Most of us are looking forward to a new era when Barack Obama takes his oath of office on Tuesday next week. Obama claims to be a deeply religious man, though one of his mentors appears to have rather unusual ideas.
[A] Gallup poll revealed that 53 per cent of Americans are actually creationists. This means that despite a full century of scientific insights attesting to the antiquity of the earth, more than half the American population believes the entire cosmos was created six thousand years ago. This is, incidentally, about a thousand years after the Sumerians invented glue. Those with the power to elect presidents and congressmen- and many who themselves get elected-believe that dinosaurs lived two by two on Noah's arc, that light from distant galaxies was created en route to earth, and that the first members of our species, were fashioned out of dirt and divine breath, in a garden with a talking snake, by the hand of an invisible God.
But Obama's candidacy is also depressing, for it demonstrates that even a person of the greatest candor and eloquence must still claim to believe the unbelievable in order to have a political career in this country. We may be ready for the audacity of hope. Will we ever be ready for the audacity of reason?