Sunday, November 4, 2007

A Giant Thing for BT3 (and a rant against Creationism)

If you are a regular reader of "Bill of the Birds," the birding (and miscellaneous) blog of Bill Thompson, III, you know of his penchant for Giant Things. A while ago, I saw a human interest story on the local news that featured a Giant Thing, and knew that I would have to track it down and photograph it for him. So, Bill, this Giant Horseshoe Crab's for you!

"World's Largest Horseshoe Crab
and Scripture Garden"

The back story of this roadside attraction is a bit odd. Originally, it was commissioned for the Columbus Center Maritime Museum on the harbor in Baltimore, Maryland. The museum closed before it opened (financial reasons) and the crab was cut into 9 pieces and dismantled. It was then purchased for display at the "Creation Museum" in Kentucky, but turned out to be too big for the facility. It eventually was donated to the Freedom Worship Baptist Church for their use in a Creation-themed exhibit at their Freedom Hall in Blanchester, OH.

side view of "the Crab"

You can walk into the crab from the rear end.

You could even be married here,
if you are so inclined.

Now, maybe you, like me, are asking yourself, "What does a giant horseshoe crab have to do with God and creation?" Luckily, that question is answered in the brochure kindly supplied to me by an elderly gentleman working at the Freedom Hall when I stopped by on Saturday afternoon. (Yes, they have a hall, a Giant Crab, a brochure, and a scripture garden, but they are still holding their Sunday services in the Blanchester High School. Great use of resources.)

Quoting now from the brochure:

"As science still attempts to disprove the Bible and the foundational basis of God's creation, the evidence still stands that the heaven and earth were created in just 6 literal days. ... The horseshoe crab crushes all evolutionary beliefs as it has not changed since it's creation on day five."

What the heck? Because the horseshoe crab hasn't evolved, then nothing else has? What kind of logic is that? What about the Peppered Moth,
Biston betularia,which has mutated twice in the last two hundred years? This moth, a native of England, was originally light in color, to camouflage itself against light-colored lichens and tree bark. When the Industrial Revolution killed off the lichens and stained the tree trunks dark with soot, the Peppered Moth adapted. The lighter colored typia variety began dying out, and Nature selected for the darker form, carbonaria. Thus, in response to environmental pollution, the Peppered Moth evolved to a different form.

Lest you think this was mere coincidence, it should be noted that with improved environmental protection standards, the typia variation has become more common again. Now that trees are less sooty, the darker variety is less well camouflaged and experiences more predation, thus the lighter forms are returning to previous levels.

Take that, you "Intelligent" Design fanatics.


Sara said...

Right On, Katdoc ! Let's see, a world with no adaptation, no diversity, and no independent thought...No thanks !
Did you find a giant Red Knot nearby ?

Julie Zickefoose said...

Ah, Kathi. Don't you get it? The fact that the horseshoe crab hasn't visibly changed for millenia truly does upset the apple cart and makes Darwin's finches and peppered moths, island speciation, and the entire fossil record just go away. That is, if you squish your eyes shut and just believe.
I saw a Bible comic in Andy Whitman's blog that had a picture of Jesus riding a dinosaur. That was cool.
Hey, while we're talking creation theory, can we talk about the feasibility of Noah's Ark? I have a little problem with that one. Did Noah go around and gather up all the beetles and midges and soil micro-organisms, too? And how did he manage to feed all those animals and keep them all alive for forty days and forty nights on the ocean? That must have been SOME boat.
Love this post, and the backstory behind the horseshoe crab in the church lot. Hmmmm. Wow.

KGMom said...

A giant horseshoe crab fit for marrying in! Really?
Oh, don't even get me started on creationsim or ID vs. evolution. I live within easy driving distance of the Dover school district where the recent famous case was fought.
And I have students who try to persuade me on creationism when I am teaching argument--so, don't get me started.
Frankly, I'd rather go read a wonderful Stephen Jay Gould work anyday than argue with a creationist.

BT3 said...


NICE JOB on the Giant Things post. Zick alerted me to it--even before she saw that MY post today on BOTB was about a Giant Thing too.

Thanks for this!!!

Susan Gets Native said...

I got cornered by one of the members of that church after a program a few months ago. She seemed normal until she mentioned the "fact" that dinosaurs didn't exist and that God put the bones there for us to find. Uh huh.

So you can walk up the crab's ass? How classy. And spiritual.

KatDoc said...


Feeding everybody on Noah's Ark was never what worried me. It was what to do with the excrement that I always found appalling. 40 days and 40 nights and no one cleaned a litterbox? Phew!

I do love the Irish Rovers song about why there are no more unicorns, though. They were so busy playing when Noah called them that they missed the boat.


"You'll see green alligators and long-necked geese; some humpy-backed camels and some chimpanzees; Some cats and rats and elephants, But sure as you're born, You're not gonna see no unicorns."

holly said...

How funny that it ended up in Ohio, of all places. (I'm still trying to work out the evolution connection in my mind...) However, it is a cool structure, I know a few places here that would kill to have that at their museums. Horseshoe crabs are big around here, they hold counts when they're spawning and I remember swimming in the Bay once where there were thousands of them underfoot.

People can make any kind of connection in their minds if they really want to, I suppose.

Anonymous said...

Oh, what a great post. It is wonderful to be taken away from the realities of life. I must admit that I'm a bit envious of those "Intelligent Design" fanatics. It's so much easier to credit (or blame) God for everything that happens in life.

Thanks for the great writing that took my mind off Pakistan, Iraq, politics, global warming, and my loss of rights under the Constitution, etc. Now, I suppose it's back to the real world.

Anonymous said...

Kathy said...

I hope I can post a comment in favor of the Biblical account of creation, without being barred from the blog? Biology was my favorite subject in high school and I took several biology courses in college, so I know the arguments for evolution quite well. I've gone through mental struggles to resolve the conflict with the Genesis account. Taking a Kay Arthur Bible study on Genesis helped me resolve those conflicts for myself.

KatDoc said...


Nobody is thrown off the blog for a differing opinion. As a PK (Preacher's Kid) I was raised in the Methodist Church and listened to my fair share of Sunday School lessons and Bible classes. I had to come to a compromise between my faith and science, too.

For me, I believe the Genesis story was written by men, in an attempt to explain the wonders of the world in a time of very little scientific knowledge. I take it less as the literal truth and more as an allegory. For me, the "six days" of Creation weren't six 24-hour periods, but six of God's days, which last a whole lot longer than ours.

Do you know the old joke:

"God, is it true that to You, a million dollars is as a penny, and a thousand years is merely a second?"

"Yes, my son, that is true."

"Well, God, could I have a million dollars?"

"In a minute, my son."

As for evolution, I think it is a pretty cool device that God created. Start with a basic form, give it the ability to adapt to pressures and stresses in the environment, then sit back and watch how it develops. A miracle, if you ask me.

It works for me, but I don't expect everyone to feel the same.