Tuesday, June 3, 2008
Stein and Steig: Which notion is more preposterous, creation or evolution?
When I recently saw the documentary Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed, I was thoroughly impressed at the logical reinforcement of what I have always been taught, that we are not here by random chance or accident. While I strongly believe in creation for biblical reasons, Expelled gave scientific support to the claim that there must be intelligent design behind the complexity of DNA, let alone the universe.
I am surprised that somehow I have heretofore missed Yellow and Pink by William Steig. Steig is better known for his Caldecott winning Sylvester and the Magic Pebble and his Newbery honor book Dr. DeSoto. Even the movie Shrek (which I have not seen) was based on a picture book by Steig, so he’s quite reputable as a storyteller. So I like his stories, I like his art, but how could I have missed Y&P for so long?! I am grateful to Marti Anderson for sharing this with me on a rainy evening.
Two figures are lying in the sun on a piece of newspaper. After a while they “wake up” and begin to ask each other how they got there and why. The first fellow, “Pink,” assumes that, since they were so admirably formed, someone must have made them. The second, “Yellow,” scoffs at the notion. Being so perfect and intricate, they must have been an accident, just “happened” after a series of natural events over millions of years that resulted in both of them being so much the same, and yet quite different. Yellow is soundly convinced of his theory, even though it is so full of holes and he has no greater evidence than Pink’s simple theory of design.
[Pink] suddenly gave Yellow a challenging look. “Explain this,” he said. “How come we’re painted the way we are?”
Yellow took a few circular turns pondering this question. “The paint,” he muttered, “the paint. Well, suppose when we rolled down those hills, or whatever it was we rolled down, we rolled through some paint someone had spilled…” (emphasis mine)
Finally Yellow protests that he can’t answer all the questions, that some things are just a mystery. Oh well. And then a man comes along and finds them nice and dry, and carries them back where he came from. Makes me think of Pinocchio.
Of course, we were not left to wonder about our true origins. If we will just read and believe the creation account that was supplied in Genesis, furnished by the only firsthand witness, all those silly questions are answered and we wouldn’t waste such time. Steig’s story makes this plain enough to children, though many of his stories are really a nudge to adults. See if your library has a copy of Yellow and Pink. And make sure you see Expelled at your earliest opportunity!