The United States Constitution is very clear in prohibiting government from making any law respecting an establishment of religion, or impeding the free exercise of religion, and yet Republicans in Congress and states pass an inordinate number of laws founded completely on the Christian religion. In fact, in spite of the Constitution and several federal court rulings banning the practice, Republicans have illegally passed laws mandating the teaching of the bible as science in public schools using taxpayer dollars because they claim the creation myth is real and evolution is an abomination to bible god. It is little surprise, then, that creationists are absolutely apoplectic over a resolution introduced by a New Jersey Democrat, Representative Rush Holt, to designate British naturalist Charles Darwin’s birthday on February 12 as a day to recognize ‘the importance of science in the betterment of humanity.”
Holt’s resolution is the third attempt to recognize Charles Darwin’s contribution to science after former Representative Pete Stark (D-CA) first introduced the idea in 2011, and Holt’s first attempt to advance “Darwin Day” in 2013 fell short. Holt, the only Quaker in Congress, a Christian, and holder of a doctoral degree in physics said, “Charles Darwin is even more than the author of the theory of evolution, as great as that is. He represents a way of thinking, a philosophy, a methodology. It was his thirst for knowledge and his scientific approach to discovering new truths and this lesson, about the value of scientific thinking, is almost as valuable as the theory he uncovered.” The executive director of the American Humanist Association, Roy Speckhardt, said “Too many people are being influenced by the dangerous creationism and so-called ‘intelligent design’ movements, and it’s time for others in Congress to stand up for true science.” Holt’s resolution was assigned to the House Science, Space and Technology Committee and is a strong stance against teaching creationism in public classrooms in addition to voicing great concern for the consequences of climate change denial. Keeping their ignoramus supporters unconscious of the existential danger of global climate change is why Republicans are on a crusade to use taxpayer money to teach creationism in public schools across the country despite it is a violation of the Constitution.
According to creationists, the proposed resolution acknowledging science’s contribution to mankind’s progress beyond the Stone Age is an “authoritarian” and “unconstitutional violation of the First Amendment’s establishment clause and protection of the freedom of speech,” and as a Pagan religion is responsible for advancing infanticide, gun violence, wars, Nazism, and likely all the diseases that plagued humanity down through the ages. The creationists’ categorical claim is that evolution is a religion like atheism, and it leads them to assert that “since the constitution calls for the state not to be involved in the establishment of any religion,” atheists have no right asking the federal government to endorse and mandate the religion known as evolution. The religious right is certain that evolutionary science is the wrong side of what they moronically labelled “a philosophical debate” because it contradicts the Adam and Eve fairy tale. They claim that atheists have no right, and the federal government has no authority, to acknowledge science’s contribution to mankind’s betterment according to their interpretation of the Constitution’s First Amendment.
There is so much wrong with the creationist’s assertions, but their greatest inaccuracy is that evolution or atheism is a religion. It is a contention borne of rank stupidity because by definition religion is a collection of beliefs and rules used to worship a deity based on mythos and ancient texts about morality, ethics, and god-law. Religion also comprises certain behaviors, clergy, and a definition of what constitutes adherence and deity veneration through the ridiculous conviction that one can have a rapport with a deity through deliberate and direct communication. Atheism is simply the rejection of belief in the existence of a deity or deities, and as a scientific theory like gravity, it is impossible, and absurd to think that any human being worships or prays to evolution. Creationists cannot see, define, or understand gravitational theory, but they believe in gravity or they would regularly jump off the top of the Empire State Building and expect to hover. Evolutionary theory is proven, observable, and well-documented in peer-reviewed scientific journals.
As is usually the case, creationists went on a tirade and threw a feces-fit over the idea that Darwin or science should be acknowledged as improving humanity. As is their wont, lacking any cogent argument to bolster their claim the creationists immediately made a laundry list of the terrible effects of Darwin’s “natural selection” explanation for evolutionary theory. According to the creationists, Darwin and science “has led to much of the moral decay we see in society,” and that teaching evolution “has had disastrous consequences on individuals and our societies including promoting euthanasia.” They also asserted that because of evolutionary theory, “President Obama agreed that infanticide (killing children after they are born) should be legal, and that if one is old or handicapped they are not safe anymore.” It got much worse as the bible thumper’s frenzied contentions went straight into absurdity.
According to a creation website featuring a page (“Citizens against the forced acceptance of the religion of evolution”) dedicated to stopping Representative Holt’s resolution the teaching of evolution is responsible for the book “How to build a bomb” in the public school system, the Columbine high school killers, the Finnish high school shooting, and the Nazi race holocaust. The Holocaust was a Nazi attempt to exterminate people of a religion; Jew is not a race. The creationists also claimed modern evolutionists advocate for eugenics and exterminating defenseless people and that if Darwin and the scientific method is acknowledged as a benefit to mankind critics of evolution will be singled out for punishment by authoritarian censorship. Censorship, by the way, they claim is similar to “evolutionary atheism that is responsible for more deaths in the last century than in all of the recorded religious wars in history” as well as a blatant “attack on free speech and our constitutional rights.”
It is beyond belief that creationists are so mortified of acknowledging Darwin’s contribution to science that they attribute every single atrocity in history to a provable scientific theory. It is also incredibly hypocritical that they are at the forefront of pushing teaching a religious belief in public schools that is a violation of the Constitution, and then have the temerity to claim acknowledging “the importance of science in the betterment of humanity” is unconstitutional, authoritarian, and a violation of their freedom of speech. It is a sign that, as technologically developed as America is, there are a significant number of Americans who still cling to a Stone Age mentality that they go berserk at the idea of recognizing how much better their lives are because of science. As one of the reasons the bill lists for honoring Darwin says; “It has been the human curiosity and ingenuity exemplified by Darwin that has promoted new scientific discoveries that have helped humanity solve many problems and improve living conditions” and that “the advancement of science must be protected from those unconcerned with the adverse impacts of global warming and climate change.” However, as much of an existential threat global climate change is to the human race, it pales in comparison to backwater bible-thumpers attempting to eliminate science from Americans’ awareness and public school classrooms.
Audio engineer and instructor for SAE. Writes op/ed commentary supporting Secular Humanist causes, and exposing suppression of women, the poor, and minorities. An advocate for freedom of religion and particularly, freedom of NO religion.
Born in the South, raised in the Mid-West and California for a well-rounded view of America; it doesn’t look good.
Former minister, lifelong musician, Mahayana Zen-Buddhist.