Liberals believe that teaching Darwinian Evolution is *soooo* important. I mean, evolution applies to so many things in my every day life.
I frequently find occasions when I try to remember my trigonometry to figure out some distance or something.
Knowledge of practical biology (e.g., how a cell works) comes in very handy all the time.
Chemistry’s pretty helpful in household cleaning.
Proportions, fractions, probability, algebra–all find their way into my life at least once a week.
Literature? Yeah, I can read. I quote it all the time.
History’s handy to know about when looking at current affairs, and fishing for an anecdote in polite conversation.
Religion class? Matters at least once an hour.
But I can’t think of a single time I’ve “used” evolution, except in arguing the whole Darwin v. Genesis controversy. Not once has Darwin played any role in my daily life, except in speculating that, if evolution happens, how do we know if and when we’re evolving ? How do we distinguish genetic “defects” from evolutionary steps?
But even that doesn’t matter in everyday life. It’s not like any of my kids has six fingers, or chameleon skin, or retractable claws or something.
It just doesn’t happen. It doesn’t help me solve day to day problems. It doesn’t provide me with valuable information to analogize. . . ..
Wait, well, it *does*, actually. As Ben Stein argues in Expelled, the only practical application of evolution is what we call “social Darwinism”: if survival of the fittest is the order of Nature, then why not practice laissez-faire in society? Why not practice eugenics?
One area it *definitely* ought to apply is to, well, animals. It never ceases to amaze me that the very people who emphasize Darwinism hate it when Darwinism happens in real life: they hate the survival of the fittest. It’s like Rush Limbaugh says: if some bird is too dumb to know a balloon isn’t food, then why not let the bird die, get eaten, and hopefully its species will evolve to have members that recognize that balloons aren’t food.
It’s one thing when animals become endangered specifically by human activity. But here is a situation where humans, in the interest of saving an endangered species, were successful, but that formerly endangered species, the bald eagle, happens to be a predator. Of course, environmentalist/animal rights types also tend to be vegetarians, so they only have a grudging fondness for predators, if the predators are endangered.
Once they’ve saved their precious endangered species, and it starts practicing Darwinism by feeding off weaker species, then they have a problem:
“They’re like thugs. They’re like gang members. They go to these offshore islands where all these seabirds are and the birds are easy picking,” said Brad Allen, a wildlife biologist with the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. “These young eagles are harassing the bejesus out of all the birds, and the great cormorants have been taking it on the chin.”
THUGS??? They’re birds. They are hungry. They see food. They eat it. They don’t have morals. They don’t have reason. They don’t have consciences. They just eat. If you didn’t want them eating smaller animals, why’d you save ’em to begin with? What happens to “survival of the fittest”???
PS–One practical application of evolution that occurs to me is, of course, in fighting diseases and fighting pests, since both have shown to evolve and survive our wonderful technologies