Darwin Day was this last weekend and if you visit DarwinDay.org you’ll find news that California Democrat Pete Stark has “…proposed H. Res. 81 to Congress, expressing support for designation of February 12, 2011, as Darwin Day and recognizing the importance of science in the betterment of humanity.” While I doubt it will pass this time, it is exciting to see that government officials are taking notice.
And why shouldn’t they? Darwin Day could have more benefits than just the recognition of the man who was one of the most important thinkers on scientific origins. It has a possible commercial aspect. I gleefully parodied this in a cartoon a couple years back (posted below) and I know for some it is crass, but I think it is necessary to start bringing correct evolutionary thought (not all the myths and outright lies about the theory and Darwin’s bedside confession of faith ) into the pop culture by the simple means of silly stuff, as well as the general arts such as the growing collection of movies we have available. Because of the era in which Darwin lived, there are all kinds of creative ideas for gift giving or nostalgia or even small museums that don’t take themselves too seriously (I always liked how Ripley’s did its museum along the coast here in the Northwest).
Imagine a day where people contemplate where we came from–where we really came from–even if they’re not atheists or agnostics. Theistic evolutionists abound already. We know that public schools won’t touch this holiday with a 4 billion year old pole anytime soon, but maybe private schools, universities and other institutions could join in as this is not a blatantly anti-God holiday, it may only lead to a lack of belief with further research.
The real obstacle Darwin Day faces is that it is so damn close to Valentine’s Day. However, what it has going for it is that the day is a statement by those tired of creationism and anti-science and I would optimistically say that our numbers are growing.
BTW: DarwinDay.org created a video about why they’re celebrating the holiday (yeah, it’s corny but cute and personable) and even has some E-Cards.