What Is Truth?
When Jesus said to Pilate that “[e]veryone on the side of truth listens to me,” Pilate famously asked him “[w]hat is truth?” It’s difficult to define what truth is, but it’s pretty easy to show what truth is not.
For example, plagiarism is dishonest. Perhaps it’s because my ire is at an all-time high because of the shitty Christians who torpedoed the gay marriage law in Maine yesterday, but I am thrilled to report that at least one famous Christian has been caught red handed.
Ray Comfort, famous for both his longtime association with Kirk Cameron and his moronic banana video, is a proud member of the tired old creationism echo chamber. These fools refuse to look at the evidence staring them in their fucking faces, opting instead to rely on myths that are thousands of years old.
The creationist community is both insular and committed to the suppression of good science, and as such, few new ideas make their way into the creationist milieux (for a lovely example of recycled creation nonsense, check out the story of “cdesign proponentists“). Never has the staleness of creationist arguments been more apparent than it is in Comfort’s newest venture, a 150th anniversary edition of On the Origin of Species.
As you would expect, Comfort’s version of Origin includes a section devoted to his impotent rebuttals to Darwin’s masterpiece. What you might not expect is that the section of the book attributed to Comfort was not actually written by Comfort. The good people at AIG Busted discovered that Comfort’s short biography of Darwin was lifted from the work of a Dr. Stan Guffey. The following examples come from the AIG Busted site:
Ray: On returning to England in 1836, Darwin set to work examining and disseminating the extensive collection of specimens he acquired during the voyage. He quickly established a reputation as an accomplished naturalist on the London scene. In 1839 he married his cousin, Emma Wedgwood. That same year he published his journal of the voyage of the Beagle, which brought him immediate celebrity among London’s intellectuals. In 1842 he and Emma moved to Down House in Kent. It was there that she bore ten children and she and Charles spent the rest of their lives.
Stan: On returning to England in 1836, Darwin set to work examining and disseminating the extensive collection of natural history specimens acquired during the voyage. He quickly established a reputation as an accomplished naturalist on the London scene. In 1839 he married Emma Wedgwood, and saw his journal of the voyage of the Beagle published. In 1842 he and Emma moved to Downe house, Kent where Emma would bear 10 children and she and he would live for the rest of their lives.
Ray: During his great adventure as the Beagle’s naturalist, Darwin had studied certain aspects of the morphology and biogeography of the many species of plants and animals that he had observed. He eventually concluded that species exhibited varying degrees of similarity because they were to varying degrees related.
Stan: On his great adventure as the Beagleʼs naturalist Darwin had noted and begun to ponder certain aspects of the morphology and biogeography of the many species of plants and animals that he had observed. In particular, he had begun to explore the possibility, and eventually concluded, that species exhibited varying degrees of similarity because they are to varying degrees related.
If you needed any evidence that nothing is too depraved for a fundamentalist Christian, there it is. Comfort’s intellectual laziness, deceit, and willingness to steal the work of others is on display. I can think of at least four commandments Comfort has broken in this one monumentally stupid act: he stole, lied, and dishonored his parents. Worst of all, he did it all in the name of his supposed lord and savior, Jesus H. Christ. If that’s not blasphemy, nothing is.