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Lincoln, Darwin @ 200

   The lead editorial in today's Buffalo News is among the essays dedicated to the marvelous coincidence of today, the 200th birthday of both Abraham Lincoln and Charles Darwin .

   While Lincoln’s ideas were political and Darwin’s scientific, both embodied a profound philosophy that helped to create the world as we know it: Humanity has the capacity to look around, take stock and, through reason and logic, decide for itself what is true. Taking old ideas on faith, whether about the inevitability of slavery or the immutability of species, is beneath us.

On Lincoln:
The State Journal-Register of Springfield, Ill., is Abraham Lincoln central, with this clear-eyed editorial -- Today we see Lincoln as the man who unified this nation. In his day, though, there may have been no Lincoln2 more divisive figure. History has a way of smoothing out such wrinkles -- and a video of a suitably varied assortment of people reciting Lincoln's Gettysburg Address .
- The Indianapolis Star also has a video of a bunch of Hoosiers of all shapes, ages, colors -- and a couple of languages -- reading the address.
- The Calgary Herald reprints an editorial written to honor Lincoln's 100th birthday: It is doubtful whether any character that lives in secular history possesses the same appeal to the human heart as that of Abraham Lincoln.

On Darwin:
- Who better than the BBC to go, well, ape over the Darwin bicentennial, offeringDarwin this staggering multi-media Web site devoted to all things evolutionary.
- In The Washington Post, Rick Weiss admires what might have been Darwin's greatest skill: His willingness to say "I don't know."
 The New York Times' wonderful Op-Ed science writerOlivia Judson, admires Darwin the man: He was a humane, gentle, decent man, a loving husband and father, and a loyal friend. Judging by his letters, he was also sometimes quite funny. He was, in other words, one of those rare beings, as likeable as he was impressive.
- The Los Angeles Times: But there is a malodorous skunk at this garden party: a movement rooted in American-style biblical fundamentalism that seeks to discredit Darwinism and undermine the teaching of evolution in public schools..

   Now, about the significance of great men and beards ...

-- George Pyle/Editorial Writer


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