It will take more than six twenty-four hour days. Months ahead of time, the team to put Ben Carson in the White House has been assembled and is feverishly working to get a solid creationist in the White House in 2016.
As Eliana Johnson reports in National Review Online, Carson hasn’t announced his candidacy, but his team is now interviewing thirty-five potential staffers for a possible White-House run. When Johnson asked Carson if he were serious, Carson dodged. “We believe in being prepared,” Carson said,
And that requires a sophisticated and complex infrastructure if I decide to run. . . . It’s like the Boy Scouts: Be Prepared.”
Does Carson think he can win? He told Johnson that the recent mid-term elections pushed him closer. “People are starting to wake up,” Carson told her.
Conservatives love Carson. His rags-to-riches tale and unapologetic religious conservatism, along with his stop-complaining messages to his fellow African Americans, have endeared him to the conservative wing of the party.
That doesn’t mean he has a chance. In the past, conservative hard-liners have entered the primaries even if they don’t think they’ll win. Their goal, in some cases, has been to move the party in a more conservative direction. By running as an unyielding social conservative, Carson will force other GOP hopefuls to tack toward the right.
And whether he wins or not, Carson will bring a dose of good old-fashioned Seventh-day Adventist creationism to the race. Seventh-day Adventism, as historian Ron Numbers argued so convincingly, played a leading role in converting American religious conservatives to a young-earth creationism.
Of course, just because Carson is a member of that staunchly young-earth creationist denomination, it doesn’t mean that he would emphasize those beliefs from the White House. After all, similar fears were raised by conservatives when Catholics such as Al Smith (1928) and John F. Kennedy ran for President. Each candidate had to assure voters that policy would not be dictated from the Vatican.
But Carson has taken a different approach. Instead of distancing himself from the rather extreme form of creationism that is official dogma in his church, Carson has publicly embraced it. In an interview last year, Carson doubled down on his SDA creationism. “I’ve seen a lot of articles,” Carson explained,
that say, ‘Carson is a Seventh-day Adventist, and that means he believes in the six-day creation. Ha ha ha.’ You know, I’m proud of the fact that I believe what God has said, and I’ve said many times that I’ll defend it before anyone. If they want to criticize the fact that I believe in a literal, six-day creation, let’s have at it because I will poke all kinds of holes in what they believe. In the end it depends on where you want to place your faith – do you want to place your faith in what God’s word says, or do you want to place your faith in an invention of man. You’re perfectly welcome to choose. I’ve chosen the one I want.
Maybe I’m viewing the world through evolution-tinted glasses, but I can’t help but think that such a firm statement of YEC belief will be off-putting for many voters. But even if Carson can’t win the race, he can pull his fellow Republican prospects into more firmly creationist positions. By standing firm on a six-day recent creation, Carson can make the entire GOP field friendlier to creationism.