Monday, February 10, 2014

The Mann-Steyn Court Case Akin to the Scopes Monkey Trial? Nuh-Uh

Personally, I'm very uncomfortable with the comparison. The Scopes trial of the 1920s revolved around a school teacher who breeched a "bible belt" state law making lessons about Charles Darwin's theory of evolution illegal. The Mann-Steyn case, on the other hand, involves free speech, a freedom vouchsafed by the First Amendment, and those who would snuff it out via lawfare. In that sense, it is more like the trial of Galileo, the astronomer who had the audacity to contravene the orthodoxy of his day which asserted that the Earth was at the center of things.

If we go with the Scopes analogy, then that would mean that Steyn is the William Jennings Bryan, the bible-spouting fuddy-duddy who balks at the encroachments of modernity, and who history has come to see as the villain of the piece. (See, for instance, the somewhat fictionalized dramatization of the Scopes trial, the play--later the movie--Inherit the Wind.) If, however, Steyn is the Galileo of the piece, an individual who balks at the "settled science" (and it is obvious to me that he is), then it is equally obvious that it his opponent who is adamantine and inflexible and who is standing in the way of free inquiry.

So to sum it up, I say we lose the monkey and embrace the Italian. And when Steyn wins, the pizza's on me!

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