An old song comes to mind as the old year passeth. The song, in turn, brings to mind a lesson from that marvelously down-to-earth book of the Bible, Ecclesiastes. If you have not, as a tactful old preacher used to say, read Ecclesiastes "lately," I will say only that it expresses the sadness of a wise man who observes the brevity and futility of life and attempts to discern what it is good for a man to do in his few days of toil and trouble under the sun.
My column on the "Limits of Evolution," in which I wrote of the enormous gap that exists between apes and humans, has brought forth a number of very interesting comments from readers. One pro-evolutionist wrote: “In the last 42 years, we have in fact learned that the neural architecture associated with language acquisition, is shared with other primates. This illuminates the larger error of thought made by Blumenfeld, that the significant comparison is a perceived ‘gap’ between modern humans and other primates. This gap is just as large between our selves and our Mesolithic ancestors as it is between them and other apes.”
Among those who make up what the "inane-stream" media call the political right in America are those who fashion themselves "fiscally conservative, but socially liberal." That means, I guess, that they believe it's okay to spend more on such worthwhile projects as teaching little schoolchildren that males "marrying" other males or females wedding one another are forming bonds of marriage just as valid as heterosexual unions in what used to be called "holy matrimony." And state or even federal spending on condoms for the kiddies in public schools is cool, too.
Do federal, state and local governments have a right to intervene in our lives when it comes to choices affecting our health? Recently, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted to forbid restaurants from giving gifts with meals that contain too much fat and sugar, a measure aimed at McDonald's Happy Meals. The reasoning of these tyrants is to prevent McDonald's from using toys to lure children into liking foods the board deems non-nutritious. Fortunately, San Francisco's mayor, Gavin Newsom, by no means a libertarian, has threatened to veto the measure saying, "Despite its good intentions, I cannot support this unwise and unprecedented governmental intrusion into parental responsibilities and private choices."