Perhaps the most amusing aspect of the John Tory foot-firmly-in-mouth creationism announcement is how so many citizens of Wankerville are desperately trying to re-interpret what he said to make it somehow acceptable, not realizing that, sadly, there is no re-interpretation that makes Tory not look like a total buffoon. And it's really pretty easy to prove that, so that's what we're going to do 'cuz, here at CC HQ, we are all about the proof.
Recall the actual suicidal phrasing:
"They teach evolution in the Ontario curriculum, but they also could teach the fact to the children that there are other theories that people have out there that are part of some Christian beliefs."
OK, then, let's see just how many ways you can spin that, and see that each of them leads to a very bad place.
First, if Tory was actually suggesting that creationism should be taught as a viable scientific alternative to biological evolution in the public school system, then I don't think we're going to have any argument that he is simply not qualified to be the premier of Ontario. Full stop. End of discussion. For anyone to sincerely believe that creationism, as it is generally presented, has any scientific basis is to admit that they are a scientific illiterate, and even members of the Blogging Tories have admitted to that. So I don't think we're going to have any debate that, if that's what Tory meant, he's toast.
Moving on, what if he meant that creationism should be in the public school system, but only in some kind of comparative religion class? Well, in the first place, I'd argue that that's clearly not what he was suggesting, so I'm being ridiculously charitable in letting him get away with that bit of revisionism. However, even that causes problems since he refers to the alternatives as being "part of some Christian beliefs."
Excuse me? Why only "Christian beliefs?" For simple fairness, if we're talking about a comparative religions class, it can't just stop there. So Tory still has a problem in that he's being unacceptably exclusionary. (And, again, one has to be monumentally generous to allow him this re-interpretation, which I would be tempted not to do.) But wait. There's more.
Some of the more desperate wankers have proposed that Tory was talking only about creationism in private religious schools. Again, you have to be seriously deluded to think that that's what he was proposing but, hey, for the sake of argument, let's go there. Does this make much more sense?
Actually, no, not really. All it suggests is that there are religious schools that are so screamingly scientifically illiterate (or, alternatively, dishonest) that they are presenting creationism as if it had any scientific value (which it most certainly does not, and that's not something we're going to debate here). But while private schools are entirely welcome to teach whatever crap they want, they certainly have no right to expect to get accredited somehow for it, or be able to participate in the public school system and get public dollars to do so. In short, while this scenario is entirely possible, it has nothing to do with the public school system and Tory should never have even brought it up. It's simply a non-issue.
And, finally, one might argue (if one was certifiably brain-dead) that Tory was only saying that private religious institutions have the right to present creationism as a particular Christian (that is, religious) belief. Um, yeah. The thing about that is that there are already private institutions that are more than happy to validate your particular religious beliefs. They're called "churches," and one is encouraged to make use of them if one wants their religious indoctrination on a regular basis.
See how all that works? Spin it as hard as you want but, regardless of what you do, Tory's gaffe is simply indefensible. He screwed the pooch and, if life is fair, he should have to pay for it. And, if life is fair, the aforementioned wankers will finally stop clogging up my comments section with inane missives that begin with, "Yeah, well what if he meant ..."
Sadly, life is rarely fair. Have you noticed that?