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    When It Comes To Denying Evolution, These Two Large Demographics Have Been Ignored
    By Hank Campbell | January 23rd 2014 04:00 AM | 19 comments | Print | E-mail | Track Comments
    About Hank

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    Some recent poll results show that right wing people in America have widened the gap of evolution acceptance. Generally, only a few points on this issue have separated the parties but if you know your framing of the last decade, you know that meant it's been okay for Democrats to say Republicans are 'more' in denial of science. This latest Pew survey (1,983 adults, +/- 3 percent at a 95% confidence interval, weighted results) shows the acceptance gap has widened in numerous demographics - but if you do a search about these results you will find people are only talking about the stupidity of the political party they happen not to be.

    Using statistics for political grandstanding is nothing new and it's always going to be rationalization and cherry-picking about evolution, or any science, when it comes to portrayals of opponents. It would obviously be a bad idea for Democrats to criticize black evangelicals on evolution, for example, though they have overwhelming denial of evolution, because they vote solidly Democrat. They also aren't itemized separately in the latest Pew evolution results, though white evangelicals are, oddly(1), so the news has instead been about Republicans. 

    I have made no secret of my irritation with right-wing denial of biology, especially given their claims to be more rational and independent than their opposition. I have encouraged America's foremost conservative magazine, National Review, to jettison the anti-evoluton shills masquerading in their pages as good conservatives with the secret agenda to promote their nonsense. Instead, they have adopted the same 'I will believe your cause if you believe mine' big tent mentality that progressives also use. But are they that much worse?


    How much does religion have to do with science acceptance? Hybrid graphic created from Shutterstock and vitalik.wapday.com images.

    If this were still 2005, we could pretend that global warming and evolution (and also, weirdly, being vilified for obeying a predecessor's federal law restricting human embryonic stem cell funding while still funding it for the first time in history) were the only science issues, and it would look pretty bad for Republicans. Yet even if 100% of Republicans denied evolution, the latest results would still mean that almost 50% of Democrats did also.

    But does that mean a giant swath of America distrusts science, or they just don't like some scientists? The public trusts scientists overall but not climate scientists, and right behind them are biologists. For the left, biologists can't be trusted when it comes to food or medicine. For the right, biologists can't be trusted about evolution. What's odd is that both sides insist biologists can't be trusted because they are controlled by the government.

    Two generations ago, when science academia was as politically balanced as mainstream America, conservatives led all groups in trust of scientists. Today, they do not have anywhere near as much confidence, though moderates don't either. Only self-identified "liberals" show the same trust in scientists and a look at the demographics show why - academics, including in science, are on the left, and overwhelmingly so, which was never the case in the past.  As the ratio of self-professed "liberals" in academia doubled over the last generation (as did independents, though almost none of those professed independents in academia vote Republican), the political partisanship became more apparent and right-wing people lost confidence in their objectivity. 

    But that is about scientists, not science. Actual science literacy is the same for people on the right and on the left, and American adults lead the world in science literacy. Given that literacy, why do so many people deny evolution? Is it due to religion or science or scientists? Yes it is. Just as some anti-GMO people insist that everyone who defends genetics must be on the take from Monsanto, some right-wing people believe that evolution has become an atheist Democratic conspiracy. 

    But even that doesn't tell the whole story of why Americans just don't buy it.


    These results look bad for Republicans. Unfortunately, some of the other results look bad for everyone. Link: Pew Research Religion  &  Public Life Project

    Some framing of these latest results was used to trot out the old 'Republicans are anti-science' shtick again but it didn't resonate outside the people so polarized they think voting Republican causes cancer - too many biologists have been forced to speak out against 'greens' and their war on biology to believe one party is the party of science, not to mention the anti-vaccine and anti-energy movements and their overwhelmingly skewed voter registration. (2)

    It clearly isn't a science literacy or faith issue, since Republicans are scientifically literate and Democrats go to church. One real issue never brought up in the culture war is that evolution is hard, so hard to understand we've had discussions about whether or not it should be taught in high school.  When something is complicated, it is harder to teach and when it is hard to teach it can be easy to instill doubt. We don't teach quantum mechanics in high school but we teach Newton, for example. 

    What most evolution-accepting people, on the left-wing or atheists who say they accept science, actually know about adaptive radiation could dance with that right-wing angel on the head of a pin - they just have unwavering faith in science rather than an oddly medieval-European-looking Jesus.  It may be that Europeans seem to accept evolution more because they lack critical thinking and simply believe what experts tell them to believe.

    So if we know what the results don't mean, what do they mean?

    Women Don't Accept Evolution Either

    When you look at the data, they show that despite hysterical claims of a decade ago that George W. Bush had ushered in some Dark Ages Science Inquisition due to evil religion, the opposite is true.  Americans on both sides of the political aisle have gotten more scientifically literate, not less.

    Older people are the ones who deny evolution the most - in both parties. Though American adults lead the world in science literacy and that science literacy has tripled since 1988, it has increased among the younger demographic. With literacy comes understanding and acceptance. That means that regardless of what averages in surveys show, science has already won when it comes to evolution. Young people get it. Now, there is also less formal religious belief in young people and the great thing about finding two similar curves and declaring correlation-causation is that it makes life easy. That doesn't make it valid.

    Like racism, sexism and lots of other -isms, you can't legislate culture out of existence. Old people with those beliefs will just be replaced over time. Making political hay out of it in the meantime seems silly.(3)

    And overtly dishonest. Along with black evangelicals, you won't see the people inclined to declare that Republicans are anti-science go after women even though the gap between women and men regarding evolution acceptance is larger than the gap between Republicans and Democrats, in all but this latest poll (it's usually around 9 points).


    Oops. Will those people who find flaws in Republicans note how lopsided evolution acceptance is when women are compared to men? Link: Pew Research Religion  &  Public Life Project

    Only 55% of women accept evolution and almost 40% more women than men think mankind has always been just like we are. But it's unrealistic to expect to see those people who are highlighting the problems of the GOP mention the science acceptance of women any time soon. 

    Statistics are funny business anyway, but people who like what they see don't look too hard to find flaws.(4) Pew actually used two surveys, for a total of 4,006 interviews. The weighting, including correcting for "known demographic discrepancies", is subjective. Among black people, Republicans and women, the ratios of evolution denial all seem to have gone up. It doesn't mean that the results are flawed, but it does mean that declaring a big change is not warranted, especially when the results are substantially different from other surveys. There is a reason simple poll averaging works in presidential elections but relying on one poll isn't a good idea.

    So are women and black people and Republicans more anti-science than men and white people and Democrats? They are if you want to believe it. What should make you suspicious are pundits who only focus on one of those things.

    NOTES:


    (1) Catholics and White Protestants look quite rational by comparison, though Catholics have always been pro-science, unless you read the claims of critics who lack a clue about basic history. Specifying white evangelicals but not black seems intentional or a real flaw. Hispanics are likely primarily Catholics so that can go without issue but evangelical and 'born again' are synonymous in mainstream religious demographics, so how they determined white evangelicals but not black is a mystery. 61% of black people describe themselves as 'born again' but only black Protestants, the minority, are listed separately. The Wheaton article say this lack of nuance about black people has "to do more with political demographics than religious characteristics." Even religious people refuse to give real answers, making the Pew categorization suspect anyway; 75% of Southern Baptists don't agree they are either 'evangelical' or 'born again'. So are they mainstream Protestants? It's too subjective to pass without comment.

    In looking at this particular chart, I have to wonder if Pew truly thinks evangelicals, as many as 90 million Americans, are solely white "Duck Dynasty" viewers. It really weakens the whole study overall to have a big flaw like this.



    (2) If you want another thoughtful look at what the results mean, including the insight that just because the left claims to accept more evolution doesn't mean they really accept more science, Kenneth Silber puts the results in context. He's no shill for the right, and he apparently didn't like Science Left Behind (Whaaaa? If you read it today, not only is everything in there completely correct, it has become more obvious to anyone not already in the bag for one side or the other) and he probably got a nice shot of dopamine beating on that dopey GOP for evolution acceptance. But, he's right. They can't claim to be the party of reason and act like Greenpeace or Nancy Pelosi, just about different stuff. If no one on their side calls them out about evolution, then they are just like Democrats when it comes to GMOs, energy, astrology, psychics and all of the other nonsense that rarely gets mentioned when the anti-science discussion/politics meme is invoked. So call them out, Republicans. Well, all 5 of you under the age of 60 who still somehow got hired in academia.

    (3) Put in another topic and it becomes obvious. 44% of white evangelical Millennials (ages 18-29) favor allowing gay and lesbian people to marry, compared to only 12% of evangelical seniors and 19% of evangelicals overall. 

    (4) Critics of American education, for example, focused on one international standardized test that found Finland had the highest scores. What happens to all of those Finns after middle school, since American adults lead the world in science literacy? It didn't matter, it gave critics a chance to say how bad American education is. They did not realize they were endorsing Finland's "conservative" approach to education, where bad teachers are fired and kids are not steeped in social engineering. 

    Comments

    You make a convincing point that men have a higher evolution acceptance than women. But the Pew statistics also show that evolution acceptance are an even stronger function of education. For example in human evolution, the men-women difference is 65%-55% = 10% while the college grad-high school grad difference is 72%-51% = 21%, twice as much. I conclude that the big driver in evolution acceptance is education, not gender. Maybe women have a low evolution acceptance because they are less educated.

    Hank
    Sure, I wrote:
    Older people are the ones who deny evolution the most - in both parties. Though American adults lead the world in science literacy and that science literacy has tripled since 1988, it has increased among the younger demographic. With literacy comes understanding and acceptance.
    I have debunked the claims that American science education is "dismal" (made by the exact same demographic that says the science education of Republicans is dismal) here and in USA Today and other places. American young people are more educated about science than any group in history and that helps. Evolution is also hard. I don't write on evolution without consulting a biologist.

    Obviously the goal of this was not to jump on women or old people but rather to puncture the very large group that only noticed the acceptance gap among Republicans. I have beat on them plenty for denying evolution but these other people are just doing it for political gain - and that persistent political opportunism is why a large chunk of the public does not trust scientists, though they instead should not trust science media.
    The problem isn't that there are more evolution deniers in the republican party. The problem is that the primary system forces republican candidates to cater to them. This creates an internal danger to the republican party as the issue becomes a tribal issue rather than a scientific issue. This is a structural problem rather than a problem of belief. I don't know how to counter it.

    I wonder what a what a comparison of elected republicans who deny evolution to elected democrats who deny evolution would look like.

    I

    Hank
    It would look the same as Democrats look on GMOs, vaccines and nuclear power. Over 50 Democrats in Congress tried to get warning labels on GMOs but if they get 3 Republicans it is dismissed as "bipartisan" rather than Democrats being anti-science - yet slightly higher evolution denial is somehow considered a crippling literacy issue for dopey Republicans. It's partisan nonsense but it gets perpetuated because science media is overwhelmingly partisan, rather than being trusted guides for the public on complex issues.

    When there are only two parties, both are going to have crackpots, and enough that politicians cater to them. I just like debunking the mythology that one of the parties is worse.  There is a reason that the coast of California has shockingly dangerous levels of childhood vaccinations and Nancy Pelosi gets 85% of the vote, but if someone says anti-vax beliefs are a tribal issue for Democrats are you buying it? If not, I know how you vote.
    Do you have any statistics that say Democrats are more likely to reject GMO's, or are you just making that up? Same thing with vaccines. I keep hearing you repeat these claims whenever you want to spread the blame, but that part of the article always seems to be just your opinion.

    Admittedly, some of the same people who read Jenny McCarthy books are also stunningly ignorant about economics, and many of them live in California. (A simply economics IQ test would start with the question about what happens when you vote yourself tax cuts and simultaneous spending increases.)

    But this particular brand of ignorance is hardly unique to left-coast Democrats. Every right-wing think tank is stocked top-to-bottom with people who supported spending increases and tax cuts for one set of Presidents, and then opposed them for another.

    As a general rule, Democrats tend to be more distrustful of big business in general, and Monsanto in particular. In all fairness, though, Monsanto has given them good reason to be distrustful.

    I understand that you have complete confidence in corporations, and you think everyone else is a hysterical commie hippie. But the track record of multinational corporations over the last few decades has been mixed. There have been some advances, but there have also been some spectacular ethical failures.

    The same cannot be said of evolutionary scientists or climate scientists.

    Hank
    You're never going to get anywhere outside your little clique of friends who all agree with whatever you are spouting, writing things like:
    Do you have any statistics that say Democrats are more likely to reject GMO's, or are you just making that up? 
    and then
    I understand that you have complete confidence in corporations, and you think everyone else is a hysterical commie hippie.
    You also did exactly what I said people do; rationalize an anti-science belief for the political party you happen to be ('anti-corporation') while insisting the opposition you like is anti-science after all.

    And I am especially happen you were born part of the 1% and don't need to work for some evil, unethical corporation. Not many people are as lucky as you, and they are being hurt by the supposed "anti-corporation" war on food, energy and medicine by people claiming they still love science.
    It actually amazes me that you keep repeating the same arguments. Every time you make the claim that Democrats are just as bad as Republicans, someone destroys you in the comments section. Then, a few weeks later, you come back and repeat the argument in some new form in a different post.

    All the arguments seem to run together, too. Monsanto has introduced some stunning improvements in plant productivity. But that does not make them blameless for their screw-ups. They are a big business that is designed to make a profit. And they have chalked up some failures that were so egregious that it made their successes a lot tougher to swallow (so to speak). And every time someone points this out, you dismiss them as a hysterical commie hippie.

    At one point, I accused you of “arguing like a Republican”. This is not fair, I guess. Many Republican economics websites simply turn off their comments section (Greg Mankiw, for example). Many Republican scaremonger websites edit my comments in order to distort my argument, and replace my words with obscenities. (RedState)

    But you do follow a familiar path in at least one way. You use facts when the suit you, and you you sarcasm when the facts are against you.

    I am lucky in that the corporation that I work for has a policy that if something will look bad in the newspaper, you can't do it. I was lucky enough to have two job offers, and I chose the one that had a strong corporate culture of honesty. The other alternative did not, but if Monsanto, for example, had been my only job offer, I would have taken it.

    The fact that they are a big corporation that employs many thousands of people does not make them blameless either. Corporate culture comes from the top.

    Hank
    You do a few things that are outlined in The Top 5 Reasons People Don't Reply To Your Comments.  Instead of attempting to circle the wagons around survey results you happen to like, and falling back on hyper-emotional verbage when you don't get your way, try and take a critical look at the issue, without your confirmation bias. It would be educational for you.
    rholley
    Here’s an example of bias, maybe:

    Earlier today I read an article in the HuffPo:

    'Red' States Have Higher Divorce Rates Than 'Blue' States, And Here's Why

    Even before I read it, I came to pretty much exactly the same conclusions as the article.  However, I would not have phrased them in such an (un)holier-than-thou way as they did.

    Rather, imitating one of the many stereotypes of Americans that we have over here (I will spare you the dreadful imitation accent), I would condense them into this single sentence:

    “Well, them Californicating hippies don’t get married anyway, so they won’t be divorcing either!”

    Robert H. Olley / Quondam Physics Department / University of Reading / England
    Hank
    That rationale explains the really high unemployment in California also.
    I defend a certain amount of my own confirmation bias, as well as a certain amount of my emotional arguments.

    It is not that I tend to believe information that confirms my existing opinions, it is that I find many of my own opinions to be more relevant to my life. I have read studies, for example, that say liberals are more likely to distrust Monsanto. In my mind, a certain amount of this distrust is well-earned. In 1976, well after the dangers were documented in their own research, Monsanto was still manufacturing PCBs. Their record on DDT is not much better.

    When I read the long and storied history of Monsanto, I tend to focus on the failures of accountability. That is a form of confirmation bias, but that is also how I separate out the useful information. Even the worst people have a hard time being careless every single day. If I were to follow around a VP at Monsanto for a year, I would most likely find that 99.9% of everything he does is fine and socially acceptable. Because of my confirmation bias, I assume he must be hiding something. Then, if he spends 0.1% of his time working against the environment, then my overall assessment turns out to be correct.

    Statistically, it is a confirmation bias, because I am 99.9% wrong. But to me, I still have a correct conclusion, because in those other two hours, he might do damage that will take a thousand years to fix.

    I know plenty of people who are anti-GMO and anti-vaccine. This is not a random sample, but they are about half Democrat. The other half are Republican or libertarian. Not a scientific study, but it applies to my life just fine.

    I also stand by my confirmation bias when it comes to which issues are important. Global warming is one of the biggest issues mankind will ever face. To me, if someone gets their science wrong about GMO labeling, but right about global warming, then they are 99% correct. Statistically, this is confirmation bias, but I stand by it. I couldn't care less if GMO foods are labeled as "organic". In fact, the vast majority of Americans would prefer that all GMO foods be labeled as such. In the case of my son, who has some really crazy allergies, I tend to agree with the majority of Americans, even though they are not scientists.

    As far as the emoptional argument is concerned, you are the one who listed the ingredients of an egg. Just as much as you dislike my hasty generalizations, imagine how I must feel.

    You started off with an article about how Republicans are facing a new litmus test, and can't seem to get elected any more if they agree with evolution. Instead of commenting on what a sad state of affairs this has turned into, the conclusion you came away with was: "Democrats are just as bad."

    Well, to me, that is an insult.

    Hank
    agree with evolution. Instead of commenting on what a sad state of affairs this has turned into, the conclusion you came away with was: "Democrats are just as bad."

    Well, to me, that is an insult.
    I told Republicans to fix their problems and not rationalize them away, and I told Democrats to do the same thing about the people under their anti-science tent. Yet the only one of those that insulted you was telling Democrats to not be as anti-science as Republicans, except about different stuff.

    Go read National Review or any other conservative site that discusses evolution. You know what they never call themselves? Anti-science. They have lots of rationalizations, just like you rationalize that you don't trust science because Monsanto did something Rachel Carson didn't like 50 years ago. 

    Using that logic, that anyone who works for Monsanto sold their soul by association, it means that no Republican can trust any science done during the Obama administration. It's just as legitimate if that is how you see the world.

    I disagree with your assertion that a giant swath of biologists transform into maniacal anti-Earth tinkerers if they leave grad school and go to work for DuPont or any other corporation, yet they are wholesome and pure if the government tells them what to work for at a university.

    Maybe I am just an old hippie. When I was young, liberals distrusted the government. Today, it's the only science activists will accept - well, as long as it's climate science. All other science they distrust.
    I am also comfortable with some of the rationalizations.

    If a Democratic candidate were to run for office who was pro-vaccine, pro-GMO, and pro-animal testing, would it sink their career? We have objective evidence that it would not. Hillary Clinton has suffered little, if any, for holding these positions. Barack Obama has waffled on all three issues, and eventually landed on the side of science, but has not suffered any political damage.

    For the Republicans, though, science issues are increasingly becoming a litmus test. At each Presidential debate, Republicans are forced to raise their hand if they believe in evolution. Mitt Romney suffered heavy damage for raising his hand, and later had to clarify that he thought evolution was the means that God used to direct the creation of different species.

    Global warming is a similar "hot button" issue among Republicans. When mitt Romney admitted that he thought the planet was warming, he was forced to walk that back as well, and claim that humans were not at fault. When Huntsman refused to denounce science, the entire debate turned into a contest of who could dismiss Huntsman the fastest.

    This is obviously a rationalization, but it is also mostly true. Democrats are not forced to kowtow to the anti-science wing of their party, while Republicans are. This has strong implications for policy, and anyone who says it does not is rationalizing.

    Hank
    A Democrat won his campaign due to a video of him taking a rifle and shooting it through the cap and trade bill - clearly he is as anti-science about global warming as anyone. You'd know that if you were evidence-based and not looking for ways to affirm your political views.

    Hillary Clinton couldn't even get the nomination in 2008 so saying she suffered "little" doesn't hold up. Her opponent, Sen. Obama, on the other hand, said the science was not settled on whether or not vaccines caused autism, which is the same waffling right wing people use about evolution. Since you like to match curves and claim causation, it certainly does mean her stand with science hurt her. On the other hand, a person on the right rationalizing Romney can do it easily - his views on evolution are mainstream America and represent all but the fringes. It isn't like any Democrat runs as an atheist because they would lose the same amount of people as on the fringe that the right has.
    Cap and Trade passed the House in 2009 by a vote of 219 to 212. Only 44 "Blue Dog" Democrats voted against the bill, and only eight Republicans voted in favor. In both cases, this is a distinct minority. If you found one guy who campaigned against it, congrats. That is not the norm, and that is kind of the point.

    Global warming is something of a litmus test for both parties. Democrats who deny science are risking a primary challenge that will end their political career in all but the most conservative districts. Similarly, the Republicans who support science will face a hard primary challenge in all but the most liberal districts. On the Cap-and-trade bill, Mark Kirk may have seemed to be defying the Republicans, but he was perfectly aware that he was about to run for Senate, to replace Roland Burris.

    I am not sure that it is fair to say that Hillary's stand on GMOs is what cost her the nomination. At the time, Obama was promising to raise taxes on the rich, which got a lot more traction in blue states than his non-statement about vaccines. Again, that is kind of the point. Democrats might disagree with her on GMOs, but it is not a deal-breaker. On the other hand, if she were to suddenly start talking about teaching intelligent design in science class, that would indeed be a deal breaker for most Democrats.

    Although there are no more atheists left in Congress, I am not sure we can place the blame for that on Democrats. Running for political office as an atheist is political suicide in either party. Bigotry against atheists is so ingrained in American politics that anyone who is not sufficiently bigoted is looked on with some suspicion.

    Mitt Romney was brave enough to point out that evolution should not be taught in science class, but creationism in philosophy. As with Hillary, it was not a deal-killer, but it was certainly a topic of discussion. The more correct question is why were Paul Broun's statements not deal killers?

    Remember Congressman Paul Broun from Georgia, who announced that evolution, embryology, and the Big Bang theory are ”lies straight from the pit of hell”? In most left-coast districts, that would be a quick route to retirement. In Athens, GA, not so much.

    Hank
    I see flaws in both parties and you are going to continue to engage in moving the goalposts and insist that if either me or anyone else in the science world not in the bag for your political world view does not continue to reply to each new and more far-fetched claim, you must be right; I fail to see what one idiot in Georgia has to do with anything. You know who else is from Georgia? Cynthia McKinney. But she's a black Democratic woman so you don't mention the anti-science (and insane) idiocy she spouted over and over. 

    Nancy Pelosi insisted that going back to using styrofoam containers in the Congressional cafeteria was going to cause cancer - and she gets 86% of the vote in San Francisco. To people who are not shills for one party, that means Democrats also still like people who are batshit crazy. Yet it's only Republicans that say stupid stuff that you seem to notice.

    I was pointing out the inconsistency and hypocrisy of not noting all of the demographics that are anti-evolution and just focusing on Republicans - and you nicely made the point by ignoring everyone except the Republicans, even going so far as to rationalize your rationalizations about how Democrats are still awesome despite being anti-science about lots more things, but a few points less on evolution.
    You tossed out one example of a Democrat who ran against cap-and-trade, I tossed out one example of a Republican who talks crazy all the time. Your raised me with Cynthia McKinney, I will raise you with Louie Gohmert. (Back in August he said it was a “scary thought” that liberal elites could be culling the population with vaccines to preserve the Earth’s resources.) We could go on like this all day.

    I agree that both parties have elected their share of quacks, but your original point was that "Actual science literacy is the same for people on the right and on the left". This is true in general, but false in the specific.

    On a variety of what I consider to be "minor" issues, Democrats are statistically less literate. Democrats are more likely to believe in astrology by nearly ten percentage points. Democrats are also less likely to understand lasers, viruses, radiation, cancer, and pesticides.

    When it comes to climate science, evolution, and the age of the planet, the statistics turn around, and the Republicans come out on the bottom.

    On average, the two parties may be about the same. In the National Science Foundation survey, the Tea Party actually came out on top (by a very small margin), but obviously it depends on which questions you ask. Much of the tea party comes from rural areas where there are better-than-average schools that teach a strong basis in math and science. Many yellow-dog Democrats tend to come from inner cities, where secondary education is much more spotty.

    Once you get away from the averages, though, the general rules start to fall apart. The higher the level of education, the more likely someone is to vote Democratic. (see, for example, http://www.politifact.com/georgia/statements/2012/nov/05/larry-sabato/ed...)

    The elected officials I have met tend to be distinctly smarter than I expected. Even a state congressman who literally voted against every issue I was concerned about was clearly informed about each issue. He understood my point of view, he simply disagreed. I felt like his opinions were based on short-term gain at the expense of long-term problems, but I could not claim he was scientifically illiterate. He was smart, just Republican.

    Even with my confirmation bias, I cannot say that he is ignorant. But I can say, with some confidence, that on certain big issues, he seems to be supporting an unproven and unscientific approach. I am sure he believes the same about me.

    Just as he does not admit to his unscientific opinions, I choose not to admit to mine. In my opinion, a Democrat who regularly attacks basic science is limiting their career. A republican who does the same does not seem to limit their career at all. In my opinion, of course.

    Make excuses for Republican ignorance much? Trying to equate the abysmal stupidity of right-wing religious fanatics to Greenpeace is ridiculous. Greenpeace is trying to prevent the destruction of our environment, while the fundies are trying to take us time-traveling back to the Inquisition (or at least to MvCarthyism).

    In the future environmentalists will be revered for saving the planet, while right-wing fundies will be reviled for the pernicious effect their idiotic fear and greed are having on our planet.

    Hank
    Thank you for making my point that militant crackpots are going to wash away the goofiness of their own party and demonize the opposition.