Dear Wendy:Wendy replies:
I have been dating my boyfriend for about three months. We get along great and he would do anything for me. We just have one problem. He doesn't believe in evolution and I very passionately do. We got in a discussion about it, which quickly turned into a huge fight...So I guess what I am asking is how do I broach this topic in a manner that doesn't turn into a huge argument? Should I just accept that we may never agree on the topic and try to get over it?
-- The "Mad" Scientist
Dear "Mad" Scientist:Well, remind me never to to go Wendy for advice, since this is truly atrocious. Evolution is not a "belief" of any kind and the hypothetical boyfriend/girlfriend have been set up in the worst straw man argument in the entire controversy, that acceptance of evolution and God is an either/or proposition. It is not. What is truly amazing, however, is the infantile nature of the comments to the story. Very few actually dealt with the nature of the disagreement. Does this reflect the fact that most people don't care? or is it an indictment of the lack of education about this topic in the general public (including the columnist, herself)? Probably a bit of both.
You need to decide on a couple of things here, Ms. First, is it a boyfriend you want or a student? Because you can't have both.
If it's the former, you need to decide how important it is that your partner's beliefs align with your own. We aren't talking about a casual interest in the Yankees versus a vague support for the Red Sox here.
Evolution and creationism are beliefs that are at the basis for entire life philosophies, values, and behavior. They can be the lens through which people view their world, particularly if they're very passionate about their beliefs, as you say you and your boyfriend are.