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

Creationists hit back at Bill Nye with their own video

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Belief • Christianity • Creationism • Science

soundoff (5,973 Responses)
  1. blue dog

    What subject did Purdom get PhD in? Theology? Shame on such PhDs to throw science under the bus in favor of unscientific theories from a book which can not be observed or proven with any equation. Religion should only care about he moral compass of society. Last time when we gave religion the role to teach us science, earth was flat and center of universe, and ppl were burnt on stakes for opposing it.

    September 1, 2012 at 10:23 am |
  2. bbk

    Way to go Bill For standing up for the truth... I cant believe people still dont accept fact. Im a seeing is believing kind of guy so if there is another side lets see some proof then well talk.

    September 1, 2012 at 10:22 am |
    • Elena

      Where is the prove that the first living being just pop up on its own, any ways that theory is as fantastic as the Bible telling us God made a mud dummy and blew in live

      where is the prove that DND information wrote itself? what was the first living being an amoeba? ok! and how did it spawn itself? how its genetic information created itself to give rise to to such being?

      And I dont deny evolution! but where is the missing link? did they fond it yet?

      September 1, 2012 at 10:32 am |
  3. Citizen Jones

    The thinking here is very shallow. Who can say that God is only 3,000 years old. God was here before time started. What was created in the beginning were experiments in the creation of life. Even God had design problems hence the extinction of the dinosaurs. To big, to vicious, to hungry, to destructive. Early man could not have lived alongside the brontosaus and friends.
    God needed to create a suitable vehicle for the souls which needed to reside on earth. Even the eary neanderthal was unsuitable, which is why he then made modern man.
    God has always been here, we are the new arrivals. Use your brains and begin to think of what it really is all about.

    Teach children to think, and there is a whole universe out there to think about.

    September 1, 2012 at 10:21 am |
    • bbk

      So when the bible said created in his image thousands of years ago God is a netherthal...

      September 1, 2012 at 10:24 am |
    • Veritas

      You have a great sense for humor, that parody on creationists was funny

      September 1, 2012 at 10:25 am |
    • Cedar rapids

      "Even God had design problems hence the extinction of the dinosaurs."

      why would god have design problems? isnt he the all powerful all knowing god? any god that makes a mistake is not a god.

      "God has always been here, we are the new arrivals. Use your brains and begin to think of what it really is all about.
      Teach children to think, and there is a whole universe out there to think about."

      I think we would say the same to you. Use your brain, really, sit down and ask yourself why on earth a god would make sense,

      September 1, 2012 at 10:25 am |
    • NoTheism

      wow, just wow... That made very little sense. The triple-O god makes mistakes? Because of such mistakes, he forces things to evolve? Soul, what's that?
      Incredible, absolutely astounding.

      September 1, 2012 at 10:26 am |
    • Manda

      Citizen Jones, t's kind of bizarre that you followed that truckload of irrationality with "use your brain" and "teach children to think." Just bizarre....

      September 1, 2012 at 10:28 am |
    • Brett

      Does everyone see how the Religious idiots will just make stuff up and contort logic to fit their bizarre beliefs?? Perfect evidence here from Citizen Jones.

      September 1, 2012 at 10:29 am |
    • JewsforScience

      bbk good point ..thats funny I can picture G-D as a knuckle dragger ..that’s so funny. I needed a good laugh,,..Bill Nye Rules by the way, Evolution is where its at …Go Bill!

      September 1, 2012 at 7:55 pm |
  4. James P

    I'm sick of creationist denying science. Science is the closest thing we have to "god". Christianity along with all other thesitc belief systems only serves to detach the species from the natural world, and likewise, themselves. It supports blind submission to authority. There is without a doubt something much greater at play here in our ever expanding universe. The answers will only be unraveled once people stop taking the word of a bunch of children storys mean't to teach the aforementioned children how to make good decisions. Then and only then with unity of the world will we be able to find out what our universe really contains. Make it a point to educate yourself on the sciences before you go and say we appeared out of nothing. Well technically we are all derived from dust in space, but thats a different story.
    Good Luck on all of the endeavors you may come across on your search for the truth.

    September 1, 2012 at 10:19 am |
    • G. Zeus Kreiszchte

      Indeed, stardust we are! But give a religious freak that much to go on, and they'll swear their story is right : "See, the bible says 'god' made us out of clay." PUKE!

      September 1, 2012 at 10:26 am |
  5. Dave

    Teach evolution I science class, teach creationism in world religion class. End of discussion.

    September 1, 2012 at 10:19 am |
    • ME II


      September 1, 2012 at 10:24 am |
    • brian

      While I agree with your basic premis, the "end of discussion:" comment is an example of the problem not the solution. Not discussing things that we don't agree with is why we have so much ignorance and intolerance in this country

      September 1, 2012 at 10:27 am |
  6. Creed

    These 'scientists' who keep claiming the earth is round, that the earth revolves around the sun and that life here on earth evolves over time just make me crazy! They had the right idea with Galileo, recant or burn at the stake you godless heretic!!!! Let's get our pitchforks and torches and march on Bill Nye. Who's with me?

    September 1, 2012 at 10:19 am |
    • Creed

      Oh, and if Homeland Security is monitoring this, I don't actually want to burn anyone at the stake.

      September 1, 2012 at 10:25 am |
  7. Jennifer

    "At AiG and the Creation Museum, we teach children and adults the truth concerning who they are in the Creator’s eyes"

    No they don't, its a bible thumbing preach-a-thon, with no actual information. Just loaded questions, its really pathetic

    September 1, 2012 at 10:19 am |
  8. Brett

    There are only two types of people in this world: People who believe that the Universe happened from nothingness without a creator, and People who believe that God happened from nothingness without a creator.

    Either way, you are all admitting that you don't know squat.

    September 1, 2012 at 10:18 am |
  9. regertz

    Anyway, well done Bill.

    September 1, 2012 at 10:17 am |
  10. Wootings

    The religious can just keep their immorality and willful ignorance to themselves. You're wrong. Admit it. Get over it.

    September 1, 2012 at 10:16 am |
  11. Converted

    Genesis 1:1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. 2 And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters

    Science now witnesses the power and greatness of God.

    Genesis 2:7 And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul

    Science again witnesses the first part... However the breath of life is the spiritual part... Science has yet to observe and measure this although it is possible. God will show us in his time just as he did the creation and evolution.

    God bless us all brothers and sisters, believers and non-believers. We are all gods children.

    September 1, 2012 at 10:15 am |
    • Jennifer

      I see no science there, just a magic genie

      September 1, 2012 at 10:19 am |
    • NoTheism

      "God bless us all brothers and sisters, believers and non-believers. We are all gods children."
      NO, you believe 'we' are all of your god's children. Prove the existence of your god before making absurd claims. Until then, avoid talking nonsense, please.

      September 1, 2012 at 10:22 am |
    • Converted

      Read and study my atheist friends... Ask God for understanding... Read about near death experiences and see the similarities.

      September 1, 2012 at 10:27 am |
    • Converted

      @jennifer I don't see science creating the heavens and earth either... Just observing them. When will this great science of yours be able to create something even as small as a house fly?

      September 1, 2012 at 10:30 am |
  12. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things,

    September 1, 2012 at 10:15 am |
    • Jennifer

      Name one....

      September 1, 2012 at 10:20 am |
    • buckshot

      Atheism is damm sight healtheir then your brain daging bible thumpubg

      September 1, 2012 at 10:23 am |
  13. pozin

    I had a nun back in the 60's that was ahead of her time. She told us that we can accept evolution and still believe in creation. The old testament is full of parables. In other words just teaching stories, not necessarily historical fact. Some people that have been imprinted from birth to take such things as 'gospel' will never relent or look at the facts. If we were all that way we would all still believe in the Easter bunny and Santa.

    September 1, 2012 at 10:14 am |
  14. Bob Burns

    It is terribly sad that creationists have such a fragile existence–their beliefs regarding the universe and our small place in it are so ridiculously futile and easily disproved that I have never understood how they can believe in God at all. As a scientist, I am convinced that if they would embrace scientific fact rather than magic, their religious beliefs would grow stronger. There is no inconsistency if one will accept that an all-powerful God created everything to follow the most beautiful principles of physics and chemistry and biology...or is it necessary for some folks to continue to worship magic. We can't begin to understand it all, but we can more easily see God at the center of it if we will stop resisting Him. God help us!!!

    September 1, 2012 at 10:14 am |
  15. Patrick

    Bill Nye's video has accrued thousands and thousand of comments: pro, con, smart, ridiculous, annoying, insightful. So, how many people have commented on the video by the Creation Museum? Well, none. Why? It's because "Comments are disabled for this video". On the AIG web site, it's cast a "rebuttal", but if you can't tolerate comments to your rebuttal, you must have extremely little confidence in your arguments.

    And the arguments are very weak. For instance, Dr. David Menton's main argument is the argumentum ad populum fallacy: lots of people believe this, so it must be true.

    September 1, 2012 at 10:13 am |
  16. Sbul

    What amazes me is how many people actually believe the earth was created 10,000 years ago. Another, crazy fact is the amount of people that think somehow God wrote the Bible and don't understand that it was men that wrote the words, men that thought of the ideas and values in it. It isn't that the bible is bad it is just that it is not a scientific tomb and if you believe that it was written by God, then you need to believe that the Quiran (sp) was dictated to Mohammad and also written by God (thought they call him Allah) which brings us to a clear contradiction. How can they both be when they are so different? Better to trust in Science which is able to adjust the theory when new facts come into play instead of denying the facts because it doesn't fit into the theory or belief.

    September 1, 2012 at 10:13 am |
  17. Zev

    While we all debate this topic the earth warms, the crops die and the future for our children becomes less and less likely to be a high quality one. Let just stop fighting and start preparing to live in a world that will require all of us to use our creative abilities to survive.

    September 1, 2012 at 10:10 am |
  18. realoldguy

    Bill Nye may be the science guy - but I'm a Republican and if I don't already know everything about something, well then it's not worth knowing about!

    September 1, 2012 at 10:09 am |
  19. Marty

    I have to wonder how these YEC's will respond if Curiosity does find evidence of past microbial life on Mars. They've already stretched their myth-bag to breaking trying to accommodate the evidence for dinosaurs. Life on another planet just ain't covered in that silly book.

    September 1, 2012 at 10:09 am |
    • Matt

      I think you underestimate their ability to utterly ignore facts.

      September 1, 2012 at 10:11 am |
    • Topher

      What if they do find? So what?

      And what do you mean about dinosaurs?

      September 1, 2012 at 10:20 am |
    • James

      Man, I hope you are right. It'll be hilarious to see how they deal with that one.

      September 1, 2012 at 10:25 am |
  20. Pittsburgh Lou

    It's a waste of time to argue with true believers. By definition, their minds are closed to any facts that contradict their beliefs.

    September 1, 2012 at 10:08 am |
    • sybaris


      Religion and the belief in any god(s) is a filthy disgusting disease of the mind

      September 1, 2012 at 10:11 am |
    • JJ

      by definition their minds are just closed. Period.

      September 1, 2012 at 10:13 am |
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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.