In case you haven't guessed by now, I love to think. Using my brain is very satisfying, and unlike most of the people about whom I write, I do it often. The best part about my brain is that it doesn't take much to get it buzzing. I overheard a discussion between two radiology technologists a few days ago that got my brain gears spinning. I'm paraphrasing a bit here, but this is the gist of the conversation:
Tech #1: You know, I just read a theory that Eve wasn't created from Adam's rib. No really, some people think he was actually created from her.
Tech #2: Nah man, Adam was created from dust, and she was made from his rib. It says so in the Book.
Tech #1: I know exactly what it says, but that's what I just heard.
After a few seconds of this clearly sarcastic debate, I smiled and said, "I thought we evolved from monkeys", knowing full well that monkeys and humans evolved from a common ancestor and thinking I was making a mildly-amusing joke to go along with theirs.
They looked at me like I had two heads. My smile faded. They weren't kidding.
"You actually believe that crap?" tech #2 asked me.
"You don't?" I replied, my eyebrows raised so high that they were threatening to burst through the top of my forehead.
I won't bore you with the remainder of the conversation, because, well, there wasn't one. They looked at each other, wordlessly deciding that I was a lunatic and not worth talking to, and promptly changed the subject to football or something else equally uninteresting.
Perhaps not coincidentally, I got an email from Aaron (not his real name) some time back that I've been holding on to. It went a little something like this:
Hi DocBastard,I will admit that I am no expert in the field of evolution, nor do I have an advanced degree in theology. However, I have done a fair bit of reading on the subject of Young Earth Creationism, mainly because I find it fascinating that there are people (ie batshit-crazy crackpot nutcase fruitcakes) who believe in it. Now if there are any creationists who failed to heed my initial warning and have actually read this far, I WARNED YOU, YOU IDIOT! Now please don't misunderstand me. I don't think you're stupid, just misguided. And maybe a little bit stupid too.
Love reading your blog and all the comments on FML. You definitely sound like a pretty interesting person! In your last blog you mentioned evolution. Now even though I know it isn't related to medicine a whole lot, I would love to hear you give us your opinions on evolution in general. I've always been fascinated that people can dispute evolution despite all the evidence (and basic logic) pointing toward it and I bet you'd be able to write an awesome article on it. If that's too tough a subject to write about maybe how the human body could have evolved over the last couple thousand years. Or even if you could talk about how the field of medicine has changed too. I'm sure you'd have a lot of insight on all those topics! Keep the blog coming!
There are creationists who think that evolution is stupid, and they go to great lengths to explain just how stupid they think it is. Allow me to introduce Dr. Kent Hovind. (He fancies himself a "doctor" because of his three degrees in Christian education, all from non-accredited institutions - his opening line in his most recent "doctoral" thesis was "Hello, my name is Kent Hovind." Seriously.)
In case you aren't familiar with the difference, I am not referring to so-called theistic evolutionists who believe that evolution is real, but that it was started and subsequently guided by a Supreme Being. Intelligent design is a similar concept. I'm talking here about died-in-the-wool, real-world, actual Young Earth Creationists like Dr. Hovind who believe that the world was created by God some 6,000 years ago. Some, Dr. Hovind included, even believe dinosaurs co-existed with man a few thousand years ago:
I'm not sure where they think all those dinosaurs went or why they vanished, but they have several absurd theories that explain everything. For example, "The oldest tree is 4,300 years old and the oldest reef is 4,200 years old; therefore, everything on earth must be younger than that." If you're in the mood for more laughs, here are some direct quotes from Dr. Hovind:
- Communism is a direct offshoot of evolution.
- The stars would have to evolve. There's an awful lot of stars out there folks, but nobody's ever seen one form . . . I think it is scientifically impossible.
- Macroevolution . . . is when an animal changes into a different kind of animal. Nobody has ever seen a dog produce a non-dog. But the evolutionist believes that a dog came from a rock.
While we're on the subject of human evolution, however, I did find something that some people may find interesting. Dr. Alan Kwan, who has a PhD in computational genomics (whatever that is) predicted how humans will continue to evolve over the next 100,000 years, including developing larger heads, larger eyes, darker skin, and thicker eyelids:
Admittedly the end result is a bit freaky, but I'm sure Neanderthals 100,000 years ago would have thought the same if they saw a picture of a modern human, especially if that human was Dennis Rodman or Sandra Bernhard.
Regardless of my obvious disdain, I believe that everyone has the right to believe in whatever they want, regardless of how preposterous it is, as long as those beliefs aren't foisted on me. In the words of W.C. Fields, "Everybody's got to believe in something. I believe I'll have another beer."