As an avowed agnostic — well, so far… growing older, I’d get on my knees before anyone who could convince me of an afterlife — I should be extremely skeptical of Ben Carson. I mean the man’s a Creationist, of all things, who claims God helped him ace his chemistry final his first semester at Yale. (Where was God when I was taking my boolean algebra final at Dartmouth? Nowhere to be found!)
Nevertheless, I have been anything but skeptical of Carson almost since the outset of this campaign when I discovered that the doctor — even when he seemed to have said something outrageous or even peculiar — nearly always had been misquoted or cut off before he had a chance to explain what he meant. He is a soft-spoken intellectual in a soundbite world. His statements about guns and the Holocaust and abjuring a president who believes in Sharia were just two examples.
In truth, the media and Democrats (same thing) find Ben Carson weird and old-fashioned despite the pioneering neurosurgeon having more scientific background than anyone who has ever run for president with the possible exception of Herbert Hoover, who was a mining engineer. And Hoover came from another era of science.
Now, with Carson a frontrunner in national and Iowa polls, not to mention the only Republican tied with Hillary Clinton in a hypothetical matchup, what I recently called, channeling Stalin, the media/Democrat “plot against the doctor” I fully expect to metastasize to a full-on “War on God.” But — take it from this agnostic — that will be a very risky war because it will be based on the assumption that Carson is wacky in his belief. He isn’t. He is to be admired and, in my case, envied.
We saw the essence of the man in last week’s CNBC debate when Carson responded this way to a question framed to portray him as a homophobe because he opposes same-sex marriage:
I believe that our Constitution protects everybody, regardless of their sexual orientation. I also believe that marriage is between a man and a woman. There is no reason why you can’t be perfectly fair to the gay community. They shouldn’t automatically assume because you believe that marriage is between one man and one woman that you are a homophobe. This is one of the myths that the left perpetrates on our society. This is how they frighten people and get people to shut up. That’s what the PC culture is all about and it’s destroying our nation. The fact of the matter is, we the American people, are not each other’s enemy. It is people who are trying to divide us are our enemies and we need to make that very clear to everybody.
Amen. And I say that as one who has supported gay marriage virtually from the time I heard about it as an issue (2003), ten years before Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton “evolved” to that position. Carson, as I observe him, is a social conservative, but not one who seeks to impose his views on others. He wants others to desist from imposing their views on all of us (the tyranny of political correctness).
How he would be as president is, admittedly, to some degree mysterious. Trump, alarmed that Carson may be slipping ahead of him, insists the doctor is unprepared and would not be ready to negotiate with the Chinese or deal with Putin. Maybe not, but I wouldn’t doubt he’d be a lot better than what we have now. He is also potentially the most uniting figure we have had in our national politics in some time. Pitted against Hillary Clinton, the contrast would be dramatic — deep morality vs. prevaricating expediency. If I were the Democrats, I’d be nervous.
No doubt they realize this and are preparing what amounts to their (guilt by association) “War on God,” readying themselves to call out the man who was the first in human history to separate conjoined twins and who has done numerous fetal brain surgeries as a Creationist.
But what is a Creationist, really? Some are undoubtedly anti-science bigots as in the Scopes Trial, but others simply believe that God created the universe but take the Biblical time scheme as metaphoric, a point of view not altogether distant from the Big Bang and not really in contradiction to the Theory of Evolution, which says nothing of first causes.
Carson is clearly the latter. He is also, it will undoubtedly be pointed out, a climate change skeptic. Much will be made of this. That being the case, perhaps he should debate Al Gore, rather than Hillary Clinton. I would suspect, however, that Al would demur — and not just because Ben got that A in chemistry and Al is well known to have gotten a D in geology (aka “rocks”), also from Yale. Al might have to explain the “inconvenient truth” of why the Arctic icecap grew to 1.7 million square kilometers the very year (2014) he predicted it would disappear altogether. Perhaps God intervened on the side of Ben Carson.