Monday, September 19, 2005


Raising Eyebrows

"Most adult Sunday school classes don't raise eyebrows," writes Henry Brinton, the pastor of Fairfax Presbyterian Church in the Sunday Outlook section of the Washington Post, "but my church is planning to hold one that's sure to. It's called 'Evolution for Christians,' and it will be taught this winter by David Bush, a member of the church I lead... His view is that science and religion answer two different sets of questions about creation, with science answering the 'how' questions, and religion answering the 'why' ones. 'With a little bit of wisdom and tolerance on each side,' he tells me, 'I think they can complement rather than contradict each other.'"

We already know that one-sided presentations of creationism and intelligent design feature prominently in fundamentalist churches across the country. We also know the holier-than-thou crowd has a tendency to take the view that anyone who doesn't accept their particular literal reading of the Bible is, by definition, an atheist -- or, perhaps, a follower of the Anti-Christ.

That's why Red State Rabble believes it is critical for mainstream Protestants, Catholics, and Jews -- along with followers of other religions -- to begin to discuss this issue in their own churches, synagogues, or mosques.

Defending science is crucial for believers and non-believers alike. Modern society simply can't function without it.

We also think it's important for the followers of mainstream religious thought to take up the gauntlet thrown down by the fundamentalists. Red State Rabble is by nature skeptical, and that makes it difficult for us to give advice to those who do believe. However, if we were believers, we would not take kindly to others telling us that our God and our beliefs aren't as good as theirs.

And here's a bit of shameless self-promotion along these lines: Red State Rabble will part of the St. Paul’s Speakers Series on Hot Topics on Oct. 16 at 9:30 a.m. in the Adult Space of St. Paul’s United Methodist Church, located at 7740 Lackman in Lenexa.

John Calvert, a representative of the Intelligent Design Network and a leader of the movement to introduce intelligent design into the Kansas public school science curriculum, will speak the week before. We hope the good folks at St. Paul's will ask Mr. Calvert what he thinks of Christians, like themselves, who attend church regularly and support teaching real science in our public schools.


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