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Evangelist goes (even more) Bananas

A few years ago, evangelist (and former child star) Kirk Cameron released a video attempting to prove that God exists and created the world just for us humans by pointing out that the common banana fits perfectly into the human hand. Watch it — it is short and (unintentionally) hilarious:

Of course, Cameron didn’t mention that the common banana sold in stores in the US (and the one in the video) are all of the same variety. This variety, called Cavendish, is (in the words of Snopes) a “sterile, seedless mutant”. What makes this even funnier is that the way humans monocrop these mutant bananas makes them especially susceptible to disease:

New plants are created from cuttings of existing ones, making them little more than clones of one another. Without the natural diversity resulting from sexual reproduction, bananas continue on generation after generation with the same genetic makeup. Their inability to mutate and adapt leaves them vulnerable to species-wide disaster, because what fells one of them will prove the undoing of every plant within that particular variety.

In fact, up until 1960 the common banana was a different variety, the Gros Michel (“Big Mike”), which was significantly better tasting and larger than the Cavendish. But the Gros Michel was completely wiped out by a root fungus. So if you extend Cameron’s logic, God allowed the banana that was best suited to humans to go extinct, or worse, humans killed off God’s perfect creation.

Even more ironically, despite the fact that Cameron doesn’t believe in evolution, the root fungus that wiped out the Gros Michel has evolved, and is now starting to attack the Cavendish, wiping out plantations in SE Asia and Australia. If it spreads to Central America, then the Cavendish will go the way of Big Mike and since there is no ready replacement, humans will not have tasty sweet bananas anymore. But not to worry, scientists are busy using genetic engineering to create a Franken-banana for our eating pleasure.

And as a side note, Cameron assumes that God created the banana for us to eat, but it is just as likely that humans evolved to make them better at eating bananas. After all, the Swahili word for banana is still used in Uganda as the word for “food”.

But all that is old news. Now, Cameron is back with an even crazier idea. In honor of the 150th anniversary of the publishing of Darwin’s seminal book on evolution, “The Origin of Species”, Cameron and Ray Comfort plan to distribute 50,000 100,000 copies of the book at US universities. Huh? The kicker is that this “very special” edition of the book includes a 50 page introduction explaining “Adolf Hitler’s undeniable connection” to the theory of evolution, as well as Darwin’s racism and “his disdain for women”.  The introduction also presents a “balanced view of Creationism”, and exposes the “many hoaxes” of evolution.

You can read the introduction here. Or better yet just watch this scathing (and not safe for work) video (from Romania of all places) attacking Cameron’s plan:

My favorite part is when she asks what Cameron would think if someone released a very special edition of the Bible, including a 50 page introduction covering Adolf Hitler’s undeniable connection with Christianity, along with a discussion of the Bible’s racism and disdain for women, and a list of all of the hoaxes and historical atrocities carried out in the name of Christianity (e.g., the Inquisition, the Crusades, Northern Ireland, etc.).

UPDATE: Apparently Cameron has removed the PDF of the introduction, and is rewriting it to make it more fair to atheists and evolution.



  1. Quidam wrote:

    Bananaman has removed the PDF introduction for a rewrite

    •Thanks to good advice from Atheists on my blog (and from others), the 50-page Introduction will address Darwin’s “racism”–and reveal how he was truly a gentle-man who was adamantly against slavery.
    •It will also qualify his apparent degeneration of women, and the fact that his moral character is irrelevant to the Theory of Evolution, just as the Theory of Relativity should stand on its own merits, and not on the morality of Albert Einstein.
    •I will also make it clear that Hitler’s attraction to the theory is also irrelevant to whether or not it’s true. I want this Introduction to be fair-minded, free from prejudice against Darwin, with no straw men or quote-mining.

    From this we can deduce that the books haven’t been printed yet – otherwise the extensive rewrite would be impossible.

    While it’s good that Ray is removing or moderating the lying ad-hominen attacks, it should raise concerns about the scholarship of a book that Darwin’s well known anti-slavery position was a surprise to Ray and necessitate a rewrite. Maybe he’ll take some more good advice from atheists and stop blathering on about things of which he is demonstrably ignorant.

    Friday, September 25, 2009 at 2:50 pm | Permalink
  2. Sammy wrote:

    To be fair, I think he was just using the banana as an example of one God’s beautiful creations, not as a singular “proof” of the existence of God.

    And yes, I think Kirk Cameron HAS gone off the whacko ledge. Just trying to put it into perspective.

    Friday, September 25, 2009 at 5:27 pm | Permalink
  3. Fred Wickham wrote:

    This Romanian woman is smart, beautiful, and funny. I’m always impressed that people whose cultures we know so little about trouble themselves to know ours (not that they know Darwin, but that they keep up on our creepy underside — guys like Kirk Cameron and his pal, the Banana Theorist)

    Friday, September 25, 2009 at 11:10 pm | Permalink
  4. Sapo wrote:

    This woman is amazing! A perfect video.

    Saturday, September 26, 2009 at 9:38 am | Permalink

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