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Feb 22 2010

Congratulations and Kudos to RenewAmerica.com

To be honest and fair to RenewAmerica, I preface this post with the disclaimer that the views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.

Congratulations!

Yes, I wish to heartily congratulate RenewAmerica.com for a magnanimous contribution to our society. Many institutions are either unwilling or unable to provide resources for the mentally or intellectually challenged so that they might have an outlet for their creativity. RenewAmerica.com has proven themselves both willing and able, particularly in the case of allowing individuals who, in my opinion, present evidence of not being well-grounded in reality a platform where they might express their screeds against science and reason.

One particular article on their site was recently brought to my attention in a blog posting at Pharyngula. The article mentioned is entitled “Evolutionism: the dying West’s science of magic and madness” and was penned by Linda Kimball.

From her very first sentence (after quoting Daniel Webster) she gives us evidence of her apparent misconceptions of reality.

Heedless to the warnings of wise men like Daniel Webster, since the turn of the century increasing numbers of Americans have been turning their backs on the rational, personal God, and by extension, on the source of their humanity, and of their unalienable rights.

I’m quite sorry to disappoint Linda, but increasing numbers of people around the world have been disavowing the existence of mythological beings such as her god for much longer than “the turn of the century”. I might also caution her to be very careful when using that particular phrase, as the most recent “turn of the century” was less than ten years ago.

I had thought that Linda was referring to the Christian™ god, but because she used the word rational in its description, either an actual deity can be ruled out or we can assume that Linda does not understand the meaning of the word rational. As humankind’s knowledge of the Universe has increased, many of us have learned that we can leave childish ideas behind us. We can disregard the mythological stories of all-powerful beings who watch everything we do in order to punish or reward us based on our adherence to some arbitrary set of rules. We have become rational.

What is the source of my humanity? Personally, I would have to say that evidence of my humanity is within my genetic makeup, and its source can be traced back through the evolutionary history of all humans. If you go back far enough, the source of humanity is the source of all life on this amazing planet we live on. That source arose from the building blocks of proteins about 3.5 billion years ago through a process called abiogenesis.

I was unaware that anyone on this planet actually had unalienable rights of any kind. Most of my rights have been granted to me by the United States Constitution, and they may be altered by amending that document. Secular laws devised by human beings are enforced in the United States of America by various policing agencies. As we do not live under a theocracy (of any religious flavor), the religious laws espoused by any particular religion mean absolutely nothing to those who do not follow that particular religion. Your god has given you no rights that are enforceable within this country. Your fellow human beings have extended rights to you, expecting in return that you extend the same rights to them.

A Sad Continuation

The most unfortunate aspect of Linda’s article is that her first sentence is the single most intelligent, coherent thing she has to say. After her first paragraph, she quickly dives into some sort of state wherein she equates secularism with new age spirituality, and goes on about the intelligentsia (also known as the “counter culture”) which have been running the world since the Renaissance in their attempt to cause the downfall of Christianity and the establishment of a New World Order.

I’m forced to come to the conclusion that Linda might be delusional, might read too much Dan Brown, and/or might need to get her meds refilled.

Linda also shows herself to be a bigot. She seems rather upset about a Department of Justice job listing because of this text:

The Civil Rights Division encourages qualified applicants with targeted disabilities to apply. Targeted disabilities are deafness, blindness, missing extremities, partial or complete paralysis, convulsive disorder, mental retardation, mental illness, severe distortion of limbs and/or spine. Applicants who meet the qualification requirements and are able to perform the essential functions of the position with or without reasonable accommodation are encouraged to identify targeted disabilities in response to the questions in the Avue application system seeking that information.

Part of Linda’s response included this:

You read correctly: The DOJ is encouraging job applications from the mentally ill, those with convulsive disorders, the mentally retarded (hear that, Rahm Emmanuel!), the blind, the deaf and the immobile to work as government lawyers. Perhaps we should be thankful that the list did not include the transgendered, transsexuals, hermaphrodites, transvestites and those still uncertain.

It seems that Linda has something against people with certain disabilities. It seems she also has something against people who don’t measure up to her own particular definition for what’s normal when it comes to gender or sexuality. In my opinion, this makes her nothing more than another pathetic bigot whom I would not bother to piss on were she on fire and pleading for help.

It seems that Linda may have been unable (or unwilling) to read the required qualifications for that particular job posting. Of course, it’s possible that she did read them, but decided that they only refuted her point so she should ignore them. Here are the requirements:

Applicants must possess a J.D. degree, be an active member of the bar in good standing (any jurisdiction), and have a minimum of three (3) years post-J.D. experience. Applicants must have substantial litigation experience, such as handling discovery, litigation strategy, motions practice, brief writing, interviewing witnesses, taking and defending depositions, trial preparation, trial practice, and negotiations. Applicants must have excellent interpersonal skills, be mature and self sufficient, communicate effectively orally and in writing, and possess excellent professional judgment.

Anyone who can meet those requirements, whether they are mentally retarded, suffering from a convulsive disorder, or a transsexual, has every right to apply for the position, and deserves no less consideration than any other applicant. Anyone who believes otherwise is a pathetic bigot, as I mentioned before.

My Recommendations

I would recommend that Linda continue to post regularly, as it can be very therapeutic. I sincerely hope that her misconceptions and delusions do not adversely affect her day-to-day life. I might also suggest that when she again feels the need to find quotes for “What Some Scientists are Saying About Naturalistic-Evolution”, she should perhaps not go so far back as 1923, but additionally should use quotes more recent than 1976. Quoting scientists who actually study biological evolution as part of their daily lives would also be a big plus. Either that or she could change the section heading to “What Some Scientists Who Were Not Biologists Said About Naturalistic-Evolution 35 to 87 Years Ago”