* rrrrrrrrrrrrrrriiiiiiiiiiiiiiing * Okay, class. Eyes up front. Today's lesson -- evolutionary theory.
There's a big difference between saying what you believe and explaining some or all of your logic and attempting to "prove" your beliefs. Oftentimes, these people aren't "proving" their beliefs so much as attempting to disprove the other side. I'm lucky -- the crowd I usually associate with is very diverse. It consists of Christians, Jews, Muslims, Atheists, Pagans, whatever. And while there is ribbing between the groups, it's usually good natured. That or it falls under the channel's Directive One -- you can say whatever you like, take all the cheap shots you want, hurl all the insults you want. But if it's your day in the barrel, you better be man enough to take what you dished out (we get more permabans that way).
Usually, everybody will find what you believe and why you believe it interesting and will treat you with respect. A perfect example of this happened one of the times that enough new people had joined that us old guards were kind of reintroducing ourselves. It got around to me, and I mentioned I was a Christian and I believed in Intelligent Design.
This prompted one of the new guys to challenge me. The mods didn't attempt to stop him, they always wonder what exactly I'm going to say. Eventually, the new guy threw down his challenge -- "Give me one example that demonstrates Intelligent Design over Evolution."
"...what does that have to do with anything?"
The clitoris has no evolutionary purpose. It doesn't regulate anything, it's not necessary for reproduction, the only reason it exists is to give pleasure to women. So it is proof of Intelligent Design over Evolution.
"It just hasn't evolved away yet."
Man managed to evolve away useless gills, but couldn't get rid of the Joy Buzzer?
One of the mods -- "So, basically, the clit proves that God meant for women to enjoy sex."
"So if a guy is not satisfying his girlfriend, it's a mortal sin?"
Yup. And good luck confessing THAT one.
The guy and I get along fine, although whether it's because he sees my point or if he's amazed that a Christian is using sex to validate the existence of God, I don't know.
Anyhoo, over the last few years, a vocal minority of Christians is acting like their religion is under attack in the US just because courts are saying that Atheists have the same rights under the Constitution and should be treated with respect that Christians have (I say "minority" because most Christians I know are very live and let live, as evidenced by the NALT movement during the Marriage Equality debate. But it's the Village Idiot -- this one group is the visible representation of a subculture, and suddenly everyone assumes the subculture is just like that). And part of that is the bullshit debate of was the Earth, Universe, Man, etc. created by God or did it evolve scientifically.
Among the people I see trying to disprove evolution, Christians bandy around what they think is a trump card, the ultimate proof that Evolution is bunk. And that trump card is, "If man evolved from apes, why do apes still exist?"
Normally, I'd ignore such an incredibly stupid question. But it's popping up so often, I think it's time to address it. So, all you Creationists, listen up --
The existence of apes and man at the same time is evidence of co-evolution. The two species are separate branches that split off and evolved from a common ancestor, not one from the other.
Please quit getting your science from Chick Tracts.