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Rubio ignites debate with answer about creationism
November 19th, 2012
04:19 PM ET

Rubio ignites debate with answer about creationism

By Dan Merica and Eric Marrapodi, CNN

Washington (CNN) – Florida Sen. Marco Rubio attempted to walk the line between science and faith-based creationism in remarks that that have provoked the ire of liberal blogs, leaving the door open to creationism in responding to a recent question about the age of the Earth.

When GQ’s Michal Hainey asked Rubio, in an interview released Monday, “How old do you think the Earth is,” the rising Republican star described the debate about the planet’s age as “one of the great mysteries.”

“I'm not a scientist, man,” Rubio told the interviewer. “I can tell you what recorded history says, I can tell you what the Bible says, but I think that's a dispute amongst theologians and I think it has nothing to do with the gross domestic product or economic growth of the United States.”

“Whether the Earth was created in seven days, or seven actual eras,” Rubio continued, “I'm not sure we'll ever be able to answer that. It's one of the great mysteries.”

Most scientists agree that the Earth is 4.5 billion years old and the universe is 14.5 billion years old. Christian Young Earth Creationists, on the other hand, argue that 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.

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Left-leaning blogs and sites like ThinkProgress and Huffington Post jumped on Rubio’s comments, with the Zack Beauchamp from ThingProgress writing, “To suggest we can’t know how old the Earth is, then, is to deny the validity of these scientific methods altogether — a maneuver familiar to Rubio, who also denies the reality of anthropogenic climate change.”

Rubio is regarded as a possible Republican presidential candidate in 2016, though the senator says his visit last week to Iowa, home of the first-in-the-nation presidential caucuses, had “nothing to do with 2016.”

His response to GQ’s age of the Earth query has also provoked questions about his political aspirations. Dave Weigel of Slate writes, “How can you read that and not think ‘Iowa’? ” The state is the first to hold a presidential caucus in 2016.

Forty-six percent of Americans believe that God created humans in their present form at one point within the past 10,000 years, according to a survey released by Gallup in June. That number has remained unchanged for the past 30 years, since 1982, when Gallup first asked the question on creationism versus evolution.

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The second most common view is that humans evolved with God's guidance - a view held by 32% of respondents. The view that humans evolved with no guidance from God was held by 15% of respondents.

The Gallup poll has not specifically asked about views on the age of the Earth.

Rubio attends a Baptist church in southern Florida but also considers himself “a practicing Catholic.”

He was born Catholic, but his family converted to Mormonism when Rubio was 8 years old, according to Rubio’s recent memoir. The family left its LDS faith behind when it moved from Nevada back to Florida and Rubio was confirmed in the Catholic Church.

Catholic teaching is that science and faith are not at odds with one another and it is possible to believe what scientists say about the Earth’s age and in God. But many evangelical churches, including Baptist ones, promote a version of creationism.

When CNN reached out to Rubio’s Baptist church in Florida on Monday, a person answering the phone would not comment on its teachings about the Earth’s age and said that a church representative was unlikely to be available in the near term.

During the GQ interview, Rubio argued that “there are multiple theories out there on how the universe was created and I think this is a country where people should have the opportunity to teach them all.”

For the past 30 years, the “equal-time argument” –- the idea that Creationism taught alongside evolution -– has been popular method for Creationists to advance their cause. 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 classrooms was a violation of the Establishment Cause in the Constitution, which is commonly referred to as the separation of church and state.

- Dan Merica

Filed under: Creationism • Politics

soundoff (6,211 Responses)
  1. returnreason.com

    It's too bad this very committed, sincere, well-meaning young man has little or no education. He could be such a force for progress and conciliation in these contentious, often violent times.

    November 20, 2012 at 7:11 pm |
  2. Virginia

    Egads, yikes, & @#$%^&!!!! Many, many debates in science about "how" things happened - won't be resolved here. But the greatest mystery of the universe I've come across so far is right here - How, in the United States, a country that put men on the moon, developed life-saving vaccines, and many more incredible science-based achievements - how can we even be contemplating electing someone to the presidency who thinks the earth may have been created within the last 10,000 years? And what difference does it make? Yo, creationists out there, is it more important to have a president who believes God created the universe in a week +/- 6000 years ago, or a president who can guide us toward a vibrant economy, safe and healthy communities, clean air, water, and energy, an ample food supply for all, justice and fairness?

    November 20, 2012 at 7:11 pm |
    • little toe

      Fine – just don't let that person sit on a SCIENCE committee as Rubio does.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:15 pm |
    • BlatantAtheist

      Dang, little toe... that is too funny... from the mouth of wiki:

      2005-2009 Select Committee to Protect Private Property Rights (Chair)
      Fiscal Council
      Rules & Calendar Council
      Select Committee on Medicaid Reform
      Spaceport & Technology Committee

      WHY on Earth is he on the spaceport & tech committee?!?

      As Rubio stated, "I'm not a scientist, man..."
      yes, we figured that... So why...

      November 20, 2012 at 7:21 pm |
  3. funnymoney

    You guys vote for Obama, and you are calling Rubio stupid? Wow!

    November 20, 2012 at 7:09 pm |
    • Toad

      "You guys vote for Obama, and you are calling Rubio stupid?"

      I didn't vote for Obama, and I'm calling Rubio a complete idiot.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:12 pm |
    • hal 9001

      I'm sorry, "funnymoney", but Marco Rubio, without realizing it, called himself stupid.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:13 pm |
  4. cc

    "That number has remained unchanged for the past 30 years, since 1982, when Gallup first asked the question on creationism versus evolution." This is one of the most damning indictments of our educational system that I've ever read. Isn't the system supposed to teach kids to think rationally? Obviously it isn't. Part of the reason might be the growth of charter schools which are free to teach whatever lies they want to propagate. Another part is likely home schooling-which allows parents to pass on their own prejudices to their kids without exposing them to alternative views-which might let the kids decide for themselves.

    November 20, 2012 at 7:07 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Teachers can't force students to think rationally if their parents believe something irrational. Children spend a very small fraction of their lives in the classroom. The biggest influence isn't school. It's parents.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:09 pm |
  5. BlatantAtheist

    "Hey, I'm no scientist man.... Yeah, I dunno. I guess those creationists could be right, right?!!? 10,000 years, sure..."

    Oh politician... How I pity thee.

    November 20, 2012 at 7:03 pm |
  6. Sebastian2

    The age of the earth is no more a mystery than whether it is flat or not; geological/astronomical evidence pegs our planet at 4.5 or so billion years. Only politicians or theologians (both with their own agendas) would try to cloud the issue....

    November 20, 2012 at 7:02 pm |
  7. joe216

    The Bible does not make mention of 24 hour days. Indeed the Bible actually says this about the useage of the word day: Psalm 90:4: For a thousand years in Your sight are like yesterday when it is past and like a watch in the night." The writer of Psalms recognized that a day in the eyes of God could be like a thousand years or 24,000 years since even one thousand years is like an hour. Two verses before that in the last clause of Psalm 90:2 it says"Even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God." The point being that God is not limited by time or our limited concept of time. The Bible is the story of who created the world while science deals with the how. There is no mention of electrons, protons and neutrons and yet they exist. I believe that God intended us to learn the mysteries of the universe when we are ready, and many men of science who believe in God such as Newton and Einstein have had major revelations about how the universe works. Israel at the time of Moses was not ready for an explanation of electrons and protons. Instead, the explanation of let there be light, which was thens as elegant as E=mc squared, sufficed for a generation of people who did not know as much about science as todays sixth graders.

    November 20, 2012 at 7:01 pm |
    • Libertarian Atheist

      Please don't quote your book of mythology. What people wrote in your invisible sky daddy guide book means nothing to any rational, thinking human being.

      You would do yourself a favor by facing up to reality, and by leaving behind imaginary fairies and sky spirits. We have a thing called science these days, you should really look into it.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:03 pm |
    • hey joe

      I don't mind that you pray to your version of a god. I don't have any problem that you read a book that tells you a bunch of made up stuff that is sometimes useful in helping you make life's decisions. Life is hard and asking a friendly, made-up thing in your head for help is totally understandable.

      But what is in your head– with no proof whatsoever that it is actually real– is not anyone else's truth.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:07 pm |
    • BlatantAtheist

      Bible says "blah blah blah"
      Believer says, "You see, what God was REALLY trying to say is that ... (insert Believer's opions)... and that's why the Bible is right"

      yawwwwwn. Interpreting the word of God as though you were a God. A usual conundrum of religion.. for those who are in dire need of some humble pie and science.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:09 pm |
    • BlatantAtheist

      Some of Einstein's writings lead me to believe you have not read ANY of his writings.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:11 pm |
  8. sorry

    It's not really a discussion of religion. It's a discussion about the work it takes to exercise critical thinking skills. It's not a problem that a politician is religious. It is a problem when they are intellectually underdeveloped. For the average, logical person with respect for education, the kind of voluntary ignorance portrayed by Rubio is insulting and frightening.

    When one person has proof of a fact and another has faith in their belief, it's not a matter of fairness. One person believes that we breath oxygen. Another person believes that air is made of angel farts and that the angels gave us all two parents about 10,000 years ago. Are these two views to be equally presented in school and public discourse?

    Ignorance is ignorance, and education is something that is to be worked at. Why are some people so lazy about learning truths and exercising their own abilities to discern facts from tales? For those of you who agree with Rubio's world view, I don't think you're bad people, I think you are limited. And it's an insult to me that I have to waste time wading through your insistence that you deserve equal time. You deserve no more equal time than I deserve to be a player in a professional basketball game.

    November 20, 2012 at 6:59 pm |
    • Libertarian Atheist

      The belief in mythology itself is embarrassing, but I will agree that we can overlook someone believing in silly voodoo garbage, if they just shut up about it, and above all NEVER involve it in politics. What he said disqualified him on an intellectual level in my view.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:02 pm |
  9. Johnny

    By definition, average intelligence implies that 50% of the people are below average – and the gopers prove that over and over and over. It just never stops.

    November 20, 2012 at 6:56 pm |
  10. DanW

    Hah! What's bigger, four thousand or four billion? "I'm not a mathematician, man." OK, which is smarter, a carrot or a human? "I'm not a brain surgeon, man." etc.

    November 20, 2012 at 6:54 pm |
  11. Leviathan

    Raised Catholic, converted to Mormonism, confirmed Catholic, attends a Southern Baptist church. Samll wonder he is a very confused man...

    November 20, 2012 at 6:48 pm |
  12. Adam

    Assumption: The Big Bang happened approx 14.5 billion years ago

    Question: What caused the Big Bang to occur and what empirical evidence do you have for your conclusion? Discuss...

    November 20, 2012 at 6:48 pm |
    • religion is a fable

      Go ask a scientist you a.s.s.h.a.t

      November 20, 2012 at 6:54 pm |
    • Plato's Neighbor

      Empirical evidence is, by definition, based on what is observable. What happened 14.5 billion years ago is quite difficult to observe, unless you are a H.G. Wells believer. Sounds like you're asking a philosophical question

      November 20, 2012 at 6:59 pm |
    • lol

      when faced with difficult question, never work on solving it.. always go for the easy way.. say, "god done it"!!

      That sums up the religious' argument!

      November 20, 2012 at 7:01 pm |
    • foof

      There is more evidence today that life is actually a computer experiment than there is evidence that a god produced this existence.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:02 pm |
    • Libertarian Atheist

      Apply that same question to your god.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:04 pm |
    • ImagineThat

      Simple – consider the universe as a cell, attached to trillions of other cells (multiple universes) making up a being of sorts. But because some of us cannot evolve, chances are our cell is located at the exit port of the being's exhaust system – doh! "Shields-up Scotty..."

      Go a small step farther and ever notice that atoms and planets and galaxies all are round and have orbits around larger pieces? The study of the very small and the very large demonstrate a pattern that goes infinately small and infinately big.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:06 pm |
    • JFCanton

      A more productive suggestion would be to try the Wikipedia page, which looks reasonably good.

      At least in theory, we can observe things that happened at some time close to the Big Bang. That's where we get a lot of the verification that we do have available... with the caveat that there a couple of scientifically unsatisfactory problems with the observable data yet to be worked out (the early timing and energy density issues have been around for 30 years).

      November 20, 2012 at 7:07 pm |
    • Plato's Neighbor

      "Apply that same question to your god." This is not an answer. Is the solution, when you yourself cannot answer the question, to turn it around? In the spirit of Socrates, what's wrong with expecting the theist and atheist to be held accountable for what they hold to be true?

      November 20, 2012 at 7:10 pm |
    • The Pope

      Well, everbody knows that god ate a giant bean burrito with extra salsa. Then, .............. KAAAAAAAABOOOOOOOOOOOOMMMMMM. After all, she is a fan of Mexican food.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:15 pm |
    • Nissim Levy

      The Big Bang is a phenomenon whereas out of Nothingness emerges time and space and all energy and matter. But not just physical things, also laws of the universe, mathematics, logic etc..

      There is no cause (causality is where A causes B) rather the Big Bang is a tautology whereas nothingness is referencing nothingness but it is nothingness so it is referencing itself. This feedback loop is the origin of space/time, matter/energy etc..

      November 20, 2012 at 7:42 pm |
    • turd sandwich

      So if you don't have a degree in astro physics and can't fully explain the big bang theory, then you should throw up your hands, disavow science and assume that some supernatural being did it??? Is that supposed to pass as an argument?

      November 20, 2012 at 8:11 pm |
  13. theriotguy

    “there are multiple theories out there on how the universe was created and I think this is a country where people should have the opportunity to teach them all.” Well I believe we exist as pure energy in a holographic reality which is not physical at all and is therefor is infinite and instant in age at the same 'time'. So let me teach that to your children's school Marco.

    November 20, 2012 at 6:44 pm |
    • Rich

      Sounds like another Romney – all over the road on everything. Hasn't quite figured out what his target audience at any given event wants to hear. I gave him a pass on the religion thing as he was only 8 yrs old so I'll blame that on the parents, however, I cannot understand how he can claim to be a "practicing Catholic" and attending a Baptist church on a weekly basis. I cannot understand why he 'visited' Iowa if it was not political – what then was the reason for the 'visit'?

      November 20, 2012 at 8:31 pm |
  14. Denial

    The Neanderthal gene is alive and well. Just look at some of these post-ers. There's your proof of evolution. For more proof watch a football game or NASCAR races

    November 20, 2012 at 6:40 pm |
  15. gf

    It's a laughable thing for supposedly smart scientists to say they actually agree on the age of the universe. We have access to such a small portion, we don't know how far it extends if even it has a limit to its expanse, and they're going to give a number that brings up origin issues of its own (ie, Where did the origin of the universe come from?). Sometimes it really is better for these really smart people to say, "We don't know how old the universe is", or "We think it might be 14.5 billions years but who the heck really knows!" than giving a number. It's just a guess, let's leave it as such. 'If' we can ever travel the expanse of the universe, we can then start giving educated guess about its age.

    November 20, 2012 at 6:34 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Your post is laughable. It's not a "guess," moron. Go back to school and get your diploma this time.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:37 pm |
    • DemFromSC

      The age of the universe might be 13.5, 14.5, or 15.5 billion. But it is conclusively nowhere near 10,000 years – you are off by at least 6 orders of magnitude. You can believe whatever you want, but believing that the correct answer is 10,000 simply means that you are wrong and scientifically ignorant.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:39 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @gf,

      1. We're not talking about the age of the universe here. We are talking about the age of the earth. We do have pretty good access to that. Our best estimate today is 4.54 ± 0.05 billion years

      2. The age for the universe in the article (14.5 billion years) is wrong (probably conflated with 4.5 billion) The universe is estimated to be around 13.7 billion years. Yes, this estimate is less precise.

      10,000 years is not an alternative answer for either of these questions.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:41 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      You have to love this: "Where did the origin of the universe come from?"

      November 20, 2012 at 6:41 pm |
    • sorry

      You don't know what you are talking about. Reading a bit about this topic would inform you of the proof and methods used to settle on a number that is extraordinarily accurate and universally agreed upon– by people who read, analyze and work at this professionally. You have an (ill informed) opinion. They have expertise. You might as well be saying that you could compete in the Olympics against world class athletes. You'd be schooled.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:44 pm |
    • Christianity is a form of mental illness- FACT

      Do you know how long the light from some of those stars took to get to where you can see the flicker? is it safe to say the Universe is AT LEAST that old. Do you really think it only took around 10,000 years for some of the light to travel as far as it did? Perhaps that is where the magic from the sky wizard comes in...he pushed the light beyond the speed of light to make sure it got here under 10,000 years?

      November 20, 2012 at 6:45 pm |
    • Christianity is a form of mental illness- FACT

      10,000 years is not an alternative answer for either of these questions.
      .
      If someone remotley considers 10,000 years old...they are beyond amazingly ignorant.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:47 pm |
    • Christianity is a form of mental illness- FACT

      typo

      November 20, 2012 at 6:50 pm |
    • gf

      @ I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      Check the article. The article talked about the age of the universe. I talked about the age of the universe. You responded talking about the age of the universe. I'm responding again about this age of the universe discussion. So it seems that not only are we talking about the age of the earth, we're also talking about _____ (fill in the blank here).

      November 20, 2012 at 6:51 pm |
    • gf

      @Tom, Tom ... actually, I don't love that question, "Where did the origin of the universe come from". Meaning, if the origin is a mass light years in diameter that exploded ... that being the origin ... where did that come from. I don't like those hugely unanswerable questions, they drive me crazy!! :)

      November 20, 2012 at 6:53 pm |
    • Fishallday

      I cant believe this is even a conversation we are still having in the 21 freaking century... unreal. Scientists have methods to gauge these types of things. Sometimes they are wrong. But I cant see how any rational human being can belive god created everything in the blink of an eye. Scientific findings and facts does not discredit anyones faith. Something baptists and evangelical christians just refuse to recognize, or are just to ignorant to accept.

      But ultimately i think this "debate" is rooted in a old age power struggle. Men who seek to use religion as a vehicle to control other people are likely to be the ones most threatened by science. Its been that way for millennia. They fear the foundations of their power being ripped out from under them. Thats all i think this is about. Power.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:55 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      The phrase in itself is idiotic, gf. An 'origin' doesn't 'come from' something. Learn to write. You sound stupid when you type crap like that.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:55 pm |
    • JFCanton

      "Extraordinarily accurate" about this (the age of the universe) is quite an overstatement. It could be totally right and is much, much better than a guess-the same number is produced by a couple of different methods-but the accuracy is highly dependent on assumptions that we generally can't verify... we have to remember that "dark matter" is still filling a giant hole in the gravitational behavior of the universe.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:56 pm |
    • gf

      @ ... (multiple posters)

      There's even here the argument that the age of the universe is 13.7 billion years, or another said it is at least 14 billion years. The problem with that is that they have only recently discovered the farthest star away at 13 billion light years. Problems with that:

      1. First, that's assuming the distance of that star from the earth somehow is linked to the age of Earth in a definite number (how Earth-centric of us to make a claim)
      2. Second, if we've only recently discovered that, what yet is there to discover?
      3. Third, at some point, what we can see greatly diminishes
      4. Fourth, that's assuming that light speed remains constant across the universe, at the "edge", at the origin point of the bang, and during the whole process of the big bang
      5. Fifth, to even look at a star and say "Yeah, that's about 13 billion light years away" makes me chuckle

      November 20, 2012 at 6:58 pm |
    • gf

      @ Tom, Tom

      Forgive my stupidity ... I used "origin" as a noun when typing. I'm not sure what to call that great big mass several light years in diameter that banged. That big descriptive phase sounds stupid to me too. Perhaps you could help someone sound more informed. What is that called? I called it the origin of the big bang, as that's it's 'point' of origin. And so the complexity I struggle with is where that came from? A compacted previous universe?

      November 20, 2012 at 7:01 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Nobody looks at a star and says it "looks as though it's x number of light years away." Your chuckle is evidence of ignorance on your part.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:01 pm |
    • hawaiiguest

      @gf

      An estimate of the age of the universe based on evidence and a tested, and confirmed, model is better (my holy book says this), or saying "i dunno". Those scientists do not just fling a number on the wall and see what sticks. For you to brush this off as "just a guess" shows you know nothing about science, or the scientific method.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:03 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      No one yet knows how the Big Bang originated, gf. So what? Does that negate everything we do know based on research? Of course not. But pretending that because we don't yet know everything, we must therefore know nothing is just stupid.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:04 pm |
    • gf

      @Tom, Tom ... by the way, I make up the 8% of Americans that have at least a masters level degree from a secular state university, not in the humanities field, but in epidemiology & health sciences. Many here can probably make that claim. But my point is that ignorant accusations about my level of intelligence are without any basis.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:11 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      No, they're not. Your posts indict you.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:18 pm |
    • gf

      @Tom,

      Actually, that is how they determine the distance of a star. Measuring based on the heliocentric parallax is not applicable with this conversation. So they can either look at it based on its luminosity, or determine how much it moves (or doesn't move). Unless you know of some way they can actually measure a star 13 billion light years away? Please do inform? How do they do it? In the end, its an estimate with some levels of comparison, but it must be considered there's an end to what we can observe.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:20 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      And don't bother bragging about your educational background, gf. As you said, you're not the only one here with an advanced degree.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:20 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      gf, you are as dishonest as Chard. Maybe you're just one of his sock puppets. Your description here is not the description you gave above. Why do you have to lie to make your point if it's a valid point?

      What part of "we don't know /= goddidit" do you fail to comprehend?

      November 20, 2012 at 7:23 pm |
    • gf

      @Tom,

      These responses would be much more fun if they could be better connected. I don't suggest that we know nothing because we can't know everything. Rather, I suggest that we don't pretend to know that which is unknowable (at least at this point in time). That being a rounded and very specific age to the universe. You to think there is because somebody said so shows a sheep-like mentality without the ability to think for yourself. That, along with the ability to jump to conclusions based on so little information, is what you've proven yourself to be. It's fitting then that you stubbornly fix yourself on a position of such bigoted presumptuousness.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:25 pm |
    • was blind, but now I see

      @Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son
      "You have to love this: "Where did the origin of the universe come from?"

      I guess that means you have an answer then?

      November 20, 2012 at 7:26 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Nice try, gf, but you fail. I don't claim to know the exact age of the universe OR the earth. I don't believe anyone made any such claim. You're the one who is attempting to put words in others' mouths and change the focus of the discussion, honey. What people ARE saying is that it's not some great mystery that we cannot begin to unravel.

      Do continue to lie. You're looking more like Chard with every post.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:29 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Oh, look, another dolt heard from. An "origin" doesn't "come from" anything, you simple-minded twit. Something "originates" with something. Something may have an "origin."

      Look up the word, stupid git.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:30 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      @gf

      We don't know what caused the inflation of the singularity. Let me repeat that: We don't know.

      There are several methods used to date the age of the universe. It would seem that it's about 13.7 for several reasons. One reason is the light horizon. I'll trust you to look that up if you don't know what it is.

      As to all your other a ssertions about not knowing precise distances of stars and whatnot. What's your point? What argument do you wish to connect those ideas to?

      November 20, 2012 at 7:35 pm |
  16. Bob J

    Sad commentary on education in the U.S. Geologist need to do a better job!

    November 20, 2012 at 6:34 pm |
    • Anton LaVey

      It's hard for them to do a better job when you have religious idiots with their collective heads buried in 4.5 billiion year old sand.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:00 pm |
  17. CarnalIgnorance

    How can something come from nothing? It is a very simple question.

    If I came home from work one day and there was a big TURD on the dining room table and I began to ask questions about that turd. How old is this turd? What compounds make up this turd? What kind of bone is this in the turd(LOL)? Then I call my son into the room. "Son,you are a turd expert.Please analyze this turd for me". " O.K. Dad!!". One week later I come home from work and my son is patiently waiting with the results. Dad this turd was 2 days old when you found it. Dad this turd is made up of Fiber Bars and Cheetos. Dad it was only a partial bone but I reconstructed it and it looks like an animal that noone has ever seen before(LOL). "Great Work Son. Now where did it come from?". "Well dad I was sitting at the table eating Fiber Bars and Cheetos 2 days ago and all of a sudden BANG!!! There it was. It took a few hours for it to cool off and begin looking like a turd, but I couldn't believe it. There it was!" Now I could postulate as to the mass of the turd collapsing in on itself became so great that finally it just exploded and materialized on the table as a hot ball of gas and slowly cooled to form what we see today as a big brown turd. Give it just a few more billion years and that Hot turd would eventually liquify into some basic amino acids and start to grow into a single celled organism. Eventually this turd with just enough time will start to forage and organize into a social order.

    And people make fun of me for believing that a Higher Power designed and created this Universe. Look at how silly Evolution really is. That everything on Earth came from a Hot Molten Rock. Which came from a big giant explosion...WHICH CAME FROM NOTHING!!! Science does not ask the question of how was the Universe formed because they just like the knowledge and want answers. Science wants a fake answer to disprove the only viable answer which is GOD!!! Spiritual knowledge and acceptance of GOD does not require me to ask the question, "Where did GOD come from?" It is a Knowing of the Spirit. The proof is in my soul. When one tries to answer spiritual questions with carnal, mindful answers then the whole premise is flawed. That is why NO SCIENTIST or ANYONE HERE will ever have the simple answer to, "Where did it all begin?"

    GOD is the ALPHA(beginning) and the OMEGA(end). PERIOD!!!!!!

    November 20, 2012 at 6:32 pm |
    • nadinesh

      fine. But we're descended from apes, the earth is over 4 billion years old and the Universe is at least 14 billion years old. You can do all the mystifying around those facts. I'm sure God would want you to be well-informed.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:35 pm |
    • Luke

      yeah....uh...I don't know how to break it to you, but the theory of evolution says nothing about life originating from hot molten rock. And the big bag theory does not say anything about the universe coming from nothing. Interestingly, a basic understand of quantum theory indicates that electrons routinely spring in and out of existence. It is, of course, the quantum theory that is powering your computer right now by the way. The rest of what you have written is at a 4th grade level at best and does not warrant a reply.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:36 pm |
    • DemFromSC

      Then where did God come from?

      November 20, 2012 at 6:36 pm |
    • Charmin

      Carnal,

      Your puerile fascination with excrement leads us to think that you are a rude, crude and uncultured teenaged boy.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:37 pm |
    • Snow

      Spoken like a truly ignorant fundidiot, dude..

      so your response to the same question that "Magical sky daddy created each item in the universe with a snap of his magic fingers in about six days coz he was bored and wanted minions to suck up to him" makes more logical sense to you?

      November 20, 2012 at 6:37 pm |
    • gf

      Admittedly, while brought with gross logic and imagery I wish you hadn't presented, the transition between elements and minerals and inanimate objects to 'life' is a tough bridge to cross, difficult to figure out, not to mention furthermore the transition to sentient beings.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:37 pm |
    • LC

      Creationism requires you to believe in the magic that some being somehow existed before the universe was created and then created it OUT OF NOTHING. How can you not see that your idea is leagues more outlandish than even your misrepresented idea of how science explains it?

      November 20, 2012 at 6:40 pm |
    • smores

      Among other things, this part doesn't make sense: "Give it just a few more billion years and that Hot turd would eventually liquify"

      November 20, 2012 at 6:43 pm |
    • CarnalIgnorance

      @Luke

      Don't quip insults because you can't see the big picture. Evolution requires us to believe that the Earth was a Ball of gas and rock that cooled into present form. And that the Universe came from an Explosion of nothing into something. Also my computer does not run on quantum physics it runs on millions of transistors packed into a silcon shell that turn on and off with electricity. All of which existed without the science of quantum physics. Ever heard of a Vacuum Tube? Also the problem with your electrons from nothing is this little thing called Newton's LAW(emphasis on law not theory) Matter can neither be created or destroyed(by man that is).

      November 20, 2012 at 6:43 pm |
    • steve505

      There's nothing "silly" about evolution, you simply don't understand it. Perhaps if you put down your bronze-age Bible, with all of its truly silly stories (Noah's Ark? lol), and picked up a modern science book or two, you might begin to understand how logical and real evolution is.

      People who deny evolution in 2012 are the modern day equivalent of people who used to think the Earth was flat. And much like them, your silly ideas about reality will disappear as time progresses.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:43 pm |
    • mark

      You really do live in your own little reality, don't you?

      November 20, 2012 at 6:44 pm |
    • gf

      @ Luke

      The Big Bang theory does bring up the question that it came from "nothing" ... or it eventually leads to that question. But, everything does. Eventually you get there with any theory or belief. The super condensed mass that exploded ... where did that come from? And before that? The theory itself is only the BANG, but where did that which BANGED come from?

      And, electrons springing in and out of existence ... I don't think that's new electrons appearing here and then other ones disappearing ... it's a "blinking" of the same electron ... disappearing from one place to appear in another. Correct me if I'm wrong. Also, it's a big step to go from that ... to life. Please explain that, if you will ... other than, "It just happened".

      My point is to settle down with your arrogance. No matter how smart the theory sounds, it's still a theory and there are holes and problems with it.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:46 pm |
    • CarnalIgnorance

      Insults and name calling; and I am the ignorant one? Just answer the question where did the universe come from? Be truthful to yourself. To all the naysayers. I used to believe everything that evolution preaches. I was blind, thank GOD now I see!!!!

      November 20, 2012 at 6:48 pm |
    • sybaris

      CarnalIgnorance <<<<<<<<,pwnd by LC

      November 20, 2012 at 6:49 pm |
    • richard

      but then one could also ask who created this higher being? the same argument can work against you. The higher being could not have came from nothing. it is an endless cycle. what we do know are the facts and the fact is scientifically the Bible is inaccurate. there are countless examples of evolution happening even today. do some research and don't close your eyes to the truth only because it negates your current beliefs. Have an open mind to science.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:49 pm |
    • sippyjuice

      if you are going to continue to state "how does something come from nothing" as your premise for an argument, then you must answer when asked "where did your god come from?" And then you must specify which god. There is more proof for evolution . It's all based on what is observed, even you can observe it. Look at viruses and you can see evolution almost before your eyes. Stop trying to use the bible to refute science. The bible knows nothing of science. If a man were to follow the old testament as a way to live, he'd be a criminal. If he were to follow the new testament, he'd be insane. Now lets get out there and use that gray matter a little more.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:51 pm |
    • turd sandwich

      dude, your argument is a turd. Just because you lack the education of physicist, doesn't mean smarter people than you can't make scientific observations to determine the age of the earth and the universe. Unless you think all of the geologists are just lying? or that physics is like voodoo

      November 20, 2012 at 6:51 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Way to try to change the subject, morons. This statement from Rubio wasn't ABOUT how the universe began. Try to keep up.

      What part of this do you not get? No one is claiming to know HOW the universe began. Why would they? We don't yet know and may never know what initiated the Big Bang, and nobody here has claimed that we do. You're just so dumb you can't distinguish between one question and another.

      That we don't yet know, and may never know, HOW the Big Bang was caused, does not mean the best and only answer is "goddidit." And it has nothing to do with the age of the earth.

      Idiots.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:52 pm |
    • smores

      in a few billion years, wouldn't the turd more likely burn up? (from more accelerated warming?) (how much closer to the sun would it be then?)

      November 20, 2012 at 6:52 pm |
    • smores

      i guess it depends on whether or not it gets washed out to sea, in which case it just another snack for poseidon.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:57 pm |
    • CarnalIgnorance

      @Richard
      @sippyjuice

      As I said in my original statement. I don't have to ask the question, "Where did GOD come from?" This is a spiritual truth which needs no justification from my mind. That is what Carnal Ignorance really means. You can't see the Spiritual Truth for the Carnal Ignorance of your mind. Truth is more than algorithyms and quantum equations. Truth is a deep knowing of what is real!! Not some regurgitated theories that someone came up with. Scientist are just humans. THe reality of it is that most people here wouldn't trust these scientist to mow their grass. Most people here are the same people that are the first ones to say "Question Everything" but believe blindly the theories of evolution and big bang. Step outside what you have cemented into your mind as fact and "Question Everytihing". There is alot of evidence that backs up Earth as a young planet. There is mounds of evidence that proves Creation. You guys(and gals) just don't look for it because you have so blindly followed what you have been taught.

      QUESTION EVERYTHING.....YOU MIGHT BE SURPRISED.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:06 pm |
    • joe

      So praise Allah as the Alpha? Oh, that's right, that's not your God. You're sure your God is the Alpha right? The other guy's God is of the devil right?

      Your belief system is simplistic and the result of a lack of education and thought. If you had gone to college, the first thing they would have taught you in class is that saying a God started the whole process gets you nowhere. If you're allowed to assert that your God "just always existed" then you're allowed to say the universe just always existed. If you're going to assert something had to make the universe, then you're stuck having to assert something had to make your God–so in essence you answer nothing.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:08 pm |
    • CarnalIgnorance

      @Joe

      So by your statement I am to assume you went to college. Beacuse you assumed that I was a Christian. I never said what God I believe in. You, with your terrific education, just made the assumption that is who I am. Just a heads up, the Muslim community have a common ancestry with the Jews starting with Abraham. They believe the same things that I have stated. NOt once did I condemn the Muslims or their beliefs. Nor any other religion. Once again a resort to name calling to hide the real ignorance that is perpetrated on this blog.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:17 pm |
    • adh1729

      A few questions for some of you smug simpletons posting here:

      When the first female evolved the first uterus, had oxytocin yet evolved? If not, had evolution produced gynecologists to do c-sections? Had the male yet evolved the appropriate male parts for reproduction? Did the first male have erectile dysfunction? Were there urologists to prescribe Viagra to help him out? Were his testes intraabdominal, thus causing sterility? I speak as a physician - evolving mammalian life as we know it, from blind chance, is absurd. Tell me how everything suddenly evolved at once to make life happen. It is all or nothing: either the male organ works or it does not, either the female organ is patent or it isn't, labor contractions are effective or they aren't. I would like to propose that we allow evolution to help people out in the ER or in the labor and delivery ward, when they run into trouble – give them millions of years to sort out their problems. Normally people would be locked up in a looney ward for believing that way. Evolving a simple living cell from inorganic matter is far worse; it is absurd to the infinite power (it is unfortunate that almost nobody in the population understands biochemistry and cell biology - it makes you incredibly easy to hoodwink.) And you lunatics enjoy laughing at Christians; I'd say the laugh is on dupes like you.

      You devoted science worshippers say you would never believe in something you cannot see - baloney. You believe in infinitely many universes that you have never seen, countless evolutionary miracles that you have never observed, all because you can assemble some ancient bones and start telling monstrously tall tales. Great is thy faith, o godless evolutionist.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:21 pm |
    • CarnalIgnorance

      @adh

      Finally, a breath of fresh air. You are spot on about the human body and all life for that matter. If folks really want a debate on GOD and evolution than they will have to get past the name calling and start questioning their beliefs. They demand it of other people all the time. "Open your eyes", "Read a science book", "Question your Sunday School Teacher". Well I propose the same to them. Open your eyes, Go to Church, Question your Teachers.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:31 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Apparently you didn't question your teachers enough, Carnal. You should have pressed them to explain the difference between "than" and "then." Don't even try to pretend "it's a typo,"

      I don't go to church to learn about science. I don't go to science class to learn about belief.

      That you are so dumb should be a warning to others.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:35 pm |
    • lol

      @carn.. "there are mounds of evidence that proves Creation"

      lets hear some.. nut up or shut up

      November 20, 2012 at 8:27 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      That'll be the day. The idiot can't even figure out that "teachers" isn't capitalized unless it's the first word in a sentence. A third grader would have learned that.

      November 20, 2012 at 8:30 pm |
    • Rich

      I'm confused. Are you saying God was a turd?

      November 20, 2012 at 9:17 pm |
    • CarnalIgnorance

      @tom

      So, in order to debase me and NOT have a purposeful debate. You copy-edit my on-the-fly typing and proclaim my stupidity because of an error in my grammar on the CNN religion blog. Apparently, you forgot a comma, Tom.

      November 20, 2012 at 9:57 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      I'm sure I did. You, on the other hand, are irked that you screwed up.

      November 20, 2012 at 10:01 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Carnall, I have multiple degrees from multiple universities and spent several decades in church leadership. Quit pretending you've got something you haven't.

      November 20, 2012 at 10:02 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      "So, in order to debase me and NOT have a purposeful debate."

      You do realize, don't you, Carnalidiot, that this isn't a sentence?

      No, you probably don't.

      So I'll tell you that it's not.

      November 20, 2012 at 10:05 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      So adh is a doctor with no clue of what evolution is?!? I bet he's too dumb to be embarrassed by his display of ignorance on the subject.

      November 20, 2012 at 10:08 pm |
  18. Joe The Plumber

    Other than the religious right "interest group", the American electorate wants a POTUS that will solve real problems like the economy, energy, or terrorism. As long at the GOP is beholding to these nut cases, their not going to win the White House. Still waiting for a GOP candidate that will tell the religious right and Rush to take a flying .......

    November 20, 2012 at 6:30 pm |
  19. Maura

    Dems need to continue to ask these questions of politicans and remind the American public exactly whom they are voting for. Keep asking, keep making the republicans answer up to 2016.

    November 20, 2012 at 6:27 pm |
  20. Duke

    Perhaps some of you should re-read Rubio's comments again. "“I can tell you what recorded history says, I can tell you what the Bible says, but I think that's a dispute amongst theologians and I think it has nothing to do with the gross domestic product or economic growth of the United States.” He then went on to say it's one of the great mysteries, referring to the origination of creation. And then he pointed out the primary issue of today is the economy. Liberals are the most intolerant people. You don't want diversity, you want people who act, think and believe the way you do. Conservatives admit there are questions that have no answers and some people may disagree. I'm not telling you all to believe one way or another. I understand where evolutionist place their faith. But few of them choose to have a respect for how others can disagree intelligently.

    November 20, 2012 at 6:24 pm |
    • nadinesh

      But it's not a mystery at all! We know quite a bit about it. To say it's a mystery is to waffle lugubriously between calling the creationists liars or dum-dums (which - believe me! - he *knows* is true!) and making himself a pariah with the scientific illiterates he is appealing to. You don't play politics with stuff like this. Yes, germs cause disease! Yes the Sun is the center of the solar system! Yes, we really went to the Moon! Yes, that little tailbone you have at the end of your spine really once was an ape's tail!

      November 20, 2012 at 6:30 pm |
    • Nissim Levy

      Really? You are really saying that the age of the earth is a question without any answers. What came before the Big Bang is a question without an answer but the question about the age of the earth does have an answer. The answer is approx. 4.5 billion years.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:30 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Duke,

      There are NO serious questions about the age of the earth! There is NOTHING to "admit".

      If you really want to see what Rubio actually said follow the link in the article:

      "I'm not a scientist, man. I can tell you what recorded history says, I can tell you what the Bible says, but I think that's a dispute amongst theologians and I think it has nothing to do with the gross domestic product or economic growth of the United States. I think the age of the universe has zero to do with how our economy is going to grow. I'm not a scientist. I don't think I'm qualified to answer a question like that. At the end of the day, I think there are multiple theories out there on how the universe was created and I think this is a country where people should have the opportunity to teach them all. I think parents should be able to teach their kids what their faith says, what science says. Whether the Earth was created in 7 days, or 7 actual eras, I'm not sure we'll ever be able to answer that. It's one of the great mysteries"

      And this is from someone on the Senate SCIENCE committee!

      This is avoiding a simple question and pandering to fundies so he can be a GOP shapeshifter candidate in 2016 – just like Rmoney in 2012.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:32 pm |
    • Duke

      Unless you were present on the earth or somewhere else 4.5 billion years ago, then you CANNOT know with 100% certainty the earth was here. And any scientist will admit that there is NO 100% certainty. Is is scientifically probable that the earth is 4.5 billion years old? Absolutely! But you nor anyone else can say definitively. Nor is it an imperative issue on the minds of the people today. This question was designed to get Rubio to have a Akin moment on creationism. These types of tactics are never used on Liberals. You can't know with certainty how "matter' began or how it will end. Only your faith can direct you...be it religion or science.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:37 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Duke,

      Unless you were present on Golgotha ~1976 years ago, then you CANNOT know with any certainty Christ was crucified.

      You said: "These types of tactics are never used on Liberals."

      Don't be ridiculous. They just don't say such stupid things. Rubio was doing a 'puff-piece' interview for GQ. He clearly wasn't expecting this question. It's not even a hard question – it just came out of left field.

      He waffled and used talking points to pander to fundamentalist voters. For someone on the Senate Science committee, this is intellectually dishonest. He is being called out on his dishonesty.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:45 pm |
    • Steve Nograd

      You used a computer to input your answer on this blog. Do you know that Evolutionary Theory is on a firmer footing that the Theory of the Electron? Think for yourself.
      Best estimate for the age of the Universe is 13.7 billion years.
      Best estimate for the age of the first solids in the solar system that made up the planets is 4.568 billion years.

      If you use and rely on modern medicine, electronics, air travel, television, etc. etc. you must also accept these truths.

      It is time to grow up now.

      November 20, 2012 at 6:49 pm |
    • Duke

      More comments from the "tolerant" elite of the Left. Always assuming. The universe was not made of solid matter in the beginning. That has nothing to do with the theory of the electron. Even highly qualified scientist and professors will admit, there is no 100% certainty for the age of universe, this planet, or how it came into being. Indeed, many scientist have different theories and those theories change with time. Such issues eventually lead to an issue of faith–religion or science. But it comes down to faith. I put my faith in both. But you all just keep assuming you know how I believe.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:00 pm |
    • JFCanton

      For the life of me I don't understand why people who want to advance the cause of science also want to insist that evolution is better proven than familiar theories of physics. 0.00001% or so of the evidence for evolution is conceivably observable. It's an eminently sensible explanation. But that's as good as it is going to get; it's simply on the wrong scale for us to observe it and confirm it on a scale that is meaningful for people who see an invisible hand conducting the action of selecting genes.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:15 pm |
    • Alex

      In a weird roundabout kinda accidental way Duke is right. Scientists don't know 100%, and they don't pretend to. Science is a process, and the important part is the methods, not the answer. The answer is just what's spit out at the end. If tomorrow, scientists get some new information or discover a new process that shows the Earth is 5B yrs old. Fine. But that doesn't mean Duke should feel vindicated, or that scientists yesterday were wrong. All they were doing is giving a deductive answer using all the best info and methods available to them. That part hadn't changed.

      However, if you want to present nonsense like the Earth being 10,000yrs old in the science classes of our children, then we do have a problem. The problem is that it's impossible to use science to come to this conclusion, so it should have absolutely nothing to do with science class. Scientists maybe not knowing exactly what the answer is doesn't make your answer right.

      November 20, 2012 at 7:16 pm |
    • Duke

      Alex, Stop making it sound like I accidentally may have said something accurate. I know and meant exactly what I said. And I would be vindicated, because if the methods that show the earth to be 4.5 billions years old today are shown later to be incorrect by .5 billion years at a later time, then CLEARLY the methods for science are imperfect and that 5 billion year age may be disproven (shorter or longer) later. That is my FREAKIN' POINT. You all try to suppose science has answered the question of the age of the earth but it cannot definitively. That was what Rubio was saying. It will always be, to some extent, a mystery. He is concerned, and so are most Americans, with fixing the economy not fixing a time for the beginning of the world.

      November 20, 2012 at 8:10 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Duke,

      you said: "You all try to suppose science has answered the question of the age of the earth but it cannot definitively. That was what Rubio was saying.

      Bull. No one is arguing that science is the absolute truth.

      What Rubio actually said was "there are multiple theories out there on how the universe was created .... Whether the Earth was created in 7 days, or 7 actual eras, I'm not sure we'll ever be able to answer that."

      The earth WAS NOT CREATED IN 7 literal days. We really are able to answer that.

      Rubio is:
      1. Avoiding the question (we don't know what he actually believes)
      2. Pandering to fundies with the '7 day' and 'multiple theories' crap.

      There really aren't multiple theories. There is consensus on the 4.5B year estimate. It might be wrong and proven wrong with new science, but there isn't anyone with a different theory saying that 10,000 years is more accurate.

      November 20, 2012 at 9:26 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Does Dukie sound a bit desperate to anyone else?

      November 20, 2012 at 9:30 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @TTTPS,

      I love the argument that "if you weren't an eyewitness 4.5 bya, you can't prove it" and then they turn around and say Jesus rose from the dead.

      The cognitive dissonance is staggering.

      November 20, 2012 at 9:51 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      True that, G.

      November 20, 2012 at 10:02 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.