Review: Goodbye God? An Illustrated Exploration of Science vs Religion
From the birth of our country, Christianity’ ties to not only the Founding Fathers but also to the very principles the nation was founded on, is unmissable. The mention of God is in every major piece of literature, letter, and even many legal documents. This way of thinking became part of the dominant faith system that would spread into every facet of what we call “The American way of life”. This was what most believed to be the only way, which lead to widespread dissemination.
So, with most tenets of belief, what one must do in order to be considered a good Christian, was first thought in the church. So, when the classic question of which came first:” The chicken or the egg”? most teachers used religion to teach it while others used circular reasoning. What decades of this way of thinking has lead to, is the current political climate ‘s dismissal of science and almost all other reason. In Sean Michael Wilson and Hunt Emerson’s Goodbye God: An Illustrated Exploration of Science Vs Religion, the reader enjoys a careful examination how this dispute has festered and how it affects society’s ultimate direction.
In Part 1, “Evolution and Creationism”, the creators gives a definition of both while outlining history of the fundamental differences between the two sides of the debate while maintaining levity about the incredulousness of the argument for creationism. As they break down Darwin’s theory of sexual selection, as it has less to do with how the opposite sex looks like and more capability to survive. Then they take apart each claim of evidence based on what is written in the Bible and compare it to actual facts. They go on o take separate the creationist schools of thought in to “Old Earth “and “Young Earth”, and how alike and different they are from each other, as both center on literal acceptance of the Bible and creation was within the last 6,000 years. The book delves into the problem with this infiltration into what is considered fact, as Noam Chomsky clearly makes the connection to America’s current political stance on global warming, that it is “fake science”. They also get into how different school systems are tackling both theories as some of these cases have even gone to the Supreme Court. As the New York Times found in a poll that an overwhelming number of teachers for fear of backlash from parents, choose to stay neutral in the argument, and in many ways, leaves the facts unclear. As we also see where scientists have taken up the fight as well, where such collectives as The Steve Project, which has pushed that evolution is a unified belief based on science as fact. In “Part 2” Science Vs Religion”, they first discuss how much of the violence of the world, especially those against women, have parts of it tied to religion and gives specific incidents where people have used words form sacred texts to justify their vehemence. Of course, one of the worst uses of religious text was to justify slavery on other human beings. This is also where we discover the concept of “Humanism”, which more or less is spirituality based on equality and free thought. The creators also dive into how absurd the concept of calling oneself, an atheist, is, as not choosing a dominant religion doesn’t mean that one doesn’t have morals or feelings, though many religious sects would disagree. As the existence of religion, doesn’t mean that good thins will happen only to those who are devout, as the same thing for who aren’t devout, that only bad things will happen to them, as this is simply false equivalencies at play. By book’s end, the creators leaves footnotes that both enhance what the reader has learned and for further reading.
Overall, an excellent book which puts both arguments bare, leaving the reader to ponder on which direction has given the most evidence to sway oneself. The story text by Wilson is intelligent, relatable, and smart. The art by Emerson is beautiful. Altogether, a great book that redefines what a graphic novel can be and gives a readers a full experience.
Story: Sean Michael Wilson Art: Hunt Emerson
Story: 10 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.7 Recommendation: Buy