July 08, 2006
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A bit more than a decade ago, I was walking from class to the student union on the SFSU campus when someone handed me a booklet, maybe two inches tall by four inches wide. Curious as to what it was, I took it and checked it out. I still have it today. Not because I think it's an exceptionally good booklet, but because I think it is an exceptionally bad one. The booklet, in comic form, was titled "Big Daddy?" and featured on its cover a gorilla chomping on a banana. Inside, a fat, balding, elitist liberal professor teaches a class full of brainwashed students about evolution. One student stands up and challenges the teacher, eventually "proving" evolution wrong and converting the students and the teacher to Christianity.
Here are a few pages from the cartoon booklet, as reprinted in 2002 (the illustrations and text are the same; some web-based footnotes have been added):
Notice how almost all the students are ethnic--Black, Asian, Jewish, Hispanic--or are women--and the Christian looks like he could have come straight from the Hitler Youth. The "argument" that the teacher uses to "prove" evolution, as well as other materials attributed to modern science, are little more than creationist straw men. The blond-haired, blue-eyed Christian boy winds up by stating that since gluons are "a made-up dream," God therefore must be the force holding protons together in the nucleus of atoms, citing Colossians 1:17 as proof. Take that, Darwin!
It seemed obvious to me that this guy is a rather standard creationist drumbeater, and the illustrations in this particular booklet have rather uncomfortable racial overtones. The author is Jack T. Chick, a Baptist evangelical who writes these cartoon "tracts" and other fundie publications for a living. He's the kind of guy who abhors being so politically correct as to give respect to other religions, and seems to take particular umbrage against Islam and Catholicism (which he accuses of, among other things, grand conspiracies such as starting the Civil War, creating the Ku Klux Klan, inventing Jehovah’s Witnesses, Mormonism, Unitarianism, Christian Science, and other religious groups, and assassinating Lincoln).
He also pulls some funny stuff, like disproving Islam by pointing out "scientific errors in the Qur'an," where he shows up Islam by pointing to a scripture that claimed that the sun set in a "spring of murky water," and that this came from the Islamic belief that the world was flat. This, of course, is in contrast to little things like Noah putting one pair of each of the million or so species of animals on earth (not counting fish) onto a 450-foot ark, or how Christians believed that the sun revolved around the Earth. Or how about when Mark says that "the stars of heaven shall fall"? In several places in the New Testament, stars are referred to as things that can fall to Earth. And so on.
But enough ragging on this guy; it's like shooting fish in a barrel. The thing is, this guy is not atypical of creationists. Every once in a while I come across the tract in my belongings and get a good chuckle out of it.
Posted by: Tim Kane at July 9, 2006 02:15 AM
Posted by: Jimbo at July 9, 2006 07:56 PM