Tuesday, May 09, 2006

The triumph of ideology

While my mom was visiting last week, we went to the zoo. It's a regular feature of her visits. When we were about ready to leave--and before I went to see the river otter, who I must see each time--I overheard a conversation between a mother and her obviously perceptive daughter.
Daughter: You know the gorillas and chimps are a lot like us. The way they hold their babies and their faces. They just seem a lot like people.
Mother: They really aren't much like humans at all. In fact, dogs are more like people, because the gorillas are wild and people and dogs aren't wild.
In fact, it had been a great day to view the gorillas and the bonobos. Both groups were out with their young.
Now, I assume that the mother was doing her best to defend her daughter from the nefarious workings of the theory of evolution, and in the process defeating her daughter's natural sense of curiosity and ability to reason. I can only hope that at some point her daughter's native intelligence can overcome her mother's sense that evidence that contradicts ideology must be thrown out.

3 comments:

John said...

I once was on a date that ended abruptly when the young man I was with presented me with the if we evolved from monkeys, then why are there still monkeys? defense of creationism. As I tried to explain to him the difference between sharing a common ancestor with modern primates and speciating directly from them, I realized that the biggest threat to the theory of evolution is not the religious detractor, but the well-meaning yet ignorant believer. This is a person who, when engaged in a debate that extends beyond the depth of his or her knowledge, will just make shit up. This is how we end up with “we evolved from monkeys.”

PS - I can always tell when you've updated your blog because you leave comments on mine.

Tyler said...

The shame is that such a date could have led to hot monkey love.

John said...

It's been my experience that it's fun to watch big, stupid guys having sex, but less fun to participate.