Miss USA 2011 - candidates discuss teaching evolution

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Miss USA 2011 - candidates discuss teaching evolution

Postby m0r1arty » Wed Jun 22, 2011 8:04 am

Beauty pageants love em or hate em' - they exist.

I'm posting this in this particular section not because of the show, but rather the answers given by those girls who have been successful enough to be in competition with each other for this accolade. I'm hoping that, as an exercise, we can analyse their responses and find subtle nuances of nationalistic pride, apathy or embarrassment. There were three questions posed to the girls the answers to which can be found from the links to those questions.

"Have you, or would you, use an online dating service?" (Yes, it is grammatically incorrect and was televised)

"Should evolution be taught in schools?"

"How do you feel about being in a tasteful nude photo shoot?"

For my point, and ease of use, the question I found most enthralling was the one about evolution and whether or not it should be taught in schools. Here is the video below:



We have a good mix of girls, apparently beautiful ones, between 19 and 27 years of age from different backgrounds personifying regions of the United States of America which voted for them to represent them. In essence we have captured the sentiments which exemplify the beauty pageant voting crowd from across the US (Not sure how representative of the general populous that is though).

Now I'm not sure if the interviewer had to coax long responses from them but they did seem relatively detailed and more than a little knowledgeable of the controversy of creationism being a counter theory with more than half giving it enough value to be presented as an equally weighted idea to be taught within schools.

Before we go any further had I been lucky enough to be the first Scottish mid 30's male with a slight beer gut to represent one of the regions of the USA I'd have responded to the question "Should evolution be taught in schools?" with a simple "Yes". I don't equate people's personal beliefs in existence with government approved curricula and can only imagine the mish-mash of ideas, all without proof, that would belie a system which represented every 'idea' as a legitimate theory. Again I'm not against religion in schools, I think it should be a subject all of it's own and cover the many outlooks people have from across the world - particularly the ones with most followers.

But it's not about creationism and evolution for me here - it's about how the girls responded and us taking an abstract and objective exercise into understanding the underlying, or indeed underpinning, notions which beget the national psyche of the citizens of America only using the footage from the second question about evolution and schools.

I'm hoping it's an interpretative exercise and thusly there are no wrong answers and only amusing anecdotes or extrapolations which help us focus on differences, or indeed similarities, between the concept of talking about evolution on a national stage which you are trying to win and having preconceived ideas as to what you actually think is correct or morally right.

To start the ball rolling: Freedom of speech, expression and belief are given freely within the constitution of the United States of America, do shows like this juxtapose the elephant in the room that is massive ignorance?

For those of you interested Miss Alyssa Campanella, from New Jersey but representing California, was crowned Miss USA 2011 and her answers were (paraphrased and timestamped respectively) she met her current beau via Twitter and so she's not against meeting dates online (1:41), she was taught it and believes it and reckons she's a science geek (1:49) and she's no problem with it as long as it's tastefully done (2:11).
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Re: Miss USA 2011 - candidates discuss teaching evolution

Postby Access Denied » Thu Jun 23, 2011 8:25 am

Now that I've stopped laughing so hard (had to stop halfway through just the evolution responses for fear of the neighbors thinking someone might be in need of some immediate medical attention) I just wanted to say before I dive in again…

Great post m0r!

Is it just me or does anybody else get the impression most of them think the question they were asked was about creationism?

[granted both words contain “tion” so easy mistake I suppose]

Take Ms. Connecticut (2:28) for example, although she mercifully gets right to the point of simply answering the question, one wonders if she’s perhaps unaware evolution is already being taught?

[scratches head]

This definitely warrants some further analysis…
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Re: Miss USA 2011 - candidates discuss teaching evolution

Postby RICH-ENGLAND » Fri Jun 24, 2011 7:44 pm

a bit off topic but...strangely enough. evolution v creation is something ive been looking into the last few days due to someone spouting some bible and god nonsense at me elsewhere on this huge web universe.

admittedly im a total atheist and dont really know a great deal about religion and the bible, BUT, as a man of science i have to look up what i can and take both sides into account so ive watched various vids and read various web pages and even in a short few days have learned so much that i am seriously dumbfounded that anyone can even take the bible serious let alone anything eles, it contradicts itself from the get go and doesn't stop there going on to allowing the stoning to death of disobedient children etc

i went back to this guy that spouted the original nonsense armed with my new found knowledge, i was astounded to find out how little this guy either knows or wants to admit about his own religion, and even more astounded to find out how badly he would try to avoid answering questions or debating at all by using deflection tactics, playing dumb, being awkward down to the point of outright lying and being in total denial, i offered links to back up everything i had to say but this guy just tried to laugh them off or refused to take them.

my question is, are they all like this?, are they in denial?, do they actually know its bs but dont want to admit it?.

is apollonius of tyana not counted as the son of god because he didn't have a fairy tale written about him?.

thanks

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Re: Miss USA 2011 - candidates discuss teaching evolution

Postby Luck » Wed Jun 29, 2011 3:04 am

Access Denied wrote:Now that I've stopped laughing so hard (had to stop halfway through just the evolution responses for fear of the neighbors thinking someone might be in need of some immediate medical attention) I just wanted to say before I dive in again…

Great post m0r!

Is it just me or does anybody else get the impression most of them think the question they were asked was about creationism?


Sad to say, it was the beauty queen from my home state who thought it should be taught as an elective. AD, no, I did not get the impression that they thought the question was about creationism. The impression that I got is that most of these girls thought that evolution was on equal footing with creationism and "that most people should be allowed to make up their minds." Which makes me think that only one or two of them actually understand evolution.
Which leads me to my second point, obviously these girls are not being graded on their potential as future Nobel Prize winners, so why are they being asked this question anyway? Other than just to make them look even more vacuous, I mean.

RICH-ENGLAND wrote:i went back to this guy that spouted the original nonsense armed with my new found knowledge, i was astounded to find out how little this guy either knows or wants to admit about his own religion, and even more astounded to find out how badly he would try to avoid answering questions or debating at all by using deflection tactics, playing dumb, being awkward down to the point of outright lying and being in total denial, i offered links to back up everything i had to say but this guy just tried to laugh them off or refused to take them.

my question is, are they all like this?, are they in denial?, do they actually know its bs but dont want to admit it?.


My guess would be yes. Most of these idiots have no knowledge or understanding of the historical and cultural context of the christian bible, nor do they care to explore it. To them the bible is to be taken literally even if it contradicts itself, because it is "the final word of god". Most of these people are not using the bible for personal or spiritual growth, but as ammunition against the rest of us to make themselves feel morally superior despite whatever sin(s) they may have just committed (insert Senator Ensign here as an example).
My problem with these folks is that they are so caught up in trying to prove that everyone else is headed for hell, that many of them (in their god-fueled righteousness) have become unpleasant, mean-spirited, spiteful and hateful toward anyone that doesn't agree with them. Living in Iowa, interactions with conservatives (both politically and religiously is not uncommon); it seems to me that some of the evangelicals that I have interacted with live by a pretty pretty rigid doctrine and have a hard time dealing with uncertainty and complicated/complex ideas (cognitive dissonance is not a pretty thing) and they will fight tooth and nail to perpetuate their belief system and fight to prevent any thoughtful consideration of it. They also have a difficult time with the idea of a pluralistic society, even though it exists for us today.

edit: grammar
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Re: Miss USA 2011 - candidates discuss teaching evolution

Postby Access Denied » Wed Jun 29, 2011 8:40 am

Luck wrote:Most of these people are not using the bible for personal or spiritual growth...

Nor Science either, unfortunately... :(

Good points Luck.
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