In Response to an Unfair, Cruel and Painful Question (Trigger Warning for Sexual Assault Victims)
COMMENTARY | First, let me say I am sorry for even needing to touch upon this subject and, in so doing, reminding any victims of sexual assault of their pain. I am so, so sorry. I wish these thoughtless, hurtful people would stop trying to elicit pain in their marketing efforts of their brainwashing program called "religion."
We, as a species, must respond to these kinds of statements, though, because there are boys and men who might fall for these claims , were they to have no other voice of opposition . There are also not only rapists who might try claiming “religious freedom” as a defense in court , but also potential jurors who just might acquit in spite of the evidence of sexual assault. This mentality must be shouted down, with extreme malice .
My attention is drawn again to a video on YouTube . In the video, we have one thoroughly-confused creationist asking, “If evolution is true, is rape wrong?” If you can stomach the lack of understanding and the fundamental ignorance, hear his own thoughtless words , wrong-on-so-many-levels, in the video , found at this link .
First, the show itself is flawed in its calling evolution a “religion.” The hosts, Eric Hovind and Paul Taylor, indict themselves for their ignorance by not understanding evolution to be nothing more than biology and not a "#religion." But, I suppose, in the solipsistic brain , not much exists outside of the box, anyway, so no surprise there. Let's get to the heart of this message, shall we? (To Hovind's credit, he does at least try to take back the term “evolutionism” and invites viewers to send in their comments and critique, in the full episode, found at this link .)
Darek Isaacs - author of "Dragons or Dinosaurs" - is the guest on this particular episode, referenced in the aforementioned clip. He's the one I'm calling onto the carpet for harmful and – I believe - purposeful misinformation , meant not to help anyone find “redemption” but to scare simpler people from independent thinking, not under the control of religious authorities.
In his own words, “There is that one thing, that one thought, I could not get out of my head. And that was, if evolution were true, then, how now, shall we live? Meaning, if we were a product of evolution, a product of survival-of-the-fittest, if there is no god, and we're just here by random, chaotic force, and if we're just molecules-in-motion if you will, how would that impact our life? And I found out that, once I studied it - and I studied Darwin , I studied Dawkins , I studied Hitchens , E.O Wilson , some of the # purveyors (emphasis his) of evolutionary thought - and they lead me to a very, very dark place, because you have to start asking questions, because if evolution is true, and it's all just about the male sp...the male propagating their DNA...well what in the world is...we had to start asking hard questions like, well is rape wrong?” He goes on and on with the multi-flawed argument - thus, the video for others to hear him, for themselves.
Where do I even begin? I suppose it will have to be the beginning.
His “position” is really multiple questions, philosophies and ideologies in one, all jumbled together in what seems to be an attempt at confusing any possibility of reasonable discussion – a common tactic among apologists. I'll give it my best to respond, though. I will try, because I refuse to leave a world for my own sons and daughters, ruled by people like him.
Fundamentally, I actually have to agree with Isaacs on one small point, the universe is indifferent to human suffering, life and death. The world truly is a cold, cruel place. Is this not one of the main reasons many claim to need to believe in their god, in the first place? As a place of refuge and protection? Are they not seeking “salvation,” these believers? On this, we actually agree. The world – the entire universe – is a cold, cruel place, indeed.
But a spoon of soup in a bucket of sewage does not a meal make, just the same.
As for the matter of the indifference of our cosmos to the Human plight, on Facebook , someone answered the cosmic indifference better than I ever could already, here “ The successful transfer of genes by way of rape in a series of singular actions perpetrated by the few (and occasionally throughout history, by organized militant groups), does not make it, 'right.' Human evolution has favored the non-rapists over the rapists. That's why there are so few rapists, and so many more of us that, 'tend,' toward monogamy, stability, teamwork, and The Golden Rule/Categorical Imperative. Ultimately, this question, though framed and posed cleverly, is really a masked version of nihilism, or, 'If God doesn't exist, and there is no eternal soul, why bother behaving? Just do whatever the **** you want.' ” [sic] - David Hobbs
Isaacs has evolution, atheism , science , creationism AND nihilism confused, all at the same time. It might surprise him to learn (or maybe not, I really don't know) the Catholic Church has accepted evolution, even if only as part of “God's overall plan.” Evolution and creationism are not mutually exclusive, any more than religion and morality or intelligence and a college degree would be.
If Isaacs had ever truly studied Darwin (specifically “The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection”) he didn't make it to the last sentence of his book. Darwin was a creationist, himself. If he ever truly studied Hitchens or Dawkins, with anything similar to comprehension, he'd know both men spoke (Dawkins still speaks) of morality and decency more than anything else. (In fact, some of Hitchens' last words to the world were, “Remember the 'love' bit.” And, Dr. Dawkins' entire premise is a plea for social justice.) Admittedly, I cannot claim to have read anything of E.O. Wilson, but, altogether, Isaac's claims of having studied any of these men smacks of a bald-faced lie.
Absolutely mind-boggling, isn't it?. But I think that's the strategy, to confuse and muckrack , in the attempt at discouraging others from escaping the church - whichever it may be. This strategy makes reasonable , mature , peaceful dialogue difficult, at best, and beleaguring, befuddling, confusing and deceiving the simple-minded at worst.
When I hear his “argument,” I also get the sense he's inadvertantly telling us – the whole world - the only thing preventing him from being a rapist is his fear of eternal punishment – and not any sense of respect for women , themselves. This is a scary thought for many. Is this really the only thing he bases his personal behavior upon – this fear of an eternal spanking by an invisible sky-daddy, after he dies?
Finally, his pseudo-intellectual claims ignore the glaring point I want readers to catch more than anything else. It is the Abrahamic religious texts – the Talmud, the “Bible” and the Koran which lacks rape as any of their major sins . It is Judaism, Christianity and Islam which is known for misogyny and for fostering the conditions which have made rape “okay” - far-too-often - in the eyes of some men and not those noble, courageous men and women who explore the world around us all with the goal of understanding our place in this cold, mostly-dark universe.
I'm sick of people like Isaacs trying to exploit the pain of others, simply because they're either too lazy - or simply unwilling - to think.
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Edited for typos.