Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Monkeys or Equality...

The other day, I made my yearly trip to the National Museum of Natural History in Washington D.C. Yes, the one and the same. As the name implies, it deals, not with the history of our nation (that is the museum a few blocks down), but with the history of our world, and most importantly: nature. In the wax figurine caveman displays, and the new, several thousand dollar "Origins of Man" exhibit, the museum also kindly informs the innocent tourist that yes, this shortish, ape-like, less-than-handsome man, was his or her ancestor from 8 or so million years ago. Talk about long-lost relatives. Essentially put, man evolved from monkeys; the same theory that has been furthered for decades by much of the scientific community. In another section of the museum, the curator has constructed another new exhibit, about race. This well put together exhibit concerns itself with informing the visitor about the ins and outs of racial segregation and bigotry. As I perused the hall of the "Race" exhibit, after having looked at the "Origins of Man" displays, a thought came to me: both of these displays contradict each other. How? Let me explain.

Several of the Natural History Museum's displays propagate the theory that all of mankind originated in Africa. This claim is based on the fact that most of all of the 'transitionary' ape fossils such as Lucy have been found in Africa, specifically in the Kenya/Tanzania region. Also propagated is the decades old theory that man evolved, an idea originated by Charles Darwin in the 1800's. This type of evolution refuses a God as the Creator of the world, and as a being in the world. To sum up--the museum states that man evolved, thereby disallowing any action of God, and thereby arguing against the existence of God.
So where's the contradiction? I came across the contrary argument in the 'Race' exhibit.

The essential argument made by the displays on race was that all men are created equal. The info boards took a quote directly out of the Declaration of Independence: "We hold these truths to be self-evident; that all men are created equal..." But wait a minute, look back at the quote: "...that all men are created equal..." Created? Yes, that is what the Declaration states. If man is created, that denotes a Creator: God. So despite the fact that one wing of the museum denies a Creator and a God, another portion of the museum claims a Creator and a God in order to have equality. Contradiction? I think so. But wait, you say, the word 'created' is just semantics. Evolution creates as well. In that case, look at the first part of the quote: "We hold these truths to be self-evident..." The interesting thing about self-evident truths is that there are none, apart from God. Why? Look at Stalin's Russia in the 1900's: Stalin's communist regime rejected any and all parts or references to God. Alright, so what? In his nation, was equality, or any other individual right for that matter, respected? No. Obviously, the truth of equality was not self-evident to Stalin. Why? Because he rejected God. Only God is the Truth, and only God is the Self-Evident Truth.
This leaves the museum in a quandary: should it elevate the evolution of man in the interest of keeping a more atheistic view, or should it be concerned about the equality of man in race, and admit there is a God?

Keep the monkeys, or keep equality, but you cannot have both.