Thursday, August 15, 2013

To my conservative colleagues

As a registered fellow Republican, I feel obligated to address the compatriots in my party. This address is in regards to an alarming amount of reconcilable differences that are permeating our culture and being galvanized and exacerbated on mainstream media rather than rectified.

In the past twelve months, I have witnessed some ridiculous interpretations of what is fact, faith and fiction from several conservative journalists, pundits and politicians.

My diatribe is not so much a song about highlighting the severe academic deficiencies of an entire party as it is an exclamation of dismay at the direction of objective knowledge.

On Aug. 19, 2012, Todd Akin ushered in a tsunami of public scathing with his comments about “legitimate rape”, touting his blatant illiteracy at how a female’s body works. His misogynistic statements came with no medical validity. He lost the election due primarily to overwhelming backlash from female voters.

Paul Broun, U.S. Representative for Georgia’s 10th congressional district, has been publicly saying stupid things since 2008.  In Nov., he compared Obama’s call for a civilian national service corps to that of Hitler and the Soviet Union. Although President Bush had endorsed a similar idea in 2006, Broun was unapologetic for invoking Godwin’s Law without fully understanding what it was he was criticizing. Rather, he is so embittered due to his preconceptions that he is entirely incapable of humility.

Fast-forward to Sept. 27, 2012 - where Broun stated that the sciences of evolution, embryology and the Big Bang were “lies straight from the pit of Hell.” Mr. Broun is also a young-Earth creationist, who believes the Earth “is about 9,000 years old” and was literally created in six, 24-hour days. Did I mention that Mr. Broun was serving on the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology!?
Upon hearing that, I had the same reaction I heard when I read this story from April, 2010.

Yes, that really happened. Facepalm.

Fortunately, someone smarter than I was listening to Broun’s comments. International smart-man Bill Nye the Science Guy commented on Broun’s speech, and questioned Broun’s ability to serve on the Science Committee.

“Broun’s views are not in the national interest,” Nye said. “He is, by any measure, unqualified to make decisions about science, space and technology.”

The next chairman of the House Sciences Committee, Republican Lamar Smith - a climate change antagonist - openly criticized the media in 2009 for not airing enough “dissenting opinions” about man-made global warming.

Just to be clear; there is an overwhelming amount of evidence within the scientific community supporting man-made global warming. It really isn’t much harder than using Google Scholar to find one of the thousands and thousands of peer-reviewed papers (as if the independent lines of evidence from every branch of natural sciences converging on the same, irrefutable logic wasn’t convincing enough). It also takes a little bit of historical and geological knowledge; not just temperature comparisons.

There is no more a controversy over the validity to global warming than there is about the Earth being flat, or revolving around the sun. (Or evolution. Yes, evolution is both a fact and a theory. The theory explains the facts)

Former House science panel chairman, Rep. Ralph Hall, ridiculously said about global warming that he is “really more fearful of freezing,” but admittedly had ZERO science to prove that scenario was eminent. Was this a joke? It certainly wasn’t science.

Mainstream media: can we please stop pitting the ignorant against the educated, then framing it as though it were a debate?

The frontier of scientific knowledge would truly appreciate it.

Justin Chandler Porter