Hullo Brian, hullo Sue. You know, in a very real sense, I’m slightly irritated by this campaign in the Grauniad to get secularists and atheists onto Thought for the Day. It may not be so bad, I suppose, if they were putting on serious thinkers with something to say who just happened to be atheists. But, all things being equal, opening the God slot to atheists means Radio 4 turning to whoever volunteers, which means evangelical atheists. And I would be not inconsiderably annoyed if those bozos at the National Secular Society managed to muscle in, since their whole purpose is to say “Religion! Boo!” They’re entitled to do that of course, as long as they do it on their own time. Trying to claim a quota of an already small amount of religious programming seems a bit off to me.
We’ve also got the Darwin anniversary at the moment. I really enjoyed Attenborough’s defence of Darwin the other week, but we can expect to see plenty of Professor Dawkins, who sort of encapsulates a lot of the problem I have with evangelical atheists. One thing that winds me up is his reliance on easy targets. I’ve never yet seen him debate a serious theologian, but he is extremely fond of heading over to Kentucky to wind up some inarticulate hillbillies. He also has this touching belief that the way to make the world a better place is to hector religious people and try to browbeat them into becoming atheists. Yeah, that really worked in the Soviet Union.
There’s also the evidential question, as in the vulgar materialist assumption that science has disproved religion. No it hasn’t. It may have made religion intellectually unnecessary, but as Attenborough understands and Dawkins doesn’t, science can’t prove or disprove a metaphysical assertion. No, where science does come into play, and where Dawkins is very good, is when religious fundamentalists make daft assertions about the physical world. This is trespassing on science’s territory, and science is perfectly within its rights to give the trespasser both barrels.
A DUP Assemblyman has urged one of Northern Ireland’s biggest museums to ‘balance out’ a forthcoming exhibition on evolution with a display about creationism.
The Ulster Museum is to run a series later this year on evolution and fossils, which is expected to incorporate the work of naturalist Charles Darwin, whose birthday 200 years ago is currently being celebrated.
Darwin’s views on the theory of evolution and natural selection shocked the worlds of science and religion when first published.
However, North Antrim MLA Mervyn Storey has called for a creationist exhibition to be run alongside which explains the origin of life according to a literal reading of the Genesis account in the Bible.
“All I’m saying is that there should be a balance because there are other views out there,” Mr Storey said.
“There are people who have a different view to Darwin on creation.”
Mr Storey, himself a proponent of creationism, said that he was entitled to express his views on the subject.
“I believe in creationism and intelligent design, I don’t believe in the theory of evolution”, he said.
Mr Storey also said that a failure by the museum to reflect the views of “other people” could raise the possibility that a legal challenge may be launched under equality legislation.
The museum, which is due to reopen later this year following a major refurbishment programme, responded last night with a statement which read: “The Ulster Museum… will house galleries and exhibitions of international significance interpreted in line with excellent scholarship and research.
“Within the permanent science galleries we will explain the conventional scientific theories internationally accepted by scholars and scientists to describe life on earth from the earliest evidence of fossils.
“This is consistent with approaches taken by museums of renown across the world.”
Mervyn is chairman of the Assembly education committee.
In related news, the environment committee has passed a vote of no confidence in Sammy the Streaker, but the rules of the peace process mean the minister stays in situ until Robbo decides otherwise. But I’m very taken, not for the first time, with the comments boxes which are placed at the bottom of Telegraph articles and allow the Ulster populace to speak they’re brane. Here are a few genuine comments:
One day history will show us that ‘climate change’ and the whole CO2 bunkum is a farce. Bona fide science knows this already. Mr.Wilson is to be applauded for his views on the matter and for not following the morons who have fallen for the baised and skewed reporting of the true facts about the fallacy that is man-made climate changed which we have rammed down our throats by government.
At last a minister with a BRAIN, we should give him a medal as big as a frying pan.
Regardless of whether MMGW or AGW are fact (which I dont believe they are) Mr Wilson is to be commended. Why – well, for having the intellectual rigour and conviction to make a stand, for one. To me, the harsh reality is that these ‘climate’ issues are a stage for wanna-be communists, champange socialists and ultra-left liberals, who would like nothing more than to put severe restrictions on the daily lives of everyone, believers (of MMGW/AGW) and non-believers alike.
If we dont collectively waken up we may find ourselves under the cosh of a regime of our own making.
You disagree? Think about it, we’re already in a surveillance driven state, CCTV everywhere, fines for not having rubbish sorted, massive databases of personal information, an overbearing government, etc, etc, etc. Put the pieces together, what could be more perfect than the impending threat of climate carnage as a vehicle for society wide control, huh?
Think, think, think, people, or should that be sheople ?
On second thoughts, maybe we should bring Dawkins over here. Isn’t public understanding of science his job description?