Why the Earth's Age Does, Actually, Matter in Politics
Paul Krugman: Republican Party becoming increasingly 'anti-rational'
By Evann Gastaldo, Newser Staff
Posted Nov 23, 2012 1:28 PM CST
Sen. Marco Rubio speaks to reporters after leaving a closed-door meeting at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2012.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

(Newser) – When Marco Rubio deflected a question about the Earth's age recently, the Florida senator argued that such issues have nothing to do with politics—but he's wrong, writes Paul Krugman in the New York Times. Let's not forget that Rubio himself once "provided powerful aid to creationists trying to water down science education," and has compared evolution in schools to indoctrination tactics used by Communists. With attitudes like those, how is the US going to remain competitive in biotechnology or find natural resources if modern science education is forced to share time with the teaching of creationism?

Rubio's "inability to acknowledge scientific evidence speaks of the anti-rational mind-set that has taken over his political party," Krugman writes, and that attitude can seep into more areas than just science. "So don’t shrug off Mr. Rubio’s awkward moment. His inability to deal with geological evidence was symptomatic of a much broader problem—one that may, in the end, set America on a path of inexorable decline." Click for his full column.

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Showing 3 of 123 comments
mwkelm
Dec 4, 2012 9:29 AM CST
In today’s world I hear of encamped Christians that believe the world is only as old as the biblical history, so basically 10,000 years old. The world takes this belief of some Christians and then applies it to all Christians. I have no stance on the age of the earth; I can see it both ways. Why, because it really doesn’t matter in my opinion. There are so many ways it could have gone down. Some of my personal thoughts are that God could have used per-existing matter millions of years old and that is why the earth can be carbon dated so old. The earth has evidence of many changes over millions of years to create a climate and oxygen rich atmosphere able to sustain life. All this could be the process in which God used to create the earth. He could have used evolution in the various animal species and then placed man on the earth when it was ready, just to name a few ideas. What really matters is that God created the earth and not how. Think also about all the science that has been developed and the terms that go with it. To understand it all takes a lot of time and equipment. In earlier days people did not have the time or education needed to learn this in scientific depth. God had to use simple means to teach his children the things that really matter. If he had tried to teach them about molecules and complicated things without any base, they could be left confused and more importantly they could miss the mark. In his wisdom he chose to do it simply. So the age of the earth and thoughts on evolution don’t bother me as a Christian and I do not believe that they disagree with the gospel of Jesus Christ.
flatnosepete
Nov 25, 2012 4:57 PM CST
The following excerpts have come to us from the Tea-Party caucus: "Rubio's parents flew from Cuba to the US on a pterodactyl." "Babe Ruth was actually half man, half dinosaur. This is why the Babe was able to hit so many dingers." Oh the humanity!
Tabbico
Nov 25, 2012 4:34 PM CST
Adding "ism" to a word does not make it science. The Judeo-Christian creation story does not become science by calling it creationISM. No objections to it being taught however; just relegate it to a course on comparative religions. And by the way, there are myriad creation stories, not just the one in the Judeo-Christian bible. If science classes are forced to teach religious creation stories, then all should be included. Just giving the biblical story is a violation of freedom of religion as it would force anyone who is not Jewish or Christian to learn the story these religions propound.