A physico-theological argument from intelligent design is any type of argument purporting to demonstrate the existence of an intelligent agent of or orderer by citing as evidence the appearance of an ultimate design, intention, or purpose in the natural world. Scottish philosopher, historian, economist and essayist David Hume is widely cited as having articulated the argument for design through the character of Cleanthes in “Part II” of his 1779 philosophical work Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion as follows:
Look around the world…You will find it to be nothing but one great machine, subdivided into an infinite number of lesser machines…All these various machines, and even their most minute parts, are adjusted to each other with an accuracy…The curious adapting of means to ends, throughout all nature, resembles exactly…the productions of human contrivance; of human design, thought, wisdom, and intelligence. Since therefore the effects resemble each other, we are led to infer…that the author of nature is somewhat similar to the mind of man…By this argument a posteriori…do we prove at one the existence of a deity, and his similarity to human mind and intelligence.
Hume’s character of Philo warns that an argument against design that the two cases are too dissimilar to support an inference that they are like effects having like causes is not philosophically sound:
What peculiar privilege has this little agitation of the brain, which we call, thought, that we must thus make it the model of the whole universe? Our partially in our own favor does indeed present it on all occasions; but sound philosophy ought carefully to guard against so natural an illusion.
In the teleological argument it is assumed that everything in nature fits so well and functions so perfectly that we must assume that the universe is being directed to achieve some end purpose.
Cleanthes likens the universe to a manmade machine, but Hume suggests that the cosmos much more closely resembles a living organism than a machine: “The experimental reasoning, which we possess in common with the beasts,…is nothing but a species of instinct or mechanical power that acts in us unknown to ourselves.”
Cleanthes argues that the universe resembles an artifact in having “an accurate adjustment of the parts to each other” and “an adaptation of means to ends”, and that a “purpose, intention and design strikes everywhere the most careless, the most stupid thinker.” Cleanthes argues that the various parts of the body and the way in which they are suited to our environment are “incontestable proof of design and intention”.
Hume argues that nature and the various things in it exhibit substantial difference from human artifacts.
Physico-theological arguments imply that the sophistication, intricacy and interconnectedness we observe in nature are intelligible only if we suppose the involvement of a human-like creative mind.
Cleanthes states that the only rational argument for god’s existence is one based on experience. Philo however argues that this is incompatible with Cleanthes’ own previously articulated teleological analogy because, according to Cleanthes’ statement, we obviously lack adequate justification for the a posteriori claim that the universe has an intelligent cause because unlike with manmade objects, we would need to have experience with the design of universes in order to know whether the material world was the result of design.
If we see a house, Cleanthes, we conclude…that it had an architect or builder; because this is precisely that species of effect, which we have experienced to proceed from that species of cause. But surely you will not affirm, that the universe bears such a resemblance to a house that we can with the same certainty infer a similar cause, or that the analogy is here entire and perfect. The dissimilitude is so striking, that the utmost you can here pretend to is a guess, a conjecture, a presumption concerning a similar cause.
In “Part V” of his Dialogues, Hume builds on Philo’s analogy of architectural construction to point out a further fault in using the argument from intelligent design to prove that the god of classical theism exists: there is nothing about the sophistication of the material universe to suggest that there exists only one designer:
What shadow of an argument…can you produce, from your hypothesis, to prove the unity of the deity? A great number of men join in building a house or ship, in rearing a city, in framing a commonwealth; why may not several deities combine in contriving and framing the world?…By sharing the work among several, we may so much further limit the attributes of each, and get rid of that extensive power and knowledge, which must be supposed in one deity, and which…can only serve to weaken the proof of his existence. And if such foolish, such vicious creatures as man, can yet often unite in framing and executing one plane, much more so those deities or demons.
Hume then backs up the argument even further, pointing out that even if the resemblance between the universe and human artifacts justified thinking they have similar causes, it is unreasonable to justify the conclusion that the designer must be anything like the traditional concept of an omnipotent, omniscient, all-perfect god. To illustrate this point, Philo argues in “Part V” that the designer may have been defective or otherwise imperfect and suggests that the universe may have been a poor first attempt at design:
A man who follows your hypothesis is able, perhaps, to assert, or conjecture, that the universe, sometime, arose from something like design: But beyond that position he cannot ascertain one single circumstance, and is left afterwards to fix every point of his theology, by the utmost license of fancy and hypothesis. This world, for aught he knows, is very faulty and imperfect…and was only the first rude essay of some infant deity…it is the work only of some dependent, inferior deity…it is the product of old age and dotage in some superannuated deity; and ever since his death, has run on at adventures, from the first impulse and active force which it received from him…these, and a thousand more of the same kind, are Cleanthes’s suppositions…From the moment the attributes of the deity are supposed finite, all these have place. And I cannot…think that so wild and unsettled a system of theology is…preferable to none at all.
Hume also argues that any number of alternative possible explanations could be given of allegedly designed entities of nature, for instance the saturation of the relevant state space of possibilities:
Many worlds may be botched and bungled, throughout an eternity, ere this system was struck out; much labor lost, many fruitless trials made; and a slow, but continued improvement carried on during infinite ages in the art of world-making. In such subjects, who can determine, where the truth…who can conjecture where the probability lies, amidst a great number of hypotheses which may be proposed, and a still greater which may be imagined.
In “Part IV” Philo pointed out that other analogies might suggest very different inferences and conclusions:
If reason I mean abstract reason, derived from inquiries a priori be not alike mute with regard to all questions concerning cause and effect, this sentence at least it will venture to pronounce, that a mental world, or universe of ideas, requires a cause as much, as does a material world, or universe of objects; and if similar in its arrangement, must require a similar cause. For what is there in this subject, which should occasion a different conclusion or inference? In an abstract view, they are entirely alike; and no difficulty attends the one supposition, which is not common to both of them.
In “Part II” Philo argued that it is impossible to infer the perfect nature of a creator from the nature of his creation:
But surely, where reasonable men treat these subjects, the question can never be concerning the being, but only the nature of the deity. The former truth…is unquestionable and self-evident. Nothing exists without a cause; and the original cause of this universe whatever it may be we call god; and piously ascribe to him every species of perfection…But as all perfection is entirely relative, we ought never to imagine, that we comprehend the attributes of this divine being, or to suppose, that his perfections have any analogy or likeness to the perfections of a human creatures. 
This is in agreement with Hume’s character of Demea, who argues that although god clearly exists; everything about god’s nature and attributes is “unknown and unintelligible”.
In “Part VII”, Philo responds to Cleanthes’ original assertion of the teleological argument back in “Part II”, interestingly utilizing much identical terminology:
You need only look around you…to satisfy yourself with regard to this question. A tree bestows order and organization on that tree which springs from it, without knowing the order; an animal in the same manner on its offspring; a bird on its nest…To say, that all this order in animals and vegetables proceeds ultimately from design, is begging the question; nor can that great point be ascertained otherwise than by proving, a priori, both that order is, from its nature, inseparably attached to thought; and that it can never of itself, or from original unknown principles, belong to matter.
It is assumed in the physico-theological argument that the exquisiteness of structure and intricate detail of the universe could not have occurred by chance.
In “Part IX”, Demea explains that the world operates on a system of cause and effect, so there must be an original cause to have started the world in motion. Having apparently abandoned the analogy of the universe to a manmade machine, Cleanthes demurs:
In such a chain, too, or succession of objects, that which preceded it, and causes that, which succeeds it causes, each part…but the whole, you say, wants a cause. I answer that the uniting of these parts into a whole, like the uniting of several distinct counties into one kingdom, or several distinct members into one body, is performed merely by an arbitrary act of mind, and has no influence on the nature of things. Did I show you the particular cause of each individual in a collection of twenty particles of matter, I should think it very unreasonable should you afterwards ask me, what was the cause of the whole twenty. This is sufficiently explained in explaining the cause of the parts.
In “Part XI”, Philo again replies to Cleanthes’ teleological argument in “Part II” by mirroring it:
Look around this universe. What an immense profusion of beings, animated and organized, sensible and active! You admire this prodigious variety and fecundity. But inspect a little more narrowly these living existences, the only beings worth regarding. How hostile and destructive to each other! How insufficient all of them for their own happiness! How contemptible or odious to the spectator! The whole presents nothing but the idea of a blind nature, impregnated by a vivifying principle, and pouring forth from her lap, without discernment or parental care, her maimed and abortive children!
The conclusion that Philo comes to in “Part, XII” is that, while the physico-theological argument might constitute some limited grounds for thinking that “the cause or causes of order in the universe probably bear some remote analogy to human intelligence”, it establishes nothing else whatsoever:
In the whole of natural theology…resolves itself into one simple…at least undefined proposition, that the cause or causes of order in the universe probably bear some remote analogy to human intelligence: If this proposition be not capable of extension…If it affords no interference that affects human life, or can be the source of any action or forbearance: And if the analogy…can be carried no farther than to the human intelligence and cannot be transferred with any appearance of probability to the other qualities of the mind…what can the most inquisitive, contemplative, and religious man do more than give a plain, philosophical assent to the proposition…and believe that the arguments on which it is established exceed the objections which lie against it?
Philo makes his criticism of revealed religion very clear in “Part XIV”. I find myself in strong agreement with Hume’s criticisms of the amorality of religion and the dangers of blind faith. In what I believe to be by far and away his most scathing and contemporarily relevant criticism of the religious, he echoes, at least in word use, Philo’s earlier warning against leaping to conclusions such as intelligent design:
What a noble privilege is it of human reason to obtain the knowledge of the Supreme Being; and… enabled to infer so sublime a principle as its supreme creator? Survey most nations and most ages. Examine the religious principles, which have…prevailed in the world. You will scarcely be persuaded, that they are any thing but sick men’s dreams: Or perhaps will regard them more as the playsome whimsies of monkeys in human shape, than the serious…dogmatic asseveration of a being, who dignifies himself with the name of rational.
In driving a wedge between religious belief and morality, Hume effectively argues in “Part XV” that atheism is morally preferable to theism: that even if religion does not put itself “in direct opposition to morality”, it nevertheless puts forward a “frivolous species of merit” that suggests “a preposterous distribution” of praise and blame based upon a perverted moral standard that is disconnected from any real human needs and interests.
Hear the verbal protestations of all men: Nothing so certain as their religious tenets. Examine their lives: You will scarcely think that they repose the smallest confidence in them. The greatest and truest zeal gives us no security against hypocrisy: The most open impiety is attended with dread and compunction. No theological absurdities so glaring that they have nor, sometimes, been embraced by men of the greatest and most cultivated understanding. No religious precepts so rigorous that they have not been adopted by the most voluptuous and most abandoned of men.
In order to understand why it is that I find both Cleanthes’ arguments for intelligent design and Philo’s arguments against the traditional concept of god so profoundly and thoroughly unconvincing, it is first necessary to recognize the gulf in the exponential growth human knowledge about the universe that exists between Hume’s late-18th-century Scotland and my own early-21st-century America: At the time that Hume wrote his Dialogues, science had yet to discover any of its present knowledge of the electron or the atom.
The scientific discovery that single-handedly renders very nearly Hume’s entire Dialogues pointless philosophical hand-waving was made in the mid-19th century with the devising of the fist law of thermodynamics: the law of the conservation of energy. Carl Nave, Associate Professor of Physics at Georgia State University, states the law this way: “Energy can neither be created nor destroyed.” Since the act of creation has been rendered a physical impossibility, all of Philo and Cleanthes’ debate on whether or not the universe was created for life and whether life was created for a purpose is set as to naught.
“You know what it says on a box of chocolate pudding mix? “Caution, pudding will get hot when heated”. Go to a hotel, you know what it says on the shower cap in the bathroom? “Fits one head”. I read. And I’m dying to know the suit that prompted lawyers to insist on the shower cap directions. Look at the box your iron came in. It says, “Warning, do not iron clothes while wearing them”. Do we really have to slow down for these people?”
Don Keefer [Thomas Sadoski]
“The Newsroom” Season 2 Episode 9: “Election Night Part II”
Written By Aaron Sorkin
September 15, 2013
“I’m in a hotel room, I go to the bathroom, there’s a shower cap in a cardboard package. You know what it says on the package? ”Fits one head”. You buy an iron, look at the box, it says “Warning, do not iron clothes while wearing them”. A carton of pudding: “Caution: pudding gets hot when heated”. I don’t think we should be giving these warnings, I think we’re interfering with the valuable thinning of the herd.”
Simon Stiles [Darryl Hughley]
“Studio 60 On The Sunset Strip” Season 1 Episode 16: “4 A.M. Miracle”
Written By Aaron Sorkin
February 19, 2007
“Traveling across the United States, it’s easy to see why Americans are often thought of as stupid. At the San Diego Zoo, right near the primate habitats, there’s a display featuring half a dozen life-size gorillas made out of bronze. Posted nearby is a sign reading “CAUTION: GORILLA STATUES MAY BE HOT”. Everywhere you turn, the obvious is being stated. “CANNON MAY BE LOUD”. “MOVING SIDEWALK IS ABOUT TO END”. To people who don’t run around suing one another, such signs suggest a crippling lack of intelligence. Place bronze statues beneath the southern California sun, and of course they’re going to get hot. Cannons are supposed to be loud, that’s their claim to fame, and – like it or not – the moving sidewalk is bound to end sooner or later. It’s hard trying to explain a country whose motto has become “You can’t claim I didn’t warn you”. What can you say about the family who is suing the railroad after their drunk son was killed walking on the tracks? Trains don’t normally sneak up on people. Unless they’ve derailed, you pretty much know where to find them. The young man wasn’t deaf and blind. No one had tied him to the tracks, so what’s there to sue about?”
“Me Talk Pretty One Day” Part 2 Chapter 9: “I Pledge Allegiance To The Bag”
May 2, 2000
Why Christians are sociopathic:
- Anyone who works on a weekend (The Jewish Sabbath is Saturday, the Christian holiday is Sunday) dies:
- Exodus 35:2: “You may work for six days, but the seventh day is a holy day of worship, a day when you don’t work. It is dedicated to the LORD. Whoever does any work on this day should be put to death.”
- Children who do not obey their parents are to stoned to death:
- Exodus 21: 17: “”Whoever treats his father or his mother disgracefully must surely be put to death.”
- Leviticus 20:9: “Anyone who dishonors father or mother must be put to death. Such a person is guilty of a capital offense.”
- Deuteronomy 21:18-21: “Suppose a man has a stubborn and rebellious son who will not obey his father or mother, even though they discipline him then his father and mother shall seize him, and bring him out to the elders of his city at the gateway of his hometown. They will say to the leaders of the city, “This son of ours is stubborn and rebellious. He won’t obey us. He eats too much and is a drunk.” All the men of the city should stone him to death. You must get rid of this evil. When all Israel hears about it, they will be afraid.”
- Matthew 15:4: “For instance, God says, ‘Honor your father and mother,’ and ‘Anyone who speaks disrespectfully of father or mother must be put to death.”
- Mark 7:10: “For instance, Moses gave you this law from God: ‘Honor your father and mother,’ and ‘Anyone who speaks disrespectfully of father or mother must be put to death.”
- Kill anyone who does not believe in the same god you do:
- Exodus 22:20: “He that sacrificeth to gods, shall be put to death, save only to the Lord.
- Deuteronomy 13:6-15: “Your own brother, son, or daughter, the wife you love, or your best friend may secretly tempt you, saying, “Let’s go worship other gods.” (Those gods may be gods that you and your ancestors never knew. of the gods of the Peoples who are around you, near to you, or far off from you, from the one end of the earth even to the other end of the earth; Don’t be influenced by any of these people or listen to them. Have no pity on them. Don’t feel sorry for them or protect them. “But you shall surely kill him; your hand shall be first against him to put him to death, and afterwards the hand of all the people. Stone him to death for trying to turn you away from the LORD your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the place of slavery. Then all Israel will hear about it and be afraid, and no one will act so wickedly again. When you begin living in the towns the LORD your God is giving you, you may hear some evil people have departed from among you to entice the inhabitants of their cities, saying, “Let’s go and serve other gods” (whom you have not known before). you are to inquire, investigate, and interrogate thoroughly. If the report turns out to be true that this detestable thing has happened among you, you must attack that town and completely destroy all its inhabitants, as well as all the livestock.”
- Deuteronomy 17:2-5: “”When you begin living in the towns the LORD your God is giving you, a man or woman among you might do evil in the sight of the LORD your God and violate the covenant. by serving other gods and worshiping them–the sun, moon, or any other heavenly bodies which I have not permitted you to worship. and if you are told or hear about it, you must investigate it thoroughly. If the report turns out to be true that this detestable thing has happened in Israel, summon the man or the woman who did this evil thing to your city gates. Then stone the man or the woman to death.”
- 2 Chronicles 15:13: “All people (young or old, male or female) who refused to dedicate their lives to the LORD God of Israel were to be killed.”
- Education is an infectious plague:
- Ecclesiastes 1:18: “for, in abundance of wisdom is abundance of sadness, and he who addeth knowledge addeth pain.’“
- Ecclesiastes 12:12: “More than these, my son, require not. Of making many books there is no end: and much study is an affliction of the flesh.”
- Acts 26:24: “And as he was thus speaking for himself, Festus said with a loud voice, Paul, thou art beside thyself; much learning doth make thee insane.”
- The Old Testament laws apply for all time:
- Matthew 5:17-18: “”Don’t misunderstand why I have come. I did not come to abolish the law of Moses or the writings of the prophets. No, I came to accomplish their purpose. I can guarantee this truth: Until the earth and the heavens disappear, neither a period nor a comma will disappear from Moses’ Teachings before everything has come true.”
- Luke 16:17: “But that doesn’t mean that the law has lost its force. It is easier for heaven and earth to disappear than for the smallest point of God’s law to be overturned.”
- For more biblical Atrocities, see my blog: http://judgian12365.wordpress.com/2010/11/23/bible-has-some-shocking-family-values/
Why Religion is insanity:
- The Earth’s sun rose and set three times before it, or any other star like it, was “created”:
- Genesis 1:5: “calling the light “day,” and the darkness “night.” The twilight and the dawn were day one.”
- Genesis 1:8: “God called the canopy “sky.” The twilight and the dawn were the second day.”
- Genesis 1:13: “The twilight and the dawn were the third day.”
- Genesis 1:16: “God fashioned two great lights—the larger light to shine during the day and the smaller light to shine during the night—as well as stars.”
- Humans were made of dirt before all other species of animal or plant:
- Genesis 2:7: “And the Lord God formed man of the slime of the earth: and breathed into his face the breath of life, and man became a living soul.”
- Genesis 2:19-20: “And out of the ground Jehovah Elohim had formed every animal of the field and all fowl of the heavens, and brought them to Man, to see what he would call them; and whatever Man called each living soul, that was its name. He gave names to all the livestock, all the birds of the sky, and all the wild animals. But still there was no helper just right for him.”
- Livestock and cattle [domesticated animals] were among the first animals “created”:
- Genesis 1:24-25: “Then God said, “Let the earth produce every sort of animal, each producing offspring of the same kind–livestock, small animals that scurry along the ground, and wild animals.” And that is what happened. God made all sorts of wild animals, livestock, and small animals, each able to produce offspring of the same kind. And God saw that it was good.”
- Photosynthetic plants were “created” before there was sunlight:
- Genesis 1:11-12: “And God said, Let the earth bring forth green grass, herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after its nature, whose seed is in itself upon the earth; and it was so. And the earth brought forth green grass and herb yielding seed after its kind and the tree yielding fruit whose seed was in itself, according to its nature; and God saw that it was good.”
- Genesis 1:16: “And God maketh the two great luminaries, the great luminary for the rule of the day, and the small luminary — and the stars — for the rule of the night;”
- Offspring’s’ traits are determined by what the parents see during copulation:
- Genesis 30:37-39: “Jacob then took branches of fresh poplar, almond, and plane wood, and peeled the bark, exposing white stripes on the branches. And he put them in the troughs, where the water was poured out: that when the flocks should come to drink, they might have the rods before their eyes, and in the sight of them might conceive. And the flocks conceived before the rods, and brought forth flocks striped, speckled, and spotted.”
- Rabbits chew cud, bats are birds, and insects have four legs:
- Leviticus 11:6-23: “You must never eat rabbits. (Rabbits are unclean because they chew their cud but do not have divided hoofs.)…Here are the kinds of birds you must consider disgusting and must not eat. They are eagles, bearded vultures, black vultures…the stork, the heron according to her species, the lapwing, and the bat. and any winged insect that crawls on four legs is detestable for you. There are, however, some flying insects that walk on all fours that you may eat: those that have jointed legs for hopping on the ground. But all other flying insects that have four legs you are to regard as unclean.”
- Deuteronomy 14:12-18: “But here are the birds that you should never eat: eagles, bearded vultures, black vultures…the stork, the heron after its species, the hoopoe, the bat,”
- The planet earth has four corners (the property of a two-dimensional [flat] square, rectangle, or other quadrilateral parallelogram):
- Ezekiel 7:2: “Son of man, this is what the Almighty LORD says to [the people in] the land of Israel: The end is coming! The end is coming to the four corners of the earth.”
- Isaiah 11:12: “He will lift a signal flag for the nations; he will gather Israel’s dispersed people and assemble Judah’s scattered people from the four corners of the earth.”
- Revelation 7:1: “After this I saw four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, holding back the four winds of the earth to prevent any wind from blowing on the land or on the sea or on any tree.”
- The earth is flat:
- Daniel 2:35: “The whole statue was crushed into small pieces of iron, clay, bronze, silver, and gold. Then the wind blew them away without a trace, like chaff on a threshing floor. But the rock that knocked the statue down became a great mountain that covered the whole earth.”
- Daniel 4:10-22: “These are the visions I had while I was asleep: I was looking, and I saw an oak tree in the middle of the earth. It was very tall. The tree grew large, became strong, and its top reached the sky. It could be seen to the ends of the earth… The tree you saw, which grew and became strong, so that its top reached to heaven, and it was visible to the end of the whole earth… it is you, O king! For you have become great and strong. Your greatness is such that it reaches to heaven, and your authority to the ends of the earth.”
- Matthew 4:8: “Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain, and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their grandeur.”
- Luke 4:5: “The devil also took him to a high place and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in an instant.”
- Psalms 33:14: “From his dwelling place, he looks down on all the inhabitants of the earth.”
- Revelation 1:7: “”Look, he is coming with the clouds,” and “every eye will see him, even those who pierced him”; and all Peoples on earth “will mourn because of him.” So shall it be! Amen.”
- The Earth has edges (something spherical objects never have):
- Deuteronomy 13:7: “They might suggest that you worship the gods of Peoples who live nearby or who come from the ends of the earth.”
- Isaiah 5:26: “The LORD raises up a flag for the nations far away. With a whistle he signals those at the ends of the earth. Look, they are coming very quickly!”
- Job 28:24: “For he looks as far as the ends of the earth and sees everything under the sky.”
- Job 37:3: “Under the whole heaven he lets it go, and his lightning to the corners of the earth.”
- Job 38:13: “that it might seize the corners of the earth, and shake the wicked out of it?”
- Jeremiah 16:19: “O LORD, my strength, and my fortress, and my refuge in the day of affliction, the Gentiles shall come to you from the ends of the earth, and shall say, Surely our fathers have inherited lies, vanity, and things wherein there is no profit.”
- The planet Earth rests upon pillars (instead of in outer space, wherein there exists no such thing as “up” or “down”):
- 1 Samuel 2:8: “He raises up the poor from the dust; he lifts the needy from the ash heap to make them sit with princes and inherit a seat of honor. For the pillars of the earth are the LORD’s, and on them he has set the world.”
- Isaiah 40:22: “He’s the one who sits above the disk of the earth, and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers. He’s the one who stretches out the heavens like a curtain, and spreads them like a tent to live in,”
- Job 9:6: “He shakes the earth from its place and makes its pillars tremble.”
- Outer space is full of water:
- Genesis 1:6-7: “Then God said, “Let there be a space between the waters, to separate the waters of the heavens from the waters of the earth. And that is what happened. God made this space to separate the waters of the earth from the waters of the heavens.”
- Stars [superheated, thermonuclear-fusion-powered gaseous masses dozens of times the size of planets] can be stepped on:
- Daniel 8:10: “And it was magnified even unto the strength of heaven: and it threw down of the strength, and of the stars, and trod upon them.”
For more explanation of just why and how, exactly, almost each and every single thing in the Bible [supposedly written by the infallible and inerrant all-knowing omniscient god of the entire universe] is scientifically and factually wrong about very nearly everything, I refer you to my blog: http://thecreativelymaladjusted.blogspot.com/2013/03/why-anyone-who-claims-that-science.html
And as far as Biblical prophecy goes, some of them came true, like when Jesus stated that he would cause violence:
- Luke 12:51-53: “Do you think I have come to bring peace to the earth? No, I have come to divide people against each other! From now on families will be split apart, three in favor of me, and two against–or two in favor and three against. A father will be against his son and a son against his father. A mother will be against her daughter and a daughter against her mother. A mother-in-law will be against her daughter-in-law and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law.”
- Mark 13:12: “Brother will betray brother to be killed, and fathers will betray children; and children will rise against their parents and have them put to death.”
- Matthew 10:21: “Brother will hand over brother to death; a father will hand over his child. Children will rebel against their parents and kill them.”
- Mathew 10:34-36: “”Don’t think that I came to bring peace to earth. I didn’t come to bring peace but conflict. For I came to set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and a man’s own family will be his foes.”
Others didn’t come true, such as when he guaranteed his followers (in the early first century CE) that they would live to see the end of the world:
- John 1:51: “Jesus said to Nathanael, “I can guarantee this truth: You will see the sky open and God’s angels going up and coming down to the Son of Man.”
- Luke 9:27: “”I can guarantee this truth: Some people who are standing here will not die until they see the kingdom of God.”
- Matthew 10:23: “So when they persecute you in one city, flee to another. I can guarantee this truth: Before you have gone through every city in Israel, the Son of Man will come.”
- Matthew 16:28: “I can guarantee this truth: Some people who are standing here will not die until they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.”
- Matthew 23:26: “I can guarantee this truth: The people living now will be held accountable for all these things.”
- Matthew 24:34: “I can guarantee this truth: This generation will not disappear until all these things take place.”
- 1 Thessalonians 2:19: “For what is our hope or joy, or the crown of which we boast? Is it not you yourselves in the presence of our Lord Jesus at His Coming?”
In the early 1990’s, Aaron Sorkin was working as a bartender in lower Manhattan. His older sister was a lawyer with the United States Navy Judge Advocate General Corps in Washington D.C. In telephone calls and letters, she would describe to her brother stories about the cases that she worked on. On the back of napkins while at work, Aaron reworked the stories his sister told him into a play, which he entitled “A Few Good Men”. Even while still bartending, aspiring playwright Sorkin had “A Few Good Men” picked up as a drama set to open on Broadway. The play only ran for a few weeks in New York because in the audience at one of the first showings was “The Princess Bride” director Robert Reiner. Reiner approached Sorkin backstage after the show and requested the playwright’s permission to produce the drama as a feature-length Hollywood motion picture. Sorkin enthusiastically agreed, and Reiner cast “Top Gun” star Tom Cruise in the leading role of Lieutenant Daniel Kaffee, Demi Moore as the female lead Lieutenant Commander Joanne Galloway, “JFK” actor Kevin Bacon as Captain Jack Ross and “Young Guns” actor Kiefer Sutherland as villain Lieutenant Jonathan Kendrick. He consulted with Sorkin when it came time to cast the role of the lead antagonist Colonel Nathan Jessup. When asked what actor he might have had in mind when he wrote the character, Sorkin answered someone like “Batman” villain Jack Nicholson. So Reiner cast Nicholson in the role. The multiple Academy and Golden Globe Award-nominated film was a box office phenomenon, and helped propel Reiner, Nicholson and especially Cruise to superstardom status.
Two years later, Sorkin submitted another screenplay that head had written to Reiner, The manuscript was entitled “The American President” and largely concerned the behind-the-scenes workings of the White House Senior Staff. Reiner, however, wanted the story to center primarily on the love affair between President Andrew Shepherd and girlfriend Sydney Wade. He cast “Disclosure” star Michael Douglas as Shepherd and Annette Bening in the role of Wade. The reworked storyline required jettisoning at least fourteen pages that Sorkin had originally written delving into the inner workings of the President’s staff, but Sorkin was nonetheless able to reassert the influence of his original concept with the casting of “JFK” narrator Ramon Estevez in the supporting role of White House Chief of Staff McInnerney and “The Secret of My Success” star Michael Fox as Lewis Rothschild. Though it did substantially less spectacularly both at the box office and in awards than “A Few Good Men”, “The American President” finally made Sorkin well-known enough for him to break into the competitive business of 1990’s network sitcoms.
His pitch to The Walt Disney Company’s American Broadcasting Company, a half-hour weekly primetime comedy about the backstage melodramas at a cable sports news program called “Sports Night” on the fiction Continental Sports Channel, modeled after the real-life program “SportsCenter” on Disney’s own Entertainment and Sports Programming Network. Sorkin made no secret of the fact that one or both of the two male leads on the show, Daniel Rydell, played by Joshua Charles, and Casey McCall, played by Peter Krause, was based on “SportsCenter” host Keith Olbermann. With “Sports Night” Sorkin began what would become a pattern throughout his career: reusing actors from previous works; by casting actor Joshua Malina, who had relatively minor supporting roles in the both “The American President” as one of Wade’s colleagues, and “A Few Good Men”, in the show-stopping role as Associate Producer Jeremy Goodwin. Sorkin cast “Law & Order” actress Felicity Huffman in the female lead role of Executive Producer Dana Whitaker.
“Sports Night”, however, was destined to run for only two short seasons, as after the first season finale Sorkin finally found a production company in Time Warner’s Warner Brothers Entertainment and a network in Comcast Corporation’s National Broadcasting Company willing to air the edited-out fourteen-plus pages from Sorkin’s script for “The American President”, which he had reworked into the pilot for an hour-long network drama about the White House. Entitled “The West Wing”, the show had been turned down by one network and one production company after another, each believing that, given the historically unprecedented partisan political polarization and record unpopularity of politicians in the nation’s capitol in Washington, a show about the lives of government workers could never be a success. The first season of “The West Wing” aired on NBC simultaneously with the second season of “Sports Night” on ABC, after which given the extraordinarily positive critical reaction to “The West Wing”, Sorkin devoted his full-time to the NBC drama.
As originally scripted by Sorkin, “The West Wing” was effectively the opposite of its parent project “The American President”, with the character of President Josiah Bartlet appearing in only a few episodes in a season. However in the Pilot the performance of, and the reaction to, Bartlet’s character as played by “The American President” holdover Ramon Estevez, was so powerful that they forced Sorkin to rewrite the whole series to center equally on the President and the Staff. Other changes also resulted from filming the pilot episode. The opening scene featured White House Chief of Staff Leo McGarry, played by John Spencer, making a tour of the eponymous West Wing of the White House conducting conversations with various other characters in different rooms and hallways of the building. Although originally planned as a series of quick cuts filmed in separate locations of the set on different days, time and budget constraints forced its condensation into a single continuously filmed scene. Thus was born Sorkin’s most well-known invention, referred to as “the walk and talk”.
Sorkin carried on with his tradition of remembering actors by casting Janel Moloney, who appeared on an episode of “Sports Night”, in the role of Donnatella Moss, Senior Assistant to Deputy White House Chief of Staff Josh Lyman, played by “My Fellow Americans” actor Bradley Whitford. Sorkin cast “Tommy Boy” villain Robert Lowe in the role of Sam Seaborn, deputy to White House Communications Director Tobias Ziegler, played by “The Practice” actor Richard Schiff. “Primary Colors” actress Allison Janney as White House Press Secretary Claudia Cregg, Karim Hill as Charles Young, and “The Lion King” actress Moira Kelly as Media Director Madeline Hamilton rounded out the cast; with peripheral appearances by “Grease” star Susan Stockard as First Lady Abigail Bartlet, Elisabeth Moss as Zoey Bartlet, “Law And Order” actress Jorja Fox as Secret Service agent Gina Toscano, and “Robin Hood: Men In Tights” villain Roger Rees as John Marbury. In the first three seasons Sorkin wrote the show, “The West Wing” went on to become the most award-winning drama in the history of television.
After the departure of Rob Lowe halfway through the show’s fourth season, Sorkin brought on “Sports Night” star Joshua Malina to play Sam Seaborn’s replacement as deputy Communications Director, William Bailey. However, throughout the course of the following fifth season, Sorkin phased himself out as the writer of the show, leaving the job in the capable hands of Lawrence O’Donnell, who had a minor role in the second season finale of the show. O’Donnell carried on Sorkin’s tradition, casting Theresa Polo, who had a supporting role on “Sports Night”, in the role of Helen Santos, wife of Presidential candidate Democratic Texas Congressman Matthew Santos, played by Jimmy Smits, in the show’s sixth season. Neither Sorkin nor O’Donnell have been willing to give a firm answer to the question of whether the character of Santos was modeled after then-Senator Barack Obama of Illinois, who rocketed to prominence with his keynote address at the 2004 Democratic National Convention, shortly before O’Donnell took over the reigns from Sorkin. O’Donnell also cast “M.A.S.H.” star Alphonso D’Abruzzo as Santos’ Republican opponent California Senator Arnold Vinick, modeled after real-life Arizona Republican Senator John McCain. O’Donnell’s biggest challenge came near the end of the show’s seventh and final season with the sudden and unexpected death of John Spencer. The show wrapped up its run with its chart-topping series finale in 2006.
Later that same year, Sorkin debuted a new show, entitled “Studio 60 On The Sunset Strip”, which like “Sports Night” but unlike “The West Wing” dealt with real-world events, took place behind the scenes of a television show, and was a comedy. NBC made the decision to premiere Sorkin’s hour-long “Studio 60” on the same night as “Saturday Night Live” writer and actress Elizabeth Fey‘s similarly themed half hour sitcom, entitled “30 Rock” after the address of the headquarters building of NBC Universal at Rockefeller Center in New York City. Sorkin cast Bradley Whitford in the starring role of Executive Producer Daniel Tripp and Matthew Perry, who had a supporting role in the fourth and fifth seasons of “The West Wing” as Tripp’s partner Executive Producer Matthew Albie, a character who showed traces of being modeled after Sorkin himself, and Amanda Peet as National Broadcasting System President Jordan McDeere.
Unfortunately out-competed by Fey’s “30 Rock” in the genre, and citing what he referred to as “mistakes” that he had made in writing the characters, Sorkin abruptly abandoned “Studio 60” after the first season ended.
Returning to movies, Sorkin produced a motion picture adaptation of the nonfiction book “Charlie Wilson’s War” by Columbia Broadcasting System News journalist George Crile about the Central Intelligence Agency’s top-secret covert war against the Unions of Soviet Socialist Republics in the West Asian country of Afghanistan under Republican President Ronald Reagan in the mid-to-late 1980’s, with multiple Academy Award winning “Forrest Gump” star Tom Hanks as the eponymous Democratic Texas Congressman Charles Wilson, “Patch Adams” actor Philip Hoffman as CIA officer Gust Avrakotos, and “Ocean’s Eleven” female lead Julia Roberts as Joanne Herring.
Sorkin followed this by winning his first-ever Academy Award for his screenplay for the movie “The Social Network”, recounting the founding of the social networking website Facebook by Harvard students Mark Zuckerberg, played by Jesse Eisenberg, and Eduardo Saverin, played by Andrew Garfield, and Napster founder Sean Parker, played by “Saturday Night Live” star Justin Timberlake.
After producing a motion picture adaptation of the nonfiction book “Moneyball: The Art Of Winning An Unfair Game” by Vanity Fair financial journalist Michael Lewis, starring “Ocean’s Eleven” actor William Pitt as Oakland Athletics General Manager William Beane, Phillip Hoffman as Manager Arthur Howe, and “Accepted” actor Jonah Hill as Assistant General Manager Peter Brand; Sorkin returned to television with an hour-long drama for the cable channel Home Box Office. Entitled “The Newsroom”, it mirrored “Sports Night” in being about the behind-the-scenes drama of a nightly cable news program, called “News Night With Will McAvoy” on the fictional Atlantis Cable News. Sorkin cast “Goodnight And Good Luck” actor Jeffrey Daniels in the role of the show’s eponymous host William McAvoy, and “The Pink Panther” actress Emily Mortimer was cast as Executive Producer MacKenzie McHale, McAvoy’s love interest, characters and a relationship that closely mirrored that of Felicity Huffman’s Dana Whitaker and Peter Krause’s Casey McCall on “Sports Night”. “Law and Order” star Sam Waterston was cast as ACN news division President Charlie Skinner, and “Cat Ballou” star Jane Fonda came on as Atlantis World Media CEO Leona Lansing. Sorkin cast “The Daily Show With Jon Stewart” correspondent Lisa Munn as economist Sloan Sabbath. Newcomers, something not seen since “The West Wing“, include John Gallagher, who had a minor role in the season four premiere of “The West Wing”, as Senior Producer James Harper, “Law And Order: Criminal Intent” actress Alison Pill as Associate Producer Margaret Jordan, and “Law And Order” actor Thomas Sadoski as Executive Producer Don Keefer. “The Newsroom” won Daniels a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor In a Television Drama after wrapping up it’s second season in 2013.
I have a photographic memory, and so will never in my life be capable of seeing the images on the television of airplanes full of people being flown into buildings full of people.
“But why should you hate every religion? We don’t all believe that we should fly into a building and kill people.”
The Bible clearly, repeatedly, and in no uncertain terms, commands ALL of its followers to kill ANYONE who does not devote their lives to the same god as they do. How, exactly, is that ANY different at all than the commandment that the men flying the planes were following?
After all, they, as adherents to one of Christianity’s fellow Abrahamic monotheistic religions [Islam], believed in and worshipped the EXACT same god as Christians do. [Need I remind you that adherence to ANY of the more than 42,000 different mutually exclusive and contradictory denominations of christianity REQUIRES a dogmatic and anti-intellectual belief in the literal, non-metaphorical, truth of the bible for most, if not all, of its very foundation (that being, the factually baseless and unfounded "historical" existence, in the early 1st century CE, of a late-4th century book's fictional character named "Jesus Christ)].
So NO ONE who KNOWS what the term “Christian” means and yet still self-identifies themselves as christian has ANY right or standing for that matter to call ANYTHING done by any member of ANY of the other Abrahamic monotheistic religions.
Muslims stone women to death for being raped? That’s what the Bible commands christians to do too. Muslims stone children to death for “dishonoring” their parents? Jesus himself in the New Testament makes it very clear in his own words that he wholeheartedly approves of the Old Testament Commandment to do just that. Muslims burn entire cities to the ground for not worshiping their same religion? The Bible commands Christians to do the exact same thing.
“There are many different opinions on how to interpret what the bible is teaching us. But, this is also a new time, a new era.”
YES The digital age (or computer age) really IS a new age, an age based COMPLETELY, in its entirety, solely and exclusively on the principles of empirical scientific rationalism. Therefore, should we not do away with a book of myths from the STONE AGE, thousands of years ago, which is PROVABLY and DEMONSTRABLY historically, scientifically, and factually dead-wrong about very nearly EVERYTHING from cover to cover.
In science, once ANY idea has been debunked and refuted, it goes away and is never seen or heard from again.
So the question is this: Why is it, than, that a book in which EVERYTHING is provably FALSE persists thousands of years after the superstition and mysticism it engenders long since ceased to serve whatever purpose it might have ever had, if any?
My answer?: Because it provides a justification for atrocities and acts of violence and devastation that absolutely NO other ideology EVER invented by the mind of a human being, or any sane intelligent person in a civilized society for that matter, could ever possibly rationalize.
The “lessons” of the Bible are either what can be charitably be described as bullsh@#$%t [i.e that insects have four legs, the earth is flat square with four corners, the sun can be stopped in the sky, the stars can be taken down and stomped on, the earth rest on pillars, outer space is full of water, plants predated the sun, humans are made of dirt, sunrise and sunset are possible without a sun, showing stripes to a cow will produced striped calves, bats are birds, whales are fish, pi=3 etc. etc.] OR what is most accurately described as “barbaric” [children must be stoned to death for not obeying their parents, women should be stoned to death for being raped, cities should be burned to the ground and their inhabitants slaughtered if one of them is rumored to have not worshipped the right god, people should be killed for doing work on the weekend, people should be burned at the stake for gardening etc.].
In an 21st century in which the entire store of human knowledge [everything that everyone on Earth knows about anything] doubles every half-decade (by any definition of the term an exponential rate of growth), what possible value could a book of myths containing what was not even the most advanced scientific knowledge at the time that it was written (It is a fact that Ancient Greek mathematicians working at the Library of Alexandria in Egypt [early first millennia BCE, centuries before the writing of the Bible] not only proved that the planet Earth was a sphere, but than went on to calculate its circumference to within inches of the actual figure NASA would discover millennia later, while the Bible, written centuries later, still states in no uncertain terms that the earth is not only flat but square) possibly hope to serve when very nearly everything it contains is KNOWN to very nearly every educated person to be either factually false or inhumanly reprehensible? That is, what utility could it serve OTHER than the obvious: To rationalize otherwise unjustifiable atrocities, crimes against humanity, and acts of mass-genocide?
The solution to this problem, I believe, is not complicated, and can be found via a method known to everyone who has ever taken a macroeconomics course at a technical college: A cost-benefit analysis. That is to say: Does whatever potential good done by people who also just so happen to fallacious call themselves “christians” [without, apparently, actually understanding what being one means] might ever do throughout the course of their lives (none of which, i might add, can be proven to be a direct result of their religious belief [that they would not have done otherwise, even were they not religious]) OUTWEIGH the very real and observed capability for such savage and barbaric beliefs to justify the mass-murder of innocent civilians by the thousands?
My answer would be a resounding NO.
You asked why it is that I hate religion. I would respond with a question of my own: “Does anyone in the world have a good reason not to?”
“And now I ask… I believe in religion, but I’m also a realist. I believe in something I can’t see, something that came out of a book. But everything we’ve learned about science originally comes out of some dudes head, his idea caught on, and bam, the world has an order about it and everything suddenly makes sense. You’re taking something someone came up with thousands of years ago, and who are still coming up with, and believing in it. You are still believing in something people started saying, and it makes sense to all of you/us. Both can be found in books. Both have people who know very much about the respected topics. There is just more people who believe in science, then religion. So how is religion any different from science? Both are pretty much made up. ”
Science is NOT a belief. NO ONE “believes in” science. Science is based on FACTS, not faith. Facts are what can be proven beyond a shadow of a reasonable doubt. What can be proven need not be believed, as what can be proven can be KNOWN. Whether one “believes in” facts is irrelevant. One either KNOWS facts or they do not. Likewise, one either KNOWS science, or they don’t.
Faith, on the other hand, is defined as “the belief in impossible things without rational reason”. (It is no coincidence, by the way, that this definition so closely mirrors that of the term “insanity”, that being: “Irrationally believing that impossible things are real for no reason.”, as religious faith, like dementia or schizophrenia, can be and furthermore has been medically and scientifically diagnosed as a form of mental illness).
You asked what the difference is between science and religion.
While there are MANY, the most important one is perhaps the most simplistic to understand, and it is one which i alluded to in the above essay: UTILITY
Since the time of the Ancient Greeks, scientific investigation has a very nearly unbroken track record of producing results that not only explain the observable universe all around us but also, sometimes even in the process of doing so, make the lives of everyone who is able to directly access them qualitatively and substantively BETTER (longer, healthier, happier, safer, easier, etc.). To put it quite simply, science not only answers questions, it SAVES LIVES. Indeed, it is no hyperbolic exaggeration to state that very nearly EVERY component of modern contemporary life in the developed industrialized first world [from electricity to the internet, to vaccines and clean air, food, and water etc.] is almost universally the exclusive byproduct of the scientific method.
Religion, on the other hand, has a more than eight-thousand year-long known recorded history of NEVER producing ANYTHING of ANY use to ANYONE. NO invention known to science was developed using the factually inaccurate writings of scientifically illiterate goat-herding stone age tribesmen upon which the three Abrahamic monotheistic religions are based. Religion has NEVER put forward ANY factually based empirically testable hypothesis, and indeed [in the case of Christianity in especial] has spent the overwhelmingly vast majority of past two millennia of its history going to genuinely extraordinary lengths to repress and inhibit any and all scientific investigation of the natural world. Even today, religions prohibit, often under the penalty of death, the utilization by any of their adherents of any of the innumerable life-improving and health-bettering products of science [In the western world, this applies most specifically to forms of birth control and contraception such as condoms, abortion and embryonic stem cell research].
In short, the difference between the modern first-world civilization built on scientific empiricism and the illiterate dark ages produced by religious fundamentalist theocratic dogmatism is quite literally all the difference in the world. It requires no over-exaggeration to say, for example, that the difference between medical science, which just in the last century all but eradicated malaria, polio, and smallpox and has extended the human lifespan from one’s early thirties just two thousand years ago to well over a hundred in the 21st century; and the Bible, which states that diseases are caused by demonic possession and that leprosy can be cured by sprinkling the blood of burnt birds with a magic wand, and its religion which taught that illness originated from bad “biles” or “humors” in the blood and so could be treated with bloodletting and leeches, makes nothing short of the difference between life and death for tens of millions of all ages and genders all around the world each and every single day.
Scientific facts (theories, laws, etc.) are OBSERVATIONS made about how the world works. An idea (something that some person thinks up) has absolutely NO merit whatsoever in science UNLESS it corresponds to or explains some phenomena that has been observed.
This, in so many words, is the real problem with religion. It completely, totally, and utterly FAILS to explain ANYTHING. The belief, for instance, that the universe, the Milky Way Galaxy, the SOL solar system, the planet Earth, and all life on it were magically SPOKEN into existence from nothing throughout the course of a week sometime around the fifth millennium BCE (as is stated in the Old Testament Book of Genesis), even if taken as true [as it is by Christians] tells us absolutely positively NOTHING of any use to anyone about life, the universe, or ANYTHING.
Charles Darwin’s Theory of Descent With Modification Through Mutation, Adaptation, Natural Selection, and Speciation [commonly shorthanded as "Evolution"], as first put forward in his 189 book “On the Origin of the Species”, on the other hand, has been confirmed, re-confirmed, and cross-confirmed by very nearly constant testing for the more than century and a half since it was proposed precisely BECAUSE it explains very nearly EVERYTHING about the biodiversity of living organisms that we as human beings observe in the natural world around us (from the anatomical and physiological similarities between dinosaur fossils and the skeletons of modern-day birds to the near-genetic identicalness of Humans with the other species of Great Ape). This is true of EVERY scientific theory that has EVER been proposed.
The biblically based worldview that the Earth was a flat disc [in spite of the fact that the bible makes explicitly clear in no uncertain terms that the Earth has four corners and is therefore a square in shape] rested upon pillars at the center of the known universe while all other celestial bodies, including the nearest star our sun, orbited around it, while it appeared superficially to resemble what could be observed standing at any one given point on the Earth’s surface, likewise gave humanity NO useful information of any kind about the ACTUAL state of the universe they lived in. (Had the President John Fitzgerald Kennedy Challenged the National Aeronautics and space Administration to land a human being on the surface of the moon in a world still ruled by such dogma, the number of astronauts who would have lost their lives due to their lack of any understanding of the real shape of the earth or arrangement of the solar system would have been quite literally incalculable.) Nevertheless, though as i pointed out previously Greek Mathematician at the Library of Alexandria accurately calculated the circumference of the spherical earth, during the Medieval Dark Ages that, according to most historians, began when the Christians burned the Library to the ground, the Biblical world view held sway so dominantly that those who were first to challenge it (such as Italian Renaissance Astronomer Galileo Galilei) were persecuted to the fullest extent of Old-Testament-style apostasy and heresy law [of the same sort that you find today in religious fundamentalist theocracies such as Saudi Arabia and Iran] by the Roman Catholic Inquisition.
However, in spite of its near-unbroken track record of violently repressing scientific progress, atheists such as myself are told that we are expected to “accept” and “tolerate” religion. As, like i stated before, religion has been diagnosed and psychological disease, the parallels of this situation to some of the recent achievements of science are unavoidable but nonetheless unsettling to contemplate. What, for example, do you think the world of today would be like if, instead of spending decades and hundreds of billions of dollars in research to eradicate polio and smallpox, the scientists of the early 20th century had instead been given, and obeyed, the request presented to we atheists: That they should merely “accept” polio and “tolerate” smallpox?
You tell me: Is there indeed ANYONE in the world today who would have been better off today had that advice been taken to heart by these researchers?
Of course not.
To “accept” something means to acknowledge that it is and always will an inescapable and unavoidable part of the world. In the case of ANY disease, the human response since the advent of the Scientific Method during the Enlightenment has been to REJECT such a notion out of hand. I do likewise when it comes to religion. As an erudite academic intellectual, i flat-out REFUSE to “accept” the dogmatic anti-intellectualism that is not only inherent, but indeed a prerequisite, in ANY religious belief.
My Father always said of criminals that: “If they were smart enough to understand what it is that they were doing, then they would not do it.” I believe the same about the religious. That is to say: If they can be persuaded to think rationally about just what, exactly, it is that they believe and what, if any, reasons they might have to believe what they do, then they will, i believe, come to the logically inescapable and demonstrably true conclusion that their beliefs have absolutely no basis of any kind at all whatsoever in reality and will thereafter, that is if they are at all intelligent or reasonable human beings, cease to believe in such insanity.
The FACTS of the matter are as follows:
- NO religious cult known to have EVER existed ANYWHERE in the known world has EVER produced ANYTHING that has EVER been of ANY practical utility to ANYONE.
- NO such cult’s sacred scriptures have ANYTHING at all whatsoever to teach ANY intelligent or educated person in the modern-day world, as the overwhelmingly vast majority of EVERYTHING in such texts is known to factually and scientifically WRONG about very nearly EVERYTHING that they have ANYTHING to say about.
- The track record of religion in the known recorded history of western civilization as we know it is indisputably, and almost invariably, one of being intellectually and scientifically REGRESSIVE, by not only SETTING human scientific knowledge back centuries if not millennia by such acts anti-intellectual terrorism as the burning of libraries [Alexandria and Constantinople, namely], but also HOLDING the progress of human civilization back by inhumane and reprehensible means for thousands of years.
- As a medically diagnosed form of dementia, religious faith has been scientifically demonstrated to make those infected with it quantifiable LESS knowledgeable, LESS informed, and indeed LESS intelligent that those who have gone unaffected by any such a condition. When it is deployed, like a weaponized biochemical agent, to knowingly, willfully, intentionally, and deliberately infect the minds of very young children, it can be shown to quantifiable RETARD such individuals’ capabilities for rational and intelligent thought for the rest of their natural lives, and thereby to diminish not only the likelihood that such individuals will ever make any substantive contribution to human civilized society, but also the value that any such contribution that they might ever manage to make, in spite of their infection, will have to the future generations that come after them.
Again, your original question was why it is, exactly, that i hate all religion. It is my firm conviction that, given the irrefutable realities listed above, there exists no human being living today anywhere on the planet earth who has any good reason NOT to deeply resent religion in all of its many forms and guises. That is to say that it is my belief that EVERYONE who lives on the planet earth has every reason in the wide world to hate religion, if for no other reason than simply because of the FACT that there is not, i believe, a single person alive today whose life would not be demonstrably, substantively and tangibly BETTER were it not for the regressive and anti-human influence of religious dogmatism on our society.
Does THAT answer your question finally?
“My thoughts on the matter are still the same.”
I assumed as much. That is, after all, the quintessential defining quality of all religions: Anti-intellectualist Dogmatism. That is to say, the predetermined, unshakeable, and unwavering commitment to never, ever, under any circumstances, change your mind in any way about anything at all.
With that, no religion could exist. Because anyone (such as myself) who comes to conclusions BASED UPON evidence, rather than IN SPITE of it, is called a “scientist”. If you draw your conclusions from the known facts, as I and all of us out here in sane rational world do, then when the facts change so must you conclusions. However, if the religious paid such attention to facts, then they would be left with no viable alternative but to concede the fact that what they believe has absolutely positively NO factual basis in perceptible reality at all whatsoever. If they did this, then there would be no religions (and the whole world would be a far better-off place for it), as no sane person could ever possibly rationalize believing in something so tangibly and demonstrably detached from the real world [the very definition of insanity, BTW]. So in order to be religious, as you are, you quite literally have no choice EXCEPT to knowingly, willfully and intentionally choose to decide to ignore any and all evidence and facts that are presented to you in favor of your factually baseless beliefs, in spite of the provable disconnect from reality. This is the reason why religions such as yours have been fighting for so many centuries, and continue to this day, against education [such as, for instance, insisting the students be taught stone-age prehistoric caveman mythology instead of scientific facts in their science classrooms], because the better-educated one is in how the scientific method works, the more likely they are to want to know that following it is the only way that anyone who has ever lived has ever had to ever know anything about anything at all. That is to say, the more likely they are to want to follow it.
This would undermine what has been and continues to be the central claim of every religion that has ever been invented by the mind of man: that they, and they alone, possess or have exclusive access to the one and only absolute infallible and inerrant truth of the one and only all-knowing omniscient god of the universe. As i have pointed out, The truth could not be more different. The fact is that willful, deliberate, and self-imposed ignorance, such as yours, is NOT a way of knowing things. It never has been and never will be. It is no coincidence that science has proven itself to be the only way anyone can know anything, whereas no religion has ever been shown to have ever had any knowledge of any value to offer. Learning ANYTHING, by definition, first and foremost REQUIRES that you be willing to admit that you do not know absolutely everything there is to know about absolutely everything there is to know anything about. Unfortunately, the exact opposite claim just so happens to be PRECISELY what religions such as yours, with their dogmas of direct lines of communication with an all-seeing and omnipresent god, are founded upon. Secondly, learning requires that you be ready, willing and able to CHANGE your mind about anything that you might already assume that you know, if it is found that you actually don’t know what you believe that you do. This is something, as you have demonstrated here, that the religious such as yourself are hardwired from a genuinely revolting early age to lack utterly the intellectual capacity to ever be able to do. For that, and the detrimental impact it will have on your mental capabilities throughout the rest of your life, you have my most sincere and heartfelt sympathies.
Fort Meade, Maryland
Monday November 5, 2063
President Katherine Janney woke, and she rolled over, throwing her arm around the man lying next to her. But the bed beside her was empty. Kate’s eyes jolted open, and she flipped back over onto her back, and sat up in the bed.
The bed next to her was indeed empty, except for a shallowing impression in the mattress beside her, the cushions still warm, as she ran her hand over the cloth.
She sat back against the headboard of the bed, pulling the covers tight around her, lest anyone come in, and looked around, scanning the room with her eyes.
To her left was a stained glass patio door, sealed shut.
She could see, through the windows on either side, the Romanesque balcony that lay beyond.
Early morning sunlight wafted onto the balcony, bathing it in a yellow-orange glow. Only limited amounts of that light filtered through the glass, and the room around her remained in near darkness, dimly lit by elaborate lamp fixtures on the walls.
“Close your eyes.” Came a gentle voice from somewhere to her right.
She turned toward the voice, which was familiar. She could see little discernible, so she did as she had been instructed, and closed her eyes.
“All right. Now, slowly, open.”
Kate opened her eyes.
The room was brightly lit the window shades having been drawn open. Bright dawn sunlight now illuminated the room, bathing everything around her in a soft, warm, yellow-orange glow.
From the shadows of the doorway to the next room, a figure emerged.
He was dressed in sweatpants and a long-sleeved t-shirt emblazoned with the red and black, white and gold colors of the University of Wisconsin.
The shirt was clearly a size or two too small for him, fitted for a five-foot-eight college student, and the turtleneck sleeves only reached his elbows, the neck itself having been removed.
He held in his hands a tray, with what looked like silvers platters of something. He came over to her. He leaned in and kissed her, pressing his lips to hers lovingly. He laid the tray in her lap, and she felt its heat.
When their lips parted, she looked down.
It was a tray of food, steam rising from the platters.
“What do we have here?” Kate asked.
Jeremy smiled, and plopped himself down onto the bed by her knees.
“We have…” He opened the gourmet platters one by one. “… French toast with New Hampshire Box Elder syrup; dry whole white wheat bread toast with strawberry jelly and raspberry jam; fried eggs, scrambled and hard-boiled; and nice crispy Canadian ham bacon strips.”
“And…” Jeremy reached behind him, to the table beside the bed. “A full pot of fresh sweet pepper wintergreen mint tea; steaming hot and a bit strong, just as you like it.”
He brought out the canister, and poured her a tall mug full of steaming tea. He sat next to her on the bed, in silence; rubbing his hands up and down her long, slender legs.
As she sipped her tea and ate breakfast, he worked his hand further up her leg. He reached to her hip and waist as she finished her toast.
He leaned forward again, and their lips met.
Kate lay leaned back over the headboard of the bed against the wall as she yielded to the gentle, tender, loving relentlessness of his kiss. She smiled and giggled against his mouth on hers lips as he swept his tongue around her lips, licking away the sweet, sticky, sugary syrup from around his lover‘s mouth.
At the same time, he brought his hand in, holding her gently, lightly by her sides as they kissed.
He reached her ribcage, and their lips finally parted.
They stayed that way for what seemed like a long time; faces mere centimeters apart, his right hand rubbing up and down her side.
Then Jeremy leaned in again, lowering his head; and pressed his lips, still moist from kissing her, to the side of her neck.
Kate turned her face up to the ceiling, smiling, and letting her eyes fall closed, as he worked the tender side of her neck. Her hands were gripping his shoulders, kneading the tendons of his collarbone; half-subconsciously drawing him to her. Then Kate heard something, and her eyes popped open. She tried noncommittal to pull her head away from him; but Jeremy was merciless, and soon her eyelids began to flutter again as her lover’s lips laved over a tender spot on the skin of the side of her neck. Then she heard it again.
It was definitely the sound of footsteps; then a door latch opening.
Hurriedly, before things progressed any further; Jeremy’s hand was just reaching the hem of the sheet wrapped tight around the President’s body, ready to pull it down and bury his face in her ample bosom; She took hold of Jeremy’s shoulders and, placing her hands on his chest, firmly pushed him away.
Jeremy drew back, sitting back on the bed surprised at being so casually spurned by his lover. Almost immediately, however, he understood completely the reason behind her rebuttal.
Only scarcely a short moment after they had parted from their intimate embrace, the clicking of heeled footsteps echoed in the corridor hallway; and Julia Gates-Allen came striding gracefully into the bedroom.
She walked right up to the President, and the two embraced compassionately; “Morning, Mom.”
Janney kissed her daughter lightly.
“Good morning, Jewels, hon.”
Jeremy could not help but notice, as Kate held her daughter to her, the stark contrast between Katherine’s below the shoulder-length reddish-auburn locks, which cascaded over her shoulders in curling waves the color of polished copper; and Julia’s raven, dark ebony-brown tresses, which hung in long, flowing ripples down her back.
Now, as the two women hugged one another and Julie kissed her aunt’s cheek; the two sharply contrasted brands interwoven with one another in a manner that reminded Brooks of the dark chocolate-fudge and peanut butter caramel swirls he had seen at ice cream vendors when he was younger.
Kate finally released her daughter, after what seemed like a long time, but was in fact only a matter of a few minutes, allowing Julie to straighten.
The girl turned to the man sitting next to her.
“And a good morning to you, too, Professor.”
“Good morning, Julia.” Brooks said; giving her a smile, which she returned ten-fold; As Julia smiled brightly at him.
Not for the first time, Jeremy noted that Julie herself was a study in stark contrasts.
Her long, ebony hair hung down over her shoulders, stray strands falling into her face. The dark veil of raven tresses contrasted sharply with the brilliant pearlescent eyes they concealed.
Jeremy and Kate had both noticed that, whereas the President was still in bed, wrapped tightly only in a sheet, and Jeremy still in his pajamas, Julia was already fully dressed for the day.
Brooks also noted that Julia had donned an outfit very similar to her standard school attire, what she regularly wore to school.
This day she had exchanged the white blouse for a tan brown and black tube tank top. Her hairstyle was different as well, just as subtlety; having traded the done up and loosely swept back do; for a tightly combed ponytail, feathering the back of her neck, the tresses pulled smoothly straight back from her forehead.
All together, Brooks noted, the girl had transitioned from the look of an elegant, decadent television news anchor; to that of an efficient, cool, hardened but sultry lawyer. Yet, he thought, as Julie turned and strode gracefully into the other room; the young woman, while making her maturity self-reliance evident, had managed to maintain the youthful look of a teenager.
There was the sound of heels clicking, and silverware tinkling; and then it was only a short time before Julie reappeared, standing in the doorway leaning on the door jamb, snacking on one of the more badly burnt pieces of toast that Jeremy had made that morning, and which hadn’t made it onto the President’s platter, covered in butter and cinnamon sugar.
The President finished her tea, and Jeremy took the cup form her hands, meeting her eyes momentarily, before getting up off the bed to take the tray and the canister of tea back into the kitchen.
He allowed Katherine to get up and get dressed.
She emerged, with an ivory silk blouse; sleek black, bias-cut, blazer jacket; a self-tie belt; and matching, coordinating, knee-length back and side-zip, navy cotton pencil skirt.
Jeremy got up and went over to help her by zipping up the front of her blouse and buttoning her jacket up to four buttons from the top, as Kate buttoned the decorative cuffs of the vented long sleeves of her jacket, and Jeremy helped her straighten the padded shoulders.
“What’s all this about?” He managed finally, at last tearing his gaze away from her eyes.
“I’m going to be calling a Cabinet meeting later today.” The President said, casually. “Secretary of State Slatterly, Secretary of Defense Hunter, Attorney General Cardezza;” Her eyes glimmered as she looked up at him; “And you.” “I am also asking all of the Departments’ Deputy Secretaries to attend. The Vice President, Ken and Leo, C.J. and Alexia will also be there.”
Just then there was a knock at the door, the doorbell rang, and Kristin Ludlowe’s voice came in over the intercom: “Madam President?”
“It is time.”
Brooks held Kate by the shoulders and looked into her eyes.
“You have been through a lot in the past few months.” He said, and, after a pause, he added: “We both have.”
Kate’s smile faded.
His eyes were looking so directly at her, so piercing, that she had the impulse to look away or down at the floor; but she held his gaze steadily.
After a moment she smiled, leaning forward to kiss him; and holding him around the shoulders.
“I will be fine.” She said.
Jeremy hesitated and then grinned, wrapping his hand around her waist as they headed for the door.
“Of course you will.” He said, moving his hand into the back vent of her suit, stroking up to back. He removed his hand as they reached the entryway.
She opened the door, and they stepped, arm in arm, out into the hallway to greet her staff.
Mavalently noticed then, for the first time, that Brooks had his arm around Julia, his hand resting lightly on her shoulder. As Brooks approached, he released the girl, as Julie hurried forward to embrace her godmother.
“Morning, Aunt Becka.”
Rebecca returned the embrace, putting her arm around the shorter woman’s shoulders.
She ushered them over to a lounge area off the main hall.
Julia stretched out, lying reclining back on the platform on top of the back seat cushions of the corner booth’s couch-like benches.
Jeremy, disconcerted with the young lady’s overtly over-relaxed mannerisms, propped himself leaning up against the wall at the end of the same corner booth.
Mavalently, preferring to remain standing, stood at a table; nearer to the center of the room and the door.
“Now then;” Jeremy said, pulling out his pad, “What’s the agenda for today?”
Becka did not even look at her notes.
“There’s a full Cabinet meeting at four this afternoon.”
“I don’t know;” Mavalently conceded; “But the President called for a meeting of the advisors, meaning select members of the President’s White House Senior Staff.”
“Who? Do you know?”
“Ken, Leo, Alexia, Sophie, C.J. and myself; The National Security Council and the Joint Chiefs of Staff will also be present.”
“Yes? How so?”
“Well;” Brooks said, looking down at his pad; “She gathered most everyone with foreign policy or international intelligence experience. If you ask me, she may be preparing for a major international diplomacy initiative. I have the distinct impression that she wants to reconstitute herself as an effective diplomat. To resume, or perhaps renew, the nation’s active role of diplomacy on the world stage.”
“Perhaps not.” He paused, and looked from Becka over to Julie, relaxed atop the couch benches in the corner.
“I do feel that I must admit that the timing seems somewhat a bit off.”
“Somewhat?” Kristin Ludlowe said, coming up to them.
“There’s barely been a country for four months, and now she wants to start governing again?”
Brooks nodded to the White House Communications Director in acknowledged, if not agreement, with the validity of her point.
“Or at least to position herself and the nation in an ideal strategic position to do so in the near future.” He said, turning to her.
“Why do you say that?”
“As you know;” Brooks said, addressing both of them now; “The President planning a meeting with President Saunierre of France, in Rome next month, which she has arranged with Camerlo Ventrinsca.”
“The Italian President?” Kristin looked from Jeremy, to Becka, who nodded, and back again.
“But what you may not know;” Brooks continued; “Is that she discretely asked Secretary of State Slatterly to request the presence of Prime Minister Mekelberg of Germany.”
“At the conference in Rome?”
“Well that should be exciting.” Becka said laconically.
“I had better tell Ali.” Kristin said, hurrying over to the alcove opposite them, and pulling out her phone. “She’s going to flip.”
Brooks could certainly understand Kristin concern his sister’s reaction to the possibility of a meeting between the two leaders. As the White House Director of Foreign Policy Communications, she would be held responsible for any and all mishaps, which might occur at any meeting of two or more powerful world leaders.
These kinds of mishaps were particularly likely when concerning a meeting of leaders of two countries as adversarial as the twin central European powers of Germany and France.
The recent conflict originated form the German Parliamentary elections.
Through a protracted, prolonged electoral process, which many people in the international community said was fraudulent; the German Electoral College had selected a career politician from Munich as their new Prime Minister.
Mekelberg unorthodox kept the former President, Farouche, on as his Ambassador to first France, and then later the United States something for which the French President Joliette-Jacques Saunierre though U.S. President Jonathan Whitford was responsible.
There being no Vice President in the German government; Saunierre held that it was, in fact, really Farouche pulling the strings.
Saunierre had, accordingly, instructed his protégé, and Ambassador to the United States, Jacques Mierseln, to hold Whitford’s successor, young Katherine Janney, liable for any public relations “damages” inflicted on his country by the German administrators.
A meeting, therefore, between the two leaders, or their Ambassadors; very much less one presided over or chaired, presumably, by President Janney; could quite possibly, too easily, explode in the faces of the new U.S. administration.
Jeremy glanced over at Julia.
The girl was lying back, reclined and relaxed on top of the back seat of the corner booth’s couch benches; her arms slung back over head; her knees slightly bent, one heeled boot firmly against the corner, where the booth met the wall behind it, the other leg, she dangled over the back of the bench, letting it swing lazily. Her eyes were closed, her face shrouded in her long dark hair, which she had loosened from its tight ponytail to a comfortable shoulder-length.
Julie appeared relaxed, at rest. But from the rhythmic up and down motions of her swinging foot; and the meticulous twirling of her fingers through her long hair; as it splayed out on the counter behind her head; Brooks could tell that she was awake and aware, listening to their conversation around her.
“What time is it?” He asked, turning back to Becka, who moved over, reaching up to smooth down Julia’s skirt as it rode up her thighs, and patted her on the knee.
The girl sat up, swinging her legs over the back of the bench, her high-heeled boots coming to rest on the fluorescent surface of the table.
“Just after 0730.” Becka replied, without glancing at her chrono.
“It’s the strangest thing.” He said, his brow furrowing.
“There was something I saw on the President’s schedule, something that I was supposed to do today.”
When he noticed Kristin in the neighboring alcove, still speaking with Alexia, her features tight; He added: “… Before the Cabinet meeting.” As if reading her thoughts, before she could remind him of his previous afternoon engagement, and beating her to the punch.
Julia reached up to sweep the long raven hair out of her eyes and away from her face, brushing to tuck behind her ear.
“I recall it had something or other to do with going to school.” Jeremy frowned.
Julie and Becka looked, smiling, at one another
“You were right about him.” Julie said, turned in Jeremy’s direction, grinning. She was speaking to someone behind Brooks, over his left shoulder; and it took him a beat to turn to see Kristin, still on the speakerphone of her phone with his sister; smiling at him as well.
“What’s this about?” Brooks asked, denoting suspicion.
“Mom was taking guesses from her staff of how long it would take you to notice that something had been added to your schedule.” Julie said.
“You say there was something?” Brooks said; sounding exasperated, not appreciating being toyed with.
“What was added?” He asked, his voice serious, though he couldn’t hardly help grinning broadly himself.
“You were right on one account;” Came a familiar melodic voice form behind him, and Jeremy turned; “It does involve going to school.” Kate said, walking up to him.
She took his face in her hands and kissed him, her eyes closing momentarily.
“Professor Brooks.” Janney opened her eyes again as their lips parted.
“Madame President.” He replied, tipping his head to her respectfully.
The two held one another’s gaze for a long moment, before the sensual trance was broken, and the President flicked her eyes toward her daughter.
“So;” Jeremy said; “What’s my assignment?” He cleared his throat as they turned back towards the alcove and the assembled group. He slid his arm around Kate’s waist, slipping his hand into one of the side vents of her skirt to rest his palm lightly on her thigh, stroking it gently as they walked.
Kate started somewhat at the touch of his palm on her thigh, but otherwise seemed not to notice.
“Well; I have been thinking lately.” The President said, reaching out with one arm to rub comforting hand up and down the back of his coat; her hand beginning to work his way up his back.
“I don’t think it’s right that Jewels should have to… forego— her education, even given current circumstances notwithstanding. There’s a high school down the highway, just East of Tipton.” The President told him.
“It’s…” She paused, sifting her memory.
She looked over at Kristin.
“… Arundel— Arundel Senior High School.” Her Communications Director finished.
Jeremy, admittedly, was having somewhat of a difficulty focusing coherent thought patterns, and it took a moment for what the President was saying to register; due in significantly large part to Kate’s fingertips, which had reached the base of the back of his neck, to run her fingers gently back and forth around the inside of Brooks’ collar; and commenced softly and lightly playing over the sensitive hairs on the skin of his neck.
But he was never-nonetheless fully able to recognize and register the evident idiosyncrasy inherent in what she was telling him.
“I am a Wisconsin University Professor.” Jeremy said, knowing, somewhere deep down in the back of his mind, that he was stating the obvious.
“You want me to teach at a suburban Maryland high school?” He asked, knowing it was an unnecessary question. He turned the President beside him.
“No.” Kate said, turning around to face him, though her fingertips did not leave the back of his neck.
“I am requesting, as your friend, and yes, your boss—”
Jeremy suppressed a flinch, knowing that both he and the President disliked the implications of the term “Boss”; as well as the word itself.
“… That you, a head science teacher in the University of Wisconsin school system; along with the superintendent of the school system of the District of Columbia; contribute, as are your professions, to progressing the continued education of not only the First Daughter, but also the teenage granddaughter of the White House Chief of Staff.”
“Wait.” Jeremy said, and Kate stayed her hand at the back of his neck. “Did you just say… uhm—?”
“Yeah.” The President said nodding, moving her fingers into the thick shock of dark hair at the back of Jeremy’s head. “Stella’s going to be there.”
“… And Elecktra too.” She said, nodding.
The 37-year-old daughter of former House Minority leader Kenneth Welsh; Estelle Mackenzie had a doctorate in Secondary English Education form New York University.
Her 14-year-old daughter, Elecktra, had become like a younger sister to the President’s own daughter, Julia.
Stella, as she was known by those closest to her, had been a principal for a number of years at Washington Yorktown-Lee High School; where Julie, and lately Elecktra attended; and had recently been elected as the newest Superintendent of the D.C. School District, in a special election held after the former superintendent formally resigned.
Estelle’s sudden promotion to Superintendent strained on her marriage, to a Communications Professor at Georgetown University. Harry Mackenzie had never quite really had the unequivocal or unconditional backing and blessing of Estelle’s father, recently in a very more influential position within the Government Department overseeing Stella’s new position. Ensuing in a divorce, finalized with in the year, the separation was distressing for their newly teenaged daughter, Elecktra, who was significantly more finely attuned to the wrangling behind the tension, due to her close friendship with Julia Allen, the daughter of her grandfather’s good friend Katherine Janney.
Kenneth Welsh met the group just outside the hotel’s doorway, waiting in front of the Presidential limousine motorcade of Wolf Pack One.
As the man who had ‘held the fort’ at the White House since September, the Chief of Staff received an especially warm greeting from the young President, who strode intently over to embrace her old friend with a light pecking kiss on his cheek.
Ken grasped Jeremy’s proffered hand firmly in both of his, shaking them vigorously. His wizened, stress-lined face was creased with merriment, and he was smiling more broadly and widely than Jeremy could remember seeing before.
Ken embraced Kristin Ludlowe like a sister, nodding respectfully as he shook hands with C.J.
Arundel Senior High School
1001 Annapolis Road
Monday, November 5, 2063
Estelle Mackenzie was a lean, slim, slender woman with short burgundy mahogany hair that curled above her shoulders, and bright lime forest green eyes. She started from the building doorway as soon as the moment that the Presidential motorcade pulled into the parking lot driveway of the school. The doors of the limousine opened, and Stella hurried forward into the hug of her father, who kissed her on both cheeks. She greeted the young President respectfully, smiling as she met the man on her arm. The English Doctor seemed to particularly connect with Brooks’ older sister Alexia, Deputy Director for Foreign Policy Communications.
Leo Spencer stepped out of the cab on the opposing side of the motorcade, and expediently made his way over to Estelle, striding up into her wide open embrace; wrapping Stella passionately in his arms; leaning her back and kissing her deeply.
Kate’s auburn eyebrows rose to the point of lifting into her bangs; and Jeremy noted Ken, Stella’s father, hurriedly stride intently and purposefully away towards the doorway, and into the school building.
Elecktra Mackenzie was waiting in the High School’s commons cafeteria area. She hopped off of the platform bench and stood, as Julie hurried over to her. The two embraced, planting their faces on each other’s shoulders, a Latin-stylized greeting, before meeting in the middle for a kiss on the lips and mouth that lasted minutes longer than should be expected, as they hugged tightly.
Janney was momentarily relieved and glad of that Ken had presently departed, going to find a suitable classroom in the long-abandoned schoolhouse; for the vision of the two girls kissing as they where could have very ably induced the older grandfather into a coronary stroke.
Kate herself had grown familiar of her niece’s ‘unconventional’ close relationships with her girlfriends.
Jeremy entered the classroom just in time to see the two girls’ lips separate. His eyebrows lifted into his bangs, but, at a glance from the President, he said nothing. He turned to woman beside him, murmuring in a low voice, so that the girls couldn’t hear his words. “I’m a scientist.” He told her, and she turned to him. “Not a mathematician or a historian.” The President nodded. “I can only teach a science class, not English or math.” Kate nodded understandingly, and waved her arm forward toward the girls. Straightening the collar of his suit jacket, he cleared his throat. “Now then;” He announced his presence; “What science classes are were each of you taking?”
Elecktra answered first. “Biology.”
“And what was the last lesson you had?” Brooks asked her, knowing that the semester had ended early.
“An abbreviated introductory primer to Cladistic phylogenetic.”
Jeremy nodded. Such was part of the foundation of biological science. He turned to Julia. “What was the last science class you took before graduation?”
“Molecular Micro-biochemistry.” Julia answered.
“What were you studying?”
“Frame shift mutations within examples of gene duplication.”
Jeremy was intrigued. “Such as?”
“The CCR5-delta 32, Glycophorin A somatic single-nucleotide polymorphisms at endothelial Per-Arnt-Sim domain protein 1 and EGLN 1, and LRP5.”
If Jeremy’s eyebrows had risen before, now they disappeared into his hair. He turned to the President.
“It was a college course Stella let her take through GW.” Kate explained. “They didn’t even offer it over at Georgetown.”
“I may be a natural science teacher by profession.” Brooks told his boss. “But I am a climatology professor. I taught paleo-climatology at the University, not biology or chemistry.” He looked back to the expectant faces of the girls. “The tree of life I can do.” He told Elecktra. “But protein adaptations in multi-cellular meiosis…?” He shrugged apologetically to the President’s daughter. “I wouldn’t have any idea where to start.”
“How about something that’s a little closer to being in your wheelhouse, professor?” Estelle Mackenzie said as she entered the classroom. She looked at her daughter and smiled. “ Eoarchaen Prokaryotic bacteria and archaea, Rhyacian Paleoproterozoic eukaryotes and protozoa, the Ectasian Mesoproterozoic evolution of eukaryotic sexual reproduction, and Ediacaran Neoproterozoic multi-cellular organisms.”
Brooks nodded. “Vaalbara, Kenorland, Columbia, Robinia, and Pannonia.” He listed the supercontinent. “The Huronian Makganyene, Kaigas, Sturtuan Marinoan and Gaskiers glaciation; the Suavjarvi, Vredefort, and Sudbury Basin impact events; the Paleoproterozoic Snowball Earth; and the Keweenawan Mid-continent Rift system.”
He turned to the DC superintendent. “You have quite the knowledge of paleo-biota for someone with a BA in English.”
Stella smiled at the President’s daughter. “I listen and try to pay attention whenever Jules and Elle are talking.”
Kate hugged Jeremy, giving him a brief, not-quite-chaste kiss, and turned to leave the school. As she walked away down the hall, she smiled as she overheard Jeremy tell the girls. “I’m afraid I can only take you as far as the Proterozoic-Phanerozoic boundary.” Before turning to Stella: “By the way, multi-cellular life forms actually developed in the Paleoproteroxoic Rhyacian period.”