Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Re: Carson, Emory, and Darwin

Yesterday we noted the disgraceful reaction of some Emory University biology faculty members to the invitation of Dr. Ben Carson to speak at the University's commencement.

There's an i-petition being circulated requesting Emory to reaffirm Dr. Carson's right, and that of any scientist or any thoughtful person at all, to hold a dissenting view on Darwinian theory without having to face rude and distorting attacks. You can go here to read about it and follow the links to the petition if you wish to affix your name to it.

Flipping and Evolving

Chris Matthews talks to his guests in the video below about how the president is trying to finesse his view on gay marriage to which he has publicly claimed to be opposed. Fearful, apparently, of alienating the gay sympathy vote or antagonizing anti-gay marriage independents, Mr. Obama has been loath to explicitly reaffirm his previously stated position or renounce it, opting instead to have his spokespersons disingenuously aver that the president's thinking on the issue is "evolving":
Everyone knows the president supports gay marriage but doesn't want to acknowledge that support for fear that it will cause him political trouble. So the most transparent administration in history dances around the issue rather than having the fortitude to tell us clearly where he stands on it.

It's ironic that the president was lauded in the media for having the courage to give the order to take down bin Laden, but seems to lack the courage to take a forthright position on a social issue like gay marriage.

It's also interesting that when Mitt Romney changes a position he's said to be a "flip-flopper," but when Mr. Obama changes a position he's said to be "evolving." Republicans "flip-flop," which sounds unprincipled, while Democrats "evolve" which sounds thoughtful and wise. It's a clever political tactic, I suppose, but rhetorical artifices like this do little to edify either the public or our political discourse.