Ben Carson Is Unfit To Be President

We’ve known for a while that Ben Carson, one of those running for the Republican nomination in the 2016 Presidential election, is a creationist. The Wikipedia writeup on him devotes a paragraph to it.

We liked him in spite of that — although we admit that we became dubious when we learned that Klinghoffer Defends Dr. Ben Carson. Nevertheless, there are far more important issues facing the country, so if he became the nominee, being a creationist wouldn’t absolutely disqualify him in our humble opinion — as long as we liked his other views.

But we can’t overlook what we just learned at the website of WorldNetDaily (WND). They probably like him specifically because of what they report in their new article: Bible or Constitution? Ben Carson says ‘not so simple’.

They have a video of an interview of Carson on “Meet the Press.” It’s about 12 minutes long, but you don’t have to watch the whole thing — or any of it, because WND tells us what he said. If you click over there to take a look, the part that upsets us is in the last minute or two, starting at about the 11 minute mark. WND says:

Republican presidential hopeful Ben Carson had no easy answer when he was bluntly asked on national television: which guides America’s government – the Bible or the Constitution?

[…]

Carson, a devout Seventh-day Adventist whose line of work, prior to seeking the White House, was as a neurosurgeon, paused a bit and then said: “That is not a simple question,” the NBC video showed.

He then said he couldn’t really answer without having a more specific scenario to address. “I think probably what you have to do is ask a specific question about a specific passage of the Bible and a specific portion of the Constitution,” he said. “I don’t think you can answer that question other than out of very specific context.”

Bad answer. Very bad. An American President is required to take an oath, which is described at the end of Article II, Section 1 of the US Constitution:

Before he enter on the Execution of his Office, he shall take the following Oath or Affirmation: — “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.” [Emphasis supplied.]

And Article VI says:

This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding. [Emphasis supplied.]

Carson doesn’t understand that. He thinks there may be some portion of the bible that supersedes the Constitution. A blunder like that is absolutely unforgivable. Sorry, Dr. Carson, nothing supersedes the Constitution.

Copyright © 2015. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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34 responses to “Ben Carson Is Unfit To Be President

  1. Give Ben a break, huh. He’s never read the Constitution and doesn’t have any idea what it’s about.

  2. Derek Freyberg

    Now I haven’t watched the interview, and won’t waste my time doing so – there are any number of reasons to not vote for Carson, but …
    ‘The question was fed to “Meet the Press” host Chuck Todd by a Facebook poster, and posed to Carson this way: “[Here’s a] simple question. Does the Bible have authority over the Constitution?”’
    So Carson wasn’t asked “Which guides America’s government – the Bible or the Constitution?”
    And he apparently wasn’t asked something like “In the event you see a conflict between the Constitution and the Bible, whatchagonnado?” (thinking of gay marriage, here, as a recent example). Now if Carson’s answer to that question were “Follow the bible, you idiot, I’m a Christian”, then you know there’s a problem.
    But at the moment, it seems to be a poorly worded question and a classic presidential candidate equivocating answer.

  3. michaelfugate

    Don’t know much about history
    Don’t know much biology
    Don’t know much about science book
    Don’t know much about the French I took….

  4. Even if Carson had given a correct answer to that question, he still would be unfit to be President. And, no, that’s not just a matter of his creationism.

    I’ll grant that he isn’t a crazy as some of the Republican candidates. But still unfit anyway.

  5. Kennedy had the balls to state he was Prez and did not service the Pope!!!
    ANd the Liar4jesus can’t say he supports the constitution over the buyBull!?!?! Not surprised as he is running as a rePUKEian with the other religious hypocrites.

  6. There’s a whole of slew of other reasons why Carson is unfit to be Prez; this is among the least of them. Like Trump, he’s an international laughingstock.

  7. Holding The Line In Florida

    Being a devout 7th Day Adventist is disqualification enough. Just like being a devout any religious sect. If you put your religious beliefs above the Law of the Land then you need to go away. Become a preacher or anything but a public servant. Look at Bush the 2d when he said God was speaking to him. I will hold out hope that it was only for public consumption. But I have my doubts. How many of my fellow soldiers died or were maimed for that religious fervor?

  8. “We liked him in spite of that”
    Whoa…….time out…
    I almost lost it until SC posted the THEOCRAT SLAM @ TM below:
    “This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding. [Emphasis supplied.]”
    Thank you SC. I was having a few facial tics early in your article.
    Thankfully, I can say with a pleased smile that you came back and put a body slam on the bad guys.
    “Whew”
    “EmPHAsis supplied.” We did not put the emPHAsis on the wrong syLLABLE
    and our faith in the infallibility of SC is restored.
    Yeah

  9. As a fiscal conservative I think it’s very unfortunate the Republican Party is infested with creationist politicians and creationist voters. Creationists are idiots and I refuse to vote for an idiot. Fortunately Ben Carson has less than a zero chance of winning the nomination.

  10. I had my own experience with Dr. Carson’s science ignorance and decided to write-up my story. It grew to chapter-length because… well, you know how it is: YECs and IDers tend to produce gaper’s block. The carnage piles up to where you just can’t help but stare at the crumbled metal and broken glass as you inevitably slow down in order to gawk and point as you motor by the scene. Similarly, describing the experience in all of its shocking reality and gore for those not present to experience it always consumes more than a few paragraphs. So here’s the beginning excerpt. If you want to read more about Dr. Benjamin’s Carson exploration of the outer limits of human ignorance in terms of flubber-quality, pseudo-science proofs-of-God, you can read the entire account (including a list of some of his favorite science errors from his president campaign fund-raising speeches) at the Bible.and.Science.Forum blog at: https://bibleandscienceforum.wordpress.com/
    _____________________________

    A few years ago, not very long after Dr. Benjamin Carson received major media attention from insulting President Obama at the National Prayer Breakfast (??), I happened to read a Carson one-on-one interview proudly posted at the Seventh Day Adventist website.

    As a prominent surgeon and the real-life hero depicted in a TV movie about his climb-from-the-ghetto success, the SDA church regularly reminds the public of Carson’s SDA roots and continued affiliation. I can no longer find the interview at Adventist.org but I so wish I had saved it, along with my very respectful, tactful but frank, point-by-point questioning of his many atrocious science blunders where he was trying to “prove scientifically” that God is the only logical explanation for everything we observe especially “the intelligent design” of the diversity of life on earth and our special place in the solar system.

    Nothing surprising there, but rarely have I seen an interview subject excessively touted as “an obviously brilliant scientist” confidently explaining “amazing, indisputable facts of science!” which anyone who stayed awake throughout their junior high science classes could so easily shred. Dr. Carson managed to sink to being so-very-wrong that it would have taken some major editing just to bring him up to the level of appearing just plain bad at science.

    My Carson science-blooper recollections include the following—I do wish I could remember many more of them—all of which allegedly proved that God must have not only created everything, he provided commentary of how each of these alleged “facts of science” shouts Intelligent Design:

    (1) The earth orbits the sun at a distance of 93 million miles. That is the just-right distance for life on earth to thrive. Just one million miles closer to the sun, and we’d all be fried within minutes! Just one million miles further, and we’d all freeze to death! That can’t be mere random chance! The atheists like to ignore these simple facts because of what they tell us about the Intelligent Designer!

    CONTINUES AT https://bibleandscienceforum.wordpress.com/

  11. P.S. I should mention that I’ve had readers in the past accuse me of fabricating that #1 point about a million miles closer or further from the sun boiling or freezing us. My readers apparently thought it impossible that a neurosurgeon could be that ignorant of elementary astronomy. Sorry, folks. It’s for real….and the man is running for President. (In fact, he will at least be able to get a few votes from the people who think #1 is a brilliant argument.)

  12. michaelfugate

    Carson earned his undergrad degree in Psychology, so other than a few intro courses his Biology background is likely weak. Couple that with the SDA upbringing and no wonder he doesn’t know what he is talking about.

  13. My biggest problem with Carson is that he went to Yale (h/t Prof T). I remember that in 2008, I was supposed to be against Ivy League Elitists, but I haven’t yet been told if that’s still the case.

    And Trump, too! He went to Penn!

    And Jindal went to Brown? Lord, the Republican field is filthy with Ivy Leaguers.

  14. The man doesn’t know what he is talking about. The eccentricity of the earth’s orbit causes the distance to vary from about 91 million miles to about 94.5 million miles. I don’t know where he gets his data but I’d hate to have him use his sources in a major crisis.

  15. Charles Deetz ;)

    Republicans these days, like creationists like it both ways, Carson got fed a trick questions. They claim supremacy of the constitution the way the founders wrote it, then also claim that the founders were christians so they wanted a theocracy, even though it isn’t mentioned once in their official or unofficial writings. Likewise creationists want science on their side, except when science is against what they believe, then it is some big conspiracy.

    I guess that’s why I like this blog and those like Right Wing Watch where I can revel in others’ duplicity that I would never (no not I) have. My mediocre life is at least honest and true, as best I can keep it.

  16. michaelfugate

    And Cruz went to Princeton and Harvard. Surprising that Jeb went to UT and not to Yale.

  17. Cynic points out that Earth’s distance from the Sun varies from 91 million to 94.5 million miles. To further illustrate just how far Ben Carson is from reality, we are closest to the sun (91 million miles) on about January 3 each year, and are farthest on July 3! Exactly opposite of what residents of the Northern Hemisphere would expect. I’m really surprised he apparently is unaware of the fact that our orbit is an ellipse.

    Carson might be a neurosurgeon, but would you want this guy operating on your brain??

  18. I’m really surprised he apparently is unaware of the fact that our orbit is an ellipse.

    I engaged Carson further with that in the blog version—but this topic reminds me of that survey that did, from what I heard, at ALL of the Ivy League Schools in a study of the faculty. It was amazing to see how many non-science faculty at Yale, for example, gave a wrong explanation for the seasons.

    Such surveyors remind me of just how hard it is to write technical material for a broader audience, especially where one cannot simply assume a set “foundation” of knowledge among your audience. That problem is compounded when I write about religious studies for the general public. Even the average Christian get confused when basic vocabulary like exegesis, hermeneutics, soteriology, propitiation, and Molinism is discussed. Where does one start? (Of course, online the problem is compounded by Dunning-Kruger.)

  19. Which guides America’s government – the Bible or the Constitution?
    What a bizarre question. (1) Nowhere does the Bible say that the U.S. government or any other nation is supposed to be “guided” by the Bible. Only the Nation of Israel were told to be a theocratic nation. (2) The New Testament focused on the INDIVIDUAL being guided by God through the scriptures.

    Therefore, an individual in government can choose to be guided in personal morality (be truthful, don’t steal, don’t hate, etc.) but nothing is said about the Bible guiding a government today and what would that even mean? The Constitution already establishes all of the “guidance” to get the nation going—and each branch of that government takes the nation forward. So I have no idea what else they are talking about!

    Indeed, if there were something in the Bible meant to guide this nation, I would surely have noticed it by now.

  20. @retiredsciguy

    Carson might be a neurosurgeon

    So, for that matter, is Eben Alexander.

  21. Dave Luckett

    I speak under correction, Prof T, but I believe that the Pauline teaching, at least, was that governments are instituted by God and are to be obeyed and accepted as of God.

    The US Constitution does not assume God’s foundation, and is, I believe, explicit that governments exist by the consent of the governed. This isn’t a contradiction – that principle might well have been ordained by God. Nevertheless the Constitution makes it clear that only its own authority rules on what are the laws of the land, and that no understanding of what is God’s law or will can be required or enforced on any person, save by Constitutional law.

    That is, what the Bible says or doesn’t say is completely irrelevant. The Constitution is the sovereign basic law of the United States, and it relies on no authority other than the will of the people. No other person, institution, deity or power whatsoever has authority over it. No other ordinance may prevail against it, be it held ever so holy or righteous.

    Any person who does not understand and accept that fact is unfit for public office under the Constitution, and that includes the office of the President of the United States.

  22. Doctor Stochastic

    Running the government isn’t brain surgery. Of course, Carson probably can do brain surgery.

  23. I’m only an outsider of course, but I wonder: is there any creationist who does not think his favourite Holy Book trumps human law? Creationist politicians in The Netherlands are fringe, but were they in charge I would not trust them anymore regarding the Dutch constitution than their American counterparts.
    That’s a serious problem for you. I already wrote that I can fully understand someone like you voting for Eisenhower and Goldwater, but their creed has largely disappeared from the GOP. I’m not joking or teasing – a right wing candidate of the Democrats would suit you much better (disclaimer: if I were American I probably would not vote at all – the Democrats in my eyes are a right wing party, with the exception of Bernie Sanders, who’s moderately left).

  24. Prof. T: “Even the average Christian gets confused when basic vocabulary like exegesis, hermeneutics, soteriology, propitiation, and Molinism is discussed. Where does one start? (Of course, online the problem is compounded by Dunning-Kruger.)”

    Where does one start? By briefly defining the specialized vocabulary the first time it’s used. Prof — have mercy on your audience! I’d bet that no one outside of your field — not even highly educated, well-read individuals — could define even one of the terms you listed (exegesis, hermeneutics, soteriology, propitiation, and Molinism) unless they recently looked it up after reading one of your posts. Even “Dunning-Kruger” is a term few people know. It’s only been in use after 1999, when Dunning and Kruger published their paper (Wikipedia is wonderful!).

  25. Since the goal of Carson and his ilk isn’t to advance traditional conservative policies (such as fiscal responsibility), but to repeal the Enlightenment, his answer is quite consistent, the Constitution being an Enlightenment-based document if there ever was one.

    And Prof. T, you are right, in that I have a very hard time understanding religious studies or even philosophy. I’m just not quick to get the concepts, I find them difficult to think about. Retiredsciguy is right that I need precise definitions of the vocabuluary, in simple terms that relate to something I can understand.

    But even that, in my case, might not be enough, because no matter how many times I read the definition of, for example, “hermaneutics”, I always forget it, and have to look it up again whenever I see it. I’ve spent a long time trying to remember what “Gnostic” and “Manichean” mean, and have read the defintitions again and again, but never remember them. My brain just doesn’t think that way.

  26. Mister. Barnabas

    “I’d bet that no one outside of your field — not even highly educated, well-read individuals — could define even one of the terms you listed…”

    Perhaps I’m missing something but I thought that was exactly what the professor was saying. But Retiredsciguy interests me by bringing it up. Got me thinking. Propitiation is right out of the King James Bible so I think a lot of older church people I knew would know it. The church I attended while growing up certainly did. Same with some of the other terms although a word like exegesis more with the young people. But I think what is missed was that the professor was stating the obvious in a tongue in cheek way. Or that was how I took it. But maybe Im just used to his writing and lectures.

    After all Molinism only started to go more mainstream I mean outside of academia with William Lane Craig talking about it on the Net. So I figured that was why it was at the end of the list as the giveaway. As the Hoosiers call it? Like a punchline.

    Dunning-Kruger for a long time has been a popular insult on so many chat and debate fights where Christians and nons go on the Net that Id be curious to see how many adults recognize it. Ive no idea what percentage would.

    These are fun topics.

  27. Mister. Barnabas

    “Fortunately Ben Carson has less than a zero chance of winning the nomination.”

    Do you think many people understand that guys like Carson, Trump, and even Huckabee just run for president to build their brand? They know that it is a good way to get more famous and then charge big speaker fees. If they are lucky they get easy money as a tv news commentator like Huckabee did.

    Carson suddenly got air time when he preached to Obama at that one breakfast. He was an instant star on Christian radio and TV after that . They say he stood up to power. And the donations to his campaign are like somebody else paying for his brand building advertising. He knows he will never be president. But he doesn’t care. That’s not what he’s auditioning for.

  28. Mister. Barnabas

    “no matter how many times I read the definition of, for example, “hermaneutics”, I always forget it, and have to look it up again whenever I see it.”

    Garnetstar I know what you mean. When I started university in the states my professor recommended that I use Answers. That was the name of a popup software that was freeware. Id point with my mouse and rightclick. Instant definitions. But now I can get by with the browser Search on the rightclick. The instant reminder like that helped me learn terms much faster.

  29. Mister. Barnabas comments, “…guys like Carson, Trump, and even Huckabee just run for president to build their brand… They know that it is a good way to get more famous and then charge big speaker fees.”

    That’s certainly the effect, but I wonder if it starts out being their plan. These guys have such huge egos that they most likely are positive they will be elected. (Dunning-Kruger Effect, maybe?)

  30. About “Dunning-Kruger Effect” — I confess I had to look it up before commenting on Prof. T’s post. I had seen the term, but did not have a clear idea of it’s meaning; probably due to the fact that this is the only blog I read regularly. (I refer here to Mister. Barnabas’s post – “Dunning-Kruger for a long time has been a popular insult on so many chat and debate fights where Christians and nons go on the Net that Id be curious to see how many adults recognize it.”)

    Anyway, the Wikipedia article on “Dunning-Kruger Effect” is very interesting and entertaining — Dunning and Kruger’s research “was inspired by the case of McArthur Wheeler, a man who robbed two banks after covering his face with lemon juice in the mistaken belief that, because lemon juice is usable as invisible ink, it would prevent his face from being recorded on surveillance cameras.”

    Also from the Wikipedia article — Dunning and Kruger’s research paper was published in 1999, so it’s a relatively new term.

  31. While the odds of him winning the nomination are less than zero, the odds of being picked as V.P. are NOT. In fact one could make the case he is in fact running for V.P. (Most of the clown car population are running for V.P., promoting their book, or looking for a spot on Fox)
    Superficially Carson looks like a great candidate. Handsome, he has very little black inflection in his speech, he is an adequate speaker, and a great rags to rich story (and he allows republicans to not look racist!)
    Being a successful surgeon (though one may argue some of his attempts at splitting conjoined twins were misguided and resulted in death) is little preparation for the presidency.

  32. michaelfugate

    It is a pathway to an easy life – just showing up and talking about nothing for 30 minutes while earning big money. See Sarah Palin.
    http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Cal-State-Stanislaus-releases-Palin-contract-3176433.php

  33. Mister Barnabas

    At first I wondered why a university would pay Palin $75,000 to speak just once. Come to think of it, there’s probably many Americans who would be willing to pool their funds and pay her a lot more money than that to never speak again at all.

    But once I read at Michaelfugate’s link I think I understand. Palin brings rich people to a banquet. That’s the hardest part. Once rich people are captive for a few hours you serve them liquor and do lots of sucking up. Then their checkbooks come out.

    I wonder if she paid somebody to write her just one general purpose speech she can practice and get coached on. Then she performs that performance at every high paying social function of that type for the next year or two.

    I didn’t see how her Fox news commentator contract could last long. It is painful to watch her try to form sentences that make sense. It is like she gets four or five words out and then panics because she doesn’t know how she can finish the sentence after the trap she built for herself.
    Kind of makes me depressed.

    A heartbeat away from the presidency expression is disturbing. Add the nuclear attack button and just thinking about it makes me want some of that liquor left over from Palin’s banquet.

  34. Techreseller

    Being a good surgeon does not necessarily require great brains. It requires great hands, patience, and the ability to mechanically figure things out. A much higher level than than an auto or truck mechanic but basically the same thing. Figure out how something is put together, what is preventing it from working as speced, fix it. Carson is very very good at that.