Thursday, August 07, 2008


Political Giants

Mervyn Storey, a Member of the Legislative Assembly of Northern Ireland from the Democratic Unionist Party, the largest party in the legislature, has called for creationism to be taught alongside evolution in science classes. In a statement that might sound eerily familiar to Americans, Mr. Storey said:

This is not about removing anything from the classroom – although that would probably be the ideal for me – but this is about us having equality of access to other views as to how the world came into existence and that I think is a very, very important issue for many parents in Northern Ireland.

That's the bad news. The worse news is that Mr. Storey is the Legislative Assembly's Education Committee chairperson.

Even more bizarrely, Mr. Storey wants "the new Giant's Causeway visitor centre to include creationist arguments that the distinctive rock formation was formed less than 6,000 years ago."

Richard Dawkins has weighed in:

We live in a democracy and anyone can get elected. I think it's sad that people with ridiculous views do get elected because it suggests that the electorate is not sufficiently well-educated to see through them.

Should we Americans feel comforted by the fact that we don't have a corner on the market for loopy legislators?

Oh, hell no. I was counting on Europe to balance our insanity with cold, hard reason!

There's no place to hide!
Of course the Giant's Causeway is less than 6000 years old. Everbody knows that Mac Finn created it while escaping from a rival giant in the 3rd century CE.
Why do I get the feeling that won't be Storey's story?

BTW, Welcome back! ... and in one piece, too! If the tales be true, that wasn't a given.
Just hold on here. Your man will be a Democratic Unionist which is the party created by Dr Iain Paisley who in turn is the creator of the Free Presbyterian church. His doctorate comes from Bob Jones Uuniversity which, I think, has deep roots in protestant fundamentalism. This is fortunately confined to Northern Ireland although the rest of the UK does have a few of the same - mostly outwith any real influence.
Bob Jones has, indeed, among the deepest of deep roots in protestant fundamentalism and I sincerely apologize on behalf of all Americans for having exported that particular infection to the shores of Great Britian.

If we ever develop a vaccine, be assured we will be willing to share it with our friends across the Big Pond.
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