According to a story in the Telegraph of the U.K., a movie entitled "Creation" about the person Charles Darwin is not being picked up by distributors for theaters in the US, possibly because of criticism by Christian groups.
There are several questions here.
Has the far right wing Christian anti-science movement become too powerful?
How come progressives, in a nation founded by progressive reformers, do not have equal say in this sort of thing?
What is going on here, really?
The Bible is the creation of a conference in 300AD in which a variety of texts deemed worthy of concern were edited into a selection, leaving some writings on the cutting room floor and elevating others. It was partly a religious exercise, but mostly political. The purpose was to effect a way to control populations so that nation states could become more powerful, and economic forces could be harnessed. A good share of this was done by turning nature-worshipping, independent thinking Celts across Europe into peasants who owed loyalty to the state and paid for existence in the form of being soldiers when called on.
Now, we seem to have a situation in which there is a reaction against science and the attempt to set the mind of man free - in an age of unprecedented scientific advance.
In a society in which education has become all important, education is being undermined.
The Texas State Board of Education has been under assault by the Christian far right for about the last 30 years, as textbooks adopted by this large state (nearly 20 million) are a standard that publishers follow in other states. YOUR state, by the way.
Now, 7 members of the 15 member board, elected statewide, are creationists. Gov Perry, in an attempt to be more appealing to the evangelical right wing, appointed a creationism activist as chair. Now there are efforts on the part of the board to re-write history and civics texts as well as elevate creationism to the status of a science classroom element. History is to be re-envisioned. The Founders intended to give evangelical Christianity more of a central place in the Constitutional framework. The wall of separation between church and state is a mistaken interpretation...
The reaction among reactionaries to the Obama school speech was another dot that should be connected. This can become, if allowed, a general assault on education itself, moving society backwards by dumbing down science education and attacking critical reasoning as well as clear understanding of history and civics.
Having read recently a bunch of short essay answers to high school standardized social studies test questions, it seemed to me that, only a year or so away from becoming voters, the basis for understanding American civics was not necessarily coming from teachers and classrooms, but somewhat from Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck and the like.
How is it that this small and anomalous segment of the population has gained such an outsized influence?
In the Texas situation, the creationists were eager to get into the system, so they filed for the election and got on the ballot. They ran unopposed. No progressives were similarly eager to get into the system to make sure that the education system reflects contemporary thinking at its best.
That may be the issue along the spectrum. It may be that progressives just don't see education as being important enough to actually put energy into competing with the forces of backwardism. We may regret that in the long run. It isn't just about another British drawing room drama romanticizing the personal side of an historical figure.
After all, it apparently is "Christian" movie reviewers who initially blacklisted the movie for US distributors. Where are the pro-science voices in this?