Louisiana Creationism: Meet Mike Walsworth

This video is from nine months ago, but for some reason it’s just now getting publicity. It happened during last year’s unsuccessful attempt by Zack Kopplin to repeal the Louisiana Science Education Act, about which we wrote Louisiana Creationism Repeal: The Full Story.

A science teacher was testifying before a committee of Louisiana legislators and attempting to patiently explain to them that yes, there really is evidence for evolution. She started to describe the work of Richard Lenski (which you can read about at PhysOrg: Genomics analysis demonstrates natural selection at work) involving more than more than 56,000 generations of E. coli evolution.

Then she was interrupted by state senator Mike Walsworth, who — in a truly dazzling display of idiocy — asked if the E. coli had evolved into a person. Really, that’s what he asked.

Here’s his page at the legislature’s website: Senator Mike Walsworth. Except for being a legislator, he seems to be unemployed because the biographical information there says only: “Mike is a graduate of Northeast Louisiana University and is a member of the Jackson Street Church of Christ, where he serves as song leader.

The video runs for only a minute. It’s worth the time to see how incredibly ignorant these people really are.

Copyright © 2013. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

add to del.icio.usAdd to Blinkslistadd to furlDigg itadd to ma.gnoliaStumble It!add to simpyseed the vineTailRankpost to facebook

. AddThis Social Bookmark Button . Permalink for this article

15 responses to “Louisiana Creationism: Meet Mike Walsworth

  1. Gack. Stupidity has no limit.

  2. Charles Deetz ;)

    I saw this video earlier today. It really lacks a zinger of a come-back. Suggestions?

  3. Charles Deetz said: “It really lacks a zinger of a come-back. Suggestions?”

    “Well, Senator, this research was based on a genealogy study I was doing of you…”

  4. Charles Deetz says: “It really lacks a zinger of a come-back. Suggestions?”

    I would have replied: Lenski only ran the experiment for around 20 years. It took 3 billion years for humans to evolve from microbes.

  5. Your answer is scientifically the perfect comeback, Curmy, but it is too civil.

    How about, “Did you really just say that, Senator?”

  6. Mike Walsworth, who — in a truly dazzling display of idiocy — asked if the E. coli had evolved into a person. Really, that’s what he asked.

    Yes sir, it’s a very large form of bacterium, and one of them is in this hearing room right now, it’s specifically located right where you are currently seated.

  7. Yes, senator, and I can demonstrate how–all I need is for you to dink this beaker full of E. Coli, and I’m pretty sure we will quickly see significant relationships develop between them and you.

  8. Not able to listen to this yet, but going by the written quote this sounds like the latest Christian fundamentalist “logic” which argues that only persons can come from persons, ie people can procreate more people and God, being a person, can create people, but “evolution” as they see it can’t produce people, because “evolution” (or microbes) is not a person (are not people). So there’s a logic behind this idiocy, I think. Maybe I’m giving the senator too much credit, but I have been running into this “only people come from people” argument more often lately.

  9. It’s one thing to be stupid, or to say something stupid within a close group of friends, but to wear your stupid in public, that’s something else completely. The sad part of this video is that he doesn’t seem to be embarrassed. On the plus side, this is a great video for his opponent in the next election.

  10. VulcanThunder

    Being a professor of microbiology in Louisiana, these clowns make me embarrassed for the state. The Governor and the Legislature are always talking about how they are going to turn this state into a “high tech powerhouse” to compete with California or Massachusetts. Not likely with their anti-science, anti-public education agenda. If Bobby and his cronies get their way, public education will be destroyed, replaced by church run schools (but funded by state money thru vouchers). Higher education has also had it’s funding cut for five years straight now. The only good news is that, even if a lot of students were taught creationism in grade and high school, when they get to college they are still open to learning about evolution. The same way they discovered that their parents were lying to them about Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy, they learn they have been told another even bigger lie.

  11. VulcanThunder says: “when they get to college they are still open to learning about evolution.”

    That must be fun.

  12. I guess that’s the new “gotcha” question, replacing the equally intelligent “Were you there?” I’m sure creationists, in their smugness, imagine it devastating. The senator has all the wit and class of a drunken heckler. The teacher should ask the senator why a merciful and intelligent designer would see fit to create an E. coli in the first place, then call the bouncer.

  13. Tripp in Georgia

    Most news reports of this are pretty scathing. Good! But, this guy isn’t stupid. He’s dishonest and has chosen to appear ignorant. I think it’s a lot more nefarious than stupidity. I hope such moments help get him, and others like him, removed from office.

  14. @Tripp in Georgia:

    sadly this probably will actually help the senator. Most of the voting public doesn’t care about this subject. Of those who do, the most vocal are the ones who don’t know that he’s not only wrong, but completely ignorant of the subject.

  15. techreseller

    I know a kid who went to Thomas Jefferson High School in Virginia (#1 rated high school in the country by Newsweek year after year). The school is a magnet school with an emphasis on science and technology. His parents are creationists. This kid told me while he was in high school that his parents told him to answer the questions on the tests as he was instructed to by his teachers, but that his biology teachers were wrong about evolution and his geography teachers were wrong about the age of the earth. Very bright kid. Got into a good college, got away from his parents. Got really messed up in college (drugs, alcohol, etc). I am convinced that he struggled with going against his parents vs what he observed all around him. His trying to reconcile his parents beliefs with reality took a toll on him. And his parents are nice people. Just off if you know what I mean.