Green Room

Surprise: Slate calls out Obama for saying same thing as Rubio

posted at 6:39 pm on November 20, 2012 by

A good read and a surprisingly fair treatment in that it actually addresses and condemns comments from Obama that are nearly exactly the same as Rubio’s:

And here’s then-Sen. Obama, D-Ill., speaking at the Compassion Forum at Messiah College in Grantham, Pa. on April 13, 2008:

Q: Senator, if one of your daughters asked you—and maybe they already have—“Daddy, did god really create the world in 6 days?,” what would you say?

A: What I’ve said to them is that I believe that God created the universe and that the six days in the Bible may not be six days as we understand it … it may not be 24-hour days, and that’s what I believe. I know there’s always a debate between those who read the Bible literally and those who don’t, and I think it’s a legitimate debate within the Christian community of which I’m a part. My belief is that the story that the Bible tells about God creating this magnificent Earth on which we live—that is essentially true, that is fundamentally true. Now, whether it happened exactly as we might understand it reading the text of the Bible: That, I don’t presume to know.

His partial conclusion:

In light of these concordances, to call Rubio a liar or a fool would be to call our nation’s president the same, along with every other politician who might like to occupy the Oval Office. If a reporter asks a candidate to name the age of Earth, there’s only one acceptable response: Well, you know, that’s a complicated issue … and who am I to say?

I’m not offended by either statement and think their formulation of “seven eras” or something other than seven 24-hour days of creation is a pretty decent way to soften the tension between Biblical teachings and scientific truths— a pretty common tension among Americans outside the ranks of liberal national news writers who insist even speaking to that tension is a betrayal of the worst kind of willful ignorance.

It’s pretty common that Americans both value scientific truth and discovery and all its fruits and still hold their religious beliefs dear. Reconciling the two is something many of them have wrestled with from time to time throughout their lives, though I agree with Rubio that pondering it may take a backseat to whether they have jobs and can raise their children. Here’s one guy who’s probably thought about it a bit:

In 2009, [President Obama] appointed Francis Collins, the brilliant geneticist, to head the National Institutes of Health. Collins is a thoughtful Christian who happens to believe in the virgin birth and the resurrection. “There’s nothing inconsistent with God on rare occasions choosing to invade the natural world in a way that appears miraculous,” he told Time magazine in 2006. “If God made the natural laws, why could he not violate them when it was a particularly significant moment for him to do so?” This man runs a $30 billion program in biomedical research, and he runs it pretty well.

Why does that scientist hate science!

Also worth a read, from Matt Lewis: Marco Rubio should know that science and God do not have to be at odds

Since we know there’s a spotlight on every single Republican candidate and politician for this particular (I think rather dumb) question, they might as well be thinking about how to answer it.

Recently in the Green Room:

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One can only conclude that Slate is blowing its racist dog whistle…/

hillbillyjim on November 20, 2012 at 7:08 PM

Poor Slate. Their tribalism prevents them from taking a reasonable position in the course of giving a balanced view, so they swallow their pride and drop their pants. I respect the anguish they had to endure to report the truth.

HitNRun on November 20, 2012 at 7:10 PM

Why is Slate defending Rubio? Is it because they want to run against him?

Illinidiva on November 20, 2012 at 7:15 PM

I am Registered Nurse and Paramedic. I have had many classes in science,biology, chemistry etc. I am also a creationist to the core. I see no “tension between Biblical teachings and scientific truths.” If you ever get a chance to see a debate between an evolutionist and a creationist, it’s a thing to behold and very enlightening.

paraff on November 20, 2012 at 7:17 PM

Illinidiva on November 20, 2012 at 7:15 PM

They aren’t really defending him, they’re calling both him *and* Obama disgraceful science deniers.

Slate’s the home of honest suckers like Glenn Greenwald, who – unlike NYT columnists (for example) – do remember every once in a while to bemoan the fact that Obama is not appreciably different than George W. Bush in any of the ways that his supporters told us were the most horrid things about Bush five years ago.

HitNRun on November 20, 2012 at 7:21 PM

Meanwhile, the War on Christianity is going along swimmingly.

I am not a Christian. My beliefs would probably align most closely with that of a Deist. So, I have no dog in the fight, but I find it appalling how our society has become quite okay with attacks on Christianity while anything perceived as an attack on any other religion is vehemently opposed.

What gives?

I don’t understand it.

ButterflyDragon on November 20, 2012 at 7:25 PM

The more I watch the Science Channel and learn that the ultimate truth of the Universe is undiscoverable, the more I believe in the existence of God.

WordsMatter on November 20, 2012 at 7:51 PM

Yes but doesn’t it sort a smooth over Rubio’s silly statement by pointing out that the Lord Messiah, God King, made similar statements.

Illinidiva on November 20, 2012 at 7:54 PM

Obama’s statement was totally Bush’s fault…

MunDane68 on November 20, 2012 at 8:50 PM

Ross Douthat hardest hit.

MechanicalBill on November 20, 2012 at 8:50 PM

The more I watch the Science Channel and learn that the ultimate truth of the Universe is undiscoverable, the more I believe in the existence of God.

Which one?

Pablo Honey on November 20, 2012 at 9:02 PM

Thanks, Mary Katherine!

williamg on November 20, 2012 at 11:38 PM

What gives?

I don’t understand it.

ButterflyDragon on November 20, 2012 at 7:25 PM

For socialism/communism to succeed, they must first marginalize and then demonize people of faith and those with traditional values. (Hitler against the Jews, Soviets against Christians, Communist China …, etc. Christianity in this country stands in the way of their “utopian dream”. Obama himself called us those who cling to their guns and religion. To reach their global governance ends they must destroy Christianity. Nothing new. It’s in the Bible. It’s not called the “spirit of antichrist” for nothing.

Christian Conservative on November 21, 2012 at 12:08 AM

The Leftist press got BHO re-elected by using over the top press positive press coverage for his right up to the election.

They are ideologues, but not stupid, and they can read the polls about how the press is trusted about as much as a used car salesman or a congress thing. So they are working to write articles that still supports their ideologies, but no longer back BHO exclusively.

This helps the ‘press’ and BHO. As they appear to be tacking back towards the ‘objectivity’, and the WH gets to appear to be taking questions from people who are not lining up to slobber on him.

Nathan_OH on November 21, 2012 at 8:50 AM

Nathan_OH on November 21, 2012 at 8:50 AM

There are 3 missing commas in that post. I leave it to you to find where they go….

Nathan_OH on November 21, 2012 at 8:53 AM

The custom of asking loaded questions of men standing in front of cameras seems to serve mostly the ones asking the questions or the ones paying them to ask them.

Marsili.us on November 21, 2012 at 10:00 AM

Ocommie has evolved, again, … read his little booklet.

FlaMurph on November 21, 2012 at 11:01 AM