Saturday, January 12, 2008

An "Irrational Attachment to The Theory of Evolution"?

In Gail Collins' NY Times column today, she says this:

Huckabee seems to be a nice guy, but conservatives are afraid he’d break up the old evangelical-plutocrat Republican alliance and most liberals are restrained by their irrational attachment to the theory of evolution.

Excuse me? I can't quite tell if Collins is being tongue-in-cheek (I frankly don't read her column enough to get where she's coming from), but it looks like Collins is the rationally challenged one here. What she just said is just as absurd as something like: "most liberals are restrained by their irrational attachment to the theory of quantum mechanics."

For people like myself who prefer to reside in the reality-based community, acceptance of the evidence for evolution is in fact an excellent litmus test for people who want my vote. It's a good indication of how decision-makers value evidence versus pet beliefs. Scientific evidence does not necessarily dictate what the correct government policy should be, but it sure as hell can rule out harebrained ones. I view that as a good thing.

This post isn't an endoresement or a slam against any particular political party or candidate - except of course candidates who have an irrational opposition to very successful, fundamental fields of science. The point is, creation vs. evolution isn't just some freak side issue on the fringes of the culture wars - it cuts to the heart of how people respond to the single most successful approach humans have developed for understanding and influencing the reality-based world.

4 comments:

John Wendt said...

"I can't quite tell if Collins is being tongue-in-cheek"

I suspect she is, i.e. this looks like a wry, back-handed expression of the conservative version of why liberals object to Huckabee.

Mike said...

I'll bet you're right - I like a wry sense of humor as much as anyone, but I guess I missed this one.

Probably because I don't think conservatives worry too much about what genuine liberals think of Huckabee, as opposed to what most non-affiliated voters think.

Mostly I was looking for an opportunity to throw in my two-bits about the recent media love-fest for a guy who rejects a major part of science.

Bob said...

HI MIKE, QUESTIONS: 1.WHEN DID SCIENCE START ? 2.WHEN DID SCIENCE FIRST START INVESTIGATING THE THEORY OF EVOLUTION ?DATES AND TIMES PLEASE.

Bob said...

PLEASE DON,T TAKE MY QUESTION WRONGLY,I DO SEE GOOD IN SCIENCE, BUT I MUCH PREFER SCIENCE WITH REASON. I DO NOT SEE IT (SCIENCE ) AS THE "BE ALL AND END ALL". BUT AS A VERY USEFUL TOOL IN THE ARSENAL OF "UNDERSTANDING", OF THE HUMAN BODY AND THE ENVIRONMENT WE WERE CREATED IN.