Auditorium to many organizations and corporations in return for contributions - in the case of the Discovery Institute, $16,000.
When the language of the Discovery Institute's Web site was read to him, with its suggestion of support, Mr. Kremer said, "We'll have to look into that."
He added, "We're happy to receive this contribution from the Discovery Institute to further our scientific research."
Words fail me. Sold out for $16,000? Contact the Smithsonian and let them know what you think: firstname.lastname@example.org
Interestingly, I couldn't find it on their website.