Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Rubio's answer rewrite

In keeping with my tradition of unsolicited speechwriting on behalf of GOP politicians, I'm going to suggest what Rubio should have said in response to GQ's question about the age of the Earth. First, here's the actual exchange:

GQ: How old do you think the Earth is? 
Marco Rubio: I'm not a scientist, man. I can tell you what recorded history says, I can tell you what the Bible says, but I think that's a dispute amongst theologians and I think it has nothing to do with the gross domestic product or economic growth of the United States. I think the age of the universe has zero to do with how our economy is going to grow. I'm not a scientist. I don't think I'm qualified to answer a question like that. At the end of the day, I think there are multiple theories out there on how the universe was created and I think this is a country where people should have the opportunity to teach them all. I think parents should be able to teach their kids what their faith says, what science says. Whether the Earth was created in 7 days, or 7 actual eras, I'm not sure we'll ever be able to answer that. It's one of the great mysteries.

Now here's how I wish it had gone:

GQ: How old do you think the Earth is? 
Preferred Answer: I'm not a scientist, man, but I happen to know that the answer, as determined by geologists and astronomers, is approximately 4.5 billion years. I suspect that if you know that answer, GQ, it's because you looked it up shortly before the interview in order to formulate your gotcha question. I recognize the politics of this can be sensitive, because there are various views in theology as to the age of the Earth, including differences about how to understand the 7 days or eras discussed in the Bible. Science doesn't provide all the answers people seek as to the ultimate meaning of the universe, but it does provide the basis for much of the gross domestic product and economic growth of the United States. So you'll never hear me denying or disparaging scientific evidence, but the bigger question is why you don't pester potential Democratic candidates with such non-sequiturs. It's one of the great mysteries.

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