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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Evolution skipped O’Donnell

Christine O’Donnell, United States Senate Tea Party-endorsed, Repbulican candidate in Delaware, is a bottomless treasure trove of absurdities, each seeming to raise the ante from the last. One of the latest to surface is a panel discussion on the TV news and analysis program “”Scarborough Country”” in 2003, where she contended that rather than educating young people about condoms and safe sex, she would stop the whole country from having sex.

If I were inclined to play along, I’d respond with a question as to how she feels she could accomplish stopping Americans from having sex. Not only is it an action necessary for the continuance our species, but it is also a natural, instinctual drive.

Hold the phone, though. This is not the first time O’Donnell has breached the topic of sex, or made outrageous statements, for that matter. In 1996, she also advocated for a worldwide cessation of masturbation.

Recently, political comedian and host of HBO’s “”Real Time”” Bill Maher vowed to show a new video each week of O’Donnell’s borderline lunacy and completely erroneous beliefs until she appears on his show. O’Donnell appeared on Maher’s old show “”Politically Incorrect”” more than 20 times in the 1990s and provided more than a flurry of outlandish commentaries for Maher to choose from. In one such appearance, she asserted her firmly held “”no lying”” lifestyle. Hey, she does not lie! That’s a good thing, right? We teach our children not to lie. However, when pressed by fellow panelist, comedian Eddie Izzard, proceeded to ask, “”If Hitler was at the door and you had Anne Frank in the attic, you wouldn’t lie?”” She responded, “”No.””

Now, yes, we do teach our children not to lie. However, we also hope to teach them other values of right and wrong, i.e. we attempt to foster in them a moral compass that can guide them through the complex situations human beings find themselves in. Most everyone can firmly agree that if Hitler was at the front door and Anne Frank was upstairs in the attic, that they would lie. Not because if he found her he would probably kill her, and you for hiding her, but because it is the right thing to do. Despite being a grown woman, O’Donnell has not dispensed with elementary notions of moral correctness when it comes to just actions. Rather, she holds on to the black and white perception that rests diametrically opposed to a clearly vivid world of grays.

It confounds the basic notions of forward progress as a species and offends the intellectual sensibilities of thinkers everywhere that people such as O’Donnell are given airtime on our nation’s stage, as if we, as a country, care what they have to say.

On Maher’s show in 1998, O’Donnell stated, “”Evolution is a myth.”” She followed the laughter and Maher’s response, “”Have you ever looked at a monkey?”” with a question of her own, “”Why aren’t monkeys still evolving into humans?”” This is someone who either blatantly rejects the science of evolution or is incapable of comprehending it — both options leave much to be leery of. Plenty of people reject evolution, which is another debate altogether that I do not wish to broach. But, what I am drawing attention to is that O’Donnell has taken a stance without fully understanding what “”evolution”” is to begin with. What does that say about her decision-making skills? Is that someone you would like representing you in the U.S. Senate?

The only refutation I have that might potentially help O’Donnell’s case here is, if evolutionary science is so concrete, why do we still have people walking this earth failing to accept facts as facts? Perhaps, she will rekindle some magic of her olden days when she was “”dabbling in witchcraft”” and put a spell on the great state of Delaware to elect her.

Nevertheless, it is most interesting to delve into how someone can be taken seriously without the necessary sense to know what statements are completely offensive to anyone with sixth-grade critical thinking skills. How is someone who works with an MS-DOS version of realistic feasibility, supposed to run in-step with those running Mac OS X “”Snow Leopard”” or Windows 7?

Hi. I’m an analytical thinker and rejecting ignorance was my idea.

— Tyler Quillin is a senior majoring in philosophy and English. He is also the academic affairs executive director for the Associated Students of the University of Arizona. He can be reached at letters@wildcat.arizona.edu.

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