Colbert destroys Texas creationist Don McLeroy

By Phil Plait | May 3, 2012 6:59 am

It may not surprise you to learn I am no fan of one Don McLeroy. He is a young-Earth creationist, antiscience evangelist, and when he was head of the Texas Board of Education he tried to ram through all sorts of ridiculous education standards that would’ve set Texas schoolchildren back about 200 years.

My own rule of not being a dick makes it difficult for me to express myself clearly about Mr. McLeroy, but happily he does the work for me. He appeared on The Colbert Report, and quite ably demonstrates what kind of person he is. And Colbert is only too happy to comply:

The Colbert Report Mon – Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Don McLeroy
www.colbertnation.com
Colbert Report Full Episodes Political Humor & Satire Blog Video Archive

[You may need to refresh this page to get the video to load.]

I love how Colbert says he chooses his own reality; he is mocking McLeroy to his face and McLeroy doesn’t really see it. But then, there’s a lot of things McLeroy doesn’t see.

By the way, the movie clip shown is from a documentary called The Revisionairies, which is all about the damage McLeroy and his cadre did while he ran the BOE. I wrote about this when the directors set up a Kickstarter account to help fund it — which was successful, obviously. From the trailer the documentary seems to be an unflattering look, to be sure, but that’s because it tells the truth. The reviews so far look good, and I’m hoping to be able to watch the whole thing myself… if I can stomach it.

I’m glad McLeroy’s no longer running the Texas BOE… but then, after he left, Governor Rick Perry (remember him?) appointed another staunch creationist to that role (after trying to appoint two others). I like Texas — I’ve been there many times, and even lived there for a summer a while back — but honestly, you guys really need to rethink your choices for politicians.

Clearly, the whole world is watching.


Related Posts:

Standing up too the experts
Texas creationist McLeroy spins the educational disaster he created
UPDATE: Texas revisionist McLeroy on ABC
Texas conservatives screw history

Comments (73)

  1. Steve

    And believe me, most Texans are ashamed of the works going on here! Unfortunately, Reagan showed the GOP how to claim the neo-conservative votes, and it’s gotten way outta hand! In many places in the south, it’s like separation of church and state no longer applies, and it’s getting scary.

    This while some PAC is running TV ads about how poor the USA ranks in science and math compared to other nations. Is it any wonder?

  2. Lars

    My own rule of not being a dick makes it difficult for me to express myself clearly about Mr. McLeroy

    When your concerns for tone trumps your ability to express yourself clearly, you might want to reconsider the former. Just sayin’.

  3. Messier Tidy Upper

    Don McLeroy : “Can you imagine writing a book about what a sleeping rock dreams of?” – 3minutes 17secs mark.

    Actually, I kinda can. Not a book but a very short story I wrote many years ago as part of a challenge :

    Wilbur’s five millennia pass :

    Wilbur was a lump of conglomerate formed by consensus from a mix of volcanic olivine, sparkling micas in an old gneiss lump and sally sandstone, when these tiny non-sentient pebbles merged, cemented by dusty rockflour they created the medium sized rock of conglomerate that Wilbur was. Wilbur was mindless with no internal conflict, no brain, spirit or character whatsoever, he just in a very Zen way kind of was.

    Wilbur desired nothing, feared nothing,. Felt zip, zero, zilch, nada, nil and nix (I hasten to add these are not names of rocky playbunnies but alternate words for the Great void.) He (as far an inanimate object can be sexed) endured the elements with immovable yet slowly eroding resignation. Gradually over the millennia, Wilbur flaked away, exfoliating grains of his non-sentient non-self into nothingness. There was no conflict or grief as Wilbur evaporated away as he had congealed from dust to dust or strictly speaking from particles of stardust, slow boiled, magmatised, ejected, re-lithified and loosely consolidated back into their constituent atomic particles once more ..

    The end.

    Okay, it may not be the greatest story ever written but still! ;-)

    Classic interview – very funny as Colbert intended it to be and McLeroy, umm, didn’t!

    Or did he? Can someone really go on a show like that & NOT know what to expect?

  4. Chris

    Actually there have been studies which apparently show that Conservatives don’t see the fact that Colbert is mocking them. It’s confirmation bias, if he says what they believe even if it’s a mocking tone, they’ll think he’s agreeing with them. Apparently they need their sarcasm detectors retuned. http://www.opednews.com/articles/Why-Do-Conservatives-Like-by-Andrew-Bard-Schmoo-090427-950.html

  5. Mejilan

    Honestly, it’s hard enough to deal with the day-to-day stupidity that affronts the senses… day-to-day. But any time I see an elected official, celebrity, or other ‘high profile’ personality take a stand and embrace manufactured stupidity, it further dims my hopes for humanity.

    I’m all for comedy to help brighten up a day, but sometimes I just can’t help but tune out. Ignorance can be bliss, I guess.

  6. Druhim

    I think he’s well aware that he’s being mocked. You have to keep in mind that like anyone else trying to get out a controversial message (controversial for good reason, it’s nonsense!), he gains nothing by acknowledging how weak his assertions are. He knows the audience is mostly liberal and doesn’t agree with him, but he’s not really speaking to them. He’s speaking to fellow believers by showing that he’s standing his ground. He’s speaking to those that are on the fence hoping he can sew further doubt in science among them. If anything, being mocked by “liberal atheists” would be a point of pride for someone like him. It reinforces within his community of believers that he’s doing something right.

  7. chillman

    @Lars, the line you point out is a reference to the famous WillWheaton quote (aka Wheaton’s Rule): “Don’t be a dick.”

    My personal feeling is that I don’t like evangelical people, be they atheist, christian, trekkie or vegan. This man makes people of faith look crazed and closed-minded. True faith in a divine creator would allow a man of faith to use a school textbook that counters his faith as a teachable moment with his child on the nature of his faith. Mandates placed in textbooks as not to offend personal and deeply held beliefs is not what Jesus would do.

    WWJD? Shrug and help the poor. Because even if the Earth were flat and people generated from Homunculi living in their father’s genitals there would still be people suffering and in need of the love a person of faith is supposed to show.

  8. DennyMo

    Similar to folks who forward Onion stories thinking they support their cause. Actually, I’ve gotten silly stuff like that from elements of the far left, too.

    MTU, loved your Wilbur story. For many years I’ve referred to my computers as Wilbur when they act up, “Come on Wilbur, play nice now.” Obviously, I’ve been part of the problem: since they’re connected to the internet, they are aware of your story, and assume if I’m calling them Wilbur, they need to act like Wilbur, hence the occasional glacial response to my inputs. Either that, or our IT folks are frequently even more incompetent than we give them credit for…

  9. Hevach

    @4: I think it’s less confirmation bias and more than the mocking tone is normal. Look at Beck, Limbaugh, or even O’Reiley when he gets worked up. The mocking tone is part of how certain popular pundits talk about the other side (I’d argue it’s more common in conservatives, but I can also list a few liberal ones who can give them a fair run). Colbert’s hyperbole may be extreme for even the farthest-right Republicans, but there’s always the unelectable extremes and third party also-rans that actually do go that far.

    A long time viewer would remember when he was on the Daily Show and was more about open mockery than mimicry, and a regular viewer will eventually see him crack up laughing or break character entirely when something is just too ridiculous to start with and he can’t top it with a straight face, but you could easily tune in a couple days a week for years and only get the occasional, “Wait, is this guy serious?” vibe. When the serious ones are talking about taxing refrigerators, it’s hard to be sure that another one isn’t being serious when he says just take them away entirely.

  10. Phil

    “Sorry, this video is unavailable from your location.”

  11. Daffy

    Make all the excuses you want—Americans are electing and supporting these morons in droves. We deserve what we get. George Carlin was right: maybe the politicians don’t suck; maybe we suck.

  12. Here is a parable I just invented for atheists to contemplate:

    The non-hearing people of the world hold a convention to denounce this thing called “music” which the rest of humanity is constantly raving about. “It’s ridiculous,” say these non-hearing people, “I have analyzed the data, searched the cosmos and studied the equations and I find no evidence for any ‘music’. Face it, music doesn’t exist! You might as well all be raving about the Singing Tortilla Monster. You people are crazy and ignorant! And stop your silly dancing!”

    Then a little girl stood up, pointed to the gathered non-hearers and said: “You don’t believe in music because you can’t hear. But the reason you can’t hear is not because you are deaf, but because you have your hands over your ears. Try removing them, and just listen!”

    Then a miraculous thing happened. One by one, the assembled non-hearers removed their hands, smiled as they had never smiled before, and began to dance…

  13. danny

    @Messier Tidy Upper
    I liked that story about Wilbur. “…he just in a very Zen way kind of was.” That’s going in my quotes.txt.

  14. Paul Turnbull

    A favour: Could you tell us the broadcast date when you embed Comedy Central stuff. Up in Canada we have to go digging through Comedy Network’s site to find the clips.

    Thanks!

  15. Paul Turnbull

    Oh and this one is from April 23rd for you Canadians out there. :)

    http://watch.thecomedynetwork.ca/the-colbert-report#clip664473

  16. Valerie

    Well, it’s true that everything is bigger in Texas – including the morons.

  17. robertm

    I’m disturbed that McLeroy is still around and that he’s turned his “standing up to the experts” gaffe into his own self promotion meme. That’s conservative creationism in a nutshell defiant stupidity.

  18. Calli Arcale

    Religious conservative? Thomas Jefferson? I suppose I shouldn’t really be surprised that McLeroy knows as much about the history of religion in our nation as he does about evolution, but it’s still depressing. He has no clue whatsoever what Jefferson believed, nor the religious climate of his day. Jefferson was a *radical* when it came to religion, and hardly conservative at all. But so were the Puritans. If Jefferson were a religious conservative, by the standards of his day, he would’ve been a Royalist.

    People like McLeroy, from the modern religious right, say they admire the founding fathers. Yet they often hold views contrary to the founding fathers. Truth is, they don’t really care that much *what* the founding fathers believed in. Why should they? They already know they’re right. The founding fathers are admired purely as icons of America and signs of patriotic fervor; their views are *assumed* to support McLeroy’s ideals. And so it is with evolution; it contradicts his views, therefore he sees no real reason to investigate it in detail — it contradicts, therefore he knows it must be wrong and based on absurdities.

    I find it interesting, however, that McLeroy argues against evolution and science on what amounts to an aesthetic basis. He’s even brought a prop for the purpose, so this is clearly an argument that he cares a great deal about. Indeed, I think it really is, as he claims, the basis of why he disbelieves evolution. And that gives me hope! Why? Because I don’t think he’s all that unusual for becoming passionate about creationism on an aesthetic basis, and because this is a place where we can actually change minds. We just need to get Neil deGrasse Tyson on TV more. ;-)

    Because, my God, but there is poetry in the natural universe! And you don’t have to be an atheist to appreciate it. Quite the contrary; it is the sort of poetry that anyone can appreciate, if they just take a moment to look at it. Seriously, if the universe is only beautiful because God created it, a God whom you have no evidence actually exists, then either it is a very poor Universe, or you haven’t looked at it enough to see that it’s beauty is actually intrinsic. Can this be a justification for believing in God? Sure. It’s not evidence, of course, and it doesn’t have to justify belief in God. It’s beautiful in and of itself.

    I believe in God. Much like Jefferson, I believe He’s fairly hands-off about things. If He were hands-on, what would be the glory in that? When we make things, we have to constantly tinker with them just to keep them going. Wouldn’t God, logically, be better at creating than we are? There’s no reason to assume God would tinker. And I think we were created in his image, but only in a metaphorical sense; I don’t think God has bum knees and a bad back. We’re created in his image the same way everything is, and I believe He chose to talk to us not because we’re special but because we are the first species (at least on Earth) to be intellectually sophisticated enough to talk back. Mind you, I think we’re only barely to that point, and people like McLeroy sometimes make me think we’re moving a bit backwards in that department. But that’s not very charitable of me, and rather in contrast to what Jesus asked us to do (forgive one another just as he forgave us). One more bit of evidence we’re not there yet. We’re a work in progress, and we have the freedom to make ourselves better, or fade into the oblivion of extinction. Our choice.

    The universe is a staggeringly beautiful place. A rock is beautiful. To say it’s worthless because it can’t dream only demonstrates the narrow perspective of someone like McLeroy. Is something valuable only if it can dream? Makes me wonder if he’s pro-choice, then, since an embryo cannot dream…. Everything is beautiful, and we can learn from everything. The only tragedy, the only demonic influence, is the temptation to *not* learn, to assume that since we’re smart enough to understand good versus evil, we do not need to examine our own assumptions. But that, in my opinion, is what the Genesis story really warns us against — believing that we are gods and therefore think we know everything that needs to be known and are always right. The Garden of Eden is a potent metaphor. The fundamentalists get it all wrong when they focus on it as a literal story. It’s not. Some might call it a fable; I call it a parable. It’s a parable not about the loss of innocence but about the loss of *humility*, and the dangers of hubris. We become sinners not because we are smart but because we *think* we are smart.

  19. SLC

    Re Calli Arcale @ #12

    Let’s see, Jefferson rejected the Virgin Birth, the divinity of Yeshua of Nazareth, the miracle tales in the scriptures, the Resurrection, and the Trinity. Not much of a Christian it would appear. Actually, Jefferson’s view of Yeshua was much closer to Islam then to Christianity.

  20. Tony Mach

    You got a rule of not being a dick? And is it hard not being a dick when it comes to climate denial? Do tell the next time you use the flaming planet and trash talk about climate denial!

  21. Carey

    ZenSufi #12: Cute story, but the analogy breaks down under the simplest examination – something you clearly failed to do before posting it.

    Music can be recorded electronically and played back visually. You can see guitar strings and drum heads vibrating when they are struck. You can feel rhythm in the floorboards. None of these things require hearing. The evidence for the existence of music is paramount, even for the deaf. The evidence for the existence of god is nil.

  22. Gary Ansorge

    20. Tony Mach

    It’s pretty obvious you don’t know what it means to be a dick. I could give you an example, but the dick filter here would probably not allow me to post it…So, as far as dicks are concerned, all I can say is, look in a mirror…

    …no…lower…

    Gary 7

  23. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    Looks like a good place for another joke……………..My relationships are mostly plate tectonic………….they start out rocky, then split……..

  24. Carey #21: Yes, ZenSufi #12’s analogy is empty, and annoying. S/he needs to find something we all accept as “true” and “real” and in which we all believe, but for which there actually is no evidence, that we might perceive the same miracle. [pause pause] Having difficulty finding such a thing/concept/idea/belief? Could it be that without a reasoned, empirical methodology on which we agree from the outset, there can be no common understanding of the phenomena we perceive in common (or at least think we do, hence our preoccupation with measurement)?

    And ZenSufi: Keep your snarky karmic mitts off my Flying Spaghetti Monster. Your thinly veiled insult may land you in an eternity of overcooked pasta.

  25. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    Assume that God is everything eternally evolving and you can unify science and faith.

  26. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    Of course you still have to weed out all the nonsense and lies

  27. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    My definition of God is that which led to my existence……….every thing eternally evolving.

  28. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    This covers all the scientific theories, and my God is visible…..just look around….multi-verse….could be……big bang….sure…….bubble universes…..ok……Of course my definition of God is merely my opinion……like all the other scientific opinions of reality…….

  29. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    If you remove God from the equation, there is no need for me to exist either………..But I am.

  30. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    Something allowed my atoms to assemble and here I am………I look at everything and thank God.

  31. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    Given forever in an eternally evolving condition my combination of atoms had to happen. Only way to happen logically.

  32. Grimbold

    Charles,
    you could have said all that in one post, not seven consecutive ones.

  33. Booker

    @ Girmbold, Obioulsy Charles was opening the seven seals. Comment 25 to 32 is all revelation!

    @CAlli Arcale, I see no reason for hope in the contorted rational of McLeroy. Is opinion is not driven by an aesthetic. It is driven by a sense of disenfranchisement. He wants the order of a hierarchy. He wants the definition of of a strict interpretation of “scripture”. He does not want nuance, nor inquiry, nor logic. Such things turn children away from the obedient drones they are supposed to be, and into people who put a negro-muslim-communist-athiest into the Oval Office. McLeroy wants a defined, structured society, where everyone knows their place, follows the established rules, and allow only insurance agents, chain store executives, and lawyers who abide by an originalist interpretation of the Constitution, to be in charge of society. McLeroy is a Christian Taliban. If he could make America operate as a fundamentalist Christian version of Afghanistan, he would be pleased, as would his fellow Rotarians.

  34. Keith Hearn

    Grimbold: That was really just one post, eternally evolving. :)

  35. Booker

    May I please submit this snippet as a reasonable argument against McLeroy, and his ilk. The entirety of this episode of Jacob Bronowski’s “The Ascent of Man” is well worth watching.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FXsVKbHY_T0

  36. Thopter

    Grimbold,
    Look at the time stamps. He obviously tried to put some thought into each sentence. How successful he was may be a matter of opinion. :)

  37. Thopter

    Charles,
    There is no “need” for anything to exist. It just does, by a happy happenstance.

    And how is your opinion about your “god” a scientific opinion?

  38. Makoto

    @Charles – nothing allowed my atoms to assemble other than natural laws. Can’t even blame my parents for most of my atoms, since the majority arrived after I was born. There was never any “need” for you or I to exist, we simply do. No god (which one, btw?) declared that you or I should be here. We are here, and can make the most of our lives and help others. No need for a god, eternal punishment, or eternal reward for that.

  39. Wzrd1

    But, Phil! I figured you’d LIKE the man, he himself said he’s a sceptic! ;)
    OK, I really think he confused septic with sceptic…

    Besides, the world *IS* only 6000 years old. I was reliably told that via blue shifted communications from a few relativistic particles blazing around from the big bang. ;)

    Oh, I SHOULD give the standard disclaimer. I have absolutely no prohibitions on being a dick. I have no blogsphere audience to cater to. Only truth and reality as I see it.
    When someone provides a better view of truth and reality, I review it and discuss it. Then, either adopt it or reject is for reasons I’ll also discuss.
    But, when some go forth without reason, only vitriol, heaven help them!
    I also expect the same in return.

  40. Chris2

    Charles, it is all due to chemistry and the bonds that just wanna bond (gotta match those electron shells)! Though, it helps if you don’t add extra chemicals to your neurons.

  41. Messier Tidy Upper

    @13. danny & 8. DennyMo : Thanks. Glad you enjoyed it. :-)

    MTU, loved your Wilbur story. For many years I’ve referred to my computers as Wilbur when they act up, “Come on Wilbur, play nice now.” Obviously, I’ve been part of the problem: since they’re connected to the internet, they are aware of your story, and assume if I’m calling them Wilbur, they need to act like Wilbur, hence the occasional glacial response to my inputs. Either that, or our IT folks are frequently even more incompetent than we give them credit for…

    When mine is being particularly slow and exasperating, I call it among other less printable things the compu-tarr – Emphasis on that last syllabele! As in moving with the pace of something stuck in the La Brear (sp?) tar pits ;-)

    @20. Tony Mach :

    You got a rule of not being a dick? And is it hard not being a dick when it comes to climate denial? Do tell the next time you use the flaming planet and trash talk about climate denial!

    Do you have any specific examples of such trash talk and being a dick from Phil Plait when it comes to when it comes to thetopic of Human Induced Rapid Global Overheating?

    Is anything the BA has said here been unmerited, unsupported or false?

  42. Nigel Depledge

    ZenSufi (12) said:

    Here is a parable I just invented for atheists to contemplate:

    The non-hearing people of the world hold a convention to denounce this thing called “music” which the rest of humanity is constantly raving about. “It’s ridiculous,” say these non-hearing people, “I have analyzed the data, searched the cosmos and studied the equations and I find no evidence for any ‘music’. Face it, music doesn’t exist! You might as well all be raving about the Singing Tortilla Monster. You people are crazy and ignorant! And stop your silly dancing!”

    Then a little girl stood up, pointed to the gathered non-hearers and said: “You don’t believe in music because you can’t hear. But the reason you can’t hear is not because you are deaf, but because you have your hands over your ears. Try removing them, and just listen!”

    Then a miraculous thing happened. One by one, the assembled non-hearers removed their hands, smiled as they had never smiled before, and began to dance…

    My word, how lame.

    Of course we have instruments that can detect music. They’re called microphones. Music is a patterned form of sound, which is a mechanical vibration. Its existence is beyond doubt. One can explain the emotional impact of music to a deaf person by drawing an analogy from the emotional impact of visual arts. It’s not exact, but it should be close enough to get the basic idea across.

    Your “parable” has no analogue for god. If you believe what most churches say about god, there is no way to acquire evidence to support the contention that god exists. Quite obviously, if one could, then everyone would believe and there would be no need for faith.

    Therefore, your trite little story is no more than a story. But thanks for trying.

  43. Nigel Depledge

    Calli Arcale (18) said:

    Because, my God, but there is poetry in the natural universe!

    This line above put me very much in mind of this line:

    There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved.

    Charles Darwin, On the Origin of Species (closing paragraph).

  44. Nigel Depledge

    Tony Mach (20) said:

    Do tell the next time you use the flaming planet and trash talk about climate denial!

    Perhaps you should first demonstrate that Phil has used these things at all. What do you say?

  45. Nigel Depledge

    Bill (24) said:

    Carey #21: Yes, ZenSufi #12′s analogy is empty, and annoying. S/he needs to find something we all accept as “true” and “real” and in which we all believe, but for which there actually is no evidence, that we might perceive the same miracle. [pause pause] Having difficulty finding such a thing/concept/idea/belief? Could it be that without a reasoned, empirical methodology on which we agree from the outset, there can be no common understanding of the phenomena we perceive in common (or at least think we do, hence our preoccupation with measurement)?

    How about Intelligence?

    We all agree it exists, but there’s really no evidence for it . . .

    ;-)

  46. bouch

    When I read ZenSufi’s (12) parable, I didn’t read the 1st sentence correctly, and read it opposite from the intent.

    That is, I read it as the the ones with their hands over their ears are the creationists, refusing to listen to science. Much better from that viewpoint, IMHO.

  47. Charlyg

    @Booker – The term “Christian Taliban” is so apt! It fully describes what these nutters are trying to do – incorporating God into a state-run religion, telling us how to dress, what women should and shouldn’t do, who we should have intimate relations with – I’m just waiting for the jihad to be announced! Oh wait, maybe that’s what they are trying to make the next election about.

  48. Keith K

    Wheels within wheels
    In a spiral array
    A pattern so grand
    And complex

    Time after time
    We lose sight of the way
    Our causes can’t see
    Their effects

  49. mike burkhart

    What can I say but that many Christans (my self inculded) accept Evolution . And so do 95% of Catholics . Now hear is a guide to dealing with fundamentlists : If you are are face to face with one : 1 Don’t attack the Bible you get nowere insted bring up the point that many Christans don’t agree with there interpation and you don’t eather 2 Say that you understand but you see things difrently ,point out that its a free country and I can beleve what I want .3 Don’t use the Bible to attack them again you will get nowere .4 Fight any and all efforts to poiticaly force there views on everyone .Religous freedom is what makes this nation grate don’t let it become a theocrcy.

  50. Thopter

    @Mike. Yikes. Didn’t you notice that you had a 15-minute window to edit your comment?

  51. bouch

    @Thopter: ???

  52. Georgijs

    I live in eastern Europe so to me it seems weird that someone like Don McLeroy can get into government. People like him would be ridiculed here. I really feel sorry for the people living in Texas.

  53. Joe

    I really don’t care if someone is or is not a believer. That is thier business. I am, that is my business. But it is, at best, rude, to call someone names because of thier faith or lack of it. I am not delusional nor stupid yet I believe in a created universe. It has the laws and conditions of the standard model. God built it and left it to run on it’s own. We should be figuring it out instead of fighting about it.

  54. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    My opinions don’t have to be scientific, but I do observe the science which explains reality…….I accept scientific observations, and try to interpret them with what I feel is my reality…..When the universe becomes two curtains flexing together, and bubble universes, and worm holes inside of black holes, I know that something put me here and you there….I call that something God and I believe that God may be everything…..Just my guess based on your science and my beliefs…..

  55. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    I was brought up Catholic, but believe that Christ was crucified because he called God his father…and that was misinterpreted that he claimed to be God’s only son…..I think we are all God’s children…..to be more scientific……Everything’s children…..I post multi -posts because I write my thoughts and post them as I think of them…..And people may not bother to read very long posts that they don’t agree with….My first religious question as a child was …If Jesus arose where is he?…….Ans: He floated up into the sky……….Oh! That explains it…Not

  56. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    I don’t open up seals……killer whales do that

  57. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    Has anybody noticed that organized religion is like a child caught in a lie…..the explanations become more and more involved but there is little truth to it……..

  58. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    My God is everything eternally evolving because everything eternally evolving put me here now…….I was supposed to be Bill Gates……..instead I am God’s Joke…..I sense a definite sense of humor around me……

  59. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    As I get older it is getting more and more difficult to arise………..

  60. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    Life and death is merely change..no reward ….no punishment……

  61. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    God may or may not intervene in real time…In an eternally evolving condition intervention could be possible without detection, through subtle changes. Or, our intervention may have all been implemented with the Big Bang…….At any rate I exist…….Deal with it.

  62. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    Well said, ” Religion is what makes this nation grate.”……………..that and racism.

  63. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    And don’t even get me started on politicians………..

  64. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    And yes I intentionally utilized the misspelling correctly…….not that I don’t misspell too.

  65. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    I think the tooth fairy made me cynical……I walked into the room as my mother put the dime under the glass…..Then peter pan……the Easter bunny….and Santa all came crashing down……then ” I want to live forever” showed up on Fame…..and I began to mistrust claims of truth made by my fellow man……..I decided it was just between me and that which enabled me to be……..

  66. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    God exists in my mind because I am. Without God a creature would be here….but it wouldn’t be me…………………………..What’s in your wallet?

  67. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    I just know that I was supposed to have all the money………How come I ended up in this body?

  68. Charles j. Slavis, Jr.

    Even Phil knows that when that giant asteroid comes crashing down on him that he is face to face with God

  69. ASFalcon13

    @12 ZenSufi

    “I have analyzed the data, searched the cosmos and studied the equations and I find no evidence for any ‘music’…”

    Your story falls apart right there. You see, I actually have studied the equations, and music falls right out of them naturally. I could start right away with time signatures and fractions…but that’s too easy. What’s the fun in that? No, no, it gets better…

    Part of my thesis at MIT involved a study of the structural dynamics of space telescopes. The best presentation I’ve ever given was connected to this work…I brought a guitar, and I used it as a practical demonstration of the equations of vibration. This included showing how major chords fell right out of the equations that describe a vibrating string…the string’s first several fundamental frequencies correspond to the notes that make up a major chord (well…close. As it turns out, the notes that fall out are based on trig functions, but we tune musical instruments using logarithms as a compromise so instruments can play equally well in all 12 keys instead of only playing one key really well. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Equal_temperament)

    Was that enough math-speak for you? See, there are plenty of equations out there that describe music perfectly, and I haven’t even started talking about music theory, like the cycle of fifths, yet. Music itself is built upon a foundation of mathematics.

    As a side note, now you’re going to ask, “What on Earth does this have to do with space telescopes?” Of course, I wasn’t just doing this for the hell of it. Satisfied that the guitar followed the basic rules of structural dynamics – the same rules that govern the vibrations of the telescope – I then proceeded to use it as a simulation of a space telescope. One goal of my work was to size a space telescope’s struts so that it’s first fundamental frequency was no less than a given frequency (20 Hz, if I recall correctly). I then demonstrated a technique on the guitar called a “harmonic” – fixing a point on the guitar string to eliminate certain frequencies – then expanded the idea to the telescope: by adding structural members to constrain certain parts of the structure, I could eliminate the first vibration mode entirely, which means I could size the telescope structural members to the original second frequency instead, which led to an overall reduction in the mass of the telescope.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guitar_harmonic

  70. Gegenschein

    68. Charles j. Slavis, Jr. Said:

    “Even Phil knows that when that giant asteroid comes crashing down on him that he is face to face with God”

    Superheated plasma does not have a face.

  71. Nigel Depledge

    Charles J Slavis Jr (54) said:

    My opinions don’t have to be scientific, but I do observe the science which explains reality…….I accept scientific observations, and try to interpret them with what I feel is my reality…..When the universe becomes two curtains flexing together, and bubble universes, and worm holes inside of black holes, I know that something put me here and you there….I call that something God and I believe that God may be everything…..Just my guess based on your science and my beliefs…..

    First off, you should know how hard it is to read your text when the only punctuation marks you use are the comma and the ellipsis. Have you never heard of periods (full stops), semicolons, colons and so on?

    Second, you seem to be stating your own personal reality vs. doctrine reconciliation as if it had validity for any other person on the planet. Whatever works for you, that’s fine; but, unless you care to explain its relevance for others, don’t expect anyone else to be more than passingly interested.

    Third, there is a difference between reality and doctrine that you seem to elide over. Reality is (basically) that which can be shown to be, whereas doctrine is a purely human invention. Reality can be shared through the media of evidence and reason, and thus a consensual truth can be approximated. As far as doctrine goes, it can only be shared among those who accept the same doctrine without questioning it, because pretty nearly all doctrine falls apart under scrutiny.

  72. Matt B.

    @12 ZenSufi: Are you claiming deafness doesn’t exist? ;)

    BTW, having your hands over your ears doesn’t make a person unable to hear, it just lowers the volume. You’d never sell this story at a rock concert.

  73. flip

    What I find odd is that McLeroy is out there promoting a film which sounds like it wouldn’t be good PR for him. He must be a very good sport, even if his ideas aren’t evidence-based.

    @12 ZenSufi

    Your analogy might work if it weren’t for the fact that
    a) music is vibration, which can be felt by other senses (and is in fact used in many auditoriums for the hard-of-hearing as a way for them to be included in performances)
    b) instruments can be built to detect music/sound, which then creates objective data

    Show me objective evidence of god and I might ‘listen’. Until then, all you’ve got is a fairly bad analogy.

    (Ah Carey beat me to it @ 21)

    @52 Joe

    You missed the point. You agree that believing or not is someone’s own personal business: and yet, McLeroy was doing his best to impose his beliefs onto the students of Texas (and the rest of the USA) by demanding creationism be included in textbooks. This has nothing to do with making fun of his personal beliefs, it has everything to do with freedom of and *from* religion. Just because snark was the tactic used doesn’t make it any less about that issue.

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