Friday, November 11, 2005

Let the Hell Fires Begin!

[[H U H ?]] * Truly stupid statement of the week: On Tuesday, residents of the southeastern Pennsylvania town of Dover voted decisively to fire all eight of their school board members for supporting “intelligent design,” the quasi-scientific theory which holds that some “higher power” had a hand in guiding human evolution. In response to that vote, Pat Robertson, the Christian right activist, televangelist, and onetime Republican presidential candidate (who recently called for the assassination of Venezuela’s leftist president, Hugo Chávez), declared on his daily TV show, The 700 Club, that the Doverites have scorned God’s blessing:

“I’d like to say to the good citizens of Dover: If there is a disaster in your area, don’t turn to God, you just rejected him from your city. And don’t wonder why he hasn’t helped you when problems begin, if they begin. I’m not saying they will, but if they do, just remember, you just voted God out of your city.”
Of course, this puts the lie to statements by other intelligent design proponents, who want Americans to believe that their theory has its basis in science, not religion. And it certainly does no good for Robertson’s already shaky credibility, beyond his circle of true believers. Wasn’t it just a few years ago that he damned Orlando, Florida, for sanctioning a “Gay Days” event? He said that the Disney-dependent city’s acceptance of homosexuality would lead to its devastation by earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, and “possibly a meteor.” So far, though, Orlando is still on the map.

READ MORE:Televangelist Warns of Evolution Doomsday” (Reuters); “O’Reilly and Robertson: Agree with Us or Die,” by Tim Grieve (Salon); “Robertson Says Dover Deserves Snub from God,” by Amy Worden (Philadelphia Inquirer); “Pat Robertson vs. the Pope: Is the Intelligent Designer Loving or Vindictive? ” by William Saletan (Slate); “God’s Pat Problem,” by John Nichols (The Nation).

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