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← Northern Ireland minister calls on Ulster Museum to promote creationism

Northern Ireland minister calls on Ulster Museum to promote creationism - Comments

Tyler Durden's Avatar Comment 1 by Tyler Durden

McCausland defended a letter he wrote to the trustees calling for anti-evolution exhibitions at the museum. He claimed that around one third of Northern Ireland's population believed either in intelligent design or the creationist view that the universe was created about 6,000 years ago.

Well, they're wrong. Next question, move on, and do try to get an education in such matters as you are the elected official.

If one-third of the population of Northern Ireland believed in a "flat earth", would McCausland, and his ignorant bretheran, entertain them? - "Yes, of course your view is valid, let's remove all spherical obloid globes from classroooms, and ban all cruise ships from leaving the island for fear we fall off the planet."


Updated: Thu, 27 May 2010 06:03:12 UTC | #473934

Jos Gibbons's Avatar Comment 2 by Jos Gibbons

[NM] believes that Ulster Protestants are one of the lost tribes of Israel

Even though they’re all Irish?

the inclusion of anti-Darwinian theories in the museum was "a human rights issue".

There’s no human right to have your ideas asserted in museum exhibits. If there were, science museums would have to include homeopathy, astrology, alien abduction etc. Why should we include creationism? We don’t even include panspermia, a vaguely plausible claim about the history of Earth’s life.

around one third of Northern Ireland's population believed either in intelligent design or the creationist view that the universe was created about 6,000 years ago. "I have had more letters from the public on this issue than any other issue," he said.

In that case, your public are idiots. Oh, wait: of course they are. They’re humans.

he wrote a "very balanced letter"

Museums are about the truth, which is as unbalanced as anything can get.

he had "a common desire to ensure that museums are reflective of the views, beliefs and cultural traditions that make up society in Northern Ireland".

Does NM even understand what the point of museums is? People are supposed to go in there to learn things, not be dragged down to the level of the local uneducated populace.

Storey, who has chaired the Northern Ireland assembly's education committee, has denied that man descended from apes. He believes in the theory that the world was created several thousand years ago, even though the most famous tourist attraction in his own constituency – the Giant’s Causeway on the North Antrim coast – is according to all the geological evidence millions of years old.

And he’s the EDUCATION chairman? What next? Is his medicine counterpart an opponent of eating healthily?

Last year Storey raised objections to notices at the Giant’s Causeway informing the public that the unique rock formation was about 550m years old. Storey believes in the literal truth of the Bible and that the earth was created only several thousand years before Christ's birth.

Oh no! A sign says I’m wrong! It MUST go down! No, I don’t care if they’ve got evidence for what they say, and I have none for what I say, and the book I’m basing it on contradicts itself many, many times. (And by “the book”, I need only mean Genesis, and not the whole Bible, to get that last bit. Just compare Genesis 1 with Genesis 2, say.)

The belief that the Earth was divinely created in 4004 BC originates with ... Ussher, in 1654.

The Jews used the exact same method to get 3761 BC. That alone refutes the claim you can calculate the date of the Earth’s origin with biblical scripture.

Thu, 27 May 2010 06:20:48 UTC | #473944

godless_hoor's Avatar Comment 3 by godless_hoor

Ussher calculated the date [of creation of the universe] based on textual clues in the Old Testament, even settling on a date and time for the moment of creation: in the early hours of 23 October.


Nelson McCausland is a lunatic.

He also complains that the media should not call Northern Ireland a celtic country because to do so ignores the Scottish influence in Ireland. Even thought the Scottish are also celts.

What. The. Fuck.

Updated: Thu, 27 May 2010 06:51:13 UTC | #473953

RichardofYork's Avatar Comment 4 by RichardofYork

My first reaction to this was at first utter disbelief and then I laughed . What are these people on? One of the lost tribes of Israel? bejesus

Thu, 27 May 2010 08:18:27 UTC | #473974

TheRationalizer's Avatar Comment 5 by TheRationalizer

I love the way they call them "theories". So including creationism is a human rights issue? Sure it's your right to be wrong, but it's not your right to state your inaccuracies as fact and spread disinformation to children; surely that is against the children's human rights?

Thu, 27 May 2010 08:28:31 UTC | #473978

funkyderek's Avatar Comment 6 by funkyderek

Given that this minister doesn't believe the Giant's Causeway is millions of years old, I wonder if he believes it was literally created by Fionn Mac Cumhaill. I'd be surprised if the level of ignorance in the six counties is as high as McCausland claims, but if it is, then what is needed is not pandering to that ignorance, but better science education, perhaps at the expense of the religious bigotry which continues to be taught in schools there.

Thu, 27 May 2010 08:39:17 UTC | #473982

tommcc's Avatar Comment 7 by tommcc

Careful Jos Gibbons, Ulster Protestants don't like being called Irish. Good for a laugh is Ali G doing spoof interview with Sammy Wilson (DUP). Ali asks are you Irish? Sammy replies no, I am British. Ali says so you are over here on holiday?

Thu, 27 May 2010 08:50:15 UTC | #473983

Pete.K's Avatar Comment 8 by Pete.K

I hope he shouts louder, so loud that his constituents (The ones with a grain of common sense.) can see what a complete buffoon they have elected to office, and correct the mistake at the next election.

I say give the man a platform to publicly shame himself, it is people like him that bring down irrational belief systems much faster that Richard Dawkins will ever do, public ridicule is the only way to deal with people like this.

Thu, 27 May 2010 09:03:08 UTC | #473987

Dark Matter's Avatar Comment 9 by Dark Matter

Who voted for this imbecile?

Nelson McCausland is proof positive that Democracy is by no means perfect and that's why it is an extremely good thing that what is exhibited in a museum is determined by fact and truth rather what is popularly believed by ill-informed, pig-ignorant credulous cretins.

Thu, 27 May 2010 09:09:36 UTC | #473994

at3p's Avatar Comment 10 by at3p

The painting shows some irish folks. It's funny to think they why they would not paint middle-eastern looking people...

I believe that if they want to be in a museum, they should be in the aisle with ancient Greek mythology, ancient Roman mythology, ancient Persian mythology, shamanism, ancient Egypt mythology, ancient Hindu mythology, and Chinese Mythology, ancient Mayan mythology, ancient Aztec mythology, ancient Norse mythology and of course the Druid mythology, which is partly native! The "crazy and weird beliefs primitive civilizations had" aisle.


Mythology, n.:

The body of a primitive people's beliefs concerning its

origin, early history, heroes, deities and so forth, as distinguished from the true accounts which it invents later.

    -- Ambrose Bierce, "The Devil's Dictionary"

Updated: Thu, 27 May 2010 09:23:08 UTC | #473997

Ignorant Amos's Avatar Comment 11 by Ignorant Amos

I've been harping on about these bunch of fucking retards on since I joined. These pricks are running the show here.....and the opposition are not much better....what chance have we got ffs? That's why I refused to vote in the general breaks my heart that I have the democratic right to vote, which was won at such a high cost, and the choices I have to place my "X" against is a bunch of demented fuckwits like these wingnuts. Give me strength!

Thu, 27 May 2010 10:24:56 UTC | #474010

Rosbif's Avatar Comment 12 by Rosbif

I'm sure the museum has the full set of displys showing all the evidence for the creationists belief.

I also expect such a balanced supporter of human rights such as McCausland will be writing to all the bishops encouraging them to bring more science and reality displays into their churches to represent the 2/3rds of the population who disagree with the church's doctrine-before-facts policy.

Thu, 27 May 2010 10:35:44 UTC | #474011

Ignorant Amos's Avatar Comment 13 by Ignorant Amos

I'm sorry everyone.....this is so embarrassing. He is speaking for his whole political party too, they are all YEC. I was born into the Ulster Protestant tradition, now ya all know why I became an Atheist just as soon as I was able to think for myself. I'd say RD's history deniers here in N.I. outstrip the U.S. by a long chalk, the 70 percenters probably or even higher. Rockets everyone!

Thu, 27 May 2010 10:37:21 UTC | #474012

Degsy's Avatar Comment 14 by Degsy

The disservice that would be done to new museum, as well as the scientific community in general in this part of the world would be irreparable. Against the backdrop of the troubles, this part of the world struggled to gain a position of repute on the global scientific stage and now enjoys an enviable position of respect with regard to teaching, R&D, product development, therapeutics and diagnostics to name but a few. it would not just be the reputation of the museum that suffered if the views of these few were upheld and entertained by the museum. It would send a clear message to others that the scientific community, as well as the general populace, were cretinous dullards; ill-informed of the facts and satisfied with mere opinion. Of course people are entitled to their beliefs. What they are not entitled to are their own facts. This surely won't be taken seriously by the museum, but the press attention given to this 'issue' can only do harm here.

Thu, 27 May 2010 10:46:30 UTC | #474014

J.D.'s Avatar Comment 15 by J.D.

I actually despair. It sounds like bullshit, but I sincerely hope that claim of 1/3 of our population being creationists/IDers is an exaggeration.

I don't think this guy gets the purpose of a museum. It's not there to be a platform for religious myths (unless there was a religious history section, in which case none of the scriptures would be presented as fact anyway). A museum is there to educate using facts- which have no need of "alternative theories".

Thu, 27 May 2010 11:02:56 UTC | #474018

SaganTheCat's Avatar Comment 16 by SaganTheCat

oh good, there'll be an exhibit showing how goddidit. I was getting fed up of these mindless assertions without evidence but clearly there's something worth putting in a museum that backs up creationism.

maybe i have it wrong and what he plans is a room full of cartoons

Thu, 27 May 2010 11:16:26 UTC | #474021

The Plc's Avatar Comment 17 by The Plc

I'm mortified to see this up here. I don't want my brothers and sisters in the science world to think that we're all backwards-thinking morons and bigots in Ulster :(

Thu, 27 May 2010 11:23:16 UTC | #474023

keithapm's Avatar Comment 18 by keithapm

Hahaha what an idiot. Well the best way to deal with this gobshite is simply to point out just why he's a gobshite and then start treating him like one. The trick is doing it loud enough to be heard. Seriously, I'm fed up respecting stupidity and I think it's time to get up off my lazy arse and start making some noise.... but not today though, today unfortunately I'm rather hungover :-p

Thu, 27 May 2010 12:21:58 UTC | #474033

phasmagigas's Avatar Comment 19 by phasmagigas

'very balanced letter'

'reflect the views of all the people in Northern Ireland in all its richness and diversity'

euphemism for: even i know my ideas have no foundation but at least i know my contemporary persuasive rhetoric will win over some of the ignorant out there.

Thu, 27 May 2010 12:31:23 UTC | #474037

crookedshoes's Avatar Comment 20 by crookedshoes

I think rosbif hits it on the head. The counter argument to this nonsense is to insist that ALL the evidence is in the museum already. Tell this gaping sphincter that "we have comprehensive representation of every available shred of creation evidence on display already". Why not publish the rebuttal in a newspaper advertisement?

Ulster Museum proudly announces creation exhibit featuring every single available piece of evidence. The head of the museum could be quoted saying he/she thinks that creationists will be very pleased with the diorama depicting all the evidence.

When people go to the museum, it simply has a book on a stand with a light shining on it. It would be funny. It would make a point too. I'd never really support this due to the roads it opens. But the fallout would be cool to witness.

Thu, 27 May 2010 12:51:55 UTC | #474041

Ignorant Amos's Avatar Comment 21 by Ignorant Amos

Degsy, Wasted Tourist et al....the problem is that the "sensible" folk really number in the severe minority among the people of N.I.....either because of the strength of indoctrination or just pure ignorance. I am regularly in debate with religiots, my good friends and family amongst them, and it beggars belief how much bullshit they have sucked up and how much of the Bible they've taken for granted through second hand preaching. The worlds best seller that is never read, but everyone claims to be an expert in what it's all about. Then you all know about how much tribal bigotry plays a large part in this part of the world....I know "Prods" that have never been near a church since their childhood, but call themselves Christian Protestants just because of the opposition to Christian Catholics, but at least the Catholics attend mass. The irony is, that for over 30 odd years, the bigoted Protestants always had a pop at the RC's and the Pope at every opportunity, but now that there is good reason to castigate the RCC, they are noticeable by their silence. Even the Rev. Ian Paisley called previous Popes the anti Christ in the European Parliament, but now there is a Pope that fits the bill, we don't hear a peep. Maybe it's a case of people in glass houses.

Thu, 27 May 2010 13:22:33 UTC | #474052

mlgatheist's Avatar Comment 22 by mlgatheist

I have always thought that it is very strange that Adam & Eve are always portrayed as white, either as redheads or blonds. Since, in the world's population, both redheads and blonds are a small minority. Even if these ficticious people, the "parents" of us all would not have likely been either.

It is obvious that the first humans, being from Africa, would have had dark skin and the hair like most Africans today have.

Thu, 27 May 2010 13:48:19 UTC | #474061

Jean Meslier's Avatar Comment 23 by Jean Meslier

I always remember the quote in Inherit The Wind after the Brady character gave the exact date of creation. Spencer Tracy's character responds "Was that Eastern Standard Time or Rocky Mountain Time?"


I wonder what time Nelson McCausland thinks it is? I would suggest "15 Planters past Cromwell" as an accurate estimation of time in Nel's orange World.

Thu, 27 May 2010 16:12:14 UTC | #474130

Toxic Razor's Avatar Comment 24 by Toxic Razor

Comment 11 by Ignorant Amos :

I've been harping on about these bunch of fucking retards on since I joined. These pricks are running the show here.....and the opposition are not much better....what chance have we got ffs? That's why I refused to vote in the general breaks my heart that I have the democratic right to vote, which was won at such a high cost, and the choices I have to place my "X" against is a bunch of demented fuckwits like these wingnuts. Give me strength!

Couldn't have put it better myself. The sad thing is that this areshole McCausland actually does reflect the views of a disturbing majority of NI protestants. Thankfully it is highly unlikely that the Ulster Museum would bow to any pressure he puts on them. This whole thing depresses me. NI has so much going for it but idiots like this just fuck the whole thing up and embarrass us in front of the world.

Thu, 27 May 2010 18:22:40 UTC | #474160

katt33's Avatar Comment 25 by katt33

I thought museums was for history, culture, art and science. Homeopathy, that can be shown as part of the Ayurvedic culture or something like that, not as science if that is a concern. Creationism, only if it were being put in as part of culture and cultural something, not science.

Thu, 27 May 2010 18:43:47 UTC | #474171

friendlypig's Avatar Comment 26 by friendlypig

For all those having trouble dealing with McCausland here are a few words of comfort:







Thu, 27 May 2010 19:04:31 UTC | #474174

dazzjazz's Avatar Comment 27 by dazzjazz

Maybe this Irish Minister's name should really be:


as in McDonalds and Santa Clause


Thu, 27 May 2010 22:43:28 UTC | #474224

Jean Meslier's Avatar Comment 28 by Jean Meslier

It must be pointed out that McCausland's party (DUP) has a mentality which has changed little since the plantation of Ireland over 400 years ago. Whilst it is easy to scoff at their creation antics the native Irish saw another side of this religious inspired bigotry, when their lands were confiscated at the point of a sword or a musket.

The responsibility for all this lies with the British Government. In the 1790's after the American and French Revolution - Ireland resounded to the call for Fraternity, Equality and Freedom. The cry was for the unity of Catholic, Protestant and Dissenter. Ordinary people learned of the fallibility of Popes, Bishops, Kings and Queens. Thomas Paine's The Rights of Man was freely available as was Jefferson's almost atheistic writings. This indeed was a time of enlightenment. But for the English rulers they were very dangerous times.

In the same decade however the Orange Order was founded and the English allowed them to to spread their intimidation throughout the land. After the failure of the United Irish Rebellion in 98 the Orangemen were given a free hand to murder and pillage. The genie was truly out of the bottle. The Orange now had a position similar to the Mafia in Sicily, after the US invasion, during WWII, which was way above their true station. But there they would stay.

In the early 1920's Irish Nationalists found themselves trapped, as one third of the population, in a gerrymandered, one party, fascist state, which was created, undemocratically, by the British. This sectarian rule was to last over 50 years, with power being controlled by people who believe that a Biblical flood created the Giants Causeway.

So Irish Nationalists see no irony in Nelson McCausland equating creationism, the Orange Order and Ulster-Scots in the same sentence. (Ulster-Scots is a dialect invented to divert British Government money away from the promotion of the Irish language. They actually hate the language more than Evolution?)

Nationalists can understand why Nel wants a larger presentation space for the Order because it is all to do with sectarianism. (Just swap the word sectarianism with power and you will see what I mean).

In conclusion I believe Nelson will continue with his holy crusade until he has King Billy III in the very centre of the Ulster Museum most likely sitting astride a T-Rex!

Fri, 28 May 2010 00:16:07 UTC | #474228

Stylemaster's Avatar Comment 29 by Stylemaster

I'm living in Belfast. I'm friends with soon to be graduates of Law, Chemistry and Medicine.. and also a teacher who hold these beliefs.. and i really mean the literal word.. adam, eve and the whole shabang. Shocking.

I can recall one situation, in a Medicine class, where the Christian student would not accept medically-necessary abortion. She was basically lambasted but didn't budge one bit. She's passed her finals.

I would worry less about the ignorant part of the community / who have no interest in how old the world is - but would accept the facts when presented with them. As for the others.. i just hope Ignorant Amos, Degsy, Wasted Tourist et al are around when they are calling the shots!

Fri, 28 May 2010 01:35:40 UTC | #474239

Jean Meslier's Avatar Comment 30 by Jean Meslier

So it's Friday night and I've just left my local pub in Newry, Co. Down and the craic is still ongoing re: our Minister for Culture Nelson McCausland's latest creation rant.

One of the locals commented about some English guy, with a posh accent, coming onto the radio show and forcing poor Nell to fill his pants in fear.

This gave me the ideal opportunity to get the RDF message out there to the masses.

Many of my drinking buddies have now heard of Richard for the very first time. (We are an uncultured lot. But it has led to people asking questions, and boy do I love people asking questions)

The word is that in the interest of balance and the need to reveal these clerical quasi-politicians, who are trapped in the late 17th century, we need Richard to come to the north of Ireland on a speaking tour.

Why not invite church representatives to debate with him (both sides). Just imagine peoples reaction if they were able to witness Dawkins expose these charlatans who, until very recently, have "ruled " with an almost free hand.

This would be a radical occurance, for this shared space, and could really IMO lead to better times.

Now wouldn't that be a real constructive blow for enlightened thinking in what has been a bigoted quagmire. Imagine the world headlines if non-belief took a foothold here.

So let me extend an informal invitation to Richard to set the ball rolling by announcing a soon to be arranged tour.

Just please make sure my hometown of Newry is on the list.

I'm sure my now "free thinking, drinking buddies" will be more than willing to help in any way they can.

Fri, 28 May 2010 22:36:12 UTC | #474564