Year 4, Month 4, Day 25: There’s Idiots, And Then There’s Texas. And Then There’s Texas’ Idiots.

Time Magazine, reporting on the latest embarrassment from Texas:

“I would point out that if you’re a believer in in the Bible, one would have to say the Great Flood is an example of climate change and that certainly wasn’t because mankind had overdeveloped hydrocarbon energy.”

— Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX) at a hearing Wednesday discussing the Keystone XL pipeline, according to Buzzfeed.

Give me a freakin’ break. April 13:

Leave aside that Noah’s Flood is a tribal myth originated in the Fertile Crescent thousands of years ago, for which no actual geological evidence can be found. Leave aside Texas Congressman Joe Barton’s obvious strawman fallacy in asserting that this mythical event is proof that climate change is not exclusively caused by human activity — a notion held by no climatologist ever, and which is equally incorrect on scriptural grounds: if the deluge was God’s response to human sinfulness, then it was as surely anthropogenic as industrial civilization’s greenhouse effect.

Leave these errors of history, science and logic aside, though…and consider Rep. Barton in constitutional terms. A congressman’s refusal to acknowledge scientific fact when it conflicts with a literalist reading of the Bible makes this a theater-of-the-absurd violation of the Establishment Clause. Barton’s buffoonery may win him points with his tea-party constituents, but Texas (and the United States) deserves better.

Warren Senders

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