Drawing a Straw Man

Here’s a perfect example from some Bezerkley English Professor who is railing against Christianity and evangelical Christianity in particular:

Fundamentalist Christianity is essentially anti-modern. It holds that truth became manifest two thousand years ago, and everything since—Copernicus and the solar system, the work of Galileo and Michelangelo, the scientific discoveries of Newton, Bacon and Locke, Wollstonecraft and the rights of women, the abolition of slavery, Darwin and Wallace, anesthesia, vaccines against smallpox and polio, progress in civil rights and social justice, the invention of the automobile, bicycle, telephone, airplane, radio, television, computer—is of no consequence. Even though most fundamentalist Christians (unlike the consistent Amish) enjoy the advantages of modern discoveries, inventions, and medical care, they do not acknowledge human ingenuity. (If pressed, they will say God is responsible for all material forms of human progress.) The highest achievements in mathematics, music, painting, sculpture, and literature are of no compelling significance or interest.

Now, compare this with the hysterical cries of “denier” thrown at anyone who even questions the word of the Great Idiot – Algore (Cursed Be His Name).  Do you even know any evangelical Christians Miss Intellectual Snob?

I know lots of them and absolutely none believe that the bicycle is some mythic invention.  In fact, I don’t know of anyone who believes that bicycles are non-existent.  And all evangelicals believe that phones and televisions and medicine exist and have improved the lives of all – even lame-brained idiots in California.

And if you check your history you will find that lots and lots of Christians gave their lives in the ending of slavery in this country – and it is Christians who today are bringing up the inconvenient fact that slavery is rampant in Muslim countries like Sudan and Saudi Arabia.

Why, I even know evangelical Christians who paint and play music and understand mathematics.  I don’t know any who sculpt, but then how many sculptors does anyone actually know of?  There are about 6 world-wide who can make a living at it, so probably not a talent you run into a lot.

And I know of absolutely no evangelical Christians who are violently anti-anesthesia or anti-vaccines or anti-civil rights.  However, let’s get to what seems to have really gotten under the skin of Miss Straw Man:

In so far as it takes any interest in science, fundamentalist Christianity is defensive, attempting either to reconcile the Bible with, or to subvert, science. Its main preoccupations appear to be the control of female sexuality and reproduction (no birth control, no possibility of abortion), the criminalization of homosexuality, access to government funds for its “faith-based initiatives,” and the injection of a primitive Christianity into all aspects of the public sphere, from government ceremonies to first-grade classrooms.

Yes – evangelical Christians have morals and believe that killing babies is murder.  They also believe that homosexuality is immoral and say so.  They believe that destroying marriage at the whim of gays is destroying the major building block of civilization itself.  And I don’t mean one of, I mean the major building block of civilization is marriage and family.  Without that we are all just a pack of raping pillagers and looters who’s major achievement is survival to the next minute and nothing else.  No painting, no mathematics, no music, no sculpture.  Just weapons and death.

And not only do we understand this – we are actually willing to stand up for our moral beliefs and say that others are wrong.  That is the true itch under Ms. Bezerkley’s skin.  She is really angry that anybody would tell her she is wrong.  She knows it in her heart, but she resents the fact that someone else knows it and might actually reprove her for her moral failure.

As for the rest, most evangelical Christians wouldn’t touch government “faith-based initiative” money with a 10 foot pole.  Unlike college professors, these people know that taking their money means having to live by their rules.

Oh yes – and we will continue to resist evolution as a theory of “magic”.  Right up until you can put a bunch of chemicals in a test tube and get them to come up with even ONE cell.  The still unknown mysteries of DNA, RNA, mitochodria, cellular membranes, and all the workings of one living cell are a big obstacle to “it just sort of happened” explanations.  Even if you do have some cool dude with a beard to front the operation.

From the Country That Used to be England

The Daily Mail reports that:

Two schoolboys were given detention after refusing to kneel down and ‘pray to Allah’ during a religious education lesson.

Parents were outraged that the two boys from year seven (11 to 12-year-olds) were punished for not wanting to take part in the practical demonstration of how Allah is worshipped.

They said forcing their children to take part in the exercise at Alsager High School, near Stoke-on-Trent – which included wearing Muslim headgear – was a breach of their human rights.

and the yadda yadda comes fast and furious.  The school has a beautiful answer that proves what happened:

A statement from Cheshire County Council on behalf of the school read: “The headteacher David Black contacted this authority immediately complaints were received.

“Enquiries are being made into the circumstances as a matter of urgency and all parents will be informed accordingly.

“Educating children in the beliefs of different faith is part of the diversity curriculum on the basis that knowledge is essential to understanding.

“We accept that such teaching is to be conducted with some sense of sensitivity.”

So we can translate that as, yes this happened and we are furious that all you yokels found out about it.  Here’s a little thought experiment – just what would be the reaction should Muslims be punished for not wearing a crucifix and kneeling to pray to Jesus?

Yes – we all know what would happen – including one of the parents quoted in the article:

“But if Muslims were asked to go to church on Sunday and take Holy Communion there would be war.”