This video is hard to watch. In it, Pastor Todd Friel scrutinizes the fictional documentary Mermaids: The Body Found which aired on the Discovery Channel. This is a perfect example of what I’ve absolutely hated about Christianity since long before I deconverted.
Todd’s Initial Reaction (0:54-0:57)
There are two possible explanations for his reaction to the clip he shows:
- He’s gullible enough to believe that this was an attempt at a legitimate documentary film, or
- He’s well aware that he can’t use it to his advantage if his viewers know it’s fake.
There really isn’t a lesser of these two evils. I don’t have to tell you what’s wrong with #2. Nobody looks good when they manipulate their audience to prove a point. That’s probably why the Bible so often attributes this type behavior to Lucifer. However, I suspect that #1 is more likely to be the case here. This is characteristic of a mindset in which research, fact-checking, and common sense take a back seat to gut reactions and whatever lines up with what I want to believe. It is no coincidence that this is the mindset of a man who is about to deny evolution.
A Brief Digression on Evolution (0:58-1:20)
This is what really angers me. Todd uses some of the lousiest and laziest objections to evolution in the book. He asserts that science says we came from monkeys (it doesn’t), says there’s no evidence for the claims of evolution (there’s plenty), then continues to mock the clip as if it were meant to represent a scientific consensus (it never was). This blind rejection of science is the biggest turn-off I face from Christianity. I can’t stand it when people are willingly ignorant of scientific facts for no better reason than because they can’t see any possible way for Genesis to be interpreted allegorically.
Openly Mocking Science… and Scientists (1:21-1:40)
Todd ends it with a cheap shot. Perhaps he played this up a bit for the sake of ratings, but that doesn’t make it acceptable. Scientists don’t ask you to trust them based on the fact that they wear lab coats and pocket protectors as Todd quips. In fact, quite the contrary… scientists are so sure of what they claim, they publish their work and let the evidence speak for itself. And come on, Todd… would Jesus make fun of scientists or put words in their mouths?
This is why I’m pissed off at Christianity. It’s not because I don’t want to believe in any god. It isn’t because of church friends who were rude to me when I renounced my faith. And it’s not because of “Christians who acknowledge Jesus with their lips, then walk out the door and deny him by their lifestyles” (but it doesn’t help). It’s because of people like Todd Friel who mislead large numbers of people because he can’t be bothered to think critically.