“It is a tale … full of sound and fury; signifying nothing.” This quote from Macbeth appropriately describes what is probably the most bizarre newspaper commentary dealing with the creation issue that I’ve ever seen. And that’s saying something, since I’ve seen “countless” such commentaries over the past thirty years.
Regardless of your political leanings, to see that such a prestigious newspaper as the New York Times would print such a disjointed, irrational and absurd commentary as the one written by Maureen Dowd on February 3, 2005, is almost unbelievable.
You need to read it for yourself—don’t take my word for it. At the end of this article, there is a link (actually to another news source that reprinted the same article) so you can read it—or at least try to read it—for yourself.
What an apt illustration of the verse of Scripture from Romans 1:22: “
Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools.” The writer of this commentary is the winner of the 1999 Pulitzer Prize for distinguished commentary. But as a secular newspaper reporter said to me during an interview the day of the release of this bizarre commentary, “That’s not the sort of article I would send to a prospective employer when applying for a journalism job!”
So what am I fussing about? Well, the commentary in question is titled “Inherit the Windbags.” Apparently this is taken from the anti-Christian and demonstrably deceitful Hollywood movie Inherit the Wind, supposedly based on the 1925 Scopes trial.
The commentary begins by asking a question about male nipples and then informing people about the AiG Creation Museum near the Cincinnati airport. Interesting transition—male nipples to the Creation Museum and back to a creationist-mocking discussion about male nipples!
Dowd proceeds with more mocking commentary about creationists. Of course, as is usual, no real scientific issues are discussed—nothing of substance.
And then, the clincher: she transitions to Iraq and President Bush. Based on a statement Bush made in 2000, she mocks the president for apparently not believing evolution as fact. She mentions the warning stickers in textbooks in Cobb County, Georgia—then the Tree of Knowledge—then Dick Cheney and Newt Gingrich—Vietnam—“Happy Days”—Roe v. Wade—stem cells—and on to Bush’s recent statements about social security!
Dowd obviously wanted to slam Bush for his views on social security. And how does one do that? Well, you start with male nipples and the AiG Creation Museum, of course!
So what’s the connection? I’m not sure, but my (fallible) understanding of this article is that she seems to be saying that belief in the Bible and creation are outdated, ridiculous ideas. She apparently sees creationists as dismantling the progress of modern thinking and returning to primitive ideas. She then connects Bush to the creation/evolution controversy and proceeds to blast him over his policies, claiming he is dismantling the advances of the whole twentieth century!
If columnists want to make such ridiculous statements about creationists, why not, instead of hiding behind their pen, agree to a real live debate! We’re ready Maureen Dowd—but a word of advice, don’t debate like you write!
Read the article for yourself. [last accessed (February 4, 2005), now available only as abstract, or to purchase as a full article].
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