CURRENTLY mayor of Waterville, Maine, Paul LePage is the creationist who won the Republican primary and is now that party’s candidate in the Maine Governor’s race. Our last post about him was Creationism in Maine: The Calculus of Stupid.
Today we found an article that provides some additional information about LePage’s thinking on the creationism issue — if one can call it thinking. At the website of the Maine Public Broadcasting Network we read Discrimination Accusations by LePage Prompts Apology Request by Democrats.
The “Discrimination Accusations” in their title are about someone’s calling LePage a French Canadian Catholic or something. Silly stuff. We won’t bother with it; instead we’ll focus on the creationism. The article begins by telling us that LePage is campaigning on the “freedom train” …
… and more than 80 people paid between $100 and $750 a pop to accompany the candidate on whistle stops in Wiscasset, Brunswick and Bath and dine on brownbag lunches packed by members of Maine’s Tea Party.
That sounds great. What follows are some excerpts from an interview with several reporters between stops, with bold added by us.
[Quoting LePage:] “He [Maine Democratic Party’s campaign director Arden Manning] calls me a Creationist. I tried it, though,” said LePage. “I went to the river and tried to part it and it didn’t move. I tried to walk across my pool and I sunk (laughs).”
What is the man talking about? Let’s read on:
Jennifer Rooks [presumably a reporter]: “Do you believe in creationism and do you think it should be taught in Maine public schools?”
Paul LePage: “I would say the more education you have, the more knowledge you have, the better person you are. And I believe yes…and yes.”
Did you understand that, dear reader? We think he answered “yes” to both of Jennifer’s questions. Let’s continue:
Arden Manning says he’s never criticized LePage’s faith, but maintains that creationism should not be taught in public school.
“Creationism and Catholicism are too very different things,” said Manning. “Creationism belongs in Sunday school and science belongs in the classroom. We have criticized the fact that Paul LePage has said he would like to teach creationism in the science classroom.”
Fair enough. Here’s more:
During the weekend train trip, LePage attempted to clarify his position. He now says he never suggested creationism should be taught in public school.
What? We posted earlier about a couple of LePage statements to the contrary. For example:
Creationism: “Quite frankly, it’s a learning tool for our kids. I think we should teach them everything possible and let them make their own minds up on how they want to live their lives.”
And in that same post we have this: [The] candidates were asked if creationism should be taught alongside creationism [sic] in Maine’s schools. LePage answered “Yes.”
But that was a month ago — our post with those quotes was on 21 June. This is now. Here’s another excerpt from today’s article, as LePage explains how he “never suggested creationism should be taught in public school”:
“I never said such a thing,” said LePage. “That’s what he [Manning, presumably] said. Quite frankly, until he brought up the term creationism I never heard it. I never hear it in my whole life. I’m 61 years old. I never heard the word. Do I believe that we came from monkeys? Yes. Do I believe in God? Yes. Does that make me a creationist?”
Frankly, we don’t know what to make of this guy. That’s why our title suggests what we think is the full range of possibilities. If you can figure it out, dear reader, please let us know.
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