Creationist Wisdom #146: A Nation Divided

THE creationists are getting restless in Louisiana. We present to you, dear reader, a letter-to-the-editor titled Being lukewarm on the question of man’s origin, which appears in the Shreveport Times of Shreveport, Louisiana. We’ll copy most of today’s letter, but we’ll omit the writer’s name and city, and we’ll add some bold for emphasis, plus our Curmudgeonly commentary between the paragraphs. Here we go:

Man was either purposefully designed or he was not. One is accurate. The other is false. Our nation is divided on that question. Those who believe man was purposefully designed attribute that design to a supreme being, a creator, e.g. their God. For most Christians and Jews, this would be the biblical God, the God of Abraham. Atheists, on the other hand, deny the existence of God and reject any suggestion that man was purposefully designed.

The nation is divided! Let’s read on:

Somehow, inexplicably, a nation that has “In God We Trust” printed on its currency and claims to be “one nation, under God” in its pledge of allegiance has chosen to teach its children only the atheistic view that man was not purposefully designed. Our biology teachers, whom we pay and direct, routinely make liars out of our preachers and rabbis who believe and teach that man was purposefully designed by God.

Hey, that is strange. With all those carefully-crafted safeguards against evolution — in our currency and in the pledge of allegiance — how did we end up with this blasphemous science stuff in the schools? The letter continues:

In high school biology classes, our children are taught that humans evolved from a lower life form that, in turn, evolved from a lower life form, etc., and that all living creatures evolved from a single common ancestor without the benefit of any planning or design, e.g., without the involvement of a supreme being, a creator, a God. Humans and turnips have a common ancestor.

Today’s letter-writer ain’t no kin to no turnip! Here’s more:

If someone were to suggest that random or chance selections of paint from a painter’s easel and random strokes from that painter’s brush would produce a “Mona Lisa,” the person making that suggestion would be considered a fool. The human brain is the most complex structure observed in the universe, much more complex and intricate than the “Mona Lisa.” Only an absolute fool would see no evidence of purposeful design in the construction and function of the human brain. Yet that’s what we teach our children.

Yes, only “an absolute fool” could fail to agree. Moving along:

The irony is that millions throughout the country go to churches and synagogues regularly. They read their Bibles, sing songs and offer prayers to the God of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and Adam. Those sitting in the pews are the same ones paying the teachers to instruct their children. They raise holy hell about abortion yet pay for and condone the teaching of children that God had nothing to do with man’s origin.

Golly, he’s right! We pay for this stuff. Another excerpt:

Our legislature passed and our governor signed into law the Louisiana Science Education Act, which permits an objective critique of evolution theory as it relates to man’s origin. It authorizes the use of texts or teaching aids that question the evidence supporting that view and introducing material that supports the alternative view, e.g. that man was purposefully designed. The law’s apparent purpose is to change what is being taught in our public schools re: man’s origin (and purpose). The intent is to expose the children to both sides of this two-sided question.

Wait a minute! Suddenly we’re confused. We were told by the sponsors of that legislation that it wasn’t about creationism. See: Louisiana’s Ben Nevers: Creationist Doublethink. One little excerpt, quoting Louisiana state Senator Ben Nevers, the sponsor of that state’s Science Education Act:

This is strictly about teaching science in the classroom,” he said. “It has nothing to do with religion.”

A creationist politician wouldn’t lie to us, would he? Let’s go on with today’s letter:

I have been trying to find out whether the Caddo School Board has done anything to bring about this change. It appears it is disinclined to take any action to comply with the intent of the new law. My calls to Bonita Crawford (my representative) and Reggie Abrams (the board’s legal counsel) were not returned. I don’t like it when public representatives or servants ignore the public they represent or serve.

He sounds frustrated and angry. Who could blame him? And now we come to the letter’s end:

If the biblical God exists, he is likely not looking at the board. Rather, he is likely looking at a lukewarm church. There is an election coming. Our legislature and governor have given the local school boards the opportunity to present both sides of this question in biology class. The Constitution and the LSEA both require that it must be done without advancing or inhibiting any particular religious belief.

[Writer’s name and city can be seen in the original.]

It’s going to be difficult for Louisiana to satisfy everyone’s expectations. The creationists know what the lawmakers did and why they did it. They expect them to deliver on their promise, and they’re growing impatient. So are we.

Copyright © 2010. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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11 responses to “Creationist Wisdom #146: A Nation Divided

  1. I wanted to make your point about the pols lying
    in the comments under the opinion piece. No commenting is allowed anywhere on Shreveport News Site. Nor blogging other than the employees of the paper it appears.
    Our local Gannett paper has the same format and it no longer allows comments either. Though it does allow blogging and forums. They don’t have the effect though that direct commenting has. Much fewer readers.

  2. The letter writer: “Man was either purposefully designed or he was not. One is accurate.”

    And neither has any bearing whatever on evolution, which is the explanation that works. The common mutually contradictory alternates, which all seem to be degenerating into “don’t ask, don’t tell,” don’t.

    The letter writer: “Humans and turnips have a common ancestor.”

    Which is what both “evolutionists” who believe that man (and all life) was purposefully designed, and some anti-evolution activists like Michael Behe believe.

    As usual, it’s impossible to tell if the letter writer is capable of seeing the obvious bait-and-switch.

  3. So, there was a purpose to our being designed like chimps and other apes? Does that mean that we ought to follow the intention of our designer(s) and act like apes?

    If someone asks, “Why does the Mona Lisa have a smile?” a satisfactory answer would be “Because the Mona Lisa was intelligently designed”?

  4. Awesome. More ammo for future court cases. With opponents like these…

  5. But humans ARE related to turnips. We have something like 25% of our genes in common (I know that is true for bananas, so I suspect it’s true for turnips as well.)

  6. LRA says: “But humans ARE related to turnips.”

    The turnip was strong in the letter-writer.

  7. I could do better. Maybe.

  8. The turnip was strong in the letter-writer.

    (spits soda on his keyboard, reaches over to pile next to his desk, grabs fresh one, plugs it in, continues on as before)

  9. Hey – you gotta love Louisiana. Any place that allows the serving of double white russian daiquiris from drive through windows has got to be alright. (I recommend a place just off the highway in Stennis, before crossing the bridge to New Orleans). If they push rational thought in their education system, they won’t be any fun anymore. We need to keep one bastion of insanity in the country…

    Besides, they make Texas look better.

  10. Lewis Thomason

    After getting really nasty replies to comments on the Shreveport Times i now comment there under another name,but I have never had a problem commenting. The onlt thing is that you can’t get any of them to stay on topic,especially when you use facts.