If there’s one narrative the left loves to promote about Republicans it’s that they’re weird and uncool. Democrats are hip and scientifically savvy while Republicans are extremist bible thumpers. And they’re pretty good at promoting it too.
The latest iteration of the narrative is GQ surprising Senator Marco Rubio with a question about how old the earth is during an interview, clearly an attempt at a “gotcha” for someone widely believed to be a contender for the GOP in 2016. Either Rubio throws creationism under the bus, and risks angering the religious Republican base, or he endorses it and risks weeks of derision as another anti-science nut job.
It’s a win-win.
Unfortunately for the narrative, Rubio did a pretty good job of handling it:
GQ: How old do you think the Earth is?
Marco Rubio: I’m not a scientist, man. I can tell you what recorded history says, I can tell you what the Bible says, but I think that’s a dispute amongst theologians and I think it has nothing to do with the gross domestic product or economic growth of the United States. I think the age of the universe has zero to do with how our economy is going to grow. I’m not a scientist. I don’t think I’m qualified to answer a question like that. At the end of the day, I think there are multiple theories out there on how the universe was created and I think this is a country where people should have the opportunity to teach them all. I think parents should be able to teach their kids what their faith says, what science says. Whether the Earth was created in 7 days, or 7 actual eras, I’m not sure we’ll ever be able to answer that. It’s one of the great mysteries.
Like Rubio, I’m wondering why any of this is pertinent to policy that actually matters. And, for what it’s worth, this atheist would happily vote for someone a believer in “Young Earth” theories if that person will promote a consistent limited government agenda in government. As Rubio notes, this is a free country with a lot of divergent views on matters of religion and especially the creation of the universe. What I’m looking for in a politician is someone who allows a free and open debate about those views.