Creationists say my head will explode. OH NOES!!!!
Driftglass bravely dove into the shallow end of the gene pool that is the Conservative Political Action Conference, which he describes perfectly:
For all nine-minutes of bullshit, faux-introspection chin-music that came from the Right about change, future and vision after they got hog-slaughtered in the last two elections, if you want to know what is really at the corrupt, oozy heart of the American Conservative movement (and its filthy little avatar, the Republican Party) look no further than their ideological trade show: the Conservative Political Action Conference, or CPAC.
Anyway, after banging his head on said shallow end, driftglass tells us about of one of the supporters of CPAC, Tradition, Family and Property, which “believes that the failing and “discredited” Theory of Evolution, Teh Gay and those damned unregulated vaginae are destroying America.”
Against my better judgment, I had to look at their website.
So, here’s what what our erstwhile Defenders of Good were up to just last week:
It was a cold Monday morning at Gettysburg College in Pennsylvania on Feb. 16. Students were roaming throughout the campus, busy with their daily routine of classes and studies, when TFP Student Action volunteers raised an American flag and a TFP standard outside of the campus quad. The objective of the day: hand out fliers refuting an issue central to the bellicose atheism of our times: Darwinian evolution.
Onward Christian Soldiers! Apparently, their divinely-inspired mission consists of bothering students trying to get to class:
TFP volunteer Cesar Franco was handing out the TFP flier, “Who really believes Darwin?” when a self-proclaimed pagan came up to him and began criticizing the flier, sparking a debate. Affirming that nothing can be proven with absolute certainty, she began to assert that evolution is certain. Caught in blatant contradiction, she began to deny absolute truth. To this denial, Mr. Franco said, “If I flip a coin in the air, I can say with absolute certainty that it will come back down.” She responded, “That’s not true! There is an infinitesimal chance that the coin will float out into space.” Stuck in a web of inconsistent arguments and dead-end reasoning, the woman departed.
Warning to the young’uns tempted to argue with these bozos: make sure you’re in control of your emotions, and that you’re prepared for the non-sequitur. This is what creationists do–trip you up by misconstruing your words and nitpicking. Onto their views of evolution by natural selection:
Natural selection, which, according to Darwin, is the process by which an organism keeps traits that favor its propagation and discards those which are detrimental, is not consistent in the development of certain animals.
Actually, natural selection deals with heritable traits in populations of organisms, but these guys are really fucking stupid, so we’ll spot them that. Here’s the argument that will make me ‘renounce my Darwinism’:
The giraffe, for example, with its elongated neck, has an extremely powerful heart which exerts a tremendous amount of force in order to pump blood up to its brain. This pressure is so strong that when the animal lowers its head to drink, the force behind the blood would cause a cerebral aneurism were it not for a special mechanism that lessens the force behind the blood, allowing the animal to bend its head down to a watering hole. But, if natural selection takes generations to successfully adapt traits in a species, then the giraffe would have surely died off long before this mechanism was developed.
Of course, a proto-giraffe with a slightly longer neck would be able to reach more food. Then the vascular system would evolve to compensate, then the neck could evolve and elongate further, then the vascular system would compensate, then…
DEAR GOD, CAN PEOPLE ACTUALLY BE THIS FUCKING STUPID UNINTENTIONALLY?
Because it’s not like there aren’t a whole bunch of other ungulates, some with long necks, and some with short necks, which might give you some ideas about the whole problem. Anyway, after a day of burbling similar inanities hither and yon, they claim “no logical argument was raised which could prove macroevolution.” Of course, they didn’t talk to, I dunno, a biology professor–because they’re really hard to find on college campuses.
I’m rebutting these wackaloons, not because I like doing so: it’s about as challenging as whacking a pinata, and as enjoyable as picking on someone who is not very bright (not fun–in case there’s any confusion about that). I do this because they are so stupid one really can’t describe them accurately without being unintentionally cruel to the mentally disabled.
And they are part of CPAC.
Which according to the CPAC website is described as “the heart and soul of conservatism” and “the preeminent yearly gathering of conservative activists.” Republican politicians actually attend. Believe it or not, they don’t run screaming from the room. Sure, there are crazy Democrats (with 50 million Democrats, give or take, some of them are guaranteed to be loco). But they’re not the intellectual vanguard of the Democratic Party.
Party of ideas? You betcha. Too bad, they’re fucking ridiculous ideas.