Journal: Scopes Trial, evolution, equality

Journal topic today was about the Scopes “monkey” trial, in which biology teacher John Scopes (actually a football coach subbing in a biology class) was defended by ACLU attorney Clarence Darrow. The textbook that he was trying to use labeled the Caucasian race as the “highest type of all.” In class, we discussed whether blind chance evolution can ever lead to equality of people as individuals or as groups. In other words, evolution is all about natural selection and survival of the fittest. Can that possibly ever create lasting equality among humans? I don’t think so, but am open to theories.

So how are we equal? According to Jefferson, we are created equal by God. Just as God can think, feel, and choose, he made us “in his image,” meaning that we are able to also think, feel, and choose, though not as well as he can. Because we all are image-bearers, we have equal value (not necessarily equal ability). Without this belief that we are really equal in some meaningful way, democracy becomes silly, as it pretends equality when none really exists. The Declaration of Independence (“We hold these truths…”) is really our nation’s founding creed. The principle of equality cannot ultimately be sustained apart from the foundation of God-given rights.

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