Friday, May 05, 2006

Paganism

Pharyngula reports that Creationists are pagan!:
Believing that God created the universe in six days is a form of superstitious paganism, the Vatican astronomer Guy Consolmagno claimed yesterday.

Brother Consolmagno, who works in a Vatican observatory in Arizona and as curator of the Vatican meteorite collection in Italy, said a "destructive myth" had developed in modern society that religion and science were competing ideologies.

He described creationism, whose supporters want it taught in schools alongside evolution, as a "kind of paganism" because it harked back to the days of "nature gods" who were responsible for natural events.
This is roughly the equivalent of TfK's preferred descriptor for ID advocates – IDolators.

And to follow up on the ID in the media event (for which audio is now available), perhaps we can all stop hurting Steve Abrams' feelings by calling him a fundamentalist, and just refer to him as a superstitious pagan.

Anyone who enjoyed our meditation on the role of the press should listen to the forum, in which creationist Board of Ed chair Steve Abrams tries to explain how he thinks the media should operate, and several journalists defend their balanced approach to presenting the creationism battle.

My comment would simply be that science is not politics. It's appropriate to give equal time to political opinions which are not equally popular (indeed, it would be nice to see a return to the equal time doctrine abandoned by Ronald Reagan), but science, by being empirical, isn't a political opinion. And political reporters shouldn't cover political disputes over science as if they were disputes about debates over political philosophy. It misinforms the public.

On a sidenote: Much of the commentary on the event has focussed on the bizarre claims of the current BoE spokesman. Little of that commentary has pointed out that his criticism relates to events that happened when he didn't live in the state. He has no basis for comment, other than his prior ideological commitments. It's a shame he only represents half of the Board's opinion.