Answers in Genesis CEO and President Ken Ham has responded to atheist author Richard Dawkins' recent comments that religious parents are indoctrinating children, by stating that Dawkins wants to impose his own "religion" of atheism at the exclusion of all others.
"Dawkins believes that children should be taught evolutionary naturalism as fact. He wants his religion of naturalism imposed on them. So children shouldn't be taught religion by their parents — they should be taught the religion of atheism by their teachers," Ham wrote on his AiG blog.
"All Dawkins is advocating is replacing one religion with another religion."
Dawkins has spoken out against what he sees as indoctrination a number of times in recent interviews.
In February, he told Time magazine that it's wrong for society and parents to label children by a religion, such as "Christian children" or "Muslim children."
"We wouldn't claim our young kids are liberals or Libertarian, so why are we saddling them with our religious labels?" the evolutionary biologist asked.
In a later interview with The Irish Times, he said that children also need to be protected from religious indoctrination in schools.
"There is a balancing act and you have to balance the rights of parents and the rights of children and I think the balance has swung too far toward parents," Dawkins said.
"Children do need to be protected so that they can have a proper education and not be indoctrinated in whatever religion their parents happen to have been brought up in."
Ham, who also leads the Creation Museum in Kentucky, accused Dawkins of inconsistency.
"Does Dawkins mean that children should be taught the major problems with evolution? Does this mean that children should be shown the evidence that supports the Bible's history? Does this mean that children should learn the difference between historical and observational science? Dawkins definitely wouldn't think so," Ham wrote.
He suggested that the atheist author thinks that children "should be exclusively taught a religion of atheistic, evolutionary naturalism — and no other options."
Ham said that such a teaching is itself "indoctrination in a false religion," and accused Dawkins of wanting to do the very thing he's arguing parents should not be doing.
Dawkins has also criticized people who "put the Bible ahead of scientific evidence," a claim which Ham said is false.
"Well, as biblical creationists, we do start with the Bible and we interpret the scientific evidence in light of what the Bible says. And observational science confirms what God's Word teaches! We aren't against science — we love science," Ham continued.
"But because we start with God's Word and Dawkins starts with man's word, we reach different conclusions about the past (historical science)."
Ham has claimed on a number of occasions that teaching only evolution in schools at the exclusion of creationism is indoctrination.
"Currently in the USA and virtually all the western world, students are just being taught one side of the story and teachers aren't even allowed to present the grave problems with evolution to their students! In reality, western public schools have told teachers that they must protect evolutionary naturalism. This is not education; this is indoctrination," Ham wrote in another post last week.