Sunday, May 6, 2007

(d)evolutionary republicans

The politics here in America are not so interesting for those of you in Europe, but I couldn't help myself in this case...
In a TV debate a few days ago, the republican runners for president of America were asked if 'they don't believe in evolution'. THREE hands shot up, so three of the ten politicians that are running for the republican slot, do not think that evolution is a good theory. So... if these three people don't believe in evolution, they don't believe in influenza vaccines, drug resistance among bacteria, and cancer treatments, since these are based on evolutionary principles. One of them is one of the front runners too... sigh. This just drives me crazy! (link to more info here on these politicians and the evolution question).

There is a presidential election in Nov 2008 and for the first time for many, many years there is no clear candidate either for the republicans or democrats. The politics here are of course a mess, and Bush's approval rate is only 28%, lower than Nixon's was. More than 62% of Americans want to get out of Iraq, but Bush is stubborn like a rusty nail in dry wood. He has completely destroyed the reputation of US abroad, and now these people makes US look even more like a fool by not believing in a basic scientific theory. Anyone not believing in gravity? The sun revolves around the Earth, anyone? About 20% of Americans think the Earth is only 6000 years old or so, and take the Bible literally. And 50% of Americans overall say they don't believe in evolution.

I think these abysmally depressing facts are based on two things - 1) a bad education system, especially in many poorer areas, and 2) a wish to simplify the world and believe in authority (here the fundamentalist Christian churches come in of course).

And to cheer you up, after reading this, here is one of my favorite products of evolution, the prairie gentian or lisianthus (Eustoma grandiflorus).

3 comments:

EH said...

And if you though it would be better on the other side of the "pond" I can tell you that are an increasing number of creationist in Europe as well, even in Sweden and more and more kids "are not sure that evolution does happen (happened?)". I totally agree with you, why believe in science when you don´t believe in evolution. Furthermore, there´s no conflict to have a religious belief and still believe in evolution. Why would God be so stupid that he created something that couldn´t evolve? If you choose to believe in God, that is.

LS said...

Exactly - religion and science can mix. You can choose to beleive in both or neither...

I thought Sweden had the highest percentage of people in the world that think evolution is OK, at least that is what I have read in Newsweek.

Paul said...

Newsweek, the voice of truth...