August 27th, 2012
11:31 AM ET
Bill Nye slams creationism
By Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor
(CNN)–Famed TV scientist Bill Nye is slamming creationism in a new online video for Big Think titled "Creationism Is Not Appropriate For Children."
"Denial of evolution is unique to the United States," Nye begins in a YouTube video posted on Thursday. The video quickly picked up steam over the weekend and as of Monday morning had been viewed more than 1,100,000 times.
Nye - a mechanical engineer and television personality best known for his program, "Bill Nye the Science Guy" - said the United States has great capital in scientific knowledge and "when you have a portion of the population that doesn't believe in it, it holds everyone back."
"Your world becomes fantastically complicated if you don't believe in evolution," Nye said in the Web video.
Creationists are a vast and varied group in the United States. 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.
Your Take: 5 reactions to Bill Nye's creationism critique
The Gallup Poll has been tracking Americans' views on creation and evolution for the past 30 years. In June it released its latest findings, which showed 46% of Americans believed in creationism, 32% believed in evolution guided by God, and 15% believed in atheistic evolution.
During the 30 years Gallup has conducted the survey, creationism has remained far and away the most popular answer, with 40% to 47% of Americans surveyed saying they believed that God created humans in their present form at one point within the past 10,000 years.
Survey: Nearly half of Americans subscribe to creationist view of human origins
"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 said in the video.
"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. Because we need them. We need scientifically literate voters and taxpayers for the future. We need engineers that can build stuff and solve problems," he said.
Creationists' beliefs about the origins of the Earth are often a narrow focus, based in large part on religious beliefs, and while they reject evolution as "just one theory," they often embrace other fields of science and technology.
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In "The Genesis Flood," the 1961 book that in many ways help launch the Young Earth creationism movement in the United States, the authors write: “Our conclusions must unavoidably be colored by our Biblical presuppositions, and this we plainly acknowledge." Their goal for the book was to harmonize the scientific evidence with the accounts in Genesis of creation and the flood.
The idea of creationism has been scorned by the mainstream scientific community since shortly after Darwin introduced "The Origin of Species" in 1859. By 1880, The American Naturalists, a science journal, reported nearly every major university in America was teaching evolution.
"In another couple centuries I'm sure that worldview won't even exist. There's no evidence for it. So..." Nye ends his video.
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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.
When science comes across a question it can't answer it says, Lets find out. When religion comes across questions they can't answer it shrugs its shoulders and says, God knows and that's good enough.
"The mystery of faith" – HA HA HA HA
The reason some people don't believe in evolution is because they have not evolved. They are being left behind.
a theory is not a proven fact, brush up on your science.
Evolution is a fact. Do you deny this?
You mean like the theory of gravity? germ theory?
Actually, scientific theories often are proven facts. YOU brush up on your science kiddo.
A lot of stuffs running on your computer, on the ICs, just as you are typing in are developed based on what you called "unproven" theories. Quick! Get off your computers – they might explode anytime. They are sitting on the foundation of "theories". Go get a grip of what "theories" and "hypotheses" are and stop regurgitating what your "highly educated" pastor is telling you.
A theory is a hypothesis that was brought further to veracity by examining evidence. Not even belief in your pitiful gods could be called a theory, since there is no evidence by which to measure or study it, most likely because it doesn't exist beyond the realm of thought.
Look up the definition of "scientific theory" - right now!
(hint: it is not just a hunch or a guess as you imply)
Scientific theories are proven facts, however they are theory's not laws because we are still learning how they work. For example the theory of aerodynamics allow us to fly, we are still learning about aerodynamics such as shapes of wings at speeds and heat and so on and so forth. You can have a supposition that planes fgly because they are supported by invisible magic pixies. My scientific theory of aerodynamics that is testable and supported by evidence and science is greater than your belief in invisible magic pixies. Same thing with evolution.
Look up theory ina a good dictionary, or read the first chapter of "The Greatest Show On Earth". That will explain what a theory is in this, the scientific context.
Gravity is also a theory. Referring to explanations for set of facts as theories allows for modifications as sceintific knowledge expands, it does not change the fact that apples fall to the ground, or that lifeforms descend with modification over time, or that the Earth has been dated to be approximately 4 billion years old.
Indeed, I have often wondered why Christians do not oppose the theory of gravity as "just a theory", as it disproves the possibility of Jesus having walked on water. Or, more to the point, why Christians do not willfully ignore the facts supporting the theory of gravity despite it disproving part of a Bible fable, yet willfully ignore the even stronger set of facts proving the theory of evolution because these facts disprove a Bible fable.
Evolution is a strong scientific theory based on evidence and facts. Evolution has been proven. It has also been proven that the Earth is much, much, much older than 10,000 years.
Creationism is religious pseudo-science, not even worthy of being referred to as theory in the scientific sense. It is based on the mythology and religious writings of an ancient desert people who had no knowledge of science. Creationism is more or less a set of mental gymnastics, necessitated by a dogged refusal to accept or admit that anything in the Bible might be inaccurate, untrue, or mythological.
"That's the great thing about science, there's no one right answer."
-The stupid oaf from Big Bang Theory.
Fact #1. Jesus rode Dinosaurs and they should be refered to ONLY as Jesus Ponies in school.
Fact#2: The earth is 6,000 years old. I know becasue Cher was performing at the Creation Concert Tour and I have a signed poster from it. God created, Adam, Eve- than Cher as entertainment. Dugh
Fact#3: People are not 'Evolving'. Perfect example: Look at Mitt Romney. Its obvious he has NOT eveolved for 6,000 years since god created everything.
Fact#4: People are so stupid, you tell them something and they believe it- even defend it. "Its on the internet so it must be true....he is a French Model."
Fact#5: All these stupid people will be the end of us as a species.
Who or WHAT created evolution, Bill? Did it create itself? Gosh...evolution is so smart. It created itself from nothing!
Are you deliberately trying to look as foolish as possible in public?
Evolution is the observation of a series of structures. Nobody created it. Thats like asking who 'created' mathematics.
Have you ever actually been to a school? Ever?
@ED: who or what created GOD ed? did god create itself? gosh..........god is so smart. god created itself from nothing!
I agree Ed. From a fundamental viewpoint, evolution within species is a proven fact. Evolution as the origin of species is totally unscientific since logically it means that life created itself–which is a scientific impossibility.
Evolution is a natural process of nature...even on the scale of planets and stars..like the other poster said...that would be like saying someone invented math..
I'm ok with peoploe who think there may be a god who started it all. But to sit there and deny the age of the universe and evolution is mental, imo
Why does your mind need some supernatural creator to account for things. Don't you realize that it is you and your beliefs that have injected a needlessly complicated and unbelivable factor into the scenario? Not only are you saying that a god is responsible for existence, it also sounds like you're saying your god is the only one out of tens of thousands that does exist. It's wholly preposterous and its a primitive view science will not cater to.
Evolution IS NOT the same thing as the orgin of life..so that argument is polintless
Ed lives in Dallas. Explains everything. Ed- do the world a favor and stay in your backwards hick state.
Ed Sr. from TX is from that great state that wants to ban evolution from the classrooms. Go ED!
Think infinity and recycling with the Big Bang expansion followed by the shrinking reversal called the Gib Gnab and recycling back to the Big Bang repeating the process on and on forever. Human life and Earth are simply a minute part of this chaotic, stochastic, expanding, shrinking process disappearing in five billion years with the burn out of the Sun and maybe returning in another five billion years with different life forms but still subject to the va-garies of its local star.
Get a bloody education before revealing your profound ignorance and stupidity on the blogs.
days don't equal 24-hours in the bible. There is a huge grey area in Gen that says "the earth becaome empty and void" which could encompass an unknown amount of time. There, evolution and God can co-exist after all.
Tell that to the fundies they will tell you that you are going to hell
@rhyNO......: ok so god and evolution can co-exsist? you're missing a few things......say like the plants being created before sunlight, that would be a major hurdle right there.
So if God rested on the seventh day (and so should we) how long exactly is that? Have we been doing it wrong for centuries?
God and prayer was replaced by "man is an animal" in the mid 1960s. In the 1965, you could go to school, get an education, and the worst you could worry about was talking in the halls, gum chewing, or running in the halls. 2012, with Darwin, they have metal detectors. We have really come a long way haven't we. Bill Nye doesn't care about the well being of kids. I thought he was dead, so obviously his career needed a boost. Since he can't appear in Playboy, he does the next thing, claims that Creationism is bad for children. It has been taught with abandon for 60 years, and look how well we do technologically- so good my company has to go and get talent from overseas because our students are too busy loving dinosaurs instead of learning quadratic equations and/or calculus.
Uh, try again?
Quadratic equations and/or calculus? You know of people who learn calculus separately without knowledge of quadratic equations? Amazing.
Also, the rest of your post is just trash.
mangler of the english language much?
One of the worst, retarded, hateful, spiteful but inconsequential, comment I have had the misfortune to read on CNN blogs.
You sir, are part of the reason this world is so screw up.
"under God" was added to the pledge and the motto in 1950's, it's been downhill ever since.
you're arguing with yourself Sybil.
No, ME II, it's been downhill ever since the 1960's, when prayer in schools was made illegal.
"Reason", your name is a misnomer if you're pushing that old BS that prayer in school is illegal.
FACT: kids and teachers alike are free to pray in school as much as they want, AS LONG AS THEY'RE NOT FORCING OTHERS INTO IT and AS LONG AS THEY'RE NOT DISRUPTING THE LEARNING PROCESS.
Freedom to pray does not mean that a student can demand a 10-minute out-loud prayer in the middle of class, which somehow translates in the minds of those who choose not to think to "prayer is illegal! Waah!"
Cows are decentants of the european aurochs. Humans artifically selected them into the cows we have now. Same with banannas, we artifically selected wild bannans full of seeds into the seedless ones we have now. If we can do that in thousands of years, why can't nature do the same with an ape species in a few million? Where is the barrier?
Same goes for dogs. 10,000 years ago there were only wild wolves. Man first domesticated the wolves then artificially selected them into all the various breeds we see today. It only took 10,000 years. Nature has had billions of years to work.
Because it takes intelligence to "selectively breed" Nature doesn't have a mind – in case you haven't heard. It's the "information" part of it all that trips up evolutionary theory.
Besides, even after all that time – dogs are still dogs. No vertical transition has taken place.
Do you guys even really understand what you're talking about?
"Because it takes intelligence to "selectively breed" Nature doesn't have a mind – in case you haven't heard. It's the "information" part of it all that trips up evolutionary theory."
With artifical selection yes. However we've seen in nature speciation without the need of artifical selection.
Bill, your simply wrong. Nothing trips up evolutionary theory. It's that simple. It is undeniably correct. That should be the end of the arguement. What's next? Arguing about whether the sky is blue?
Or maybe because dogs are domesticated animals, there is no selective pressure against them anymore.....
But okay, it's cool that you don't understand anything.
"Besides, even after all that time – dogs are still dogs. No vertical transition has taken place."
If dogs became anything other than what their ancestors were, it would disprove evolution.
So BB are you suggesting that all animals were created as they are with no ablity to evolve at all? Or they were but with barriers? If so where are they? You don't accept evolution, but you never mention the alterntive with any details of how it works.
You are wrong and so un-informed.
The time periods are so hard to conceive, but over billions of years it is possible, with no intelligence.
You should read The Blind Watchmaker, The Unselfish Gene or The Greatest Show on Earth.
You'll learn that there are simple organsims that are light sensistive, then there are some that have a dark area in the cell membrane, so they can detect light and dark and direction. Slowly they became curved. There are fish with hollow eyes, no lens. Eventually the sphere closed and a lense developed. It's not the way a designer would have done it – the image is upside down and the optic nerve creates a dead spot, but it works. And as some one said – half an eye is better than no eye.
Bats "devolved" ; Even those with poor eyesight passed on their genes and survived. They didn't need perfect eye sight.
You discover a flower with a long, deep tube – you can be sure you'll find a hummingbird or a bug with a beak or a tongue just long enough. All evolved over millions of years.
Science has not been good at explaining the data, since they are tainted by their own beliefs. Every science experiment can include God, so why does everybody think that studying science excludes God. Jesus is the one that every has an issue with, since it is written that he raised from the dead. A supernatural event, by definition is outside science. So anyways, back to main issue. Is evolution true? We still do not have any new information from a biological/scientific reaction.......we must appeal on the science time to billions of years(radioactive isotopes), that we cannot measure. I admit there are somethings that makes creationists(young earth), think about, but can we look at them together? If it is true we have no reason for anger or disagreement, unless you have some other motive. All science screams that their is something intelligent that created it, period. Each human has to answer this, but there is a sense where each person will decide. Have a good day......
I sure hope you don't have kids.
Between the missing words and the poor grammar I have no idea what you were trying to say, but you too should have a good day.
"Every science experiment can include God [...]"
No USEFUL science experiment can include a god, as god is said to be capable of anything, and thus is compatible with ANY experimental result. The results of experiments and facts of reality don't matter, as a god is compatible with any possible configuration. It doesn't matter whether the grass is blue and the sky is green, it doesn't matter if the only thing that existed in the universe was the Earth, the Sun and a giant space lizard, it doesn't matter whether the laws of nature are consistent or not, the god explanation is compatible with all of these situations.
Scientists, like mechanics, are in the business of finding testable explanations for specific phenomena in reality, an explanation you cannot test, that is compatible with any situation regardless of the facts, is a useless explanation. Believer or not, I would think that you wouldn't want a scientist to start using god in their explanations any more than you would want your mechanic to invoke demon possession for your car problems.
That, and if you are a believer, it shouldn't matter whether scientists need to include a god or not in their explanations, as any explanation should be able to work. Also there is that whole thing about the Bible saying "Do not put the Lord your God to the test" (Luke 4:12, Deuteronomy 6:16), which would make this stance not only bad science, but bad (Christian) theology.
What does denying Evolution as fact have to do with...
i am not sure how admitting evolution is a theory, and not a proven fact equates to someone not getting a job in future.
Forgetting the fact Bill is an ME and not a biologist, lets see....There are many Christian and or intelligent design acceptors who work in the medical field/science field. Look at your own history Bill. I guess Bill never read up on the fathers of science like Isaac Newton, Johannes Kepler, Robert Boyle, and Galileo to name a few. All of theses guys are on record and in print in defense of their faith and acceptance in a creator of all living things.
The article is talking about Young Earth Creationism, not all religion.
All the folks you listed long before Darwin proposed ToE.
You also demonstrate that you don't have a clue as to even the basic lexicon of the scientific method.
Evolution, just like gravity, is fact and theory.
This is stuff you should have learned in Junior High.
You cannot practice science by picking and choosing what to believe; evidence is evidence, and stands until someone can show otherwise. If children learn that they can dismiss evidence because the church tells them to, how will this contribute to science?
I guess you never read up on Isaac Newton to discover that he was very big into the occult, alchemy (making gold with a magic Philosopher's Stone), numerology, and the like. His scientifically verified concepts are accepted - the rest (including religion) – nope.
In those days you almost had to be a priest to have the time and money to do any research. Or you were funded by the church.
Today members of the National Science Accademy are mainly atheist. Generally, there is a direct relationship between intelligence and lack of belief in the supernatural.
I don't have enough faith to be an evolutionist.
No one does. Because evolution is based on facts, evidence, observations, etcc. Faith is not needed, required, or warranted.
So tell me the fact around creation of mass and energy. When we came from "Nothing", that means there are also no laws governing this "nothing". where did the laws come from? You use faith, same as me, you just choose faith in misguided "science".
Actually creation theory does not require any 'faith' whatsoever. Unlike most, I only believe what can can be scientifically and concretely proven with irrefutable evidence that I can see and observe with my own eyes. For the past 30 years, I've deeply researched this topic in many field areas of study from geology, to physics, archeology, and many many others and have confirmed absolutely as a certainty most accounts on the creation side are actually far more accurate with significant, undeniable, consistent, and overwhelming supporting evidence that would probably make a whole lot of jaws drop on both sides universally if anyone out there were to know all the data I have gathered on this subject following many years of painstaking intensive research. The larger problem at play here is people largely as a whole are for lack of a better word, stupid, and I'm not talking about either evolutionists or creationist - what I actually mean is both sides! Those who generally lean to the religious side are most often largely ignorant of what all they have available supporting their side or position simply using "faith" as an excuse for ignorance without any actual understanding they could easily defend their position. Meanwhile the opposing side is made of largely a lot of seemingly logical "smart" often well educated people who are ironically no where nearly as "smart" as people out there generally think or realize so it literally becomes a debate of ignorant verses stupid on both sides which I do as a footnote occasionally find mildly entertaining. And for the record, when I say the evidence out there supports creationism, I'm also not necessary saying all things were built by the will of some all knowing intelligent being though I don't preclude it as a possibility. What I do mean is there is substantially more evidence out there than most people currently realize, which does in fact confirm solidly the physical history of the earth is not on the time scale or scope that everyone believes. Many accounts from the evolution based accounts of this picture did also happen as well but all these things did so at a much more rapid pace than anyone realizes and in some instances even thousands of times faster. Some of what I've researched and confirmed a long time ago is now starting to surface more publicly in newer discoveries so I believe it's probably now only just a matter of time before people as a whole start becoming more aware that what they've always thought and accepted to be true may not necessarily be the case but with that also probably gain a far better understanding of the world around us.
To the person who said that Athiests are followers of Satan (and going to hell): You're the one who believes in imaginary people, not us. Please don't lump us together in the same category.
To be clearer, to believe in Satan, you must also believe in God; it's just a matter of which of the two you follow. An atheist does not believe in God and so cannot believe in Satan.
Why are you so mean? I was just asking a question.
Also how did that article prove creationism?
The article doesn't "prove" creationism. What is shows is that the major assumption scientists rely on to support the millions of years requirement for evolution to works is radiometric dating. Since this "constant" has been called into question by secular and peer-reviewed scientists, the evolutionists house of cards is falling.
As for being mean, sorry about that. But I think Jehovah's Witnesses are mislead, and a little crazy. Just my opinion.
I want a proof in your favore and not a diss against evolution.
i understand evolution, i just haven't seen the proof. if there were proof it would be the law of evolution, not the theory. don't tell me about all those "scientific facts" that you keep referring to, tell me why evolution has never gotten beyond the theory stage. the fool hath said in his heart, there is no god.
You want 'proof' of evolution.
Yet you adhere to religion which demands 'faith' and does not DARE discuss the concept of 'proof'.
Sounds a bit hypocritical to me.
Are you still waiting for atomic theory to become atomic fact?
FYI- Gravity hasn't gotten past the Theory stage either....
Well, there's a lot more proof for evolutionism than there is for creationism. In the case of the latter, you have to believe that the earth is only a couple thousand years old when we know for a fact that's not true thanks to carbon dating. We also have seen discovery of prehistoric skeletons that show man has evolved in his shape and form. The 'missing link' seems to be getting closer and closer and with our new ability to explore under the ocean perhaps we'll find it sometime soon.
What about the theory of gravity? The germ theory? Or the cell theory? Do you not believe it those?
Science doesn't have laws, those are found in math and philosophy. A theory is a model that best explains observed phenomena, their is no higher level in science than a theory.
You people who base your lives on fairy tales make me wish I was born to some other species than gullible stupid humans.
I believe it was very well put in a short explanation. There has never been a case of life coming from non-life and there has never been an instance of genetic information added in an organism to make it change from one form of life to another or from one species to another. Who is being unscientific here? I think his name should be "Bill Nye the unscientific guy."
Wasn't Adam created from non life?
What he was saying is there's never been a case of life from non-life occurring in the natural world.
Besides, this is abiogenesis – and has nothing to do directly with the theory of evolution.
Before you are so dismissive of evolution you should learn a bit more about it. Your statements make it clear that you have only a cursory understanding of the concepts. You have chosen to follow a path of faith (belief without proof). Many people do follow science based on faith. Here's the key difference: If you dig down into religious beliefs the core requires an act of faith, but if you dig down into scientific beliefs the core is provable based on objectively observable facts.
"The Gallup Poll has been tracking Americans' views on creation and evolution for the past 30 years. In June it released its latest findings, which showed 46% of Americans believed in creationism, 32% believed in evolution guided by God, and 15% believed in atheistic evolution."
I doubt if a poll catches the fine points that many average respondents will put on these terms, "creationism," "guided" and even "atheistic." Depending on how you draw up definitions, the first can blend into the second, and even the second and third can overlap on some belief systems and philosophical overviews (such as from Whitehead–if you're wondering who he is, he co-wrote the modern founding treatise of logic). Going by how it is reported here, the Gallup poll doesn't sort out peoples' conviction in science. More than half of Americans think the earth and human descendants are well over 10,000 years old.
The Gallup Poll has been tracking Americans' views on creation and evolution for the past 30 years. In June it released its latest findings, which showed 46% of Americans believed in creationism, 32% believed in evolution guided by God, and 15% believed in atheistic evolution.
In other words, 46% are dumber than a post, 32% have a shot at someday grasping reality, and 15% are fighting a battle of ignorance that can never be won.
Thanks for your snarking, Dude. It was really helpful.
He's slamming Creationism, not theism. It's sad proof of how ignorant we are that people don't know the difference.
Uh, sorry, but trying to sound smart doesn't always communicate well. Creationism is inextricably tied to theism. If you don't know that much, don't comment.
You can believe in God without believing in Creationism, silly.
The theory starts by saying life has evolved over time. First x object was created out of nothing, then combined with other things created out of nothing, then magically an atom, yhen a cell, a molecule, then bacteria, single cell creatures, followed by simple sea creatures with organs, then more advanced creatures, next red blooded mammals, then primates, and finally human. All of this started out of nothing, and somehow knew to evolve in this exact order.
You've cited the wrong theory, stupid.
I don't know what theory you just cited, but it looks nothing like the theory of evolution.
Lol i think you got things mixed up bro. It's not like "evolution" had a hidden agenda or a goal to eventually create humans. We are simply the random product of evolution over billions of years.
You are looking from the present into the past and making the assumption that the current state was predictable at the origin. That is not the case. In addition, your leap from a molecule to a cell shows a basic disconnect in your understanding of the boundaries between physics, chemistry and biology. Nice try though. Would you like to play again?
Evolution is full of deadends and mistakes. It only appears to your weak mind that there is a specific order because that is the order that lead to us in the first place.