Thursday, June 12, 2014

Weird science

Posted on Thu, Jun 12, 2014 at 4:00 AM

Thanks to the Indy for the “etc.” column on Steve Daines’ flirtation with creationism (May 22). Just a few years ago, this was mentioned in some publications, but his campaign hasn’t uttered a word about it since.

The story involved a fundraiser at the Creation Museum in Petersburg, Ky., but one wonders why he had to go so far from Montana when he was even then awash in campaign money.

A good investigative journalist might uncover other such visits, perhaps to the Dinosaur and Fossil Museum in Glendive, to which Daines’ former boss and friend, Greg Gianforte, donated over $200,000 for its construction.

But is Daines a creationist?

Don’t expect a straight answer. It’s not his style. He does recommend that it be taught in schools alongside evolution and the kids can make up their own minds as to whether biblical literalism or scientific explanation is best. If that doesn’t work, local school boards could decide.

Creation museums feature two principles: Earth history (it’s 6,000 years old) and that dinosaurs shared our planet simultaneously. Of course, Earth is really about 4 billion years old and while the dinosaurs went extinct about 60 million years ago, hominids came on the scene closer to a million years in the past.

Daines is from Bozeman and the renowned Museum of the Rockies has been there for some time. A few visits there could have straightened him out. Instead we may have to deal with a senator with limited scientific understanding.

Mike Chessin


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