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Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Father: "My family found out firsthand about the new 'hard sell' of Darwinism at museums"

About the new determination of museums to sell evolution, however inappropriately, a midwestern American father, Donald M, writes me to say,

My family and I saw some this first hand this past summer when we visited the Natural History museum on the Mall in D.C., or as I came to call it, the National Temple oF Darwin. The NTD had display after to display of hard sell evolution. In the evolution theater, which was a space where you come watch a hard sell film on evolution, there were benches for visitors to sit on to watch the film. In the middle of one of the benches there was a seated statue of an ape. The visual rhetoric could not have been more clear: come sit by your cousin and enjoy our little film.

In another exhibit, clearly geared to younger children, there was a brass rendering of a monkey's paw, palm up. Children were invited to place their hand next to the bronze one and note how similar they were. Has to be your relative, right?

And, there was sign on one wall for a coming attraction entitled, "What Does It Mean To Be Human?" Based on everything else I saw in the museum, the only answer they could give is "not much!"

– Donald M.

Well, Donald, one thing about being human is that we can understand abstract concepts like "no taxation without representation" and "free choice with regard to entertainment." Fundamentally, citizens can refuse to spend tax or discretionary money on displays aimed at suggesting that there is no important difference between humans and chimps. Come to think of it, that is the important difference between humans and chimps, isn't it? Strange the Museum guys didn't think of that.. But maybe they truly believe their own idea ... no wonder they just don't see da Revolution coming ...

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