Todd Akin, Dominionist Theology and Why UUs Need to Watch “Inherit The Wind”

So a poll came out Thursday saying that Claire McCaskill is up by 10 points (I knew that would happen as soon as I wrote that Todd Akin was still ahead).  I don’t believe that, my high-connected Democratic friends here in Missouri say not to trust it, and what’s more important, Claire McCaskill doesn’t trust it. Here is what she said:

Rasmussen poll made me laugh out loud. If anyone believes that, I just turned 29. Sneaky stuff.

And in case you all didn’t believe him the first time, Todd Akin held a press conference yesterday to school all of you; he is in the race until the end.

The new Post-Dispatch/News4 (St. Louis area newspaper/CBS station) poll has the McCaskill lead slightly less, but what’s really important is the following part of the poll:

QUESTION: If the 2012 general election for Missouri’s U.S. Senate seat were held today, would you vote for Claire McCaskill, the Democrat, or Todd Akin, the Republican?
State 50 41
St. Louis 57 33
Kansas City 60 30
Northern Missouri 37 54
Central Missouri 43 50
Southeast Missouri 43 51
Southwest Missouri 38 53

Look at the breakdown. Every place besides the I-70 corridor is for Todd Akin. This race is NOT a lock; if Todd Akin can weather this storm of his own making, he still has a snowball’s chance in hell of winning.


TCM is in the midst of their ’31 Days of Stars’ and Thursday was Gene Kelly day. One of the last movies that TCM showed that features Gene Kelly was “Inherit the Wind”. For those of you who don’t remember, Kelly played Hornbeck (modelled after H.L. Mencken), the totally rational and cynical newspaper Yankee who comes down to Hillsboro to cover (and agitate) the story of an evolution trial.

It is ironic that this was part of a response to my second Todd Akin post:

I disagree with the strategy of using biblical phrases to counter this bigotry. For one thing, many UUs don’t view the bible as being authoritative.

I’m probably going to burn what few bridges I have left in UUism…but I am so bloody sick and tired of hearing this lame-ass line. So…most UUs don’t view the Bible as being authoritative? No shit. But does it really matter that most UUs don’t view the Bible as authoritative; seeing as though the people who are trying to grasp more power than they already have do see it as authoritative?

This is about more than one man’s giving away the secret handshake people. This is about a the next two generations  of schoolchildren in this country. If the Dominioninsts succeed in grasping more power, the textbooks those children will get their information from will have been written to satisfy Dominionist taste. Don’t believe me, look at Texas (and here and here and here). Or look at the list of books that will be allowed in Louisiana schools.

It’s time for UUs to quit acting like Hornbeck (who comes off looking very cold and lonely) and start acting more like Henry Drummond or Sarah Brady. Nobody is saying that UUs have to give more weight to the Bible than they do to anything else. (Or at least that not what I’m saying.) But it does help if you give it some weight; especially when the people who you need to talk to give it a lot of authority.

‘Inherit the Wind’ has a lot to teach us if we are willing to listen. Most of the world is like Bertram Cates–asking questions that have no easy answers. In giving a response to Bert, UUism can go one of three ways; 1)it can be like Matthew Harrison Brady (not in the fundamentalist Christian sense, but fundamentalist); 2)it can be like Hornbeck; or 3)it can be like Henry Drummond. The question is…which will UUism be?

And since you have sat through this whole post, you deserve a break. So I’ve linked to a segment of The Daily Show for your enjoyment. Science and Schools

4 thoughts on “Todd Akin, Dominionist Theology and Why UUs Need to Watch “Inherit The Wind”

  1. The last time I looked (about 2-3 years back), the growth in UU seemed to be in those congregations not afraid of religious language nor afraid to use that language occasionally. So I suspect that your comment above isn’t burning too many bridges (although I suspect you may have lost your chance to become UUA President).

  2. “But does it really matter that most UUs don’t view the Bible as authoritative; seeing as though the people who are trying to grasp more power than they already have do see it as authoritative?”

    Having been raised fundamentalist Xian, I have the language already at my disposal. And I can use it in CPE PRN, e.g. The big problem IMO is that the religious right by no stretch of imagination see the Bible as authoritative. That is only what they say. In truth, they see their current twist on the interpretation of it as authoritative. That is the language that we will never speak, even if we are able to understand it. The religious right accepts the religious left’s use and interpretation of the Bible only if they see it as AGREEING with their own. They do not see the Bible and/or Xianity as a language for reasoned discourse but as content that cannot be questioned.

  3. i just found this blog and have high hopes for it to continue. keep up the great work, its hard to find good ones. i have added to my favourites. thank you.

  4. Pingback: “…the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.” or Todd Akin Lost, But Not For the Reason You Think « East Of Midnight

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s