Another Fine Scientist on the Hill

So you think a level 85 orc running for office is scary? Consider the prevailing community standards, wherein the great biologist and women’s health advocate Todd Akin sits on the U.S. House Science committee with the physician Paul Broun, Jr., from my home state of Georgia. In the tradition of Friday Horror Movies, TPM’s Benjy Sarlin has drawn attention to a video of Broun speaking to a Baptist Sportsmen’s Banquet in his district on the importance to him–as a scientist–of understanding that science is Satanic. Give it a gander if you aren’t disturbed by having twenty deer trophies staring at you as Broun raves on, to many audible “amens”:

Now as a practicing Christian, I’m more offended religiously than politically at Broun’s rant. The Bible, he says, is a “manufacturer’s handbook,” that shows “how to run our lives individually, how to run our families, how to run our churches…how to run all of public policy and everything in society.” What an astonishingly, depressingly unspiritual way to look at the Good Book; what an appallingly illiterate way of understanding it, particularly if you get that the only scriptures people like Broun want to use to control the lives of everyone in the world just happen to reinforce the kind of smug white conservative patriarchal world-view from a bygone era they consider ideal.

It’s saddening and maddening, worse yet because among the “amens” greeting Broun’s soul-deadening paen to religious and political authoritarianism there wasn’t one voice saying “Really?”

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Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.