Suppose you wanted to become a leader of the creationist movement and earn a living that way. And suppose further — forgive the redundancies — you were unscrupulous, unprincipled, dishonest, and ruthlessly willing to exploit the weak-minded.
Now then, whether you plan to operate a website, a creation museum, a ministry, a publishing operation, or some combination of the foregoing, what rules should govern your enterprise? You can probably think of more than we’ll suggest here, but what follows are the rules we have gleaned by studying the activities of such persons. Here we go!
1: Know the weaknesses and insecurities of your intended audience. Creationists have little education, so you should use that to your advantage by demonizing the educated. Always claim that those people are arrogant, godless, and afraid of The Truth™. This is closely related to the next rule:
2: Constantly flatter your followers. Tell them that the worldview you are promoting is superior — morally and intellectually — to everything else that may be out there. Never miss an opportunity to tell your followers that they are the ones with superior intelligence and insight.
3: Identify and always vilify an enemy. This is vital. If you present yourself as being engaged in a desperate struggle against a wicked foe, your followers will eagerly support your efforts. The best kind of enemy is one that won’t fight back because they regard you as so foolish that it’s beneath them to respond to your arguments and debate challenges. In the case of creationism, the perfect enemy is Darwinism. Better yet, your enemy is science itself.
4: Never make specific predictions that can be tested. However, it’s perfectly safe to predict what will occur in the far future, or in the afterlife.
5: Use the news. Whenever people do bad things, always say that it’s the fault of your adversaries. In the case of natural disasters, if you must comment, say that they happen for a good reason, even if we can’t comprehend it.
6: Always ask for contributions that will enable you to continue your crusade. Point out that your adversaries are funded by the government, which is part of the big conspiracy, while you are the true champion of the people.
7: Besides requesting contributions, always have things that can be sold to your followers, such as video tapes, pamphlets, etc. Such things are cheap and easy to produce, and can easily be sold on the internet.
That’s all we’ve got, at least for now. We welcome your suggestions.
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