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Creationists hit back at Bill Nye with their own video
"The idea of deep time ... explains so much of the world around us," Bill Nye said in the viral video.
August 31st, 2012
04:34 PM ET

Creationists hit back at Bill Nye with their own video

By Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

(CNN) - Bill Nye's viral YouTube video pleading with parents not to teach their children to deny evolution has spawned an online life of its own, with prominent creationists hitting back against the popular TV host.

"Time is Nye for a Rebuttal," Ken Ham the CEO of Answers in Genesis writes on his website. Answers in Genesis is the Christian ministry behind the Creation Museum in Petersburg, Kentucky.

Nye's criticism of creationism went viral earlier this week, after being posted last Thursday.

"I say to the grownups, if you want to deny evolution and live in your world, that's completely inconsistent with the world we observe, that's fine. But don't make your kids do it," Nye says in his Big Think video, which has been viewed nearly 3 million times.

Ham writes that Nye is joining in with other evolutionists who say teaching children to deny evolution is a form of "child abuse." That idea comes in part from the atheist scientist Richard Dawkins, who in his book "The God Delusion" argues against exposing children to religion before they are old enough to fully understand it.

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"At AiG and the Creation Museum, we teach children and adults the truth concerning who they are in the Creator’s eyes — and where they came from," Ham writes. "We tell people that they do have purpose and meaning in life and that they were created for a purpose. "No, we are not just evolved animals as Nye believes; we are all made in the image of God."

Ham is the public face of a group that academics call Young Earth Creationists, though they prefer to be called Biblical Creationists. They believe in a literal interpretation of the creation account in the book of Genesis found in the Bible.

The Creation Museum also produced its own rebuttal video on YouTube that features two of their staff scientists, both Ph.Ds, David Menton and Georgia Purdom.

"[Nye] might be interested to know I also teach my young daughter about evolution and I know many Christian parents who do the same," Purdom says in the video. "Children should be exposed to both ideas concerning our past."

For the past 30 years, one popular method for Creationists to advance their cause has been to make an equal-time argument,with Creationism taught alongside evolution. In the late 1980s, some state legislatures passed bills that promoted the idea of a balanced treatment of both ideas in the classroom.

In 1987, the issue made it all the way to the Supreme Court, where a Louisiana "equal-time law" was struck down. The court ruled that teaching creationism in public school class rooms was a violation of the Establishment Cause in the Constitution, which is commonly referred to as the separation of church and state.

A key point between most scientists and many creationists is the timing for the origin of the world.

Your Take: 5 reactions to Bill Nye's creationism critique

Nye's argument falls in line with the vast majority of scientists, who date the age of the earth as 4.5 billion years old and the universe as 14.5 billion years old.

"The idea of deep time of billions of years explains so much of the world around us. If you try to ignore that, your worldview becomes crazy, untenable, itself inconsistent," Nye says in his viral video.

Young Earth Creationists say the weeklong account of God creating the earth and everything in it represents six 24-hour periods (plus one day of rest) and date the age of the earth between 6,000 and 10,000 years.

"Yes we see fossils and distant stars, but the history on how they got there really depends on our worldview," Purdom says in the museum's rebuttal. "Do we start with man's ideas, who wasn't here during man's supposed billions of years of earth history or do we start with the Bible, the written revelation of the eyewitness account of the eternal God who created it all?"

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Polling from Gallup has shown for the past 30 years that between 40-46% of the survey respondents believe in Creationism, that God created humans and the world in the past 10,000 years.

The most recent poll showed belief in atheistic evolution was on the rise at 16%, nearly double what it had been in previous years. The poll also found 32% of respondents believe in evolution guided by God.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • Creationism • Science

soundoff (5,973 Responses)
  1. Alex

    Why is it that most creationists and other science-deniers are also Republicans?

    September 1, 2012 at 12:52 pm |
    • Jesus freaker

      Because the Republicans target those votes.

      September 1, 2012 at 12:54 pm |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      Control agendas.

      September 1, 2012 at 12:54 pm |
    • Chip Fields

      Name one thing this is observable and repeatable in a laboratory that Creationists deny

      September 1, 2012 at 12:55 pm |
    • Plucky

      @Chip,
      What kind of creationist? Young or old earth?

      September 1, 2012 at 12:57 pm |
    • Chip Fields

      Old earth....I can't get past the age of the stars

      September 1, 2012 at 12:58 pm |
    • Plucky

      Olde earth? Don't know if they disagree with any science at all.

      September 1, 2012 at 1:03 pm |
    • Chip Fields

      That's what I'm talking about....I don't have a problem with Operational Science (that which is observable and repeatable in a laboratory), but I take issue with Historical Science, which is based on faith and cannot be observed and repeated in a laboratory

      September 1, 2012 at 1:05 pm |
    • Plucky

      I've never heard of historical science. Can you post a definition?

      September 1, 2012 at 1:09 pm |
  2. shawnnaj

    I absolutely refuse to watch the rebuttal from the genesis group, they have disabled ratings and comments and you cannot even contact them via Facebook or their website. How can you make a rebuttal video and block out anyone with an opinion. They're idiots and they know it.

    September 1, 2012 at 12:51 pm |
  3. Rick in AZ

    It's amazing to me that people don't believe in science but believe in magic.

    September 1, 2012 at 12:49 pm |
    • Chip Fields

      You're right, I believe everything just popped into existence from nothing....heck, I see that happening all around me

      September 1, 2012 at 12:54 pm |
    • sqeptiq

      Yet you are willing to believe in a being that created everything in existence except itself, exists but was not created itself, and which no one has ever seen or has evidence of?

      September 1, 2012 at 1:26 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Chip, how much education do you have?

      September 1, 2012 at 1:27 pm |
  4. t3chn0ph0b3

    I guess we've figured out that you can fool 40%-46% of the people all the time. No wonder homeopathic remedies are so popular!

    September 1, 2012 at 12:48 pm |
  5. Jesus Harold Christ on a donkey Creationists...

    ....get your s*@t together and join the 21st century. It's time to grow up and leave The Land of Make Believe.

    September 1, 2012 at 12:48 pm |
  6. CletusTJudd

    for 2000 years men have tried to silence Christians and banish the Bible. It's been made illegal, driven underground. Many have died professing their faith.

    What happens is the opposite of what the persecuters intended- it actually intensifies the spread of Christianity. It is spreading in China, Iran, Russia, North Korea, and many countries who routinely have killed and imprisoned believers. So go ahead Nye and others and give it your best attempt to destroy, diminish, and drive Christianity and the Bible underground – Christianity will instead grow and thrive. Scripture will become like the greatest treasure to possess. We may yet see a nationwide revival thanks to your efforts.

    September 1, 2012 at 12:48 pm |
    • t3chn0ph0b3

      Good luck with that. Note that the proponents of atheistic evolution have doubled recently. They're not just going to go away because someone says that religious fundamentalism is bad for kids (which it is).

      September 1, 2012 at 12:50 pm |
    • midwest rail

      Good grief – another faux Christian grasping at any opportunity to wrap himself in the burlap sack of victim hood. Disagreement is NOT persecution. Get over yourself.

      September 1, 2012 at 12:51 pm |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      Cletus, I sure hope you're wrong and as far as I am concerned I will fight to my last breath to stop your madness.

      September 1, 2012 at 12:52 pm |
    • Plucky

      It's OK Cletus,
      We want the good jobs to go to our kids. Keep teaching yours that junk.

      September 1, 2012 at 12:55 pm |
    • Derpwood

      Hahahaha . .

      Fortunately, humans are evolving away from their need for magic books, talking snakes, invisible friends, and magic underwear to explain the universe they live in . .

      OH – and BTW – "Christianity" is only one of MANY different religions, all of which claim that they are the one true religion . .

      How exactly does that work again?

      September 1, 2012 at 12:56 pm |
  7. Iain T

    Creationists are living proof that there are no gods. We would a god create such a flawed being?

    September 1, 2012 at 12:48 pm |
  8. RM

    Mr. Marrapodi states "Nye's argument falls in line with the vast majority of scientists, who date the age of the earth and the universe as 4.5 billion years old". The vast majority of scientist date the universe as 13.75 billion years old. This is a significant error and should be corrected.

    September 1, 2012 at 12:47 pm |
  9. Kevin Egan

    IT'San insult to both to scientists and and god fearining people this argument, about creationism verses evolution.
    you are missing thepoint .Scientists deduce reality about what they can seen . faith baesed therories on what can't be.
    Myown studyof the relevantbible verses sugest both science and creationism do start to agree around the period of about
    10000 years ago about which time that creationist start the clock. now this sugests to me that all aguments on these issues are all wrong . First of all the bible says we were created in six days , However we know from Genisisthat the sun was
    around day three of the narative and days are detemined by the earths rotaion facing the sun so what thwe heck were the other two days and nights. the big abang perhaps and the other posible the super nova explosion that created the solar system. How ever it should bnoted that the BIBLE might be discribed as the story about mans relationship with GOD.
    It is therefore not realLy relevent to thBible narative the actual age of the universe God can't have a relationship with man untill man exists so evenif the universe did exist 20 billion or so years before hand, So the almighty simply uses the genisis tale to gloss over that gap as it is not relevent to the main tale if man does not exist in the firstplace!

    September 1, 2012 at 12:47 pm |
  10. LindaPP

    How come there is NO mention of the dinosaur in the bible? That's where it really falls of the tracks.

    September 1, 2012 at 12:46 pm |
    • Galaxy Prime

      LindaPP – Excellent point! It would of made sense if the bible said a T-rex chased Adam and Eve out of the Garden of Eden!

      September 1, 2012 at 12:52 pm |
    • chris hitchens

      There is mention of dinosaurs in the Bible.

      September 1, 2012 at 12:54 pm |
  11. Hammerdown

    or do we start with the Bible, the written revelation of the eyewitness account of the eternal God who created it all?"

    Eyewitness account ?
    You have got to be kidding.

    September 1, 2012 at 12:44 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      If only they were.

      September 1, 2012 at 12:46 pm |
  12. Chip Fields

    Why is there something, and not nothing....science can't answer that, and you will find there is more than just scientific truth out there

    September 1, 2012 at 12:44 pm |
    • midwest rail

      Chip – how old is the Earth ?

      September 1, 2012 at 12:46 pm |
    • Universalist

      Why are all the elements created in Super Nova's?

      September 1, 2012 at 12:48 pm |
    • Alex

      Just because we don't have an answer (right now) about why there is something vs. nothing does NOT mean that you start believing a fairy tale about a tall blond man who wished our universe into existence.

      September 1, 2012 at 12:48 pm |
    • Chip Fields

      OK, you guys convinced me...thanks

      September 1, 2012 at 12:51 pm |
    • If horses had Gods .. their Gods would be horses

      So an anthropomorphic set of omnipotent Gods is the answer?!

      September 1, 2012 at 12:53 pm |
    • TheVocalAtheist

      What truth Chip?

      September 1, 2012 at 12:53 pm |
    • Universalist

      Oh, I get your drift.
      What makes you think 'nothing' is a state that ever existed? As if 'nothing' is actually real.

      September 1, 2012 at 12:53 pm |
    • Robert Warner

      So many fallacies in one post. First, Higgs-Boson seems to answer your most basic question, how something can come from nothing. Of course, your followup would be "Where did Higgs-Boson come from if not God". The problem with your entire line of reasoning is this; Where did God come from? You can't answer that except through nonsense statements like "He is the Alpha and the Omega, he always was and always will be" .THAT is the beauty of science that you can't grasp- science claims nothing as fact (scientific Law) until it is PROVEN. Religious pressure is probably the only reason that evolution has not been declared as a Law but it CERTAINLY has been proven. Creationist theory?- simply a fairy tale from an old book which any person with even a minor knowledge of science and biology would find laughable.

      September 1, 2012 at 1:20 pm |
  13. ep451

    …. And we give space to the Creationists theories… this below is what we should be talking about.
    The countries before us include China, South Korea, Canada, Finland…..

    “”U.S. students recently finished 25th in math and 17th in science in the ranking of 31 countries by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development””

    September 1, 2012 at 12:42 pm |
    • paul42

      the reason the US lags in education is because the libs in charge of our educational system for the last few decades have been more concerned with social engineering than teaching the skills necessary for the kids to grow up to be responsible citizens, ready for college or a good trade, and productive workers.

      September 1, 2012 at 1:00 pm |
    • Blue Dog

      @paul42 What nonsense? Where do you learn all this bs? Is there a religious school for that too?

      September 1, 2012 at 1:44 pm |
  14. Galaxy Prime

    There is no god. Religion was created by the nobility to control the poor dumb masses they ruled. The bible is nothing but a sales manual written by humans to sell christianity to the weak-minded gullible fools who don't know any better. You've all been had.

    September 1, 2012 at 12:41 pm |
    • donna

      Evidence tells us that religious tendencies evolved in small groups before there were masses of people to control.

      September 1, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
  15. Laura

    No one teaches the universe is 4.5 billion years old. That is the age of the earth. The universe is around 13.75 billion years old.

    September 1, 2012 at 12:37 pm |
    • DeeCee1000

      Even the writer of this article can't get the numbers right! It's no wonder the US is falling behind so many other countries when it comes to academics. These "Creationists" are such idiots!

      September 1, 2012 at 12:48 pm |
    • Universalist

      I'm suprised nobody picked up on this. Good point!

      September 1, 2012 at 12:49 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      It's been posted numerous times here.

      If you want to notify the author and/or editor, why not contact CNN? Do you really think the folks who wrote this article are reading theses comments?

      September 1, 2012 at 12:52 pm |
  16. roperltl

    if there is a god and believe there is wouldn't he or she have to be a science not your run of the mill sciences like bill nye or steve hawking but a supersonic science to create universe,planets and us

    September 1, 2012 at 12:36 pm |
  17. Loathstheright

    Just the thought that people actually believe in a God, any God and that it created the universe is just insane. They are willingfully ignorant to reason and facts.

    September 1, 2012 at 12:35 pm |
  18. jim atmad

    Sometimes there aren't two sides to a story.

    Creationism, Intelligent Design, or whatever other similar bogus idea you want to propose isn't science. It is taking the known universe and trying to squeeze it into the Genesis story that you already believe is true, not because of any evidence, but merely as a matter of faith.

    Having a preconceived conclusion and trying to make the evidence fit that conclusion is the opposite of science.

    Creationism should never be taught in school as science. Mention it in a comparative religion course, but not in a science class.

    As a life-long Christian, it makes me exceptionally angry and disappointed that self-proclaimed Christians choose to lie to children.

    The literal Genesis story does NOT match the known universe. How you deal with that is up to you, but don't lie about it.

    September 1, 2012 at 12:35 pm |
    • Brian

      Well said. Also of note, one could plausibly believe that some unknown creator put the evolutionary mechanism in place.

      September 1, 2012 at 12:50 pm |
    • gwtars

      VERY well said.

      September 1, 2012 at 12:50 pm |
    • Universalist

      "plausibly believe that some unknown creator put the evolutionary mechanism in place"

      Hogwash! Creators don't mechanise lotto winners.

      The Heavans and the Earth is a lotto outcome. The statistic probability of similar events are astronically in favor of
      this outcome.

      September 1, 2012 at 1:05 pm |
    • Bob Bales

      Actually, creationist believe in creationism because they see the facts as supporting it. If you see the facts as supporting evolution, fine, but don't deny the right of others to reach conclusions different then yours.

      September 1, 2012 at 1:11 pm |
    • Universalist

      I actually see a red sky everyday, so don't deny me my opinion of the sky's color, ok?

      September 1, 2012 at 6:29 pm |
  19. David in Three Hills

    1sep12

    A measure of credibility comes with good spelling. In the lead para of today's Bill Nye article, the author needs to learn the difference between IT'S and ITS.

    Dn

    ........................................

    (CNN) – Bill Nye's viral YouTube video pleading with parents not to teach their children to deny evolution has spawned an online life of it's own, with prominent creationists hitting back against the popular TV host.

    September 1, 2012 at 12:35 pm |
    • Buddy Edgewood

      Well, Mr Nit-picky, what about your use of 'para', instead of paragraph?

      Whoops, there goes your credibility!

      September 1, 2012 at 12:44 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Hardly.

      September 1, 2012 at 12:45 pm |
    • Skeeve

      A measure of stupidity is focusing on typos instead of content.

      September 1, 2012 at 12:50 pm |
    • Universalist

      Did you ask Bill Nye his opinion of who he was created by? If not, then you don't have a leg to stand on.

      September 1, 2012 at 6:32 pm |
  20. putty

    I admire what Bill's doing, but he's one guy, and an engineer. Perhaps a group of cell/mol biologists, geneticists and evolutionary biologists should get together and write a layman's article explaining what a theory is, what the theory of evolution vs the facts of evolution are, how we know what we know, what we have done with this knowledge, what is work in progress and how knowledge of evolution is directly beneficial to society and required for medical research? With citations for further reference? Would CNN accept such an article? That would be more constructive than whatever this is, which is allowing laypeople to control a "debate" that we should not be having.

    September 1, 2012 at 12:34 pm |
    • donna

      Putty, that's already happened and is still happening. Do you know how many books and articles have been written on that very subject for laymen?

      Nye is not coming up with this on his own, he is telling us what the vast majority of biologists are already saying.

      September 1, 2012 at 2:43 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.