Your Curmudgeon has long been disturbed by the bizarre development in American politics that increasingly places acceptance of evolution in the Democrat party (which was the party of William Jennings Bryan), while creationist-style religion is now likely to find a home among Republicans. We’ve written about it before, but not lately, because our opinions upset some of our readers. See, e.g.: Creationism or Socialism: Which is Dumber?
But all may not be lost. National Review, founded by William F. Buckley Jr., has long been a leading magazine of conservative thought. To our delight — and amazement — they have a pro-evolution article in the latest issue. It’s titled Conservatives Shouldn’t Fear Evolutionary Theory. It was written by Razib Khan, a geneticist.
Khan doesn’t say anything that will be new to our readers, so we won’t give you very many excerpts, but the mere fact that this is appearing in the National Review gives your Curmudgeon reason to hope that the future may work out after all. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis, and occasional Curmudgeonly interjections that look [like this]:
As an evolutionary geneticist and a conservative, I take some interest in critiques of Darwinism. I have come to expect that every few years a new book by Michael Behe [Hee hee!], a professor of biochemistry at Lehigh University, will trigger commentary relaying his skepticism of evolutionary theory to the interested public. And this will result in vociferous rejoinders from evolutionary biologists.
The next paragraph is something we never thought we’d see in a conservative magazine. Khan says:
But evolutionary biology is nothing for conservatives to fear, because it is one of the crowning achievements of modern Western civilization. It should be viewed not as an acid gnawing at the bones of civilization, but as a jewel. The science built upon the rock of Charles Darwin’s ideas is a reflection of Western modernity’s commitment to truth as a fundamental value. And many Christians well-versed in evolutionary science find it entirely compatible with their religious beliefs.
By the way, the magazine has an active comments feature. To see it you have to click an icon just below the article’s title. We started reading them, but quickly stopped. They’re bad. Anyway, here’s another excerpt from the article:
Further, while evolutionary biology does not tell us what is good, the truth of the world around us can inform our efforts to seek the good — and in this sense, the political implications of evolutionary biology do not favor the Left. Today many on the Left reject the very idea of human nature, to the point of effectively being evolution deniers themselves. They assert that society and values can be restructured at will. That male and female are categories of the mind, rather than of nature. In rejecting evolution, a conservative gives up the most powerful rejoinder to these claims.
Okay, that’s enough. It’s a long article, and we recommend it, but there’s not much point in just copying stuff. So click over there and take a look. Hey — there may be hope for the Republican Party.
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