So…I get back from a weekend spent listening to progressive Alabamians opine the backwardness of their state, only to return to Georgia to see that Republican Congressman Jack Kingston was on Real Time with Bill Maher Friday night, repeatedly denying the reality of evolution by natural selection. Â He doesn’t even bother to tap-dance around it with the old “Well, I’m not a scientist so I can’t say.” Â To add insult to injury, he merely smiles at his confessed stupidity, like some naughty schoolboy caught in some minor infraction. Â Maher rightly points out that evolution denial is a readily disprovable stance (and has been, I might add, for decades–especially since the discovery of DNA and the deepening understanding of its behavior).
I understand that Kingston is not a biologist, nor is he a scientist, and he shouldn’t be expected to answer every scientific question accurately. Â But being a member of Congress isn’t exactly a game of Trivial Pursuit, and Georgia voters should not just shrug off–much less embrace–such smug and willful ignorance. Â Sadly, his statements will only serve to elevate his status within his core constituency.