Thursday, August 02, 2007

Do The Evolution

So, the above video caught my attention recently. I know Jon usually runs the political racket ‘round these parts, but I’ve got something to get off my chest. I'm going to use it not only as a chance to hop up on my soapbox, but as an MP3 dump.

As some of you probably know, or have surmised to some degree from my other posts, I'm a biologist. Specifically, an evolutionary biologist. From watching that video, you might not see why I'm bringing it up, but my reasons will be absolutely crystalline in a few moments.

The above video shows a crowd of people who aren't just using religion as a rhetorical weapon: They want to bring God down here to fight on their side. Physically. They want a bloodbath.

As I'm sure anyone with brains in their heads (rather than the rocks these people so clearly possess) realizes that the book of Revelation has no bearing on any actual end times, as it wasn't a prophecy. But, to them, it does. And that should scare you. These people control our country. Why plan for the future, why care for the environment, why bother with social security reform if our world won't be here in 50 years? That's how these people think.

That bloodbath I mentioned? It's a looming threat in our own country. Last week, evolutionary biologists in Colorado received threatening messages, followed by threats e-mailed to evil-utionists across the country.

Why us? Some propaganda I got from clears that question up: They think evolution is the seed of evil in the world. A while back, a friend of mine said he didn't think fundies would get violent with evolutionary biologists like they do with abortion doctors. Evolution has no religious affiliation and contradicts a literal reading of the Bible (a literal reading never intended by its authors), therefore it is the seed of evil in their view. As an evolutionary biologist, they see me as the reason that there's abortion, murder, gay sex, theft and porn.

They see fighting the enemies of their narrow Biblical interpretation as integral to their plot to bring the Rapture. After all, fighting the enemies of their bastardized warrior god (such an idea doesn't even deserve a capital "g") will get them rewards in heaven. Or so they think. And, as should be clear from the video and the death threats, they'll get ugly in order to get it. They've already started on the homosexuals and the abortion doctors. They've just been warming up, assuming they have the guts to follow through with any of it, which is, admittedly, doubtful.

But society can stop them. I implore you: Don't give these nutcases the time of day. When someone starts in on you about the end times, or fighting "evil" with violence, tell them, in the words of P.Z. Myers, that they are demented fuckwits. Shut them down before they even start. Don't hide your contempt for them. Every time they encounter someone who, in the name of being PC or polite, doesn't tell them where they can shove their ideas, they get bolder. They get stronger.

In the mean time, here are some auditory libations for these troubled times:

Download: The Thermals - "A Pillar Of Salt"
Download: Super Furry Animals - "It's Not the End of the World"
Download: R.E.M - "Sweetness Follows"
Download: Explosions In The Sky - "Greet Death"
Download: Bonnie "Prince" Billy - "Death To Everyone"
Download: Blur- "Death Of A Party"
Download: David Byrne- "Tiny Apocalypse"
Download: Modest Mouse - "Tiny Cities Made Of Ashes"
Download: U2 - "Until The End Of The World"

(Dethklok, "Go Forth And Die")

(April Wright)

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Anonymous Lars said...

I totally hear you on this. I've even been in Hebron, Kentucky, where they have the Creationism museum. Dudes riding on dinosaurs. Scary scary shit.

But on the other hand, I've come to think about it in a different way- there can be positive aspects about religion, or at least spirituality, and while these wacked-out anti-evolutionists are clearly demented, they do more simply represent the far end of the spirituality spectrum; they're the scared-of-life, clinging to vapor equivalent of people who have a strong spiritual sense. So in that way, I feel like they're more to be pitied than hated.

Also, in Kentucky where such anti-science people seem to breed, I've seen that given the chance most people don't really buy into it. Even family members of the crazy Creationists- they pay it lip service, but aren't really convinced. I mean, seriously, again- dudes riding on dinosaurs. WTF?

The biggest danger, bigger even than these nutcases running the government, is the breakdown of communication between the sides in this argument. That just make things fester and increases fear. And while it might seem as though doing things like issuing death threats to evolutionary biologists and being d-bags in general should shut out these trogladytes from any type of meaningful discourse, still I've come to think that the best way to deal with them is to talk. It's really a success either way- if they want to talk rationally to you, you get the chance to explain yourself and convince them (plus they're less likely to sentence you to death if they have respect for you as a rhetorical adversary). If they refuse to talk to you, then your suspicions about them being nuts are confirmed. But I can't really say I agree with just shutting them down automatically. That's what they're trying to do to us.

This comment was way too long. Your blog totally fucking rocks.

2:25 PM  

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