WorldNetDaily and the Scopes Trial, Again

Buffoon Award

This is a good one, which we learned about thanks to the blaring sirens and flashing lights of the Drool-o-tron™. The blinking letters of its wall display said WorldNetDaily (WND). As you know, WorldNetDaily (WND) was an early winner of the Curmudgeon’s Buffoon Award, thus the jolly logo displayed above this post.

The device had locked our computer was locked onto this headline at WND: 20th century’s most explosive trial still reverberating. WND has written about the Scopes trial before — see WorldNetDaily — The Scopes Trial.

This one was written by Larry Tomczak, described by WND as “a cultural commentator of 43 years, Liberty Counsel public policy adviser, Intercessors for America board member and best-selling author.” Here’s the Wikipedia write-up on him: Larry Tomczak, which says he’s “an apostolic leader and evangelist with over 42 years of ministry experience.” This is going to be fun! Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis:

Ninety-two years ago an historic trial erupted on the national scene. The repercussions of the case reverberate throughout America to this very day, affecting every generation. The “Scopes Monkey Trial,” was one of the most sensational cases in America’s history. It was called “The Trial for America’s Soul” and is commemorated yearly with a re-enactment at the National Historic Landmark courthouse in Dayton, Tennessee.

Everybody knows about the Scopes Trial. We’ve written about it several times — for example, see Scopes Transcript: Darrow’s examination of Bryan, and also Scopes Trial: Bryan’s Closing Argument — so we won’t need to provide much factual commentary or rebuttal of what Larry says. Let’s read on:

The circus-like atmosphere of the trial ended with Mr. Scopes found guilty and fined about $1,400 (today’s money). Bryan died in his sleep five days afterward. The verdict was later overturned on a technicality and later a biased and dishonest play and film, “Inherit the Wind,” caused millions to ridicule religious opposition to evolution.

The fine was $100, probably worth about $1,400 today. Larry says:

The fundamental issue is the same today: Regarding the origin of our universe and mankind, will we honor a secular/evolutionary worldview or a spiritual/creationist worldview? And can instructors present both views, or must those adhering to the trustworthiness of Scripture be forced to remain silent in the face of one-sided propaganda?

Yes, that’s the fundamental issue. Larry tells us:

The dogmatic theory taught in schools and perpetuated by Hollywood that human beings accidentally evolved over billions of years by “natural selection” is mind-boggling. It’s akin to postulating that the images on Mount Rushmore formed spontaneously. Without any Creator to whom we’re accountable, Darwinian evolution teaches we’ve descended from ape-like creatures through mutation and time.

Gasp! Larry continues:

In his 160-year-old “Origin of the Species,” Darwin stated, “Let us assume …” or “We may well suppose …” over 800 times! We’re supposed to acquiesce so our youth base their lives on assumptions rather than the authoritative Word of God, which emphatically says, “Remember thy Creator in the days of thy youth” (Ecclesiastes 12:1).

Darwin was a fool! Let’s read on:

Intellectual elites see biblical teaching on creation as an offense to intelligence. They declare it unscientific and dismiss the biblical account of man’s origin. Atheist Richard Dawkins said, “If you meet somebody who claims not to believe in evolution, that person is ignorant, stupid or insane.” Jesus declared, “Have you not read that He who made [CREATED] them at the beginning made them male and female” (Matthew19:4) – so does Dawkins’ description apply to Him?

Dawkins is another fool! Larry says:

We’re called to be Christian advocates for righteousness. The Abolition Movement that eradicated slavery and the Civil Rights Movement that combated injustice through nonviolence are just two examples of Christian activism that changed America. Christians are not to be silent bystanders in the face of this tsunami of secular humanism. We’re called to be peaceful, prayerful and passionate ambassadors for our Judeo-Christian heritage.

Here’s one more excerpt

Our society has experienced unbelievable devastation, having drifted from our biblical foundation of God as Creator and Scripture as our authoritative guide. … We must be equipped and engaged in this ongoing battle dealing with Origins 101. One man, Charles Darwin, propagated a theory that adversely impacted the world. Will you join with Christians like those who gathered in Dayton, Tennessee, to promote truth and persuade others, like our Founding Fathers did, to honor our Creator as our Declaration of Independence affirms?

Well, dear reader, are you with the good people of Dayton, or with the hell-bound followers of Charles Darwin?

Copyright © 2017. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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17 responses to “WorldNetDaily and the Scopes Trial, Again

  1. Michael Fugate

    Larry forgets that there were Christians on both sides of the slavery and civil rights issues – just like there are Christians on both sides of the evolution issue.

    The idea that evolution has made society less moral is a laughable – has Larry looked at the poverty rate, the literacy rate, the homicide rate since 1859? Didn’t think so.

  2. Reads like more Trump populism and we all know how much credence to give to those spurious arguments. As to unbelievable devastation I wonder how Larry would have managed during WWII?

  3. “In his 160-year-old “Origin of the Species,” Darwin stated, “Let us assume …” or “We may well suppose …” over 800 times!” — False, of course. The claim, in a more defensible form, seems to have originated in 1909: see https://ncse.com/blog/2016/11/we-may-well-suppose-redux-0018352 and earlier posts of mine linked therein.

  4. We may well suppose that Glenn Branch is the only person to trace that clunker to its origin. Well done!

  5. @Michael Fugate
    One must point out this major difference in the morality of the USA since 1859: Slavery

  6. It is worthwhile to think a little about the Mount Rushmore example of intelligent design.
    If the carvings on Mount Rushmore are examples of Intelligent Design, just as living things are. In answer to the question, “Where did they come from?”

    The carvings on Mount Rushmore are explained in the same way as the flies and trees. If you tell your kids that Intelligent Design is enough to explain one, so it is enough to explain the others. The carvings might have grown there, as far as ID is concerned.

    But anyone really knows that saying “Intelligent Design” is not satisfying as an explanation for the images of the presidents. No kid is going to be satisfied by being told that they were designed.

  7. Dave Luckett

    The Rev asks: “will we honor a secular/evolutionary worldview or a spiritual/creationist worldview?”

    I’ll take secular/evolutionary for a hundred dollars, Rev.

    Why? Because it works. Thousands of years of stumbling around in the dark, occasionally finding something by accident, often having promising lines of discovery closed down by religious diktat, and with social structures no better than those applying in the ancient world. And then, from the sixteenth century, the development of the scientific method – and within a century or so, the emergence of the Enlightenment and the modern world. A secular/evolutionary worldview works. A spiritual/creationist one doesn’t.

    And if, like most of the latter worldview, you must have an authority for that method of assessment, how about Jesus of Nazareth, who said, “By their fruits you shall know them”?

  8. Michael Fugate

    Sure the future is scary, but why wouldn’t any who studied history want to go back? Unless of course one has studied anything ever.

  9. The fundamental issue is the same today: Regarding the origin of our universe and mankind, will we honor a secular/evolutionary worldview or a spiritual/creationist worldview?

    Most of us choose to follow the real-world evidence rather than old tribal myths, of which there are thousands of mostly-contradictory and entirely unevidenced stories. I like the Old Man Coyote stories myself, but I wouldn’t bet the rent money that they are factual.

    And can instructors present both views, or must those adhering to the trustworthiness of Scripture be forced to remain silent in the face of one-sided propaganda?

    US creationists want their particular tribal myths presented as the equal to real-world evidence and scientific theories. They would be and are dead set against any other tribe’s myths–it us just their own one-sided propaganda that they want taught.

    It might be a little different if the various religions used evidence to determine which (if any) are TRVE, but evidence is the last thing that they bring to the debates.

    As Heinlein noted, “Belief gets in the way of learning.”

  10. “US creationists want …..”
    Don’t worry, Coyote, Dutch creationists want exactly the same. And according to Paul Braterman also the Scottish ones.

  11. You evil godless materialists are missing the point!

    It’s not about evidence, or reality, it’s all about morality! The WND is right, “Christians are not to be silent bystanders in the face of this tsunami of secular humanism”, but instead must adopt the high moral ground occupied by such pillars of virtue as Hobby Lobby as they fund their own Bible Museum!

    ….or, maybe not: Hobby Lobby: Christian firm’s artefact smuggling case settled

  12. Megalonyx gave me a good laugh with the Hobby Lobby reference. I saw the headline and said to myself why does this sound familiar? Of course, Hobby Lobby is well-known for being at the centre of a 2014 US Supreme Court battle to avoid paying for female workers’ contraception on religious grounds.

    So it’s no to contraception but a big yes to plundering and stealing the culture artifacts of another people. Got to love those crazy fundy Christians and their hi-jinks. Or not.

  13. Given Curmudgeon’s choice, I’ll take hell-bound followers of Charles Darwin any day. He’d be a lot more interesting to meet and talk to than any creationist I’ve ever heard of.

  14. Eric Lipps

    The fundamental issue is the same today: Regarding the origin of our universe and mankind, will we honor a secular/evolutionary worldview or a spiritual/creationist worldview? And can instructors present both views, or must those adhering to the trustworthiness of Scripture be forced to remain silent in the face of one-sided propaganda?

    The fundamental issue isn’t which “worldview” one favors but what happens to be true. Or, rather, what can be shown to be false, since truth can be hard to establish absolutely while falsehood can be more easily revealed.

    We’re supposed to acquiesce so our youth base their lives on assumptions rather than the authoritative Word of God, which emphatically says, “Remember thy Creator in the days of thy youth” (Ecclesiastes 12:1).

    And who, exactly, has established the Bible as “authoritative” in matters of science? Not said it but rather established it? Isn’t it an assumption that the Bible is the actual Word of God, straight from the Deity’s mouth?

    It doesn’t matter how “emphatically” something is said. What counts, again, is whether it is or isn’t true, or at least logically valid. Creationism fails on both counts.

  15. Eric L thinks he’s smart:

    “And who, exactly, has established the Bible as “authoritative” in matters of science?”
    Why, God Himself of course. That’s not an assumption, it’s a fact. ‘Cause God. Let me translate an excellent quote from Dutch creacrap site Logos.nl:

    “Reason is part of being human. Reformed theologians always have stressed that man can’t be the norm to himself. Man has to find a norm outside himself and that’s Holy Scripture. Reason is part of fallen man.”

    “1. Reason has to know its place.
    2. Empirical data are tentative. Knowledge has more grounds than just empirical data.
    3. We must reason from belief, not from the unbelief of an evolutionary theory.”

    So I repeat the profound question of our dear SC: EricL, are you with the good people of Dayton and Logos.nl, or with the hell-bound followers of Charles Darwin and MNb?

  16. ….. that man can’t be the norm to himself.
    God punishes immediately by making me look like a linguistic fool. But perhaps the Great Hand from Above will show His Mercy and Benevolence, undoing my foolishness?

    [*Voice from above*] As you wish, my son.

  17. We can’t measure God by the standards of man..
    When God kills men, we do not call that murder.
    When God takes away property, we do not call that theft or robbery.
    So what standard do we have for expecting what God says should measure up to what we call truth-telling by man?

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