Reed Cartwright has the full text of a letter from Kentucky Governor Ernie Fletcher to the Kentucky Academy of Sciences. Fletcher is a creationist who has urged local school districts in that state to teach creationism. His argument is patently ridiculous. He actually argues that evolution conflicts with the Declaration of Independence. No, I’m not making that up:
Our nation, however, was founded on self-evident truths. Among these truths are inalienable rights “endowed by their Creator.” From my perspective, it is not a matter of faith, or religion, or theory. It is similar to basic self-evident objective truths that are the basis of knowledge. For example, 2 + 2 = 4. It disappoints and astounds me that the so-called intellectual elite are so concerned about accepting self-evident truths that nearly 90% of the population understands.
Nonsense. Evolution says nothing about a “creator”, nor does belief in a creator have anything to do with whether one accepts evolution. The Declaration doesn’t say “endowed by the Biblical God as his word is interpreted literally by his followers” and it was in fact written and/or edited by at least three men who didn’t care much for the Biblical conception of God at all (Jefferson, Adams and Franklin). Clearly they were using language of sort of a “lowest common denominator” deity. Deists, Unitarians and Christians alike could read what they wanted into a vague term like “Creator”.
Update: I didn’t realize that one of my fellow ScienceBloggers had posted the same letter a couple weeks ago. Scooped again!