Letters, nails and vehicular sabotage haven't kept two UF biology professors from expressing their belief in evolution.

In a string of events occurring over the past four months, the professors' cars, which were parked in the Bartram-Carr Hall parking lot, were vandalized.

First, religious letters were left on the cars, and then pro-evolution bumper stickers and Darwin-fish emblems were scraped and torn from the vehicles. Most recently, nails were put into the tires.

One of the victims, Brian McNab, said he noticed a problem with his white Volkswagen when air continued to come out of the tires even after he had re-inflated them.

McNab took the car in for an inspection, and two two-inch nails were found and determined as the cause of the flat tires.

"I can't prove who did it and I don't want to jump to any conclusions," McNab said. "But I think it's obvious that it's someone who has a strong opposition to evolution."

The creationism movement, he said, has always stemmed controversy with evolution, and believers of the ideology assert that all humans were made as a part of "intelligent design" by a deity.

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but where do you draw the line?" McNab said. "I think they ought to learn something about science."

The other victim, Betty Smocovitis, said in an email she is disappointed at what she called the small-minded nastiness of the individual, and she would continue to replace the Darwin fish on her car.

University Police spokesman Maj. Brad Barber said no reports have been filed for the incidents, but professors have been encouraged to contact UPD if any another incident occurs.

The perpetrators are still at large.

(8) comments

jjh

TeaParty Baptist, I suspect

Uncle B

Come on Christian Fundies....WWJD? I doubt he'd resort to childish vandalism.

NixManes

The writer starts off the first sentence incorrectly by stating that evolution is connected to belief. Scientists *know* it's true; they need not *believe* anything, a state of mind that requires no evidence and often ignores it.

wdv87

How sad is our state of affairs when professors are attacked in such a cowardly way. Although I do feel bad for the perpetrators, they are simply a product of their environment. I do hope they are brought to justice however. Their punishment should be an education.

sth

NixManes - Scientists do not "know"that evolution is true. The Theory of Evolution is a theory, the best observable explanation for the current state of man's physical being. The theory is riddled with discrepancies, and most scientists admit that it is far from perfect. It's the "best guess". Science can't answer all questions, but it does provide a vehicle for exploring potential answers. You guys are making fun of christians, but people who put fish bumper stickers on their cars are a little out there too. Also, I have a nail in my tire as we speak. I wonder how it got there? Was it the Fundies?

sth

NixMane starts off his first sentence correctly stating that the writer incorrectly by states that evolution is connected to belief. He neglects to state that McNab incorrectly states that someone "has a strong opposition to evolution", as if evolution was a belief. One could disagree with the theory, but I've never heard of opposing it. One would typically conduct experiments to disprove it.

mk

I imagine the vandals also oppose gravity and plan to be raptured to heaven to prove it does not exist.

HunHare

sth, your comments are typical of someone who has almost no understanding of evolutionary theory. The fundamental (har!) difference between science and religious dogma: scientists know and admit that their findings--based on solid, observable fact--are subject to revision as more reliable data become available. That's how truth is found.

Religious dogma, on the other hand, requires unquestioning belief, despite what physical evidence exists to contradict it. (Though I hope you'll at least agree that the sun doesn't rise and set because Apollo drags it across the sky with his flaming chariot.)

What are you afraid of?

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.