Bill Nye slams creationism
August 27th, 2012
11:31 AM ET

Bill Nye slams creationism

By Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor
[twitter-follow screen_name='EricCNNBelief']

(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.

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

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.

Follow the CNN Belief Blog on Twitter

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.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Creationism • Science

soundoff (14,640 Responses)
  1. CJ

    'Guided by god' is the not too subtle code for the religious who, for all their trumpeted 'modesty', feel that evolution was 'guided' to eventually result...in themselves.

    August 27, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
  2. Peter Gunn

    To Bill Nye: Thanks for sharing, but I didn't ask. Now dance you clown!!!

    August 27, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
    • AverageJoe76

      so you'll shoot at his feet? Hmmm.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  3. Al

    These are tough questions to ponder.

    Matter must either exist eternally, have appeared somehow at some time from nothing or have been created by a being. As a Christian, I think that other Christians should not be so dogmatic about the literal six day creation. The Genesis account could easily be a metaphorical account of the creation of life and the earth.

    August 27, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
    • rafael

      What created the being?

      August 27, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
    • John H.

      Science does not say matter came from nothing. If you can say that, you don't understand what the big bang theory is about.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  4. Big R

    Bill Nye is obsessed. Who said we had to choose sides? It's people like this nut-case who cause division when it wasn't really there to begin with. So he lost a few arguments with fellow Christian scientists... why cause a division. I guess when you're the minority, you'll try anything to get attention. For me, I teach my children the wonders of science AND the principles of Christian living. In fact, I don't even look at science and faith being in the same category. To suggest that somehow Christians are less capable of "building stuff" or "solving problems" is a weak and ludicrous suggestion.

    August 27, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
    • Dyslexic doG

      you're an embarrassment to the 21st century.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
    • Jacqueline R.

      Love your answer. I think no one knows, and if we don't know for certain, then at least entertain the idea that there is something - call it God, the Universe, whatever. But to close off your mind to the possibility that there is something more than what we can prove is as narrow-minded as the Bible thumpers.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
    • saganhill

      Really? He is causing a division? Its the other way around. Creationist, everyone of them I have ever met, have absolutely no critical thinking skills. They come to a conclusion first then try to find answers for that conclusion. Hardly Scientific in practice. Is stupidity part of the god belief, yes, no question about it. There is no evidence for god or the supernatural.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
    • rafael


      August 27, 2012 at 4:16 pm |
    • Big R

      I'm just saying... Bill's comments are ridiculous. We don't have to know the answer to the Universe or Creation in order to live productive, powerful, meaningful lives. To suggest that Christians are weaker in "problem solving", "building things", have more "complicated" lives, "paying taxes", "voting"... is as narrow minded as the extreme creationists. The connection he's drawing is a complete stretch and nonsense. Not everything in life is black and white...

      August 27, 2012 at 6:06 pm |
  5. I am God

    I severely hate it when you have someone trying to blame people who don't believe in God with the most wars in the world. It just shows that the religious nuts that make them statements fail to account all the religions in the world.

    August 27, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
  6. Babs

    I wouldn't believe in atheism. But that's just me.

    August 27, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
    • zzz666

      No one "believes" in atheism. Atheism is a lack of belief in a god. You don't believe in plenty of gods as well! What's the quote? Something like: "I would contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one less god than you".

      August 27, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
  7. DP

    People don't want to believe in evolution because they fear if God didn't create everything there may not be a God or Heaven.

    August 27, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
  8. Joe Knows Best

    Evolution is a theory; if it was a fact it would be law; if it is so easily proven as you all suggest why is it not a law? There is no wisdom among fools. It's not like scientists would lie either, right? Science cannot and will not ever be able to answer many questions.

    August 27, 2012 at 4:04 pm |
    • John

      Religious beliefs are based on faith, not proof, and not law.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
    • rafael

      Take a a look around you, and compare how you live to how people lived 2000 years ago. Science answered all of the questions of how you got there.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
    • ReasonableXX

      You don't know what the term scientific theory means. No wonder you do such a poor job of arguing against one.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
    • John H.

      A Scientific Theory is the highest point an idea in science can achieve. Clearly you have not a clue about science!

      August 27, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
  9. malik

    This guy reminds me of Max von Sydow, the Devil in the movie Needful Things.

    August 27, 2012 at 4:04 pm |
  10. rkdres

    both creationism and big bang are two silly ideas on both ends of a spectrum.

    August 27, 2012 at 4:03 pm |
    • Babs

      So the answers in the middle somewhere.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
    • John H.

      Though there is evidence to support the idea of the big bang. Creationism, not so much. That's the thing, science has facts to fall back on. Religion, just a musty old book.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
  11. Sirhc

    "The deepest sin against the human mind is to believe things without evidence. Science is simply common sense at its best." – Thomas Huxley

    August 27, 2012 at 4:03 pm |
    • truthseeker777

      Deepest 'sin', wow, so he DID believe in God.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
  12. Engineer

    It's so frustrating going to work and not being able to build anything because I place my faith, worship and life in Jesus... I hope Bill Nye doesn't tell my boss I'm worthless. This whole thing is so boring. You all argue back and forth producing nothing of value to society. And for all you that want to protect our children, what hypocricy! "We need to let them choose what they want to believe!... as long as it's not the Bible.." What a joke. Religion (aka humans reaching for God) is very damaging to socitey, but full trust and faith in Christ (aka God reaching for humans) is something completely different. I fear for a society that is becoming so proud in our own achievements and growing in hate towards others for desiring to live in Joy and Grace and Hope and Love and Eternity.

    God doesn't love you any less or ANY MORE for anything you do... although you can be of more value to His Kingdom.

    Bash away all those who worship to god of Science. 🙂 I encourage you all to find the freedom and joy in laying your life down from the things of this world that consume society.

    August 27, 2012 at 4:03 pm |
    • snowboarder

      when you spend a lifetime indoctrinating your children, there is little choice involved.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
    • Engineer

      @ snowboarder I agree. We should present all the information avaliable and let them choose and then help them grow and continue to guide them until they are truely mature enough to make every decision for themselves. I will send my kids to public schools and teach them as much as possibly can, some of which will be who Jesus is. If they are not compelled to live the same way then that is not up to me. We teach soooo much in schools and there are so many wild classes in universities these days, why is the Bible not also considered a valuable potential account of human history to be studied?

      August 27, 2012 at 4:18 pm |
  13. PC

    "In another couple centuries I'm sure that worldview won't even exist...." Nye ends his video.

    Just as it was thought, a little over 2000 years ago, that by ending a Man's life by nailing Him to a cross and watching Him die in the afternoon sun, his influence and teachings would be put to an end as well.

    August 27, 2012 at 4:03 pm |
  14. SCOTTA

    why do people say GOD doesnt exist? take human beings for example we are created by GOD PLAIN AND SIMPLE!! i would like to see a scientist create a human being from scratch.not with cloning or the like.yeah right not gonna happen.scientists are only as smart as GOD allows them to be.where do you think they got their intellect from why GOD of course.you could say well they studied hard but then i say well who is the one who gives scientists the ability to comprehend things and put them into practice ?GOD THATS WHO!! wait till scientists stand in judgment before GOD and realize just how little they truly know compared to ALMIGHTY GOD!!!!

    August 27, 2012 at 4:02 pm |
    • xeirus

      Man, you are truly ignorant...
      You are what's holding us back as a people.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:09 pm |
    • Honey Badger Dont Care

      You have no evidence to support any of your claims, especially the one that your god exists.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:10 pm |
    • GodNotReligion

      Ever stop to think that maybe God created evolution?

      August 27, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
  15. MXD

    I think if we all agree to call the source of everything "God" then we'll all be pretty much on the same page. But once we start insisting that our particular prophet is THE God – that's when we start getting silly and fighting over whose idiosyncratic ideologies are right. So, if Catholics, for ex, are right – then the other 5.5 billion currently living people are going to Hades?? Does that make ANY sense??

    August 27, 2012 at 4:02 pm |
  16. Bob Christian (aka: Christian Bob)

    * Bill Nye is obviously naive and should change his name to Bill Naive.
    * Here are a few websites to educate Bill Naive:
    * Don't be a Darwin Dummy (precious human life did NOT come from slime or monkeys).

    August 27, 2012 at 4:02 pm |
    • Hugo

      Bob, is name calling an example of loving your neighbor or enemy?

      In any event, a better approach, if you actually have a point to make, is to make your point and then support your point by citing sources. Failing to do so treats your neighbor disrespectfully.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:06 pm |
    • Karen

      C. Bob: Every one of those sites has been thoroughly debunked, Strobel's especially:

      Time you got with the last century and left your silly old Christian supersti.tion behind.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:07 pm |
    • Brian

      LOL... no... Man didn't come from slime or monkeys!! He came from a super magic being in the sky that created all things in six days! C'mon folks. Just because you were brought up in a church and told things all your life, that doesn't make them so. There are billions of folks of other religions who are convinced they are right about the creation of man also.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
  17. Creed

    I always ask the Creationists whether or not Tyrannosaurus Rex, Velociraptors, Pleurocoelus, Brachiosaurs, Anchiceratops and a thousand other dinosaurs lived in the Garden of Eden with Adam. So far, I have never been given any response other than a blank, confused stare followed by unintelligible stammering. We are arguing with folks so frighteningly uninformed that I have had creationists tell me that Boston Terriers, Labrador Retrievers, Dachshunds Great Danes and Poodles all lived in the Garden of Eden. It is an uphill battle to address such extreme ignorance and overwhelming prejudice.

    August 27, 2012 at 4:02 pm |
    • truthseeker777

      So far, I have never been given any response other than a blank, confused stare followed by unintelligible stammering.
      You must be talking to babies still in their cribs, which match your intelligence.
      Yes they lived and are even mentioned in the Bible.
      Wow, God is STILL right !

      August 27, 2012 at 4:05 pm |
    • GodNotReligion

      Who wrote the Bible?

      August 27, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
  18. CantBeatCommonSense

    This isn't critical thinking, this is glorified creative thinking ironically.

    August 27, 2012 at 4:02 pm |
    • save the world and slap some sense into a christard today!

      Gillyyyyyyyy! I mean HeavenSennnnt!

      Go to your room. Go on.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
  19. SPA Knight

    Interesting that a mechanical engineer, not a scientist, is able to dismiss creationism and promote a "theory of evolution" in it's place. Wow, what an open mind from a man with no credentials in science or theology. But because he hosted a TV show for children he can produce a YouTube Video expecting credibility and the sad thing is he gets it from those who claim to be the smart ones among us. Yawn. Next we'll have Kaptain Kangaroo (back from the grave) and Barney teaching us how to think at a third grade level.

    August 27, 2012 at 4:01 pm |
    • The Taught Police

      It's time for its correct usage. Whose who's are you hewing into hues? There are two tu's to your tutu too.

      August 27, 2012 at 4:03 pm |
  20. ArthurP


    1) Someone who is always ready to martyr themselves by trying to lock the always open doors of academia.
    2) Someone who suffers from Epistemophobia and or Sophophobia.

    August 27, 2012 at 4:01 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 99 100 101 102 103 104 105 106 107 108 109 110 111 112 113 114 115 116 117 118 119 120 121 122 123 124 125 126 127 128 129 130 131 132 133 134 135 136 137 138 139 140 141 142 143 144 145 146 147 148 149 150 151 152 153 154 155 156 157 158 159 160 161 162 163 164 165
About this blog

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.