By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor
Washington (CNN) – A U.S. congressman is attracting attention and criticism for an online video that shows him blasting evolution and the Big Bang theory as “lies from the pit of hell” in a recent speech at a church event in his home state of Georgia.
“All that stuff I was taught about evolution, embryology, the Big Bang theory, all that is lies straight from the pit of hell,” U.S Rep. Paul Broun said in an address last month at a banquet organized by Liberty Baptist Church in Hartwell, Georgia. “And it’s lies to try to keep me and all the folks who were taught that from understanding that they need a savior.”
Broun, a medical doctor by training, serves on the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology.
Speaking at Liberty Baptist Church’s Sportsman’s Banquet on September 27, he said that “a lot of scientific data that I’ve found out as a scientist that actually show that this is really a young Earth.”
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“I don’t believe that the Earth’s but about 9,000 years old,” Broun said in the speech, which Liberty Baptist Church posted on its website via YouTube. “I believe it was created in six days as we know them. That’s what the Bible says."
Scientists say that the Earth is roughly 4.5 billion years old and that the universe dates back 13.7 billion years.
In his speech to the church group, Broun called the Bible the “the manufacturer’s handbook. … It teaches us how to run all of public policy and everything in our society.”
“That’s the reason, as your congressman, I hold the holy Bible as being the major directions to me of how I vote in Washington, D.C., and I’ll continue to do that,” he said.
A spokeswoman for the congressman, Meredith Griffanti, said that Broun was not available for comment on Wednesday and that the video showed him “speaking off the record to a large church group about his personal beliefs regarding religious issues.”
The congressman’s remarks about science have drawn attention online, with critics taking aim at his role on the science committee.
Bill Nye, the popular science personality, told the Huffington Post in an e-mail that "Since the economic future of the United States depends on our tradition of technological innovation, Representative Broun's views are not in the national interest."
"For example, the Earth is simply not 9,000 years old," said Nye, a mechanical engineer and television personality best known for his program "Bill Nye the Science Guy." Broun "is, by any measure, unqualified to make decisions about science, space, and technology."
Talking Points Memo reported on the church video over the weekend after being tipped off by the Bridge Project, a progressive group that tracks conservative activity.
Most creationists believe in the account of the origins of the world as told in the Book of Genesis, the first book of the Bible.
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In the creation account, God creates Adam and Eve, the world and everything in it in six days.
For Christians who read the Genesis account literally, or authoritatively as they would say, the six days in the account are literal 24-hour periods and leave no room for evolution. Young Earth creationists use this construct and biblical genealogies to determine the age of the Earth and typically come up with 6,000 to 10,000 years.
The Gallup Poll has been tracking Americans' views on creation and evolution for 30 years. In June, it released its latest findings, which showed that 46% of Americans believed in creationism, 32% believed in evolution guided by God, and 15% believed in atheistic evolution.
– CNN's Eric Marrapodi contributed to this report.
Topher, the moon and earth weren't "touching", they were all matter existing in the same planet. Very early, when the earth was still largely molten material, a collision with the earth from another early solar system body, ejected material from the earth, which later formed the moon. There is no crater. The event has been covered and reformed thousands of times over during the millions of years that has transpired since the event.
Oops I need to stop tying this morning. This is the second time I've "replied" to someone out in the main thread. Let me try this again.
So it's not just me! :D
Gravitational coupling between the Moon and the tidal bulge nearest the Moon acts as a torque on the Earth's rotation, draining angular momentum and rotational kinetic energy from the Earth's spin. In turn, angular momentum is added to the Moon's orbit, accelerating it, which lifts the Moon into a higher orbit with a longer period. As a result, the distance between the Earth and Moon is increasing, and the Earth's spin slowing down.
Not only were the Earth and Moon touching, it is theorized that the moon was formed from debris ejected when a Mars-sized object collided with the Earth approximately 4.5 billion years ago.
Oops, wrong spot.
It's hard to remember to hit reply when you are quickly responding to a thread at the bottom of a page. I think I once did it three or four times in a row.
Big bang and Evolution are the most Powerful and Superb "Creation Acts" of GOD;
and GOD has thus unmistakably put His most Wise and Superb "Mathematical Signature" on Big bang and Evolution
even in the first place:
==UNIVERSAL MAGNIFICENT MIRACLES!
If only there was proof of that.
Good post back, Veritas. The reality is that there's no proof of any of that – not even a hint of proof. Religion is based on one thing – blind faith – and it's based on that for a very good reason, that being without blind faith it is immediately recognized as an elaborate ruse with no connection to reality.
Regular proficiency testing should be required for Congressmen. Well, maybe that's too much to ask. Let's start with tests of basic cognitive skills.
I would run for congress if I had any damn money. God is a meat ball and created me after his own image.
Absolutely 100% agree. And you know why? Not so much to determine the critical thinking skills of Congressman, but to force the RIGHT people to run in the first place.
I think we usually disagree. On this one, you are 100%. Brown is a fool. Can we impeach him from another state? The party should tell him to resign.
I do not believe we evolved from Apes, but everthing evolves except Mr. Brown.
Most members of both parties would pass, but the teapublicans wouldn't want their scores released. Might scare off the booboisie.
Good grief. This hogwash again ? Young earth creationists are so deluded that there is simply no way to help them. Most disturbing is Broun's comment that the Bible "teaches us how to run all of public policy..." Perhaps he needs a refresher course in basic civics. America is not a theocracy, and make no mistake, that is what he and his ilk are interested in.
And they say that there is no American Taliban. HAH!
He's right lies from the pit of hell!
Report this CNN (below)
wnd.com, yeah that's a reliable source. Why don't you just quote some 2000 year old book out of context. Oh, right...
What the eff is with all of the deer heads behind this guy in the video? I personally don't have a problem with hunting, but that many deer heads on a wall just seems kind of strange?
Large truck + Large herd = high rate of return
we i guess this evidence that people do use assault rifles for hunting
Your husband takes you to the company Christmas party. You have long been jealous of his very attractive co-worker Genevieve, and your jealous imagination suspects there is a spark between them. You dress to the nines and look great. The moment comes to say hello to her. She is beautiful, charming and smells intoxicating. You break a heal just as you reach to shake her hand. You spill your drink on both Genevieve and your husband. They look at each other and giggle, holding the gaze a bit too long.
What in Darwin's name does that dribble have to do with anything in this article?
Obviously this dude has a lot of personal issues
Hey guys, be nice. Can't be worse than the statements of our great congress member! At least this poster is just strange and not dangerous. And I doubt he's on the science committee, either.
Keep digging your hole Topher. What "problems" are there with the fact that the universe is old? What did your preacher tell you to say on that topic?
And we wonder why science education is suffering in our country. When we put people like him and Mr. "Legitimate R a.p e" on Congressional Science committees what else do you expect?
I don't know how old the whole world is. I never went to school. I can still do stuff though cuz I'm 37.
At least neither of them are on the Subcommittee on Research and Science Education.
A small mercy to be sure.
You wake up feeling amazing with Marie next to you. She finally spent the night. You can make out the curve of her buttocks beneath the thin sheet. Your groin reacts and you press against her, fitting neatly in the begging crevice. She smells like flowers and honey. You throb with anticipation and she moans in anticipation. You reach for a condom, but realize to your dismay that your dog is busy chewing and has something stuck in his teeth…
Dude, you need to lay of the lady books.
The fact that people like Congressman Paul Broun get elected is prima facie evidence of the biggest weakness in democracy as a principle:
Deluded people vote.
Education is the only solution, but clearly it doesn't always work.
Where was he from again? Georgia? I guess that's part of the explanation.
"Broun, a medical doctor by training, serves on the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology."
I am going to go be sick now.
yes. BRC also made this observation a couple of comments down.
It beggars belief and demonstrates just how committed the Republicans are to make the legistlative branch of the federal government during Obama's tenure as President a moribund morass of incompetence.
It's easy. Folks in that part of the country still believe Nixon's tripe about Republicans being the only ones who can protect the people of America from Communists. Therefore, if Jesus Christ ran as a Democrat, and an old Yellow Dog ran against him as a Republican, the Dog would win.
hold onto your hat, but Todd Akin (of 'the woman's body suppresses conception during r@pe' fame) is on the committee as well:
Every body loves "Old Yellah". ;)
Towelie says, "If you are going to elect an old yellow dog for president, don't forget to bring a towel!"
I am going to have to extend my hours.
One of the Democratic vacancies on this committee belonged of course to US Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D. Arizona).
Ms. Giffords was the ranking member of the Subcommittee on Space and Aeronautics and also participated on the Subcommittee on Technology and Innovation.
Not only that, but he is the Chairman of the Subcommittee on Investigations and Oversight
and also sits on the Subcommittee on Energy and Environment
If he is a medical doctor, and I am having a heart attack please call a real nurse or a paramedic or a boy scout. He probably believes in cupping, leeches (though they have a purpose), and bleeding.
1 Corinthians 1:26-28......
26 For you see your calling, brethren, that not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called. 27 But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty; 28 and the base things of the world and the things which are despised God has chosen, and the things which are not, to bring to nothing the things that are
Was that supposed to mean something?
That was an amazing display of genuine Frontier Gibberish!
"These foolish things remind me of you"
Want to put that in English?
Seriously, how did this moron get elected? I can understand believing in God, but believing that the earth was formed 1000 years after the development of agriculture is a bit of a stretch.
The fact that he serves on the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology scares me far more than just the fact that he got elected.
indeed so. It is both bewildering and terrifying at the same time.
How the hell do people like this even get elected? And this guy is a doctor? A disgrace to the profession...
I think Granny Clampett was a doctor too. Maybe they went to the same school.
Good one Gordon, made me laugh. Loved Granny.
The Big Bang had a creative purpose. Life can not form from inanimate matter. Look up spontaneous generation and learn some true facts about evolution!
If life can't come from inanimate matter then how did your deity create life from inanimate matter?
Ooh! Logic burn!
"as your congressman, I hold the holy Bible as being the major directions to me of how I vote in Washington, D.C"
Shame on you, Georgia, for electing this ignorant fool. He should immediately be removed from office.
The man should, therefore, be immediately impeached and removed from office for violating the establishment clause of the 1st Amendment.
Representative Paul Broun's comments illustrate that Christian indoctrination, if applied early enough, can completely obliterate a person's potential for intelligent thought.
He's right. There's actually very good evidence for a young Earth.
We are still waiting for the evidence. After 2,000+ years however, we are not holding our breath.
I understand that you accept the young earth delusion, but don't lie and say you have good evidence.
Can you explain to me the moon-drift problem then?
No there isn't. There is a massive amount of evidence supporting the universe is 13.7 billion years old.
Denying that is akin to saying the sun is orbitting the earth (which there are still people believing). Go back to school.
So I'm sure you agree with the same in the opposite direction ... that there are problems with the universe being that old and that denying those things is equally as ridiculous?
I just scanned your site. Who is Tim Thompson? Also, I see a lot of complaining about young-Earth authors, but no evidence to back up the as.sertions that if the Earth and moon were billions of years old, due to drift, the two would have been touching.
Never took calculus, so no I can't. But I can point to radiometric dating, and continental drift.
It is widely theorized that at one point the Earth and Moon WERE touching, so I'm not exactly seeing the "moon drift problem". What is it that you think makes the fact that the universe is billions of years old unlikely?
If you had actually looked at the page you would understand that the moon is actually drifting away from the Earth at a rate of approximately 400 meters every 10,000 years.
Hey, Huebert! How's it going?
I can't really speak on continental drift, but there's a lot of problems with radiometric dating.
I don't really expect you to be able to talk on these points in great detail (because I can't either) but there's plenty of other problems with the "millions of years" scenario. Spiral galaxies. Blue stars. Amount of salt in the sea. These are all things that point to a much younger earth. For instance, with the moon problem I mentioned earlier, if you do the math backwards, the moon would have touched the Earth around 1 million years ago ... that's a big problem for those who say the Earth is 4.54 BILLION years old.
Alright everyone, for your safety, and the safety of others, please step away from the Topher. He has already made up his mind to stew in the ignorant bliss of observing only one book as the source of all information.
Leave him now. There's nothing more we can do for him.
If the two were touching, where's the physical evidence? Shouldn't there be a moon-sized crater somewhere? I big hole? Torn earth from the separation? And why would they suddenly start separating 1 million years ago if they stayed together for more than 4 billion? It seems a totally ridiculous theory to me.
Topher, you were asked for evidence of a young earth. Instead of answering, you come up with a strawman question about moon drift.So, topher, answer the question, and don't dodge around it. Explain your young earth theory, from a non-biblical point of view. We are waiting.
Topher, not only were the Earth and Moon touching, it is theorized that the moon was formed from debris ejected when a Mars-sized object collided with the Earth approximately 4.5 billion years ago
Let me put this in the right place:
How is it a strawman?
And I think I am presenting evidence for a young Earth. I haven't mentioned the Bible once in this conversation.
Alec should wash his hands before he catches crazy.
balls touching. Isn't that gay or something? The earth was formed from gay astrophysics. Great.
Topher, the moon and earth weren't "touching" as you suggest. Instead it was all matter existing in the same planet planet. When the earth was still largely molten material, a collision from another early solar system body, ejected material from the earth, which later formed the moon. There is no crater because the event has been covered and reformed thousands of times over during the millions of years that has transpired since the event.
Topher, you have yet to present ANY evidence!
So let me get this straight. A Mars-sized object collided with us (leaving no physical evidence), moved away from us (leaving no physical evidence) and only went 238,900 miles away. And you believe that why?
Topher, the event left plenty of evidence - the moon is the evidence.
A deity created the entire universe in six days. And you believe that why?
Topher, it is called Physics, you can take a course on it at any college in the country.
See Amniculi's comment for one theory. Another is that there are very large crateres, you know them as oceans. Remember 2 very important facts- 1) That over the course of the earth's existence it's geography has greatly changed, so you cannot say that there wasn't a giant more singular crater in its early existence. 2) The force applied by gravity is inversly proportional to the sqared distance between the two bodies, this means that the moons rate of drift is not constant. When it was closest to eart there was a greater pull holding it in place, as it drift farther away, the force decreases, and the rate of drift will increase, if at 238k miles it's moving a quarter mile every 10000 years, I'm pretty sure it was going nowhere fast when they were touching.
As for your comments on radiometric dating. Bull. Give 1 fault with it, with any of it. I want to see some kind of comment other then "Christian Scientists don't trust it" or we can all just ignore that you even said it.
You're still welcome to present SOME evidence of a young earth, if you have any.
It's all going well thank you :)
Ok I'll leave off radiometric dating. Simply explain how continental drift could have occurred within the staggeringly small time frame of a young earth.
Because A: physics, and B: the Earth and Moon have the same isotopic composition.
"Topher, the event left plenty of evidence – the moon is the evidence."
I agree is COULD be evidence, then then why is it so round? Why isn't it more jagged after a major collision? Why isn't it showing any physical signs of such? And why isn't there evidence of that collision here on Earth?
"A deity created the entire universe in six days. And you believe that why?"
OK, but I'm only answering Biblically because you asked. I'm sure I'll hear barking from other atheists. I believe the Bible account for several reasons. 1. It's God word. And since He was there, I trust His account. 2. It fits with science for all the reasons I've stated earlier. There's plenty of evidence for a young Earth. 3. The Bible is a reliable collection of historical docu.ments written by eyewitnesses during the lifetime of other eyewitnesses and reports supernatural events.
But let's not get off on a rabbit trail, here. We're talking about what science says.
"But let's not get off on a rabbit trail, here. We're talking about what science says"
You turned down the trail to begin with when you started questioning science as a diversion. Here's the statement that you made that started all this- "He's right. There's actually very good evidence for a young Earth."
Support that. try and prove it. Put aside all of the science you're failing to prove wrong and support the comment you made. Give one piece of this "very good evidence" of which you speak.
Topher, when the Mars sized object hit the Earth it did not just form the Moon as we know it today. It threw a bunch of debris into orbit around the Earth that gravity brought together to form the Moon.
"Ok I'll leave off radiometric dating. Simply explain how continental drift could have occurred within the staggeringly small time frame of a young earth."
I honestly can't say too much about it because I don't know much about it. It sure seems to be happening. I don't necessarily believe in Pangaea, though if there were major changes it likely would have come about during the flood or the ice age after the flood.
If that were the case, wouldn't the moon look like a bunch of bolders clustered together? Again, you've got a problem with how round it is. It looks more like a smooth river-rock than it does a mountainside.
Topher, when the Mars sized object hit the Earth it did not just form the Moon as we know it today. It threw a bunch of debris into orbit around the Earth that gravity brought together to form the Moon.
Topher, this collision with the earth took place 4.5 billions years ago when both the earth and the debris that was ejected, were not much more than a collection of gas and dust, which coalesced into spheres and hardened into the solid planetary forms that we see now, hundreds of millions of years later. That's why the moon is round now and does not (and cannot anymore) display any evidence of this early reformation of its materials.
It's your inability to accept how long all this has been going on, that causes you to think there should be evidence of the event, as though it happened just a few thousand years ago.
The fact that you don't understand simple physics is not my problem. The moon is the shape it is becuase gravity formed all of the debris into a sphere. The Earth and all of the rest of the planets were formed in the same way, and you will notice they all have a similar shape.
Topher, you said in response to Pete:
"If that were the case, wouldn't the moon look like a bunch of bolders clustered together? Again, you've got a problem with how round it is. It looks more like a smooth river-rock than it does a mountainside."
It would not be a bunch of boulders because the earth and moon material at the time were not "hard". They were malleable, gaseous, "mushy" material, if you will. Which gradually, every so gradually over millions of years, formed and coalesced into the hardened spheres we see today.
Once again you have a time/moon-drift problem. At 4.5 billion years the moon wouldn't be the moon anymore (it would be too far away). This scenario also presents you with ZERO evidence of this happening. If neither the moon nor the Earth can display the evidence, all you've got is something you made up in your mind. Why give any credence to something with no evidence whatsoever?
Topher, do you enjoy being stupid and ignorant, or do you just not realize that you are? I hate to call names, but seriously, dude...
Actually Topher, at some point the postion of the moon will become locked in, and it will stop moving away from the Earth. The Moon is slowly moving farther away from Earth, its rate of motion decreases the greater its orbital distance becomes. The Moon will eventually move far enough from Earth that its orbit will stabilize and increase no further. Theoretically, the Moon's orbit will eventually stabilize at a distance 1.6 times what it is today in about 15 billion years. I say theoretically since our current understanding of the Sun is that it will expand into a red giant in only five billion years or so and destroy both the Earth and Moon in the process.
Topher still waiting on your "very good evidence that the Earth is young." Just present you evidence, your moon drift nonsense is not you presenting you evidence, it is you trying to poke holes in evidence that someone else has for the fact that the Earth is much older than 10,000 years. YOur post should read something like this: The earth is young becuase. . . .
Okay, Topher, you stated (conveniently for your argument) that there is no evidence whatsoever of the origin of the moon we've been discussing. This allows you to dismiss the theory. So, here is some evidence for you:
"Supporting evidence includes: the identical direction of the Earth's spin and the Moon's orbit, Moon samples that indicate the surface of the Moon was once molten, the Moon's relatively small iron core, lower density compared to the Earth, evidence of similar collisions in other star systems (that result in debris disks), and that giant collisions are consistent with the leading theories of the formation of the solar system."
 ^ a b Mackenzie, Dana (2003). The Big Splat, or How The Moon Came To Be. John Wiley & Sons. ISBN 978-0-471-15057-2.
You can choose to dismiss the evidence as invalid (which I'm guessing your'e likely to do), however, you may no longer assert:
"all you've got is something you made up in your mind. Why give any credence to something with no evidence whatsoever?" (Topher, 2012)
The only thing that might be losely considered evidence is that if you measure time from the point of the big bang. 7 days at the point of the big bank would be millions of years at earth.
Mr. Brown needs to be handed his hate. Thanks Georgia!
Topher-Fantastic points! Excellent posts!
Topher – except that all your points are wrong.
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.