UPDATE: A prominent group of B.C. atheists is criticizing Christy Clark for her comments on religion and the Bible.
Appearing on evangelical Christian talk show "100 Huntley Street," the B.C. premier, and devout Anglican, said the holy book helps her to make difficult choices that will pay off long-term, rather than expedient decisions that might satisfy people immediately (You can see her answer starting at 4:27 in the video, the reference to the bible comes at around 5:30).
"Part of it is just trying to find the courage to do the right thing," Clark replied after being asked what is most challenging about being premier.
"Many times, as with many decisions that we face, and we learn this in the Bible, it’s much easier to make a short-term decision that will make everybody happy or that will make your life a little bit easier, than it is to make a long-term decision that’s good for the future but may be tough in the short run."
While Clark did not make direct reference to the ongoing spat with Alberta over royalties from the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline, her comments certainly could apply to the situation. Clark is demanding a bigger piece of the financial benefits from the project and is threatening to stop the pipeline in its tracks if she doesn't get it.
However, the pipeline is unpopular in B.C. and Clark is facing an uphill battle in the next election against Adrian Dix's NDP, which is currently leading in the polls. So picking a fight over the pipeline may not be as tough a decision as it appears.
Clark also talked about families during the interview.
"The most important structure in any society is a family," Clark said. "The hardest work in the world is the work that parents do in raising kids with character and with morals."
Clark said her Liberal government is working to create more jobs to make things easier for B.C.'s families.
"100 Huntley Street" describes itself as a show which brings the "amazing stories of people who have had life changing encounters with God — whether they be world leaders, celebrities, sports figures or everyday people like you and me." The program is produced by Crossroads Christian Communications.
B.C.'s premier has made a noticeable pivot to the right in recent months as the B.C. Conservatives have begun to squeeze out support for the Liberals on the right. The Liberal Party in B.C. is a centre-right party.
Clark hired staunch Tory and former Stephen Harper adviser Ken Boessenkool as her chief of staff in January. Boessenkool has said he "came out of the womb right wing."
B.C.'s premier has also brought on Sarah MacIntyre, another former Harper staffer, has her new press handler.
Her hires aren't the only sign Clark is shifting to the right. Earlier this year, Clark made headlines after being photographed at a her son's hockey game with the prime minister, Tim Hortons coffee cups clearly visible.
The TV appearance touting her religion may be the latest sign Clark is seeking to become more conservative in the eyes of voters in the hopes of preventing a split of the centre-right vote in the next election that would allow for an easy NDP victory.
Eating A Ham Sandwich
Lunch time? Leviticus 11:7-8 reads: <blockquote>And the swine, though he divide the hoof, and be clovenfooted, yet he cheweth not the cud; he is unclean to you. Of their flesh shall ye not eat, and their carcase shall ye not touch; they are unclean to you.</blockquote>
Thinking of getting the Superman insignia on your bicep? Leviticus 19:28 states: <blockquote>Ye shall not make any cuttings in your flesh for the dead, nor print any marks upon you: I am the LORD.</blockquote>
Off to the barber? Leviticus 19:27 states: <blockquote>Ye shall not round the corners of your heads, neither shalt thou mar the corners of thy beard.</blockquote>
Men With Injured Or Cut Off Private Parts Entering Houses Of God
It's bad enough if you're a man who has had his private parts injured -- or heaven forbid cut off -- but to add insult to injury, Deuteronomy 23:1 states: <blockquote>He that is wounded in the stones, or hath his privy member cut off, shall not enter into the congregation of the LORD.</blockquote>
Have you ever had your palm read? Or maybe you've consulted your horoscope for a little guidance? Leviticus 19:31 reads: <blockquote>Regard not them that have familiar spirits, neither seek after wizards, to be defiled by them: I am the LORD your God.</blockquote> Photo by zopdeep on <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/mcpucho/318112432/sizes/m/in/photostream/" target="_hplink">Flickr.com</a>
Heard some juicy news about Harold in the accounting department? Can't wait to tell your BFF that you just read that Snooki is pregnant? Leviticus 19:16 states: <blockquote>Thou shalt not go up and down as a talebearer among thy people: neither shalt thou stand against the blood of thy neighbour; I am the LORD.</blockquote> Photo by JoeInSouthernCA on <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/joebehr/4744688383/sizes/z/in/photostream/" target="_hplink">Flickr.com</a>
Wives Helping Out Their Husbands In A Fight
Gentlemen -- if you ever get in a fight and you get the feeling your lady might jump in and lend you a hand by squeezing your opponent's... ahem... "secrets," you'd better stop her. Deuteronomy 25:11-12 states: <blockquote>When men strive together one with another, and the wife of the one draweth near for to deliver her husband out of the hand of him that smiteth him, and putteth forth her hand, and taketh him by the secrets Then thou shalt cut off her hand, thine eye shall not pity her.</blockquote>
Children Cursing Their Parents
Kids these days -- you never know what's going to come out of their mouths! But hopefully your child doesn't curse you because Exodus 21:17 states: <blockquote>"And he that curseth his father, or his mother, shall surely be put to death."</blockquote>
Getting Remarried After Getting Divorced
When it comes to the Bible, this is a big no-no (unless your spouse was cheating on you): Mark 10:11-12 states: <blockquote>Whosoever putteth away his wife, and marrieth another, committeth adultery: and whosoever marrieth her that is put away from her husband committeth adultery.</blockquote>
Working On The Sabbath
In our fast-paced society, does anyone really work Monday to Friday from 9-5? Exodus 31:14-15 states: <blockquote>"Ye shall keep the sabbath therefore; for it is holy unto you: every one that defileth it shall surely be put to death: for whosoever doeth any work therein, that soul shall be cut off from among his people. Six days may work be done; but in the seventh is the sabbath of rest, holy to the LORD: whosoever doeth any work in the sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death.</blockquote>
Women Speaking In Houses Of God
Headed to church, ladies? 1 Corinthians 14:34-35 states: <blockquote>Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law. And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.</blockquote>
Eating Shrimp, Lobster, And Other Assorted Seafood
Craving a big bowl of popcorn shrimp? Leviticus 10-11 states: <blockquote>And all that have not fins and scales in the seas, and in the rivers, of all that move in the waters, and of any living thing which is in the waters, they shall be an abomination unto you: They shall be even an abomination unto you; ye shall not eat of their flesh, but ye shall have their carcases in abomination.</blockquote> Photo by jeffreyw on <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/jeffreyww/5833838507/sizes/z/in/photostream/" target="_hplink">Flickr.com</a>
Losing Your Virginity Before You Get Married
Today it might be harder to find a bride who is a virgin rather than the other way around. But Deuteronomy 22:20-21 states: <blockquote>But if this thing be true, and the tokens of virginity be not found for the damsel: Then they shall bring out the damsel to the door of her father's house, and the men of her city shall stone her with stones that she die: because she hath wrought folly in Israel, to play the whore in her father's house: so shalt thou put evil away from among you</blockquote>
Charles Darwin (1809-1882)
"The impossibility of conceiving that this grand and wondrous universe, with our conscious selves, arose through chance, seems to me the chief argument for the existence of God." <strong>Clarification</strong>: <em>The full quote, from <a href="http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/entry-8837" target="_hplink">one of Darwin's letters</a>, carries a different sentiment. A young admirer <a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16949157" target="_hplink">asked Darwin about his religious views</a> (the original inquiry is lost), and the great naturalist answered: "It is impossible to answer your question briefly; and I am not sure that I could do so, even if I wrote at some length. But I may say that the impossibility of conceiving that this grand and wondrous universe, with our conscious selves, arose through chance, seems to me the chief argument for the existence of God; but whether this is an argument of real value, I have never been able to decide."</em>
Neil deGrasse Tyson (1958-
"So you're made of detritus [from exploded stars]. Get over it. Or better yet, celebrate it. After all, what nobler thought can one cherish than that the universe lives within us all?" --American astrophysicist and science commentator
Stephen Hawking (1942-)
"What I have done is to show that it is possible for the way the universe began to be determined by the laws of science. In that case, it would not be necessary to appeal to God to decide how the universe began. This doesn't prove that there is no God, only that God is not necessary." --English physicist and cosmologist
Carl Sagan (1934-1996)
"Science is not only compatible with spirituality; it is a profound source of spirituality. When we recognize our place in an immensity of light-years and in the passage of ages, when we grasp the intricacy, beauty, and subtlety of life, then that soaring feeling, that sense of elation and humility combined, is surely spiritual...The notion that science and spirituality are somehow mutually exclusive does a disservice to both." --American astrophysicist
Francis Collins (1950-)
"Science is...a powerful way, indeed - to study the natural world. Science is not particularly effective...in making commentary about the supernatural world. Both worlds, for me, are quite real and quite important. They are investigated in different ways. They coexist. They illuminate each other." --American physician-geneticist and director of the National Human Genome Research Institute
Isaac Asimov (1920-1992)
"Emotionally, I am an atheist. I don't have the evidence to prove that God doesn't exist, but I so strongly suspect he doesn't that I don't want to waste my time" --American biochemist and science fiction writer
Albert Einstein (1879-1955)
<strong>Clarification</strong>: <em>While the <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/17/science/17einsteinw.html" target="_hplink">New York Times noted</a> that "Einstein consistently characterized the idea of a personal God who answers prayers as naive, and life after death as wishful thinking," he also "described himself as an 'agnostic' and 'not an atheist.'" One ambiguous quote, from <a href="http://books.google.com/books?id=58HQXMp1ESwC&pg=PA92&lpg=PA92&dq=einstein+phyllis+wright&source=bl&ots=zn6BlmXlY4&sig=DxDgqkMMwMaJ9pgUVmgwih4WbQE&hl=en&sa=X&ei=2NY6T6euHIbr0gHC4PivCw&ved=0CCwQ6AEwAjgK#v=onepage&q=einstein phyllis wright&f=false" target="_hplink">Einstein's response to a letter from a sixth-grade student named Phyllis Wright</a>, reads "Everyone who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that a spirit is manifest in the laws of the universe - a spirit vastly superior to that of man, and one in the face of which we with our modest powers must feel humble. In this way the pursuit of science leads to a religious feeling of a special sort, which is indeed quite different from the religiosity of someone more naive."</em> --German physicist, created theory of general relativity.
Max Planck (1858-1947)
"It was not by accident that the greatest thinkers of all ages were deeply religious souls." --German physicist, noted for work on quantum theory
Erwin Schroedinger (1887-1961)
"I am very astonished that the scientific picture of the real world around me is very deficient. It gives a lot of factual information, puts all our experiences in a magnificently consistent order, but is ghastly silent about all and sundry that is really near to our heart, that really matters to us. It cannot tell us a word about red and blue, bitter and sweet, physical pain and physical delight; it knows nothing of beautiful and ugly, good or bad, god and eternity." --Austrian physicist, awarded Nobel prize in 1933
Rosalind Franklin (1920-1958)
"In my view, all that is necessary for faith is the belief that by doing our best we shall come nearer to success and that success in our aims (the improvement of the lot of mankind, present and future) is worth attaining...I maintain that faith in this world is perfectly possible without faith in another world." --British biophysicist renowned for her work on X-ray diffraction.
William H. Bragg (1862-1942)
"From religion comes a man's purpose; from science, his power to achieve it. Sometimes people ask if religion and science are not opposed to one another. They are: in the sense that the thumb and fingers of my hands are opposed to one another. It is an opposition by means of which anything can be grasped." --British physicist, chemist, and mathematician. Awarded Nobel Prize in 1915
Richard Feynman (1918-1988)
"God was invented to explain mystery. God is always invented to explain those things that you do not understand." --American physicist, awarded Nobel Prize in 1965
Wernher Von Braun (1912-1977)
"I find it as difficult to understand a scientist who does not acknowledge the presence of a superior rationality behind the existence of the universe as it is to comprehend a theologian who would deny the advances of science." --German-American rocket scientist
Richard Dawkins (1941-)
"The more you understand the significance of evolution, the more you are pushed away from the agnostic position and towards atheism. Complex, statistically improbable things are by their nature more difficult to explain than simple, statistically probable things." --British evolutionary biologist
Nevill Mott (1905-1996)
"Science can have a purifying effect on religion, freeing it from beliefs of a pre-scientific age and helping us to a truer conception of God. At the same time, I am far from believing that science will ever give us the answers to all our questions." --English physicist, awarded Nobel Prize in 1977
Fred Hoyle (1915-2001)
"A commonsense interpretation of the facts suggests that a superintellect has monkeyed with physics, as well as with chemistry and biology, and that there are no blind forces worth speaking about in nature. The numbers one calculates from the facts seem to me so overwhelming as to put this conclusion almost beyond question." --English mathematician and astronomer.
Sir Arthur C. Clarke (1917-2008)
"Science can destroy religion by ignoring it as well as by disproving its tenets. No one ever demonstrated, so far as I am aware, the nonexistence of Zeus or Thor - but they have few followers now" --British science fiction author and inventor
Walter Kohn (1923-)
"I am very much a scientist, and so I naturally have thought about religion also through the eyes of a scientist. When I do that, I see religion not denominationally, but in a more, let us say, deistic sense. I have been influence in my thinking by the writing of Einstein who has made remarks to the effect that when he contemplated the world he sensed an underlying Force much greater than any human force. I feel very much the same. There is a sense of awe, a sense of reverence, and a sense of great mystery." --American theoretical physicist, awarded Nobel Prize in 1998
Sam Harris (1967-)
"Atheism is not a philosophy; it is not even a view of the world; it is simply a refusal to deny the obvious." --American neuroscientist
Victor J. Stenger (1935-)
"With pantheism...the deity is associated with the order of nature or the universe itself...when modern scientists such as Einstein and Stephen Hawking mention 'God' in their writing, this is what they seem to mean: that God is Nature." --American physicist