Monday, June 27, 2011

Whisper Down the Alley

So one of those things happened last week. The kind of thing that you immediately see how it’s analogous to the plight of rationalists everywhere, but it takes a lot of verbiage to explain to someone who just won’t see it.
Ryan Dunn died in a car crash. Now I don’t want to over-inflate this story. A drunk guy drove into a tree. But a famous drunk guy drove into a tree so even though it’s a fairly common accident in a shitty part of Philadelphia the media deems it important.

Within two days people were already speculating whether or not it was a hoax.

Now ok, let’s think about this for a second. 
1) there is a police report, 

2) there is eye witness testimony, and 

3) there is family and friends publicly grieving

. Yet still…some people don’t believe it. 

This reminds me of many other famous people who are believed by many to have faked, survived, or otherwise overcome death.
Andy Kaufman, Elvis ... and Jesus.

My point here is very succinct so I don’t want to drag it out any more than necessary. Even given an age of unparalleled communication and information technology, even given that the Internet is still largely a written medium and requires at least a rudimentary grasp on reading and writing, even given everything short of seeing the body…people were willing to believe that this guy might not be dead. 

So what does that say about the Bible as a historical record? A lot, and it’s all negative. To take a book, written hundreds of years ago, by a barely literate people, after decades of being passed down via oral tradition, then translated through three take that book and call it truth is just absurd. 
We can’t keep facts straight over three days in the information age. How well do you think Iron Age goat herders did?