I’ve been a science fiction reader since my early teens, and the concept of intelligent design is actually quite broadly represented in the literature. Any sci-fi fan worth his salt could come up with nice little short story that expound on the idea of…. oh say a giant race of lizards, who created mankind as sort of a whim, and then took off on an multi-dimensional vacation.
Basically the idea that life sprang willy nilly out of the unordered lifeless void and then just, well just got more complex and so there … take it or leave it. That plot would never sell. Our trusty sci-fi reader would be justly critical: Why more complex creatures as time passes? and Why not men with wings (women too for sure)? And a race of intelligent, nearly immortal, wise and mysterious dragons would be good too. But where’s the punch line? No meaning or purpose to existence? That won’t sell.
But to see grown men shriek and denounce as heretics any who doubt the wisdom of the keepers of “the way” … well this is also the theme of many a good fantasy/sci-fi novel. Throw in a cunning head priest (Dawkins?) and the usual coterie of henchmen and you’ve got a script possibility here. (Heinlein did this quite well, but the religion was a “religion” … Hmm, maybe…. )
But here we are in 2009, with the various groups monitoring the thoughts (via speech) of the potential heretics who just seem to have missed their “correct thoughts” refresher, and just chomping at the bit to keep the masses in line. And what thoughts are they monitoring? Like any good novel this is the Orwellian modus operandi: Love = Hate, Peace = War, etc. But now the new doctrines are: Groupthink = Thought, Sick = Healthy, Chaos = Good, Family = Bad, Handicapped = Special, Faithful = Archaic, Responsibility = Oppression, Truth = Relative, Facts = Irrelevant.
Now the “correct thoughts” police really are busy. Let’s see now, the topics where you will be slapped, stomped, humiliated, insulted, called names, scorned … you get the idea. The topics include: Darwinism, Sexual Minorities, Gender Issues (used to be called “sex”), Predicting the Weather (Global warming), Race, Culture (i.e. White, European). Many good novels on such societies have been extrapolated by Asimov to Zelazany.
Anyway, there are scads of sci-fi stories that describe what we are living through now, the group intimidation of any who step out of line is not to be found in rural small town America but are abundant at all institutions of “learning,” k-12, colleges, government employment and certainly most corporations.
Does the Darwinian vs. ID dialog style hint that we are becoming a Fascist state? Perhaps becoming so, but I’m not so concerned if GM is beholden to a big daddy, as I am about the little brown-shirts who feel empowered when they shut down a Tancredo talk with intimidation and violence. Coming to a theatre near you? Consider where the UK, Canada, Netherlands and Austria are on free speech. Now Russia seems almost sane by comparison. I used to travel to Canada on short vacations with my family, no more Do their committees on “wrong” expressions apply to visitors? And I had thought of traveling to the UK to see Scotland…. uhhh, better not, some weenie put the not-wanted label on outspoken Michael Savage. Who needs their nanny state dysfunction? Anyway a trip to the UK will be like a trip to sunny Yemen soon, why bother. If one topic is off limits why not others?
So keep up the discussions VFR. It’s a real treat. An oasis of early Heinlein, Asimov and others; i.e. a nice, cool refreshing diet of logic in a loony-tunes world.