Greater Krueger National Park

Greater Krueger National Park
An image from a recent trip to South Africa. Clcik on the image for more on this trip.

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Monday, June 6, 2011

Lizards and Oil

I've been offline for a while. Busy with other projects including a lot of wildlife photography. A very nice break from the real world of lying congressmen, exotic presidential candidates, incompetent presidents. failed foreign policies, and impending economic collapse. Before I return to the lists, I would like to make a confession. At this late point in my life, I have finally figured it all out - or at least most of it.

Assuming that God exists there is no reason why he could not have created a world that includes evolution. There is absolutely no reason that it has to be either God or Science. It is clear to me that it is both and there is no logical indication that God did not intend it to be that way. I've been hanging out with animals and birds for quite a while now and I am confirmed in my belief in the continuity of life forms. Just because birds and animals can not express themselves in one of our human languages does not mean that they do not have feelings and ideas very similar to our own. I don't have any animosity toward scientists and understand that they are just trying to understand what is going on around us. I do part company with them when they draw a sharp distinction between "humans" and "animals." We are all animals and we are all part of the same world no matter how inconvenient that becomes in certain situations.

The part that I am still working on is the God part. I confess that I have a problem believing in the deity that any of the great religions describe. At the same time, I can not explain the great mystery of existence. At this point in time, I am pretty much thinking of it in quasi-Hindu terms. There is a life force out there that we just plain do not understand. For all I know that could be the deity. It gets weird from there, because if the life force is conscious I really don't like him, her or it. He, she or it created a world that is too flawed for me to accept without criticism. If he, she or it is truly omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent he, she or it could and should have done a better job of creation. If he, she or it is testing us; he, she or it is in reality playing with us and I resent that. If he, she, or it created me why bother to make me imperfect?

The other evening I was watching the yelling matches on television and one of the more prominent conservative commentators spoke to the problem of the sage brush lizard in Texas oil country. Apparently there are some folks who want to put the lizard on the endangered species list and thus risk slowing down or stopping oil drilling in much of the best part of the state to find oil. In today's economy that oil and those jobs are badly needed and the commentator spoke eloquently to those points. Unfortunately, he also joked about lizard bar-b-cue and deplored the fact that an insignificant lizard that very few people ever see should stand in the way of prosperity. The oil is going to win this particular argument, but it is too bad that we have to be so cavalier when we are in the process of eliminating another form of life.

I am conservative and I am offended by this man's insensitivity. I can imagine how his callous attitude goes over in liberal circles. This is not the way to deal with our political problems. If conservatives continue to be this stupid we will not be able to convince the majority of Americans to vote with us for the policies that we espouse.