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Novelties, Nonsense, and Non Sequiturs

Magic as Science

Scientific American (May 1990) attempts to conjure up another defense of Archaeopteryx, "the oldest know bird, a textbook example of a transitional form between reptiles and modern birds."

The author presents the two prevailing models for the evolution of flight:

Arboreal model -- "flight evolving from the downward beating of the wings evolved from gliding and originated in animals that climbed and leaped from trees."

Cursorial model -- "flying arose among bipedal animals making small jumps (to catch insects for example) while running and flapping their forelegs simultaneously to extend the jumps. With progressive development of the wing structures, the jumps became longer and higher until the animals could eventually keep themselves on a flying course by beating their wings."

Of course, the author omits the part about the magic wand.

Future Leaders Under Construction

A Better Homes and Gardens (Jan. 1990) reader offers the following insight for sound parenting:
"I have found a surefire way to end my 2-year-old's temper tantrums. I imitate everything he does, right down to the foot-stomping and screaming. He thinks it's so hilarious that he forgets all about his own complaint."

The Redistributionist Hustle

The U.S. constitution originally required Congress to enumerate citizens every ten years so as to determine the number, and later, the ratio of representatives in the House.

Times have changed. The 1990 Census form expresses the general shift in political thinking which has arisen since that time:

"Your answers help fund services everyone needs. By putting yourself in the picture -- answering the census and being counted -- you help make sure your community gets its fair share of federal and state funding for essential programs and services: for schools, health centers, parks, highways, services for the elderly, child care, employment and training programs and much more."
Just think, President Pierce once vetoed a bill redistributing funds to aid the insane because he could not find "any authority in the Constitution for making the Federal Government the great almoner of public charity throughout the U.S."

Sex Can Kill

In a recent California gubernatorial debate between Democratic hopefuls, Pro-Abortionist, John Van De Kamp chided Pro-Abortionist, Diane Feinstein for her opposition to abortions being performed simply to choose one sex over another. Pro-Abortion groups strongly pressured Feinstein to reject this infelicity.

Noting that both candidates strongly oppose sexual discrimination in employment, what conclusion should we draw from their principles? -- We may not consider sex when hiring persons, but we may consider sex if we are planning to kill them.

I'm Personally Opposed to Murder

Dr. Kristi Van Nostrand, a medical resident, recently quipped, appropriately enough on April Fool's day:

"Abortions should be available for women, but I just can't imagine doing them myself....I feel like I'm ending a life." (Orange County Register)

Translation: I believe abortion is murder but women should be allowed to murder.

To Speculate or not to Speculate

Time magazine recently asked Billy Graham about the Second Coming:

Time: "Like all Evangelicals [!] you believe in the Second Coming of Christ to be preceded by unprecedented worldwide warfare, famine, and cruelty. But doesn't the waning of the Cold War make such an apocalypse more remote today than, say, ten years ago?"

Graham: "I could not answer that because I think the Lord taught us not to speculate on the time of His return....

[But in the same response he adds] -- "I personally think things are now converging for the first time in history' fulfilling the prophesies that Christ Himself made about His coming. I had a German scientist say to me the other day that from a scientific point of view man is almost at the end now."

Growing Hysteria Over Medieva Collegiate Road-Killings

Among other discoveries, the Skeptical Inquirer uncovered the following circumstances behind some of the recent Satanic cult hysteria circulating the nation:

"In one case in New Hampshire, for example, police publicly claimed to have found evidence of ritually slaughtered animals, which were later determined to be only road kills cleaned up by state road workers and deposited in the woods. In another case, in Cobleskill, New York, in response to reports of a 'satanic cult ritual meeting' and impending human sacrifice, police rushed with guns drawn into a wooded site. They found only some college students in hooded garments practicing a medieval play and using wooden daggers and swords as props."

Copyright © by Covenant Community Church of Orange County 1990
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