Rejection of science makes GOP stupid

Al Diaz | Eastern Echo

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal talks during a plenary session at the 2008 Republican Governors Association Annual Conference at the Intercontinental Hotel in Miami, Florida, Wednesday, November 12, 2008. (Al Diaz/Miami Herald/MCT)

Last updated: 03/10/13 10:22pm


“We must stop being the stupid party,” said Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana about his beloved Grand Old Party in a speech to the Republican National Committee.

Jindal, however, represents the very elements that make his party the stupid party. It isn’t that he is ostentatiously stupid like Sarah Palin, but that he kowtows to the most anti-intellectual facets of America.

In 2008, Louisiana enacted the Louisiana Science Education Act. The law allows for school vouchers funded by taxpayers to be used for private schools, many of which are religious schools that teach pseudoscience in science classrooms.

“Bible-believing Christians cannot accept any evolutionary interpretation,” said Life Science, one of the textbooks used in supposed “science” courses at these private institutions. “Dinosaurs and humans were definitely on the Earth at the same time and may have even lived side by side within the past few thousand years.”

There have since been bills introduced in Louisiana’s Legislature to repeal the law, and it was ruled unconstitutional by a state court recently. But the law and its attempts to promote creationism are an example of the problems within the Republican Party, and present a clear reason why most scientists identify as Democrats.

A Pew Research Center poll conducted in July 2009 showed only around 6 percent of U.S. scientists are Republicans.

It’s doubtful most scientists merely happen to be liberal or that they happen to support President Barack Obama. It’s more likely they identify as such because they want actual science to be taught in science classes.

Creationism is the fallacy that the Earth is only 6,000 years old, and that mankind has always been around; that God created humans in present form. It is a rejection of evolutionary theory, and almost every discovery and fact about the world we know today.

The scientific community knows the process of natural selection and random mutation, evolution, is how modern day creatures came to be, that the Earth is 4.54 billion years old, that dinosaurs went extinct 65 million years ago and mankind has been on Earth for an estimated 200,000 years.

But despite these facts, there are individuals who demand we “teach the controversy,” though in reality, there is about as much true controversy over evolution as whether babies are delivered by storks or by obstetricians in operating rooms.

Louisiana and many other states have embraced these individuals and their wacky theories, which makes you wonder why we don’t teach that thunderstorms are a manifestation of Zeus’ frustrations, or that heat waves are a result of Helios’ displeasure.

Perhaps students would be better equipped with “Heroes, Gods and Monsters of the Greek Mythology” than “Biology Made Simple.”

Gov. Jindal graduated from Brown University with a B.A. in public policy and a B.A. in biology. He was later accepted into New College, Oxford, as a Rhodes scholar.

In other words: He knows better.

Supporting laws like the Louisiana Science Education Act is one of the things making the GOP the “stupid party” and Jindal is a contributor to its dumbing down.

Pretty depressing when you consider this Rhodes scholar could help his party wise up.

Published Mar 10, 2013 in Opinions

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