Deposition of Hilton Fay Hinderliter
Deposition of Hilton Fay Hinderliter - transcript paragraph formatted version. (Plaintiffs Witness)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE EASTERN DIVISION OF ARKANSAS
REV. BILL McLEAN, et al.,
- against -
THE STATE OF ARKANSAS, et al.,
Deposition of DR. HILTON FAY HINDERLITER, taken by Plaintiffs pursuant to Stipulation, at the offices of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, Esqs., 919 Third Avenue, New York, New York 10022, on the 25th day of November, 1981, commencing at 10:10 A.M., before Paul Goldwert, a Certified Shorthand Reporter and Notary Public of the State of New York.
SKADDEN, ARPS, SLATE, MEAGHER, & FLOM, Esqs.
Attorneys for Plaintiffs
919 Third Avenue
New York, New York 10022
BY: STEPHEN G. WOLFE, Esq.,
STEVE CLARK, Esq.
STATE OF ARKANSAS
Little Rock, Arkansas
IT IS HEREBY STIPULATED AND AGREED, by and between the attorneys for the respective parties herein that the sealing, filing and certification of the within deposition be waived; that such deposition may be signed and sworn to before any officer authorized to administer an oath, with the same force and effect as if signed and sworn to before the officer before whom said deposition was taken.
IT IS FURTHER STIPULATED AND AGREED that all objections, except as to form, are reserved to the time of trial.
IT IS FURTHER STIPULATED AND AGREED that counsel for the witnesses appearing herein shall be furnished with a copy of the within deposition without cost.
HILTON FAY HINDERLITER, Doctor, having first affirmed to tell the truth, the whole truth, nothing but the truth, was examined and testified as follows:
Q: Doctor, could you give me your name and address for the record?
A: Hilton Fay Hinderliter.
My address is ******* ***** **, Box ***, ******, Pennsylvania, *****.
MR. WOLFE: I will ask the Reporter to mark as Hinderliter Deposition Exhibit 1 a copy of Dr. Hinderliter's vita.
(Vita was marked Hinderliter's Exhibit Number 1 for Identification.)
Q: Doctor, I will show you now a copy of Exhibit 1 to a deposition, and ask you if you recognize it?
A: Yes, I recognize it.
Q: Doctor, did you provide the information on that vita?
Q: Is it accurate, so far as you know?
I compiled that in rather a hurry. I I haven't sought employment for a good many years, so I have not gone over that as a strict vita. But, as far as I know, all the information in there is accurate.
Q: Have you had any post-doctoral education or training since the time of your grant of the Ph.D.?
A: No formal training, as such.
Q: Could you tell me what the honorary physics and mathematics societies referred to are?
A: The honorary physics society is Sigma Pi Sigma.
And, the mathematics is Mu Epsilon.
And, I think, those are true. They are the standard undergraduate honor societies for math and physics.
Q: Doctor, have you had any teaching experience, other than that indicated by your position at the New Kensington campus of Penn State?
A: As a graduate student, I taught one term as a graduate assistant. I wasn't a teaching assistant for most of my graduate work. I had a NASA traineeship. Most of the
students there were on assistantships, but I just taught for my own experience in teaching, not because I was doing that to earn my way through school.
Q: Doctor, did you have any sub-specialty within nuclear physics in your Ph.D. study?
A: My thesis was low-energy nuclear structure. It was using a 6M.e.V. Vandergraff accelerator. I did neutron time of flight spectroscopy, I guess you call it. It was experimental, not theoretical.
Q: Doctor, did you have graduate or undergraduate work at any institution other than Penn State?
Q: Was your thesis published, sir?
A: My entire thesis was not, but the essentials of the thesis were published in the Journal of Nuclear Physics.
Q: Can you give me a citation to that publication?
A: I don't have it with me. It could be found in the Nuclear Science Abstracts.
Q: That was published as an article or as an abstract?
A: An article.
Q: Who were the authors of the article?
A: Myself and William A. Lochsted. He was my thesis advisor.
There is something else. I had publication as an abstract in the bulletin of the American Physical Society when they have their annual meetings. I presented a paper which was on my thesis work.
Q: Doctor, have you ever held, since your Ph.D., any research grants from any institution?
Q: Have you ever applied for research grants since your Ph.D.?
A: No. Not to my knowledge — not to my recollection, I should say.
Q: Have you ever been subject to academic discipline at any institution?
Q: Doctor, have you had any other publication since the time of your Ph.D., other than the two you have mentioned in Nuclear Physics and the Abstract of the Bulletin of the American Physical Society?
A: I had articles published in the Creation Research Society Quarterly, the things that were included
in my documents that I submitted here today.
Q: Are there any other publications that you have made in addition to those that you provided in the documents production?
A: Not in any sense in which you define a publication.
I have written letters, but I don't think you mean that by a "publication".
Q: I am thinking of a paper or abstract, or the like, published in a periodical.
A: Not that I can think of.
Q: So, there have been none, other than those which you have produced to us today?
A: To the best I can remember, that is the truth — I am sorry.
In a science teaching journal, I did something. It was in connection with the Chautauqua short course I attended. They were sponsored by the American Science Foundation. Part of that project was doing — there were two meetings in the course. There was one meeting and you did an interim project, and there was a second meeting. I had the results of my project published — I can't remember the name of the journal. I have a copy
of it. It was in around 1974. It dealt with an approach to teaching science to non-science majors. It was my own kind of innovative course.
Q: Do you know if the journal you referred to was a refereed journal?
A: I don't know. You mean, somebody obviously read the paper.
To my knowledge, it was not sent to some person who criticized it and sent it back to me. It was not a creation-oriented publication at all.
Q: Sir, for how long have you been an assistant professor at Penn State?
A: This is my thirteenth year. Technically, I was an instructor for my first year there, and the second year, I was promoted to Assistant Professor. So, that would make it twelve years as Assistant Professor.
Q: When did you receive tenure there?
A: I started teaching there in 1969, in the
fall, and tenure is technically granted after the end of the seventh year. They have to give you a year's notice. So, they have to tell you at the end of the sixth year when you are accepted for tenure.
In 1975, I was notified that I received tenure.
Q: Sir, could you describe the responsibilities of your position as Assistant Professor at Penn State?
A: My primary job is teaching undergraduate physics, both calculus and non-calculus; sophomore physics is usually the way you would designate it. As a part of the role of a faculty member, there is some evaluation based on publishing, scholarship, community service. These are things involved to certain degrees with the job. The primary responsibility is teaching.
Q: Sir, do you teach any graduate courses?
Q: Does the New Kensington campus grant graduate degrees in physics?
A: The campus does not. It is part of the university system, which does, of course.
Q: Are there graduate physics students at
the New Kensington campus?
A: None, to my knowledge.
It's not the standard. Conceivably, somebody, as a graduate student, could take a course in something, but I don't know of any being there.
Q: Have you supervised the research of graduate students while you were at Penn State?
Q: Doctor, have you ever been considered for promotion to full professor at Penn State?
A: The next level up is Associate Professor. I was considered for promotion. There was a dossier sent in. I don't know how many years ago. That was denied.
I was told it was denied primarily because I had not published in accepted scientific periodicals.
Q: Sir, you said this was four or five years ago?
A: I think so.
Q: Was the explanation that you just mentioned of why promotion was denied for failure to publish in accepted periodicals, did that come to you in a letter?
A: No. There was, at that time, no official
statement as to why the promotion decision was denied.
Q: Could you tell me by whom you were given that explanation?
A: Yes. That was communicated to me by the departmental liaison person between the main campus and our campus.
I think it was also explained to me by the local administration; that is, our director, or associate director.
Q: Sir, have you ever been considered for promotion since that first occasion?
A: No. I was pretty much told that, if I didn't have such publications, as I explained a minute ago, that there was no use in applying for promotion.
Q: Sir, at the time of this promotion consideration, what publications had you made?
A: My thesis results were published in that article I mentioned about the science teaching journal. I don't think any of the publications that I gave, you in that extra folder had been made by that time.
Q: So, this was either in 1976 or 1977, is
that correct, so far as you recall?
Q: At that time, your publications had been your thesis results in Nuclear Physics and an abstract also on your thesis work in the Bulletin of the American Physical Society and an article in the journal whose name we don't know, about the results of this NSH short course?
Q: Were there, in addition to those three?
A: No other publications that I recall.
Q: Doctor, have you engaged in any research since the completion of your Ph.D. research?
A: It depends what you mean by "research".
Q: Sir, as you define "research," have you been engaged in any, and could you describe it for me?
A: Yes. One has to do with solar contraction. That was addressed in some of the articles I gave you. Another I have done, I guess you call it personal research. It was not financed by anyone, but I had theorized on the gravitational force and trying to come up with a model for what the gravitation could be, explained by or due to; make those two major areas
as research. In addition, anything I have written about creation, evolution.
Q: Sir, could you describe the research process that you are using in your work on solar contraction?
A: I have done a good bit of library research, looking up articles.
I had written to other scientists in other areas asking for information, or having them critique the things I have written.
I had worked my gravity model to the point of making predictions that could refine or refute my theory.
Solar contraction, of course, I had — after I had studied the subject and went back over the things I had been taught as concerns the sun's supposed mechanism for generating energy, I suggested to at least one other person that it would be positive to check in and see if there might be any evidence for solar contraction.
At the time, I knew of no such evidence. Within the following year, there was material published in the officially recognized scientific
literature that supposedly supported such contraction.
Q: Could you explain what you meant in your last answer by "supposedly supported such contraction"?
A: John Eddy published data that claimed to show that the sun was contracting. Other people have published other data that supposedly — that they said denied that the sun was contracting.
He was saying supposedly was contracting as Eddy's conclusion drawn from his own data. In other words, I am not claiming it is a known fact that the sun is contracting.
Q: Is the research process that you have engaged in — I think you mentioned library research, letters and communication with other scientists, and you mentioned this prediction of the possibility of solar contraction, is that process any different in your work in modeling the gravitational force?
A: In there, I have made some predictions, but there has not been any data verifying or not verifying the predictions.
Otherwise, I think they are pretty much the same.
Q: Sir, have you performed any experiments or made any experimental observations in your work in either solar contraction or gravitational force?
A: I have done no direct experimental work. I have no means to do that, either finances or equipment.
For example, I don't have an observatory. I don't have access to telescopes where I could get data from the size of the sun, for example.
Q: Sir, have you ever made a grant application for funding or equipment for observations or experiments in either of these areas?
A: Not that I can remember.
Q: Have you ever investigated the possibility of being a guest scientist or visiting professor at a facility where you would have access to an observatory or other facilities for such research?
A: No. I never thought of that.
Q: Doctor, are you aware of any observatories or facilities owned by the Federal Government which are available to scientists, without charge?
A: No. I have never thought about that. Personally, I would say there are people who are more qualified to do astronomical observations
than I am qualified to operate telescopes or whatever.
Q: Doctor, could you tell me the undergraduate and graduate course work you have done that you regard as relevant to your work in solar contraction?
A: I had basic physics courses, quite a few math courses. I took a 400-level course in solar physics, which, as I look back upon it, it motivated me to study the subject of solar contraction.
Q: Sir, when you say "400-level," that indicates a graduate-level course?
A: 400-level is upper-class, not necessarily graduate. I think it's junior and senior.
Q: Did you have any other course work in solar physics or astrophysics or related areas?
A: None that I can remember.
Q: Doctor, have you ever had any articles submitted for publication which were rejected?
A: None that I can remember, no.
Q: Sir, are you a member of any professional associations?
A: I am a member of the Creation Research Society. That's the only one.
Q: When did you become a member of the
Creation Research Society?
A: I don't really know. It has not been within the last two years.
Q: So, you are saying at least two years? And, you are not sure how much longer?
A: At least five years.
Q: Are you a member of the Creation Science Research Center?
Q: Are you a member of the Bible Science Association?
A: I receive their newsletter, but I don't know that they have any membership.
Q: Are you a member of Citizens for Fairness in Education?
Q: Are you a member of the American Scientific Affiliation?
Q: Are you a member of the Moral Majority?
Q: Are you a member of any Right To Life organizations?
Q: Are you a church member, Doctor?
A: Not in the sense of being on any membership roll.
Q: Do you attend church, sir?
Q: Could you say what church you attend?
A: It's Pine Run Evangelical and Reformed Church. It's a RD rural route from Apollo, Pennsylvania.
Q: Sir, is the Pine Run Church affiliated with any larger organization, or council of churches?
A: No, it is not.
Q: Are you able to describe the denomination of the Pine Run Church?
A: It is not part of a denomination. It is an independent church.
Q: Sir, have you any understanding of the term "fundamentalist" with respect to religion?
A: I have heard the term, but — do I have any understanding?
I maybe understand some ways in which some people use it.
Q: Do you have a definition, yourself, that you use for the term?
Q: Do you consider yourself a fundamentalist as to religion?
A: You would have to define what that term is, before I could answer.
Q: Do you consider yourself a fundamentalist?
A: If I had no definition of what a fundamentalist is, there is no way I could tell you if I consider myself to be one.
Q: Do you attend the Pine Run Church regularly?
A: You would have to say what is meant by regularly?
Q: Are you able to estimate how often, on a monthly or annual basis, you attend the Church?
A: Recently, I would say, about once every two weeks.
Q: Are you an officer in the Church?
Q: Do you belong to any groups, Bible classes, or study classes in the Church?
Q: How long have you been a member of the Pine Run Church?
A: I said I am not a member of any church.
Q: How long have you attended the Pine Run Church?
A: Since about last Easter.
Q: Did you attend another church prior to attending the Pine Run Church?
Q: What church was that?
A: Church of God, Franklin Avenue, Vandergrift, Pennsylvania.
Q: Have you ever been a church member of any other church?
A: Not since I was in high school, I think.
Q: What church was that that you were a member of
A: It was the Evangelical United Brethren Church in Hawthorn, Pennsylvania.
Q: Sir, what was the occasion for your ceasing attendance at the Church of God, and beginning to attend the Pine Run Church?
A: The Church of God was part of a national movement which originated approximately one-hundred years ago, and it was based on certain beliefs. I mean, this movement started a hundred
I came to the conclusion that the present constituency of the movement was not consistent with the principles for which it was started. So, I could not, in good conscience, identify with the movement.
Q: Are you able to describe the aspects of the movement that you could not identify with or subscribe to?
A: Yes. Basically, the pioneers of this movement, and they referred to themselves as "pioneers," propagated the idea that denominationism was not their position. They felt it was not wise or whatever to have the Church organized as a hierarchy, but the movement, in the course of one-hundred years, developed its own hierarchy.
So that was my main objection.
Q: Were there other objections, in addition?
A: I had personal qualms about some of the activities of the pastor of that particular church. I assume this is to be not — I do not want to make public an attack on that pastor.
I mean, whatever information I give, is not to be made public, I assume.
Q: I do not know if the text of the deposition may be publicly available.
I am not urging you to put on record anything about your personal disagreement with the pastor of the church.
Are there any other matters that had to do with the change in church attendance that do not touch upon that, that you would like to add to the record?
Q: Doctor, have you ever read the Bible?
A: You mean read the entire Bible?
Q: Do you ever read any portion of the Bible?
Q: What versions have you read, or trans lation?
A: I have read the King James Version. I have read the New English Bible, Amplified Bible, New American Standard Version. I have read from The Living Bible and Good News For Modern Man.
Did I mention the Phillip's translation? Those are the ones I can remember.
Q: Are you able to say about how often you read the Bible?
A: No, because I am not — I follow no consistent schedule in reading the Bible. I read it to what extent and as often as I feel motivated to read it.
Q: As a physicist, do you ever consult the Bible?
MR. CLARK: Are you asking if he consults the Bible for purposes of science?
Q: Did you ever consult the Bible in your either study or research as a physicist?
A: Not generally.
I think there was a statement made in one of those articles about the sun and the sun's nature.
I think I referred to biblical statements as to what the sun might or might not do in the future.
I did not present that as any scientific evidence. It was just as a point of interest. I have never presented any scientific
argument based on the Bible says this; therefore, it must be true.
Q: Doctor, do you recall any other instance when you have used the Bible in any way in your work as a scientist?
A: Put in those terms, no, not to my recollection.
Q: Doctor, do you believe that the Bible is inerrant?
A: Could you explain what you mean by "inerrant"?
That it is correct and contains no errors. I would say that I have no knowledge of containing errors.
I do not necessarily advance any such inerrancy as a religious faith.
Q: Do you believe that the Bible is literally true?
A: Again, it depends on what you mean by that.
There are statements in the Bible that, by their own context, are shown to be not to be literal statements or to be taken literally. And, in that sense, I would answer the
Q: Could you describe an instance of what you just mentioned; that is, portions of the Bible which are not intended to be taken literally?
A: Some visions in the Book of Revelation. I think within themselves, they are not referring to literal events, but their purpose is to be symbolic.
Q: Do you believe that the account of creation in Genesis is literally true?
A: I find no reason to deny its credibility but I do not — again, that's not tenets of my religious faith that everything said in Genesis is literally true. I may feel it's true, but I do not consider that as an essential of Christian belief.
(Continued on the next page.)
Q: Is it your opinion that the Genesis account of creation is literally true?
A: That is my opinion in the sense that I have no factual knowledge showing that would not be true.
In one of the publications I had there, I made an analogy with conservation of momentum, and I believed conservation of linear momentum to be true in the sense that I know of no scientific data that would disprove it.
So, I believe in conservation momentum and analogously I believe in the Genesis account of creation.
Q: Doctor, did you subscribe to a statement of principle or statement of belief when you joined the Creation Research Society?
A: I believe I did, yes.
Q: Doctor, do you recall if one of the portions of that statement of belief is a statement as to belief in the scientific accuracy and literal truth of the Genesis account?
A: I don't remember exactly how it was worded.
MR. WOLFE: Off the record.
(Discussion off the record)
Q: Doctor, I will read to you numbered Paragraph 1 from the application form for the Creation Research Society.
The application states that all members must subscribe to the following, numbered Paragraph 1: "The Bible is written of God's action and because we believe it to be inspired throughout, all of its assertions are historically and scientifically true in all of the original autographs. To the student of nature, this means that the account of origins in Genesis is a factual presentation of simple historical truths. First, Doctor, do you recall having subscribed to the statement of belief that contained essentially that language?
A: Could you let me see the copy you have there?
A: I don't remember exactly what the thing said, but that does look familiar.
Q: Looking at that numbered Paragraph 1 on the copy I have given you, would you be willing to
subscribe to that statement now?
Q: Sir, could you tell me your understanding of the phrase "original autographs" as used in that statement?
A: My understanding of it, I believe it to whatever manuscripts now exist. They are not the original manuscripts. The originals do not exist, to my knowledge, but copies of those have been studied and through the process of time, I think they have gotten more and more information bearing on the original manuscripts.
Q: Could you tell me what you understand by the statement that "The Bible is inspired throughout"?
A: I would say it would mean that certain statements made in the Bible were the result of revelation.
Q: Could you tell me what you mean by "revelation"?
A: Communication through the writer by God.
Q: Doctor, do you regard the Bible as a source of scientific knowledge?
A: It depends on your definition of the word "scientific".
There are things in the Bible that would fit in various categories of scientific knowledge, such as measurements, statements of things, the way things normally happen.
Q: Would you regard the biblical account of the creation as scientific evidence?
A: I think that would depend on your definition of "scientific evidence".
Q: Could you tell me what understanding you have of the phrase "scientific evidence" and using that understanding of your definition, tell me your view as to whether the biblical creation account consists of scientific evidence.
A: I don't think there is any generally agreed upon definition of what scientific evidence is, and I do not think there is any agreed definition of what science is.
By generally accepted standards, I would state that the Genesis account would not be considered scientific evidence.
Q: Why is that, sir?
A: I don't know if I can say why. I would just make that statement based on various things I have read, people who were speaking
as scientists saying that the Genesis account was not scientific evidence.
Q: Is it your view that the Genesis account is scientific evidence?
A: I don't think I can answer that because it would depend on what the definition of "scientific evidence" is, and I don't necessarily have a settled opinion on what scientific evidence is, myself.
Q: Do you have a current opinion or view as to what scientific evidence is, that you are able to describe for us?
A: Not really, because, in the definition of "science," for example, if you look in a dictionary, there are several definitions, and they are different. One is just the search for knowledge. Certainly, in the sense of anything that would aid the search for knowledge, then the Bible would be scientific knowledge.
In another sense, science is defined as that knowledge gained by repeatable observations. Genesis would not be scientific because the things that are recorded in Genesis do not purport to be repeatable.
I think one definition of science is as
good as another. It's a matter of what the person — in what context that term "science" is discussed.
Q: Doctor, has the Bible ever suggested a specific project or research interest to you?
A: Yes, it has.
Q: Could you describe that instance, sir?
A: One thing it suggested as a research project would be to use a metal detector to find evidence of Pharaoh's army drowned in the Red Sea.
Q: Are you aware of any work that has been done in that area?
A: No. I am not even aware of what Pharaoh's chariots might have been made of.
Q: Do you recall any other instances?
A: Off the top of my head, no, I don't.
Q: Do you recall any instance when the Bible, or reading the Bible suggested a specific method of investigation to you?
A: No, I don't recall any.
Q: Do you recall any instance when your reading the Bible suggested the solution or a possible solution to a particular research question or problem?
A: No, I don't.
Q: Doctor, how did you first hear about this legal action challenging the Arkansas statute?
A: I think the first I heard of it was a phone call I received from Tim Humphreys from the Attorney General's Office.
Q: Do you recall when that was, sir?
A: It was about the end of last month. I think the phone call would have been made around the 25th. I am not sure. He verified the phone call with a letter and I think the letter was dated October 27th.
Q: Had you heard about the Arkansas statute that is at issue here prior, to that time?
A: I may have just read about it in passing. I never paid any particular attention to it.
Q: When did you first see a copy of the Arkansas statute that is in question here?
A: When Tim Humphreys sent me the letter verifying his phone call.
Q: Had you ever seen a text of the model statute providing for the teaching of creationism in public schools?
A: Not that I remember.
Q: Had you ever discussed this case or the Arkansas statute with anyone prior to the phone call from Mr. Humphreys?
Q: Have you ever had any contact concerning this case or the Arkansas statute with Wendell Byrd or John Whitehead?
A: Not prior to my being contacted by the Attorney General's Office.
Q: Have you had any contact with either of those gentlemen since?
A: I never heard of Mr. Whitehead before. I had sent a letter to Wendell Byrd after I heard about this. I think I just asked what he knew what was going on because I didn't know.
Q: Did you receive any reply from Mr. Byrd?
A: No, I didn't.
Q: Doctor, have you ever given testimony before this occasion in a previous court action or deposition?
Q: Have you ever given testimony before a
legislative or administrative body?
Q: Have you ever testified or made a statement to a school board on any subject?
Q: Have you ever participated in debates or made any speeches or public appearances on the subject of creation or evolution?
Q: Could you tell me in what occasions?
A: I never held any debates. I am pretty sure that is true in any context. I have spoken to some high school classes. Some of the documents I gave you refer to that.
One was a letter from a high school teacher. It was his evaluation of what I had presented. I don't remember if I remember everything in the question.
Q: Do you recall any other occasions, other than these talks to high school classes, when you discussed creation-science or evolution-science with public
A: I have spoken to some church groups and I conducted a course at a Christian liberal arts college in Dayton, Pennsylvania.
Q: What was the name of that college in Dayton?
Q: Do you recall when that was?
A: I am not sure. It would have been, maybe, four years ago.
Q: Was that a course within the curriculum or a seminar?
A: That college is just starting up, and they have no — at that time, at least, they had no fixed curriculum.
It was a course about philosophy — something to do with Christianity and science.
Q: Do you recall any other public presentations you have given about creation-science or evolution-science?
A: I spoke to the Westmoreland County Intermediate Unit at their invitation.
Q: Could you tell me what the Westmoreland
County Intermediate Unit is?
A: I am not sure exactly what it is, but, to my knowledge, it is a county branch of the State Department of Education, dealing with high schools and school districts.
They had teachers from each of the school districts invited once a month, and they have speakers come in and give presentations.
Q: Sir, I think you have said the Intermediate Unit had invited you to speak?
Q: Do you recall when that was?
A: It was either this past spring or the year before. I am very absentminded about things. I think it was this past spring.
Q: Do you know if there is a transcript extant of the presentation that you made to the Intermediate Unit?
A: Not to my knowledge.
Q: Did you make any notes or write down the text of your presentation?
A: I didn't write out the text. I had some scribbled notes to remind myself of certain topics.
Q: Do you know if you still have those notes?
A: I am not sure.
Q: Doctor, have you ever had any criminal arrests or convictions?
Q: Do you recall the substance of the phone call that you had from Mr. Humphreys approximately on the 25th of October?
A: I can remember some things, but I am not sure I can remember everything in detail.
Q: Can you tell me what you recall about that conversation?
MR. CLARK: I want to object just for the purpose of trying to get a clarification as to what you are seeking.
If you are seeking information exchanged between an attorney and his client, you are not entitled to that.
MR. WOLFE: Is it your position that the Arkansas Attorney General is representing Dr. Hinderliter in his individual capacity?
MR. CLARK: We are not representing him in his individual capacity, but he is a witness for us in this potential lawsuit, and communications that were had between Dr. Hinderliter and
members of the Attorney General's staff as to strategy for the case, or as to specific conversations as to directions he may have received from the Attorney General's staff, I think, are privileged.
MR. WOLFE: You are asserting that they are covered by the attorney/client privilege, or work product privilege?
MR. CLARK: Work product, actually. If I had an idea of what information you were seeking, maybe I would not assert that privilege.
But, it is part and parcel of our work product at this time.
MR. WOLFE: I guess, essentially, what I want to know is the substance of Dr. Hinderliter's expected testimony.
MR. CLARK: That we have given you to the extent that we have indicated he is a physicist and he would offer evidence showing the scientific proofs supporting creation-science. If you want to ask him as to a conversation between Mr. Humphreys of my staff and
himself, I am not sure you do have the right to inquire, at least under the work product privilege. If you want to ask him about his research or opinion, feel free.
MR. WOLFE: I certainly do want to do that. Given that Dr. Hinderliter is an expert witness, and given that the work product doctrine is not absolute, and I think there are probably things that might be covered by the work product doctrine that we are entitled to inquire into as to expert witnesses, I think probably it sounds as though, to me, that we have essentially the same view as to what I am entitled to ask. So, my proposal would be that I proceed and, on instances when you think I have asked an improper question, perhaps, Doctor, do not respond instantly but give a moment or two for
MR. Clark to state when he believes I have asked an improper question covered by the work product privilege.
MR. CLARK: That is fair.
Q: Doctor, have you ever discussed with a
representative of the Arkansas Attorney General the expected substance of the testimony that you will give in this case?
Q: Could you tell me when that was?
(Continued on the next page.)
Q: Had you discussed the subject of your expected testimony on any prior occasion?
Q: Sir, are you being paid to give testimony in this action?
Q: Are you being reimbursed for your expenses in giving testimony?
Q: Do you know by whom your expenses are being reimbursed?
A: By the Attorney General's Office, I believe.
Q: Have you discussed the subject matter of your expected testimony with anyone other than representatives of the Attorney General's Office?
Q: Sir, could you tell me what areas you expect to give testimony in at trial?
A: To as much as I can recall, the information I was given yesterday.
Q: Would you describe that, sir?
A: I believe you made a statement that pretty well covered that.
Let him read that statement again.
That's the substance of it.
MR. CLARK: Scientific proofs supporting creation-science.
Q: Are there any specific scientific proofs about which you expect to personally testify?
A: I can't say as yet that I know of any particular ones. You want me to conjecture things that I might testify on?
Q: Let me put the question in another way. What specific scientific proofs supporting creation-science do you consider yourself qualified to give testimony on?
A: Actually, my personal opinion is that there is no such thing as a scientific proof. Does that contradict something? Science cannot technically prove anything, as per scientific writers,
Q: Would you feel comfortable in terms of the scientific evidence for the proof of the account of Genesis creation in which you consider, yourself qualified?
A: Yes, I would be.
Q: Could you tell me as to what scientific evidence for the accuracy of the Genesis account of
creation you consider yourself qualified to testify about?
A: I don't know that Genesis — it's not only a matter of scientific evidence bearing on the Genesis account. It's a matter of scientific evidence bearing on evolutionary accounts. In my opinion, evidence that contradicts evolution is evidence for creation.
Q: Could we try taking them one at a time? I guess, first, are you able to distinguish in your mind between scientific evidence which is support for creation-science and the scientific evidence which calls into question the accuracy of evolution-science?
A: Am I able to distinguish between those two?
A: I never really thought much about that. I can't think of any distinction.
Q: Given as to either scientific evidence which supports creation-science, and by "creation- science" now, I mean something more general than the Genesis account.
Let's say creation-science as described in the Arkansas statute, or as to scientific evidence which calls into question the evolution-science model, what areas do you regard yourself qualified to give testimony in?
A: I think it would be the philosophy of science area, which would be my best area.
Q: Are there any other areas in which you regard yourself as qualified to give testimony?
A: I could be qualified from the standpoint of nuclear physics to make some statements about radioactive decay processes and radioactivity.
Q: Are there any others?
A: I can't think of anything.
Q: How would you regard your publications in the Creation Research Society Quarterly — under which of these two areas would you regard your articles in the Creation Research Society Quarterly as being encompassed?
A: The philosophy of science area.
Q: Doctor, have you an understanding or a definition that you use for the phrase "creation- science"?
A: Personally, I don't.
I could refer to an Impact article or a series of Impact articles from the Institute of Creation Research.
I think they were Impacts 95 and 96. I think creation-science is defined therein. As best I can recollect, I have no objection to that definition.
Q: Doctor, are you familiar with the definition of "creation-science" which is given in Act 590?
A: I have read Act 590.
Q: Do you recall whether you would agree or disagree with any portions of that definition?
A: I can make a comment, at least one comment on that. That is, under this Act 590, Section 4, "Definitions," Items 5 and 6, I do not consider to be a necessary aspect of creation-science; that is, the idea of a world-wide flood and a relatively recent inception of the earth. I do not consider that essential to a creation model. I think they are justified. If that's the definition to be used in this Act, I find no objec-
tion to that. But, I, personally, do not think a creation model need incorporate any statement about a world-wide flood or the recent age of the earth and living kinds.
Q: Doctor, is it your own belief that the present evidence supports those two items?
A: On Item 5, I would, from what I do know, and I do not claim to be an expert on geology, but I am of the personal opinion that there is evidence of a world-wide flood. On the age of the earth, I think the evidence is no more indicative of an age in the billions of years that it is for an age in the tens of thousands of years.
It just depends on what assumptions you make when you are trying to calculate the age of the earth In other words, I think, on Item 6, about the age of the earth, I don't think you can prove the earth is old or you can prove the earth is young. So, as far as I am concerned, I would say that is a toss-up.
Maybe, I lean toward the young ages for
my own personal conclusions.
Q: Doctor, referring to Subsection A of Section F, it has six numbered items which gives as inclusions or instances of creation-science, and in Subsection B, there are six numbered items, apparently inclusions or instances of evolution-science which appear to be counterparts of one another.
As to the two pairs, Numbers 5 and 6, do you regard one member or one of those two pairs as better supported by the current scientific evidence than the other?
MR. CLARK: I am not sure I understand the question.
Are you asking if 5 and 6, under the definition of creation-science, and 5 and 6, under the definition of evolution-science, among those pairs, does scientific evidence support one or the other?
MR. WOLFE: Yes. Does he regard one or the other of each pair better supported by the scientific evidence.
A: Yes. I would have to say especially in Number 5, I do.
I could quote from that — I don't have the reference, but I believe it was Steven J. Gould who had an article on catastrophes and stated that the earth's geology cannot be explained by uniformitarianism but might require catastrophism. So, I might say Item 5, the creation view, is more supported by the evidence.
Q: As to the pair numbered 6?
A: I wouldn't say I would necessarily judge one more supported than the other.
Q: Doctor, would you say your opinion of which of the two items numbered 6 is better supported by the scientific evidence has changed any in the past five years?
Q: In what way?
A: You said the last five years?
A: I don't know about the last five years. In the last fifteen years, it has.
Q: Let's take the last fifteen. Can you describe what changes, in your view on that question, have taken place in the last fifteen years?
A: In my education, whatever courses I had dealing with the age of the earth and the age of the universe, it was generally stated that the universe was billions of years old, and I accepted that. But, upon further study, I don't see any particular reason to accept that as known.
Q: Fifteen years ago, you would have said. that the scientific evidence better supported the age of billions of years. And, now, you say the evidence is neither more supportive of one notion than the other?
Q: Could you describe what has caused the change in your view over the past fifteen years?
A: I guess I have looked at the supposed proofs of the age of the universe and found that there are many ways of calculating the age of the universe. Of those ways, only a few, or, at least only some gave ages in the billions of years. There are other dating methods that give ages that are much more shorter. I was only informed of the ones that give billions of years ages in my early education, so that is why I accepted the statement that it was known