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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

(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. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things ,

    September 1, 2012 at 4:29 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Evolution changes things. Prayer does nothing but wear out one's knees.

      September 1, 2012 at 4:30 pm |
    • exlonghorn

      Actually, I think one of the goals of religion is to change nothing.

      September 1, 2012 at 4:32 pm |
    • Templeton Foundation Prayer Study (a religious foundation)

      When post surgical complications were studied for the efficacy of prayer the conclusion was:
      1. Prayer had no effect.
      2. Those knowing they were receiving prayer had a HIGHER incidence of complications (59%).

      September 1, 2012 at 4:33 pm |
    • lamb of dog

      You again. Blah blah blah always the same mindless post.

      September 1, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
  2. Wynter

    Religion is a crutch. Pure and simple. It is used to keep people from fearing death. Over the ages it has been used to keep the masses in line and as a power over the people for political gain. Religion has its purpose and is useful in the keeping the human psyche sane in some people. But it's usefulness is limited. When civilization was just starting out it kept countries from falling apart. But in today's world, science and technology have surpassed religion in that regard. I am not saying it's usefulness in today's society is outdated, but it should not engage in self destructive arguments with today's scientific community.
    Religion is something that can only be believed if you are indoctrinated in it typically at a young age. Young minds are given little choice at that age where peer pressure from adults frame their entire world. It's time we brought our kid's up better than this. They deserve a choice in the matter not indoctrination. So I give my kid's a view into all religions and sciences. All the knowledge they want to know without the pressure to believe it or go to hell. Times have changed and its time we let our kids teach us a thing or two.

    September 1, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  3. lamb of dog

    Creationist = Dark age minded moron.

    September 1, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
  4. That sums it up.

    "History depends on world view..." No, actually it does not.

    September 1, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  5. jholland27

    god was created by man to maintain order and reason during a time when both were absent – a celestial santa claus for adults if you will – if fact, if you look at the two fabricated stories of god/jesus and santa claus you see they are similar – both can't be seen and you have to rely on your faith that they exist, both are watching you to ensure you are being good and have dire consequences if you are bad, both have fantastic stories of magic that can't be true or proven based on science. Religion will very slowly disappear from the human condition but not without a fight since it is strongly identified with brains of followers and the majority of human beings are followers (the herd). Most of us prefer to give over responsibility for our lives to a celestial father and this has been used as an advantage by many a leader to subjugate the masses. When we were kids my brother was a terror and would never respond well to reasoning when told why he shouldn't do something like take things that didn't belong to him – the only thing that would work was my parents telling him that santa was watching and he wouldn't be getting any presents on christmas day if he wasn't good. i started realizing it was essentially the same message I heard at sunday service – be good because god is watching and you won't go to heaven if you are bad.

    September 1, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  6. Brooke

    The article got one thing wrong. Even though the earth is estimated to be about 4.5 billion years old, the universe is over 13 billion years old according to astronomical data.

    September 1, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  7. nft

    In the beginning, man created god.

    September 1, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  8. Liam

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

    I would quickly like to point out that a vast majority of scientists think that the earth is younger than the universe. Earth is ~4.5 billion years old. However the rest of the universe is closer to 14 billion years old.

    A small but important thing to distinguish.

    September 1, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
    • Fn0rdz

      I don't know of ANYONE who claims the Earth is older the the universe. Such a claim would be necessarily inconsistent on its face.

      September 1, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
  9. lamb of dog

    This purdam guy must not listen to himself speak.

    September 1, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
  10. Cy

    Nature and God are the same thing. God is the author of nature.

    September 1, 2012 at 4:23 pm |
    • If horses had Gods .. their Gods would be horses

      Why do you think that? Why do you need a God(s) involved? Why can't you accept the evidence around you without the need to anthropomorphize an additional step?

      September 1, 2012 at 4:28 pm |
    • End Religion

      @cy: you are one step away, my friend. You're shedding your need for an imaginary creator. It's only a matter of time. You're an atheist. You just don't know it yet.

      September 1, 2012 at 6:27 pm |
  11. therealbartonfunk

    That creationist videos CRAZY! They say things like natural selection is to unbelievable, BUT it is believable that some space being magicked thing into existence. And you can't trust scientist, because they are human, but you can trust some thousand year old book because it is the word of some sky being. As if it's not just a old bunch of made up fairy tales written by people. These people are insane!

    September 1, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
  12. Cy

    Evolution can be viewed as God's method of ceation. God is still creating!!!

    September 1, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
    • If horses had Gods .. their Gods would be horses

      Why? Why is a God(s) needed?

      September 1, 2012 at 4:27 pm |
  13. someGuy

    "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?"

    I never quite understood this line of reasoning. The bible itself says than man corrupts all things. Back in the days of the catholic church, monks were the only people who could read and write, the general populace had to listen to the priest to know what the bible said. It sat in their sole possession for over a millennia, and we all know how squeaky clean the catholic church is.

    It would be awesome if there were some book which had all the answers in it, but there isn't. I can't help but feel like peoples over dependence on it is often a product of fear and a desire for comfort. I would be comforted too if I believed the bible were the end-all be-all.

    September 1, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
    • topfuel500

      The Bible The Bible Do you know how many church goers actually read the Bible and how many are bench warmers?

      September 1, 2012 at 4:26 pm |
  14. Larry

    Let God answer the question of "his" "its' "her" creation. God – speak to us and let us know.................... no answer. Must be too busy today, like yesterday, and like a thousand yesterday's before that. When was the last time anyone hear directly from this God? I guess he stopped talking after dictation for the bible was complete? Stop with the fairy tales and live for now.

    September 1, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
    • Guest

      If only the deluded majority could grasp this simple, self-evident fact!

      September 1, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
  15. RustyHinges8

    We as humans know that all effects have causes. The laws of physics and science explain how the universe works, but they don't explain how it got here. The main theroy is "the big bang" where energy and materials...dust and particles exploded, throwing out more dust, rocks and heat with swirling energy....we really don't know for sure how this "bang" occurred. To fill that mysterious void, we put a God. Through our human existance, we have embellished and stretched "God" into a lot of different forms. He was just standing in for the Universe, but got caught up in all sorts of things....replacements for human weaknesses. "God" should have been called "Gap". That's what he's filling in.

    September 1, 2012 at 4:17 pm |
    • Guest

      Exactly!

      September 1, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
    • lamb of dog

      One nation under gap.

      September 1, 2012 at 4:21 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      In Gap We Trust.

      September 1, 2012 at 4:25 pm |
  16. teach-reality!

    Keep up the good work sir! We need to continue to fight mythology driven dogma! The last thing the world needs is another intellectual "dark age"! Look how well it turned out the last time it happened!

    September 1, 2012 at 4:14 pm |
  17. babyfacemagee

    Lotta brainwashed religious nut jobs here...that's all I'm sayin. Did it ever occur to you that man wrote the bible himself? That it's a story meant to control you because those who wrote it know you're afraid and know you're looking for 'something' to believe in to channel that fear? Stop being a lemming. Use your head. If the earth and man were created only 8-10,000 years ago then how do you explain the scientific dating of dinosaur bones, fossilized plants and even meteors to millions and millions of years ago? Do you really not understand the theory behind carbon dating? Grow up and wake up. Too many dumb people...

    September 1, 2012 at 4:13 pm |
  18. Lowell

    By the way BRAVE BOY, The KORAN says God created the Earth also. FUNNY HOW YOU ONLY CRITICIZE THE
    HOLY BIBLE and say NOTHING about ISLAM.
    YOU ARE OF THE DEVIL AND AN INFIDEL. ALLAH AKHBAR.

    September 1, 2012 at 4:04 pm |
    • midwest rail

      Repeating the same drivel over and over makes it no more true the 12th time than the 1st. It's still drivel.

      September 1, 2012 at 4:08 pm |
  19. Reality

    Only for the new members of this blog: ( TOPIC INFORMATION THAT EVERYONE SHOULD BE AWARE WITH RESPECT TO THEIR OWN EVOLUTION)

    Are you part Neanderthal? Read below. (this is no joke)

    Besides the dinosaurs and other fossils in our evolutionary process:

    You might be part Neaderthal and for $99 actually find out:

    As per National Geographic's Genographic project:
    https://www3.nationalgeographic.com/genographic/

    " DNA studies suggest that all humans today descend from a group of African ancestors who about 60,000 years ago began a remarkable journey. Follow the journey from them to you as written in your genes”.

    "Adam" is the common male ancestor of every living man. He lived in Africa some 60,000 years ago, which means that all humans lived in Africa at least at that time.

    Unlike his Biblical namesake, this Adam was not the only man alive in his era. Rather, he is unique because his descendents are the only ones to survive.

    It is important to note that Adam does not literally represent the first human. He is the coalescence point of all the genetic diversity."

    For your $99 and a DNA swab:

    "Included in the markers we will test for is a subset that scientists have recently determined to be from our hominin cousins, Neanderthals and the newly discovered Denisovans, who split from our lineage around 500,000 years ago. As modern humans were first migrating out of Africa more than 60,000 years ago, Neanderthals and Denisovans were still alive and well in Eurasia. It seems that our ancestors met, leaving a small genetic trace of these ancient relatives in our DNA. With Geno 2.0, you will learn if you have any Neanderthal or Denisovan DNA in your genome."
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    ======================================================================================

    September 1, 2012 at 4:04 pm |
    • exlonghorn

      As I've pointed out before, Reality is factually incorrect regarding The Genographic Project. It has nothing to do with Adam, and does not say anything about tracing back to a single person. The project is to study migratory patterns of humans from roughly 60,000 years ago to today using DNA samples from volunteers. The study also does not hint that humans originated 60,000 years ago, as Reality implies. Feel free to go read about it yourself.

      September 1, 2012 at 4:50 pm |
    • Reality

      Yes indeed, please read all the information at NG's Genographic site:

      As copied from said site:

      https://www3.nationalgeographic.com/genographic/

      " DNA studies suggest that all humans today descend from a group of African ancestors who about 60,000 years ago began a remarkable JOURNEY. Follow the journey from them to you as written in your genes”.

      "Adam" is the common male ancestor of every living man. He lived in Africa some 60,000 years ago, which means that all humans lived in Africa at least at that time.

      Unlike his Biblical namesake, this Adam was not the only man alive in his era. Rather, he is unique because his descendents are the only ones to survive.

      It is important to note that Adam does not literally represent the first human. He is the coalescence point of all the genetic diversity."

      September 2, 2012 at 7:49 am |
    • Leonard

      Looks like exlonghorn came up short.

      September 2, 2012 at 7:51 am |
  20. Lefty Capuccino

    The beauty of living in America is you can believe whatever stupid crap you want.

    September 1, 2012 at 4:03 pm |
    • donna

      And the ugly is that whatever crap someone else believes impacts others.

      September 1, 2012 at 4:10 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.