|Nessie: lending the lie to Darwin's On the Origin of Species|
Check this story, brought to my attention by the estimable Kurt Kemmerer:
How American fundamentalist schools are using Nessie to disprove evolution.
Mortifying, eh? According to fundamentalists, the Loch Ness Monster exists. And, you know, if dinosaurs and people can be proven to co-exist that means that the theory of evolution is mere elitist hoohaw, probably inspired by Satan. (By the way, why must it be Nessie? Why wouldn't other prehistoric creatures --say, crocodiles or komodo dragons --fit the bill?)
When people long to believe in something so strongly that they place store in jaw-dropping absurdities, it is very difficult to hold out any hope of advancement for mankind. Nonetheless, as my friend Dan Binmore repeatedly points out, humans have made progress. Literacy rates, life spans, and yes, even morality have made crucial advances over the centuries. All of it in spite of the cruel ignorance of primitives and nativists (of all races).
Well, after all, complaining about the ignorance of Bible Belt rubes is a lot like complaining about the weather. It doesn't do a damn bit of good, but sometimes you've just got to give vent.
Oh, yeah. And while we're in a complaining vein... after two consecutive disappointing summers, Portland is about to conclude the second coolest June in the last 20 years.