One thing Republicans still do have in common with Ronald Reagan: creationism. It looks like we are going to have to drag the Republicans kicking and screaming into the 21st century. if we don’t, they are going to drag us all back to the thirteenth, and we know how much fun that would be.
First we have U.S Rep. Paul Broun (R-GA), who serves on the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology, stepping up to the plate and unloading this doozy last month at a church event – apparently in the dark, dark recesses of the back forty:
“All that stuff I was taught about evolution, embryology, the Big Bang theory, all that is lies straight from the pit of hell. And it’s lies to try to keep me and all the folks who were taught that from understanding that they need a savior.”
Watch the report from CNN:
The loosely-attached heads at Liberty Baptist Church in Hartwell, Georgia loved it, I’m sure. This is the kind of backwards thinking they embrace.
Broun insisted that, “a lot of scientific data that I’ve found out as a scientist that actually show that this is really a young Earth.”
How young, you ask?
“I don’t believe that the Earth’s but about 9,000 years old. I believe it was created in six days as we know them. That’s what the Bible says.”
Broun has apparently confused science and belief. And all too common occurrence these days. After all, in the past year we had Michele Bachmann, Rick Santorum, Rick Perry, and Ron Paul, all Republican presidential hopefuls, insisting that the Bible, not science, explained human origins.
“That’s the reason, as your congressman, I hold the holy Bible as being the major directions to me of how I vote in Washington, D.C., and I’ll continue to do that,” he told the flock lining up to have their brains sheared.
CNN reports that,
A spokeswoman for the congressman, Meredith Griffanti, said that Broun was not available for comment on Wednesday and that the video showed him “speaking off the record to a large church group about his personal beliefs regarding religious issues.”
Broun apparently is very confused or very dishonest. He told the church folks that his religion informed his politics. He tells the media that his religion is none of their damn business.
Or ours. But it is very much our business.
And then there is that other Republican clown. Gosh, let me be specific, there are so many. You all remember the rape fan…oh wait, that still leaves too many to choose from…the rape fan from Missouri. Todd Akin. You remember him,, right?
This is what Akin had to say about evolution. You can listen to it thanks to ThinkProgress. This is what he told the Tea Party folks in Jefferson City, MO, certainly as gullible a group as the Baptists in Hartwell, Georgia, that there is no science behind evolution:
Akin: I don’t see it as even a matter of science because I don’t know that you can prove one or the other. That’s one of those things. We can talk about theology and all of those other things but I’m basically concerned about, you’ve got a choice between Claire McCaskill and myself. My job is to make the thing there. If we want to do theoretical stuff, we can do that, but I think I better stay on topic.”
Akin serves with Broun on the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology
What the hell are these people drinking?
At this point, you might feel in need of a dose of sanity. Here’s what Jon Stewart had to say about these clowns on Thursday:
You cannot just pretend the evidence isn’t there. Well, maybe you can. After all, the arctic is about to become a snow-free zone and the GOP still insists anthropogenic global warming is a myth and a liberal plot.
How much can a person hate reality? Ask Akin and Broun.
These sorts of views are perfectly all right as personal religious views. I have religious beliefs too. But I don’t think my religious beliefs trump yours, or trump the common good. When these views are applied to national policies, policies that affect every American, the effect is nothing short of catastrophic.
Fundamentalist religious beliefs have trumped science across the spectrum: evolution, global warming, women’s reproductive rights, marriage equality, and both science and history. They have even tried to apply the Bible to economics. And if you thought Republican economic theory was ugly before….
Our public schools are being replaced by schools more amenable to the message of the Bible. And institutions of higher learning are under relentless attack for doing precisely what they were meant to do: introducing students to a wider world, freeing them of parochial attitudes and ideas. Preparing them for the world.
America cannot afford the attitude that science is something you can choose to believe in, or not. Globally, we are already behind the eight-ball where science is concerned. China, as an economic power, is surging toward global dominance, and the rest of the world is not standing still. The United States will be the only country moving backward.
Americans cannot afford the Republican Party, the party of small-thinking and parochialism; the party of superstition, the party that insists angry deities cause bad weather and make volcanoes erupt.
We owe it not only to our ancestors, for where their suffering and sacrifice have brought us, but to our descendents, to leave them a better world through our suffering and sacrifice. To borrow the words of Carl Sagan, the demon-haunted universe is closing in, and our candle is guttering.
We cannot decide whether to believe in science. But we can decide to defend it, and to keep that candle burning for our children, and for their children.
America, and the world, have suffered enough from these backward-looking troglodytes. I would like my descendents to have a better life than sitting in a cave, scratching their heads, and wondering where fire comes from.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.