Title text: Scientists are also sexy, let's not forget that.
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This comic is a reference to Young Earth Creationism, which includes the belief that the earth has only existed for about 6,000 years. Young Earth Creationism is mainly based on literal interpretations of the Bible, which is frowned upon by most Bible scholars, to say nothing of empirical scientists.
The professor is originally not bothered by the fact that someone believes in Young Earth Creationism and simply tells the child to look at the scientific evidence. She assumes that even a child could see that the creationist arguments make no sense and can safely be ignored. However, she then hears that the person is actually a US senator, who would presumably influence national policy according to his creationist beliefs. This, she acknowledges, is an actual problem.
The comment on the fossils refers to an argument by Young Earth Creationists about the discovery of fossilized sea creatures at high altitudes. While mainstream science sees this as evidence of geological processes taking far longer than six thousand years, these creationists say that sea life reached these locations during a worldwide flood that covered even the tops of mountains.
The story of this flood is found in the Biblical book of Genesis, chapters six through nine. Essentially, not long after God created humans, they became evil and powerful enough that God decided to wipe the slate clean with a great flood. God told a man named Noah, who still followed God, to build a large ark to carry his family and two of each kind of animal† through the flood. After Noah finished the Ark, the flood came with rains lasting forty days and forty nights‡. Even the tops of mountains were covered. The Ark floated for five months until God made the waters recede, and eventually Noah's family and the rescued animals left the Ark and repopulated the Earth.
Though it is not stated in the story, many sea creatures are presumed to have died at high altitudes when the waters lowered. This is the Young Earth Creationist explanation for the fossils.
† = The Bible says that the rain lasted "forty days and forty nights". However, ["forty days and forty nights" is a mere expression that means "a very long time"].
‡ = The entire story can be [read here] from Chapter 6 to 9.
- [Megan and a professor stand together, with another figure in the distance.]
- Megan: Professor, that man claims the earth is 6,000 years old!
- Professor: So? Just use your head and don't concern yourself overmuch with what other people think.
- Megan: But he says the fossils in the mountains were put there in a flood!
- Professor: Well, evidence suggests that they were not.
- Megan: But he--
- [A mountain landscape.]
- Professor: A million people can call the mountains a fiction, yet it need not trouble you as you stand atop them.
- [Megan and professor again.]
- Megan: But he believes the silliest things!
- Professor: So?
- Professor: The universe doesn't care what you believe. The wonderful thing about science is that it doesn't ask for your faith, it just asks for your eyes.
- Megan: But he's a US Senator!
- Professor: Ah, then yes, we do have a bit of a situation.
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