Wisconsin, the original headquarters of Ringling Brothers circus, which has brought us such acts as Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show, Zip the Pinhead, The Doll Family, and various sword swallowers, tiger tamers, acrobats, magic shows, etc… Now in the same tradition, we have the Creation lady at the Dane County Fair.
Just down from the Tupperware booth, and across from the demonstration kitchen for “The Original Waterless Cookware,” Mary Weigand promotes something very different at the Dane County Fair.
The part-time nurse from West Bend seeks to convince people that the universe is only 6,000 years old and that Charles Darwin was wrong. Her booth proclaims Christianity and evolution incompatible.
“Can you believe in evolution when God says he created the world and everything in it in six days?” she asked. “There’s really nothing to reinterpret.”
Unfortunately the Doug Erickson never asked Mary Weigand if she will also spend her free time trying to get people to stop eating shellfish, get their haircut or wearing poly/cotton blends. He did however bring some sanity into the story:
Donald Waller, a UW-Madison botany professor who studies evolutionary biology, was dismayed to learn of the booth’s existence from a reporter.
“I think it’s a testament to the power of belief and the difference between belief and science,” Waller said. “She is asking that the physical laws of the universe be changed to accommodate her views.”
Techniques such as radioactive isotope dating repeatedly conclude that some geological features are hundreds of millions of years old, Waller said. “There’s little disagreement among scientists about the age of the Earth,” he said.
Then back to the crazy:
Weigand said she became frustrated several years ago with the education her son was getting at a public high school. She felt the textbooks were not scientifically sound and that district officials would not listen to opposing views. Since 2006, she has taken her case directly to the people at county fairs.
At the Dane County Fair booth, she displays dozens of fossils she’s collected and purchased over the years — fossils, she said, that show there’s been no progression over time for plants or animals.
“This is all the same stuff we see today,” she said. “Where are the intermediate forms in the fossil record?”
A better explanation for the formation of fossils is the catastrophic flood described in the book of Genesis, she said. That was about 4,500 years ago, she said.
Problem with textbooks? take it up with the \"creationists\" in Texas. It is funny that she feels the textbooks are not “scientifically sound” while personally ignoring the physical laws of the universe! It is sad and scary though that she wants to have this insanity injected into our public schools.
Then back to sanity:
“This is nothing new. This is the standard creationist story,” said Charles Byers, UW-Madison professor emeritus of geology. “There are lots of examples of intermediate fossils showing progression of life going back for half a billion years.”
One thing the story left out though, she is from West Bend and her husband is ON the local school board!
As Mr. Barnum is credited as saying “There is a sucker born every minute.”
In all seriousness, if you have time this weekend, you should attend the Dane County Fair!
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