I have a former daughter-in-law (don’t ask) who doesn’t believe in evolution.
Her exact words on the subject the only time we discussed it were, “No ma’am, no way, no how.”
Nothing unusual there; she has a lot of company. (The scary thing is that she has a master’s in biology and is head of her high school science department.)
I thought of her when I read about a Florida Tea Party group fighting U.S. Fish and Wildlife restrictions on boating and other human activities that would endanger Florida’s manatees .
“We Can’t Elevate Nature Above People”
“We cannot elevate nature above people,” said Edna Mattos, 63, leader of the Citrus County Tea Party Patriots, in an interview. “That’s against the Bible and the Bill of Rights.”
Mattos didn’t explain exactly how elevating nature against people would be against the Bible or the Bill of Rights — or for that matter, how people exist apart from nature.
She did say her group believes that federal regulators’ aim is to control not only the fish and wildlife of Citrus County but “the use of the land that surrounds this area, and the people that live here and visit.”
“As most of us know,” she continued, “this all ties in to the United Nations’ Agenda 21 and Sustainability.”
Agenda 21, in case you’re out of touch, was an outcome of the UN Conference on Environment and Development held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in 1992 that outlines action to be taken globally, nationally and locally by organizations of the UN, governments, and major groups in every area in which humans directly affect the environment.”
The manatee, sometimes known as the sea cow, is a gentle herbivorous mammal native to the Caribbean, the Amazon and West Africa. It spends about half its life sleeping underwater, surfacing about every 20 minutes or so to breathe.
Relative Of The Elephant
According to fossil remains, manatee and their ancestors have lived in Florida waters for 45 to 60 million years. Their closest living relatives are elephants. Warm water creatures, they have occasionally been found as far north as Cape Cod and can live in salt water or fresh.
Manatees can swim vertically or upside down; they can do rolls and perform somersaults. Extra-dense bones enable them to stay suspended at or below the water’s surface.
Because they have only a few cervical vertebrae, they can’t turn their heads. They can chirp, whistle and squeak, and they seem to enjoy having people swim with them.
No Natural (Animal) Predators
They have no natural predators – at least among the animal kingdom.
But because they move so slowly, they can’t easily get out of the way of motor boats, which often leave gashes on their backs.
Hence the proposed restrictions on boating in the waters the manatees frequent, and the resulting twist in the Citrus County folks’ knickers.
How all this will be resolved remains to be seen.
But until it is, here is a a post from BuzzFeed, a site founded by Huffington Post co-founder Jonah Peretti, about the 40 things you’ll only see in Florida.