I'll admit it: the article's title got me off on the wrong foot right away. But it didn't get a whole lot better.
I'm talking about Bill Harlan's column on the Local page of the Rapid City Journal today. The article examines South Dakota's standing as 53rd (behind Guam and the Virgin Islands) in receiving research dollars (scientific pork?). So who was number one? No big surprise.
The report’s No. 1 New Economy state, by the way, with a score of 96.1, was high-taxing, homosexual-marriage-allowing, George-McGovern-for-president-voting Massachusetts. (Harvard, MIT and Boston’s Route 128, apparently swayed the judges.)
Maybe Harlan knows this already and he's just being silly to make for a funny column, but there's a reason or two the People's Republic of Massachusetts is more developed than South Dakota.
The first permanent settlement in Mass. was in 1620, which was 269 years before South Dakota became a state and 241 years before we were even a territory. They have 101 years on us as a state, and they were there at the beginning. I'd say they have a little jump on us in both population and infrastructure.
Second, while I oppose pork on principle, you can't throw as much pork at a state as Ted Kennedy has done for decades (and I'm not talking about the man himself) and not have some of it actually amount to something productive; the law of averages says that even massive amounts of wasteful spending of taxpayer dollars with little oversight has to produce something at least minimally useful.
But I think the most interesting thing about this article--and perhaps the main point of the article--is the slap at us abortion-opposing, marriage-supporting, Bible-believing Christians who are stupid enough to actually believe God meant what He said--or simply believe He exists in the first place.
What? You don't believe a reporter for the state's second largest newspaper would insult the 87% of South Dakotans who call themselves Christians, the 75% of Americans who believe the Bible is the Word of God, or the 91% of Americans who say they believe in God?
If the above paragraph lauding Tax-achusetts doesn't tell you that, also consider the article's title: "Would Darwin diss South Dakota?"
Harlan did include a quote from Darwin that might actually get you thinking for a moment that it's about "change," not God:
Charles Darwin, who wrote: “It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the ones most responsive to change.”
So is it an appeal that we need to be more open to change? Most people I know either have or want cable/satellite TV, cell phones and high-speed internet, so I don't think there's any change-ophobia or progress-ophobia in South Dakota.
Or is it a veiled implication that South Dakotans need to become high-taxing, homosexual-marriage-allowing, George-McGovern-for-president-voting bunch of atheists?
Or since Darwin is more commonly known for a doctrine that strikes at the heart of belief in God Himself, is that a not-so-veiled implication that we need to throw away those silly Bibles that too many of us still believe in, and join the "modern world?" Given the implication of the title, coupled with the content, I can't escape the implication that thinking people wouldn't possibly differ from Darwinism and a disbelief in outdated notions like God.
The plain truth is often forgotten by these highbrow elitist types that a host of renowned scientists have believed in God, including Copernicus, Kepler, Francis Bacon, Galileo, Newton, Kelvin, Mendel, Einstein, the Wright brothers, Pascal, Pasteur, and George Washington Carver. And atheists who bother to put aside their animosity toward God and do a little thinking for themselves are continually coming to believe in an intelligent designer.
If the trade is for high taxes, acceptance of an unhealthy and unnatural sexual practice, socialism, and a host of social problems that are rotting the People's Republic of Massachusetts...all that simply to receive the peer-approval of a bunch of closed-minded snobs who despite their huffing and puffing haven't had an original thought in decades? Well, only a fool or an atheist (maybe one and the same) would take that deal.