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Pot, Kettle, Medved

Townhall commentary:

A misleading recent headline in the New York Times demonstrated the way that the left abuses the language to cement its continued control of our public discourse.

Under the banner "EVOLUTION OPPONENT IS IN LINE FOR SCHOOLS POST" reporter Cornelia Dean declared: "The National Association of State Boards of Education will elect officers in July, and for one office, president-elect, there is only one candidate: a member of the Kansas school board who supported its efforts against the teaching of evolution."

The headline and the lead sentence conjure up the image of a prairie populist, perhaps bearing pitchfork and clad in Bib overalls, denying the existence of dinosaurs and opposing any suggestion that the work of creation required more than six literal days. The sophisticates who read America's Journal of Record no doubt scanned this alarming article with considerable head-shaking and tsk-tsking at the knuckle-dragging yahoos who populate Red State flyover country.

If anyone bothered to read the article in its entirety, however, they ultimately would discover that Kenneth R. Willard, the school official in question, in no way qualified as "an evolution opponent."

Being disingenuous is the stock in trade of the radical and religious right, but this article takes things to a whole new level...

This past weekend, I watched "A Flock of Dodos" on Showtime, and it was very enlightening. These evolution opponents -- and make no mistake, that's EXACTLY what they are -- know that their arguments don't have a scientific leg to stand on, and they have lost every court battle they've joined, and so now they are reduced to arguing that to provide our children with a balanced education we must "teach the controversy" about evolution.

The film does a wonderful job debunking this convoluted line of reasoning to reveal the truth of the matter -- these people want to put God in the classroom. And not just in the form of a prayer, but they want to introduce him as science.

The comical thing about it is that they admit you can't put God in a test tube, and they admit that there's no scientific evidence available which shows the work of a divine clockmaker in the natural history of the planet. Instead, they point at Mt. Rushmore as proof of God.

"Say what?" you say?

They ask us to look at mountains and say that you can explain them by natural processes such as plate tectonics or erosion, but then you encounter Mt. Rushmore. Clearly this shows the hand of a creator! And since humans and animals are "masterfully designed," that too would indicate that there was a divine hand in the process since something as wonderful as a human being could not have come about by accident.

Of course as the film pointed out, for every argument that an animal is a perfect design, there are ten that show it is not, but those get ignored.

In fact, ultimately their argument is that since science doesn't have ALL the answers definitively proven, then the solution must be God.

And yes, if you believe that, you are an evolution opponent in spite of what Medved says. Science works because it never claims to have all the answers -- that is what inspires scientists to keep researching and keep moving forward. The religious fanatics among us would say that the answer to all our questions is God, and that to even try and look anywhere else is blasphemy. And though these folks cannot constitutionally make their beliefs a public school curriculum, they can introduce that element of doubt. They can say that we can't really trust science. They can then exploit that doubt with their own easy answers that might make people FEEL better, but were really the attitude that led to the Dark Ages.

So, Mr. Medved, it's okay if you want to support this sort of thing, but don't call the rest of us liars if we identify you as what you are. I am a Christian and have been for 36 years now, and one of the most important things I've learned as I grew in my faith was that there are some things for which there are no easy answers. And the origin of life is one of those issues.

But I do know that if evolution exists -- and I believe it does -- that it does not contradict my faith in the existence of a higher being. If a person's faith is so flawed and narrow that it could be shattered by science, I'd say the problem is with that person, not with science.


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Comments (2)

Matt:

The Mt Rushmore comparison doesn't work really well. We have the historical record, recorded in photography and moving picture of the mountain being carved by the artist.

Darwin's Theory of Evolution is an interesting theory but hasn't been proven. When was the last time science identified a newly evolved or evolving species? Why don't we see hard evidence of Evolution in progress? Where are the transitional species, evolving on the way to being something else? Explain evolutionary dead ends such as the manatee and the platypus, etc.

How do these twisted right wing fanatics get this:

The headline and the lead sentence conjure up the image of a prairie populist, perhaps bearing pitchfork and clad in Bib overalls, denying the existence of dinosaurs and opposing any suggestion that the work of creation required more than six literal days.

out of this:

EVOLUTION OPPONENT IS IN LINE FOR SCHOOLS POST

"The National Association of State Boards of Education will elect officers in July, and for one office, president-elect, there is only one candidate: a member of the Kansas school board who supported its efforts against the teaching of evolution."

Amazing. They invent this fantasy world where they interpret meaning out of simple English sentences, and then attack the meaning... that only exists in their minds anyway.

If you'll notice, the Townhall writer, Michael Medved, doesn't link to the article in question, but assures that if someone would just "read the article in its entirety, however, they ultimately would discover that Kenneth R. Willard, the school official in question, in no way qualified as "an evolution opponent."

No need for you to read it, just take Medved's word for it...

Oh wait - let's fact-check Medved instead -- here's the article he chose to not let his readers see for themselves.

I read the article, and found the opposite - there is evidence provided that supports the contention that Willard is an evolution opponent.

He said, though, that he personally thought students should be taught about challenges to the theory of evolution, like intelligent design. And while he said he had not heard of a possible challenge to his candidacy, Mr. Willard added that he was not surprised by it.

"Some people are mindless about their attacks on anyone questioning anything Darwin might have said," Mr. Willard said.

Willard sure looks like an evolution opponent to me.

Paul you said: "Being disingenuous is the stock in trade of the radical and religious right, but this article takes things to a whole new level..."

It's more than just being disingenuous when Medved bullshits his readers and doesn't give them the link to see and decide for themselves.


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