I <3 the Young Turks. Here's their video commentary on the recent depressing-as-ever Gallup poll on evolution vs. creationism.

Here's the exact text of the survey choices:

32% - "Human beings have developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life, but God guided this process."
15% - "Human beings have developed over millions of years from less advanced forms of life, but God had no part in this process."
46% - "God created human beings pretty much in their present form at one time within the last 10,000 years or so."
7% - "No opinion."

There's one glaring (to me) problem here. There's actually a big gray zone between "guided" and "had no part". It would be hard for any believer to answer that God had no part, even if they understand that the whole thing works without any ongoing micromanagement.

I would rather the survey had distinguished between "I believe God must have actively guided the process as it unfolded" and "God did not necessarily have to guide it, at least once it got underway." That question would serve to clearly separate the people who just plain do not understand the facts from those who do, while leaving room for the latter group to still have a variety of innocuous personal beliefs that might be scientifically neither provable nor disprovable.

But anyway, what can you do: there's obviously a lot of value in keeping the survey text completely frozen over time so we can perceive the (depressing) trends. Or perhaps the (depressing) lack of a trend.

Anyway, the video: Ana Kasparian points out something important. I place a lot of blame for this situation on religion, religion, religion, but the true cause is more accurately incuriosity. It's impossible to understand how a thing like evolution can possibly have produced all the natural wonders of life that we see today without putting in an investment of your intellectual energy. Which most people just aren't willing to do -- and that's the problem no matter what church you do or don't go to. Without that, it just seems utterly unfathomable.

Fifteen percent. Man, that is just sad.

Well, that is actually a lot better than it had been in the 80s and 90s (~10%). So I guess I should feel happy.
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