Does Sarah Palin believe that dinosaurs were alive 4000 years ago?
Sarah Palin is Not a Literal Creationist
Sarah Palin has apparently stated that she considers herself a
creationist in the sense that she thinks God is behind all
evolution. However, Sarah Palin is not a literal Creationist
in the sense that she believes the world was created in 7 literal
days and is only a few thousand years old. She is flexible with
dating in the Bible and according to her church does not believe
that Dinosaurs literally roamed Earth with man. Some
creationists believe that before man was created, God created the
world in 7 days where each 'Day' is an extended period of time.
Sarah Palin was born into a Catholic family. Her family later
attended a Pentacostal Christian church. She now considers her home
church to be the Wasilla Bible Church, which is an independent
church not associated with any major Christian denomination.
This exact line of inquiry stems from various internet sources.
Three of the most prominent are a video interview with Matt Damon,
an internet blog, and an article in the LA Times.
1. Internet Blog
These allegations appear to stem from a blog post that included
"fake Governor Sarah Palin quotes" made up by a blogger at
unbearablebobness.typepad.com. He states that his blog post was an
attempt to satirize Gov. Palin's beliefs, and does not reflect
those beliefs in any way.
The direct quote from unbearablebobness.typepad.com is as
"God made dinosaurs 4,000 years ago as
ultimately flawed creatures, lizards of Satan really, so when they
died and became petroleum products we, made in his perfect image,
could use them in our pickup trucks, snow machines and fishing
boats. Now, as to the ANWR, Todd and I often enjoying caribou
hunting and one year we shot up a herd big time, I mean I
personally slaughtered around 40 of them with my new, at the time,
custom Austrian hunting rifle. And guess what? That caribou herd is
still around and even bigger than ever. Caribou herds actually need
culling, be it by rifles or wolves, or Exxon-Mobil oil rigs, they
do just great!"
The post concludes with the following disclaimer:
"Disclaimer: She didn't actually say these things - I made
them up. But thanks for all the visits."
It thus appears that, to a large extent, people have attributed
this belief to Gov. Palin after believing that she actually made
what many believe to be 'fictional' statements.
2. Matt Damon
Damon said in an interview that he wanted to know if Sarah Palin
thinks dinosaurs were "here 4000 years ago." The interview can be
found on YouTube.
Damon does not provide any basis for his desire to ask Palin
about her beliefs. Accordingly, it is unclear whether Damon's
assertion stems from a mistaken belief that Palin actually made the
statements attributed to her on the aforementioned internet
3. The LA Times
An LA Times article has cited an anonymous source as stating
that, shortly after being elected mayor of Wasilla, Alaska in 1996,
Sarah Palin stated that she believed humans and dinosaurs existed
at the same time. Some have questioned the truth of those
allegations because the person who told that story operates a
political blog primarily directed toward opposing Palin's
candidacy, the source never published his story prior to Palin's
nomination for Vice President, there were apparently no other
witnesses to the statement, and no one else has come forward as
stating that they have heard Palin endorse similar beliefs. (See
Related Links for the LA Times article.) Apparently, the article
has not gained wide circulation in other newspapers partly because
of questions related the truth of the source's allegations.
According to the article:
"Soon after Sarah Palin was elected mayor of the foothill town
of Wasilla, Alaska, she startled a local music teacher by insisting
in casual conversation that men and dinosaurs coexisted on an Earth
created 6,000 years ago -- about 65 million years after scientists
say most dinosaurs became extinct -- the teacher said.
"When he asked her about prehistoric fossils and tracks dating
back millions of years, Palin said "she had seen pictures of human
footprints inside the tracks," recalled Munger, who teaches music
at the University of Alaska in Anchorage and has regularly
criticized Palin in recent years on his liberal political blog,
called Progressive Alaska."
4. Did Not Attempt to Teach Creationism in Schools
Palin has NOT called for creationism to be taught in schools
along side evolution (see FactCheck.org article on "Sliming
Palin"). She has said that students should be allowed to "debate
both sides" of the evolution/creationism debate comes up in class,
but has also said that creationism should not be part of the
curriculum. She has not pushed a bill to teach creationism in
Alaska during her tenure as Governor of Alaska.
In an interview with Katie Couric, Sara Palin states that
"[creationism] should be taught as an accepted principle."