February 4th, 2014
01:17 PM ET
Bill Nye: Why I'm debating creationist Ken Ham
Editor's note: Ken Ham will debate Bill Nye on Tuesday at the Creation Museum in Petersburg, Kentucky, with CNN's Tom Foreman moderating. The debate will be live-streamed at 7 p.m. ET on CNN.com, and CNN's "Piers Morgan Live" will host both Ham and Nye at 9 p.m. Tuesday after the debate.
Opinion by Bill Nye, Special to CNN
(CNN) - A lot of people have been asking why I accepted Ken Ham’s invitation to debate the origins of life Tuesday night at the Creation Museum in Kentucky.
In short, I decided to participate in the debate because I felt it would draw attention to the importance of science education here in the United States.
What keeps this country in the game economically is our ability to innovate. New ideas lead to new technologies, which drive new businesses and new opportunities.
Technological innovations absolutely cannot be created without fundamental understanding of science, the means by which we know nature.
How many young adults and taxpayers use mobile phones? How many of us rely on global navigation systems that use satellites high above the Earth’s surface to find our way around?
Even if you eschew smartphones, you rely on the system to keep airplanes in the sky and ships at sea on their routes. Modern farmers plant seeds in fields with extraordinary precision using information beamed from satellites in space.
MORE ON CNN: Ken Ham: Why I'm Debating Bill Nye
For the United States to maintain its leadership in technology, we need well-educated science students. To allow our students to come of age without the knowledge gained through the extraordinary scientific insights and diligence of our ancestors would deprive them of understanding of nature and our place in the cosmos.
It would also rob our students of their future. Without scientists and engineers to create new technologies and ways of doing society’s business, other economies in other countries will out-compete the United States and leave our citizens behind.
Tuesday's debate will be about whether Ham’s creation model is viable or useful for describing nature. We cannot use his model to predict the outcome of any experiment, design a tool, cure a disease or describe natural phenomena with mathematics.
These are all things that parents in the United States very much want their children to be able to do; everyone wants his or her kids to have common sense, to be able to reason clearly and to be able to succeed in the world.
The facts and process of science have enabled the United States to lead the world in technology and provide good health for an unprecedented number of our citizens. Science fuels our economy. Without it, our economic engine will slow and eventually stop.
It seems to me that Ham is a fundamentalist. Around the world there are billions of people, who embrace the facts and process of modern science, and they enjoy their faith. By all accounts, their faith enriches their lives. These people have no conflict with their faith and science. Ham is unique in this regard.
Fundamentally, Ham’s creation model is not part of modern science. His idea has no predictive quality or ability. It provides no means to learn more about the world around us. It does not enable students to make consistent sense of nature.
So, we’ll see. We’ll see if his model stands up to traditional scientific inquiry: If a certain claim is true, then we would expect a certain outcome.
I’m excited and very much looking forward to the encounter.
Bill Nye is a science educator and CEO of the Planetary Society. The views expressed in this column belong to Nye.
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.
I watched the whole thing last night, what a great debate! Nye was stronger and more rational and Ham had some points to think about but most of his bible based logic just doesn't hold water with any current knowledge we have gained. It is almost as if creationist science refuses to acknowledge any new findings or use current tools....there is way too much effort given towards trying to deny facts and new findings rather than giving possible 90% acceptance and moving on. The whole idea that we cant possibly predict how the past unfolded because we weren't there and didn't see it with our own eye is laughable and a hell of a hypocritical stance for the creationists to hold......isn't the bible based on this, aren't they just supposed to have "faith" that everything in the bible is real. Bottom line, creationists are stirring up confusion and are holding back progress, and it is my opinion that any school that teaches only creationism to kids are creating a bunch of zombies who won't understand how to think outside the box and it is borderline child abuse!
I love Bill and think he's a great guy, but he lacks drive and assertion and I fear Ken will tear him up. Even if Bill's right and can prove Ken wrong on every topic, I still feel Ken can use flair and showmanship to detract attention away from a poor, flawed debate. I've seen Bill speak recently in various YouTube videos and he comes off more or less as Ben Stein and his monotone voice. Hopefully Bill does good.
Lets just all agree that religion stays at home or in temples and churches and nowhere near science or the class room.
That means that you can not teach cats and dogs have a common ancestor then. Because it is a belief not back with sufficient facts.
your comment doesn't seem to relate to anything being discussed.
Or you do not understand how it relates to the topic discussed. Go re-watch the debate.
Agent x, DNA evidence alone proves dog and cats had common ancestors. Cite your source for info to the contrary that doesn't deal with the bible in any way. People like you whom dont understand science should not attempt to lecture anyone!
This was debate was mostly not about creationism and evolution. It was more about one interpretation of the bible that says the earth is young verses the idea that it is much older than that. Notice that evolution does not even attempt to show how life started on earth and creationism does not describe any detail how life changes. So the comparison is apples and oranges to begin with.
Evolution is the change in species over successive generations and abiogenesis is the study of the beginnings of life. So that's why evolution didn't broach on that point.
That is the exact point I was making.
lol your a little confused.
lol your a little confused.�� Wow, that was a highly insightful, and well thought out retort.� Do you have anymore like that?
You have confirmed my point
Sam, No. I am not confused at all. My point was that evolution is not an attempt to say how life started so debating evolution verse creationism is comparing to different things. How can you not understand? You are the one that is confused. Restated my point and did not even know that you were doing it. You are confused.
Funny, I hear evolutionists making sweeping statements all the time about the origins of life. Dawkins, Sagan, Nye, Hall, Hallgrímsson, Cracraft, Donoghue, Decker, Cotner; they seem to be quite comfortable about describing the origins of life while ridiculing with their assumptions the creation model.
Duane, At least evolutionists are working hard to find and put together a working model.
View this against the LAZY 'god done it' proposition you are espousing.
That makes you proud? It is simply magic thinking coupled with indolence. Nice, but no real achievement.
No, they just invent their science with books like, The God Delusion: Richard Dawkins; and more specific and humble works like God, the Universe and Everything Else: Stephen Hawking. The bloated egos of foolish men who are blips in the course of history, who they themselves believe they're here, gone, and dead open their mouths as the grand authority of reason and know nothing. It's an unfortunate fact that so many people follow these guys, accept their grandiose stories as fact, and fail to investigate what it is they really say. You can be sure this is true when all of their retorts and rebuttals are ridicule for anyone who thinks something different than they. The evolutionist simply believes we come from nothing, we are nothing, and we're going nowhere from a protoplasmic soup to elemental dispersion. If God doesn't exist, and He didn't send Jesus Christ on a mission of salvation, why are these men so upset at what they don't believe exists? They are sad men, who are going nowhere, and can't stand the fact that there are those who know that the universe was made for a grand purpose, even more grand than the present universe we see. The creation itself exudes this fact. Romans 1:20
The things those scientist publish are scrutinized and studied by other experts. More papers are published to share information and find problems with their theories and new theories developed before any of their ideas are accepted. The bible provides answer with no proof and your job is to accept it. As beautiful as you think the words and stories are in the bible no amount of belief makes it true. You base your life on lies and regurgitate fictional stories that you stupidly believe are facts. I suggest you do yourself a favour and do some research before you begin typing in forums again.
No, the fact is that I've tested and tried it, and it works. God still performs miracle, and I've seen them; many of them. God doesn't say in the Bible to just accept His Word blindly. He says, "taste and see that the Lord is good." Psalms 34:8 When a scientist ventures out to test some unknown deduction derived from his observation and the trust he has in his abilities, many call that noble. I say to take a thorough account of the bold claims the Bible makes as dismissed, when multiple thousands of individuals have borne witness to it is ignoble.
So you are seriously saying you don't understand why they would debate evolution and creationism? I'll break it down for you because you seem very lost. Things don't evolve in creationism, they are created apparently. That's why bills trying to explain the evidence that exists that proves evolution isn't a fantasy therefore disproving this freaky Flintstones Christianity theory. Understand now?
No. Your arrogance and intelligence do not match. Here let me break it down for you. Evolution shows how things change over time. Creation does not say things do not change over time. In fact, the bible said things did change after sin was introduced into the world. Debating two different concepts is wrong. They should have been debating Abiogenesis and creationism. Those are two concepts dealing with the same subject matter. Your failure to understand is that the bible does say life does not change. I hope you can find a way to understand what I wrote this time.
The man Nye was debating disbelieves evolution how can you be so confused? Do you not think Bill Nye would of picked up on that?
Just so you understand agentx the bible is a story and nothing more. You cant populate a planet with only two people that would inevitably become incest. You cant fit two of every species on the ark that was described and you cant flood the world there just isn't enough water present. The earth is older than the bible states and it certainly wasn't created in 6 days. It is a book to help people make the right decisions using story's as an example and anybody who decides to believe otherwise either has little to no common sense or chooses to believe it because it makes them feel better. You live in a factual world I suggest you wake quickly and get with it.
Sam, I am not confused. Ham did not argue against variation that is observed. He was saying there is an extent to that variation. He does not argue against a wolf and a dog having a common ancestor; he argues against a cat and dog having a common ancestor.
AgentX, if you do not believe that mammals (for example) all have a common ancestor, then you are disregarding the evidence. The theory of evolution is backed by evidence. If it was not, then the theory would not be accepted. All scientific theories are rigorously tested, and this is an ongoing process. When there is evidence that comes to light that contradicts a theory it is discarded. The theory of evolution has not been discarded.
The theory of Creationism, however, has not been accepted by the scientific community for one reason: it lacks evidence. Without evidence, a theory is not accepted. And by the way, "it is written in a book by people who were religious" is not evidence. In addition, there is evidence that discredits the theory of Creationism. Therefore, it will never be accepted, and this is why it should never be taught in schools except as part of a class on religion.
Believe what you will, but you cannot change reality.
It's apples and rotten apples. Creationism of the sort espoused by Ham is both wrong and crazy. He thinks a dozen scientific disciplines are totally wrong and that the Earth, despite all evidence, was just created a few thousand years ago. He lies to himself and others to meet his emotional needs.
The debate became convoluded, I think. Ken was definitely not at his best. He very much appreciates that laws of nature can be discovered, investigated and then fuel innovation–opportunties that don't need to be connected to macro evolution or the age of the Earth. I don't think Bill really picked that up from Ken. Separating this point out from the religious points may have helped. The Catholic catechism on the topic leaves the door open for discussion while, by faith and belief,
teaches that God is behind it all.
Thinking that physics, geology, cosmology, astronomy, paleontology, evolutionary biology and more are all wrong just because his extremely literal reading of the bible requires that they be so is just silly time.
Religion is nothing more then Opium to the masses
As sam stated above
"Just so you understand agentx the bible is a story and nothing more. You cant populate a planet with only two people that would inevitably become incest. You cant fit two of every species on the ark that was described and you cant flood the world there just isn't enough water present. The earth is older than the bible states and it certainly wasn't created in 6 days. It is a book to help people make the right decisions using story's as an example and anybody who decides to believe otherwise either has little to no common sense or chooses to believe it because it makes them feel better. You live in a factual world I suggest you wake quickly and get with it."
First of all the bible does not say that the earth is only 6000 years old in fact the very first verse in the Bible states this;
(Genesis 1:2) . . .Now the earth proved to be formless and waste and there was darkness upon the surface of [the] watery deep; and God’s active force was moving to and fro over the surface of the waters. . .
The next verses describe how he made the earth habitable and then the creation of every living thing. So, the earth was obvioulsy around long before any animals or humans, so it's true that mankind has been on the earth for 6,000 years. Also, each creative day was not 24 hours as it states in the bible that "a day to man is 1,000 years to God". Obviously it would not make sense that the earth creations were created in 6 days, but it is reasonable to conclude that it was done in 6,000 years. Also, as mentioned above by someone else that the although the Bible is not a science book, it is correct when it does touch on scientific matters – such as the "the circle of the earth" and "hanging upon nothing". At one time men of "science" thought the world was flat, but then discovered it was not, so obvioulsy stating the earth was a cirlce was correct as a scientific fact. Also, at one time there were several theories of how the earth was suspended in space, such as it resting on the shoulder of Atlas, but again "hanging upon nothing" was also true as a scientific fact. All the laws of the universe that have allowed 'satellites' to orbit the earth and space travel are only possible because the Earth is the exact distance from the sun to allow life to exist and gravity so we aren't floating around. How would scientist know how to get a rocket in the air, let alone make it to the moon if they didn't believe that it could be done based on those laws. So, in a way, they to have faith that these laws allow that to happen. As for were did not water come from to completely cover the earth, it also tells us that in bible. It states that there was an expanse above the earth that created moisture so rain at that time was not needed, so this was not just mere rain, it literally was a deluge when this expanse was released. Also, the bible does not say that every tree was destroyed, only that they even the tallest mountain was covered by the flood. As the waters receded the Ark came to rest on a moutain top, so obviously some trees – especially sequioas did servive, but others that were not as sturdy such as plants would not have, so God made sure those were in the Ark. There are so many things written in the Bible that are accurate and have proven by archaeologist. The main purpose of the Bible is to learn about God, his qualities, what worship is acceptable to him, why there is so much suffering, violence and that he has a plan for the future. Evolution does not explain those things. I found it interesting that on several questions asked of Bill Nye, his words were "it's a mystery". There is no mystery of how life got here and why we exist and what the future holds, the bible is quite clear on that. There will always be those who don't want to believe the Bible is true, but neither did people believe Noah about the flood until it was to late. We were created with free will, you can choose to believe in evolution, etc. or in the Bible, but for those of us who believe in the Bible, we are glad there is no mystery about it.
You seem happy believing what read in the bible. You also seem happy to interpret what you read so it makes sense to you. The bible is a book not based on science or facts. I suggest u do some research if you really want to know if you could be wrong.
The debate was a wonderful way to find out the two ideologies present on this subject. The fallacy of those who hold to a evolutionary view of the world and the science that tries to describe it is this: Evolutionist believe creationists are anti-science. This patently false. In fact, because Biblical creationist believe that the Bible is not only absolutely truthful but also places the highest value on truth in its absolute sense, creationist will go the extra mile to be assured of truth as asserted by man's reason, even scientific reasoning. Many times, what is asserted as truth by a 'smart' person, can prove to be false. To challenge the dating systems that many rely on to try and determine the age of this, that or the other, is not anti-science. In fact, it is quite scientific, to a fault, to challenge something that as Bill Nye would say, "...doesn't hold water.." But it is helpful to all if we have open discussions in all realms of issues showing respect for one another as we seek to good to all. We will be able to learn more, more quickly thus being more productive as we serve the needs of those around us and abroad. Excellent job by both as they described their foundation/viewpoint from whence they share their love for science.
No, creationism is anti-Science, plain and simple. To start with a conclusion and then try and prove it is completely against the scientific paradigm. There is no "evolutionary ideology" it happened and is happening independently of human thought or belief.
There is simply no evidence for creationism. None. One side is premised on observable evidence and the other on blind faith.
Exactly. Christian Scientists want you to believe that they are scientists, when in fact they do not use science in their reasoning. They call the idea of Creationism a theory, when in fact it has not been accepted as a theory by the scientific community. The reason it is not accepted is not because these scientists are anti-religious, but because the hypothesis lacks evidence. Without evidence, a hypothesis is not accepted as a theory. In fact, there is glaring evidence contradicting the so-called theory of Creationism and only by ignoring this evidence can you defend the theory. This is why Creationism has not been accepted as a theory and even if it was it would be discarded.
There is only one logical conclusion: to believe in Creationism is to disregard science. Call it anti-science if you will. I do.
Long convoluted argument, but some glaring statements can be easily spotted. "creationist will go the extra mile to be assured of truth as asserted by man's reason" . That statement is laughably false. It is the scientific side that always strives to present evidence, in fact, it is an obligation to their activities, while the religious side has never cared about evidence, except an old book. To say creationists go extra miles to assure the truth is blatantly false. With such a mindset, it is not worth arguing.
I don't find it laughable but rather arrogant and impudent that so many call evolutionists scientist and scientists agreeing with the creation model as some other group. I'm sure Newton, Kepler, Maury, Faraday, Pasteur, Pascal, Rawlinson, Stokes, Maxwell, Morse, Linnaeus, Thompson, Joule, Kelvin, DaVinci, Decartes, Dalton, Lister, Fleming, Fabre, and yes there are so many others who would take great umbrage with this hijacking of science. It seems that what has happened is a turnaround of what happened during the close of the Dark Ages. Now you have a well funded evolutionist faction that makes every effort to restrict the discussion to their point of view (and their god is their point of view, humanism). Consider it, because this position invokes the results as the inquisition. "We must not give these creationists any credibility by choosing to debate them" is the mantra of most evolution scientists deliver now. They think they've cowed the public into listening only to them, so they're afraid they might lose their position. This is what the inquisition councils did, the Pharisees and the Sadducees did it, the Estates-General did it, Communism did it. It's the same direction, and the same purpose.
there is no so such thing as an "evolutionist". There is just science, reason and fact vs wackos that believe in mythology.. There is no debate... fact beats voodoo
The debate was a wonderful way to find out the two ideologies present on this subject. The fallacy of those who hold to a evolutionary view of the world and the science that tries to describe it is this: Evolutionist believe creationists are anti-science. This patently false. In fact, because creationist believe that the Bible is not only absolutely truthful but also places the highest value on truth in its absolute sense, creationist will go the extra mile to be assured of truth as asserted by man's reason, even scientific reasoning. Many times, what is asserted as truth by a 'smart' person, can prove to be false. To challenge the dating systems that many rely on to try and determine the age of this, that or the other, is not anti-science. In fact, it is quite scientific, to a fault, to challenge something that as Bill Nye would say, "...doesn't hold water.." But it is helpful to all if we have open discussions in all realms of issues showing respect for one another as we seek to good to all. We will be able to learn more, more quickly thus being more productive as we serve the needs of those around us and abroad.
Repeating your nonsense will never make it true, no matter how many times you repeat it!
No matter how clever you twist truthful words and misrepresent actual science, you will never overcome the GLARING FACT that your religious presumptions have not a single solitary piece of fact nor evidence that will ever support it! You can keep repeating your gross misconceptions till you die, but you will NEVER turn them into truth nor fact!
Science is constantly re-evaluating its own theories and updates those models with new verified FACTS!
Religion is stagnant and useless. Religion was an ancient mythology invented by primitive man to help explain the countless natural phenonmenon that early humans could simply not comprehend!
You now have the choice to embrace scientific enlightenment or remain forever ignorant by embacing imaginary fairy tales.
You apparantly chose to remain ignorant.
You can reevaluate and reevaluate what you can't know (because you weren't there, nor was any other human), and you'll end up with the same predicament. Anyone willing to admit the truth knows that an observational experience of origins will never happen. Not just Bill Nye, but every other evolutionist wants to deny thus fact. That's why no other evolutionary scientist will debate Ken Ham or any viable creation scientist. They don't want the emperor's missing clothes to show in public. Well, they showed during this debate, and perhaps now, some the scientist who don't dare reveal their doubts about evolutionary origins theory (for fear of their jobs) will enter the discussion. All that I ever get from the vast majority of people believing in evolutionary theory is that there is "overwhelming evidence to support Earth's age". What this predominately means is the so-called measuring of radiometric decay. But these measures have been proven to be inconsistent, besides the fact that the assumption that all natural laws have always existed makes this theory porous at best . No, it's not observable science to make those assumptions. No experiment can be set up for it, and therefore it is not repeatable, and therefore it is not science.
What are you talking about? "emperors missing clothes" its science, look up the word please. Look up what it means for something to be accepted as a scientific theory. Do just a little bit of research. The bible is stories, I say fiction and you believe fact you must have enough common sense that no matter how wondeful you think those stories are you have absolutely no prrof what so ever that any of it is true.
Conclusions about origins are not observable, they are not repeatable. The "emperor's clothes" were revealed as missing when Bill Nye accurately said that no one knows where the matter came from before their presumed "big bang", nor where consciousness came from. These are matters of origins that no evolutionist or man of any kind can know. If they call an evolutionary model science, where is the observation required that established it. Current physical laws can be observed and repeated. The so-called laws of evolution cannot and have not been. At the conclusion of Charles Darwin studies he state that if his theories were true, there would be an avalanche of physical evidence to Irrefutably corroborate them. Instead evolutionist establish claims by assumption, and "great passion".
How can you believe this stuff? How are you able to operate in life? How do you drive go to work, pay bills, and drive a car. It is terrifying that we share a world who believe as you do. You literally are an adult that believes in myths and its shapes your worldview... So scary... please learn to think critically
When you meet God you'll have to explain to Him how He was deceptive. Oh, that's right, He'll already know why you thought that. Romans 3:4
Yawn. Got anything new besides threats?
The bible foretold things that were yet to be written in your science books. Imagine that!
Such as: "There will be disasters!" "There will be wars!" "There will be powerful leaders who mislead people!" "There will be greedy conmen who start religions other than *my* 'true' religion!"
Can you believe it? Some of those incredibly precise and specific predictions came true – couldn't possibly be coincidence.
No point in arguing with people who read or lets be honest don't read but are told about things that happen in an old book and believe every word of it without question. Thankfully as civilization has much better access to education religion is dying out.
The bible is more accurate than your education books. Imagine that!
lol what are you basing that on? Faith? there is no logic in your comment. Just the fear that if everything you have based your life on is wrong you may look stupid.
If what you BELIEVE is true, then you won't look like anything; you'll just be a rotting heap of spoiled mass. God just has an alternative; it's your choice. Jeremiah 29:11-13
Please google Pascal's wager for an answer why your statement is silly.
Yes you have to IMAGINE that for it to be true.......
If laughing were a logical argument you would have point. Educational text books had Piltdown man in them saying it was 1 million years old. It turned out the Piltdown man was fake and only 500 years old. That is a very large error. Educational text books claimed that the earth was 2.2 billion years old 50 years ago, and now they say it is 4.2 billion years old. One way or another there was an error that was very large. The bible does not actually say how old the earth is. it is an interpretation across many books that some Christians debate with other Christians.
So your saying Agentx because science updates itself when new information comes to light we should follow interpretations of the bible first and rely on science as a back up? Was it the bible that proved those things wrong or was it science? I think your very lost.
Harry Potter's 7 volumes are more accurate the the Bible. Imagine that!
*See? I can make unfounded statements too! Gee, this is fun!
Can it be true? I wasn't aware of that. I would like to donate my life savings to the church of Harry. Do you have an address?
Sure. Call the number above. A girl named Jenny will answer, and she'll give you the address, which, coincidently, happens to be mine.
"No point in arguing with people who read or lets be honest don't read but are told about things that happen in an old book and believe every word of it without question."
Like people who believe every word in "science" text book and never bother to question it?
Do you question the Bible? Or are you just going to play the 'contrary' game?
lol i think we know your a religious one. See how science works is very smart people who enjoy a subject study it.The really smart ones then spend their life proving or disproving said subject. So i trust science because I know if there was a way to disprove it somebody would take great joy in being the one to do so.
"I have a fundamental belief in the Bible as the Word of God, written by those who were
inspired. I study the Bible daily."– Isaac Newton
"The book of nature which we have to read is written by the finger of God." - Michael
Faraday (The greatest scientist of the 19th century)
“God existed before there were human beings on Earth" - Max Planck (Founder of Quantum Physics)
If those quotes are correct and not taken out of context then they are a person beliefs they aren't facts or science. Those scientists never proved gods existence or the correctness of the bible. Your not one for making a very strong point.
Sam, was Isaac Newton a smart person?
Isaac Newton writings:
Religion 7,500 pages (mostly about Jesus Christ)
Opticks 406 pages
Principia 974 pages
"God created everything by number, weight and measure." - Issac Newton
I don't know I never met him and as of yet you haven't made a point.
Isaac Newton's studies of the occult, including The Philosopher's Stone:
Science is far broader than the age of the Earth or man. People who believe in creation by a God are normally very open to discovering laws of nature, investigating through scientific method, and innovating. The MRI was revolutionary to modern science and medicine, developed by a scientist who had a creationist world view, for example. Your need to use lol rather hold an intelligent discussion isn't making the evolutionary point of view look so smart. If you have a link to a reliability study on carbon dating, I am open to learning, as I am not rigid in my stance on the matter, as you seem to be.
Paul, if that's the take people have about science then they know nothing about science. Theories are disproved, modified or new theories replace them as our understanding improves. Science in NOT the end answer. rather it's a methodology for zeroing in on answers which get harder and harder to disprove. At some point, the become generally accepted as "true" but truth is malleable.
Faith is static as belief must be.
What?! The whole point of science is to question what we don't understand and then try to figure it out. Science is quite open about what is considered a fact versus what is a theory and what is a hypothesis. Science classes present all of these things and encourage students to use the scientific method to learn and problem solve. A belief that Genesis is literally how our planet and the flora and fauna that inhabits its surface started does not fit into the definition of science and therefore does not belong in science classes or text books. Besides, there's simply too much evidence that our planet is much, much older than 10,000 years and absolutely none that supports a young planet where plants and animals magically appeared.
The whole point of science is that you question what you read in the current science books.
If no one questioned what they were taught in science class as kids, wouldn't we still believe in the pudding model of the atom.
The whole point is that Science is always changing with new experiments.
You question and test it through the scientific process, which creationists still can't figure out how to do. They have no scientific theory which has been established in court many times. Several of the leading ones have admitted it.
.........He typed on the internet. Thanks quantum mechanics!
If you want to study God's word, I would suggest that you study reality because that is what he gave us. To believe in creationism you need to believe in a deceptive God who created a reality that was meant to mislead us.
When you meet God you'll have to explain to Him how He was deceptive. Oh, that's right, He'll already know why you thought that. Romans 3:4
Ah the all knowing god. What a boring existance that must be. And what a sorry existance for us, for our lives are predetermined (unless god doesn't know what our actions will be?) and we have no say in what we do, what we believe, how we act.
I wonder, does god know where he/she came from?
How very accommodating for the well known, accomplished, Bill Nye to be compassionate enough to meet at this place in Kentucky, On the other hand, you will NEVER see this Ham guy do the opposite, and for very good reason. Now, Bill, do not attract any more attention to these knuckle draggers. They can keep their backward beliefs at that "Museum.
Organized religion is poison. If one is truly authentic in their quest for the Divine, they take responsibility for their own spiritual development. That said, I am a very happy, well adjusted spiritual being living in the physical, and have no problem merging science and spirituality. Many feel the same way, but this museum guy and the fundies are in a category that is akin to authoritarianism. Please, Bill, STOP giving them a platform to infect society w/their insane BS.
Could you give us a clue as to what you mean by spirituality?
What have you found in your quest? I wonder if it any diferent in the happiness i have in living each day to it's fullest and enjoying the company of others.
Regardless of where anyone falls on the Creationism vs. Evolution divide, I completely agree with Mr. Nye's desire to draw attention to science and it's importance to the economy, society and America's status in the world.
Attention to and participation in so-called Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM) area of knowledge has all but disappeared in the last 5-10 years. Wake up America! We are losing our place in the world as a leader in innovation!
There are now fewer STEM students in academia. Couple this with high tuition rate, STEM will likely disappear.
Sadly, both the public and private sector are doing next to nothing to support STEM related research and development. Large and small corporations now focus on increasing the CEO and Board of Directors personal immediate shareholder value accomplished by cost cutting and operation closures. These greedy fat cats care nothing for the shares outstanding shareholders (average Joes and Janes like you and me), their customers of their goods and services, the public, and (*GASP*) their employees (*GASP*)
Rather than invest in new products, new patents, new processes and new jobs (a mysteriously deemed disease these days) they maximize profits through elimination and extermination only to divest as quickly as they can locking in artificial profits (meaning unsustainable profits to the fools that invests in their schemes).
The House of Reps are destroying STEMs as well, cutting R&D, education, public funding for roads and bridges, even vaporizing small defense contractors in the name of austerity. Look around America, are we better off because of this? Have we forgotten that job creation leads to prosperity for all?
The 1% are not innovating, creating and helping America. They are shoveling billions of cheap money into their pockets (thanks to the Federal Reserve keeping interest rates low). And we want to give them that much more in MORE Tax cuts???
Hey Washington! Where's MY tax cut??? I, a member of the diminishing middle class also says I am TAXED ENOUGH ALREADY (The TEA monicker can work for the middle class, too. Just keep the idiot politicians thank you very much). I want a well paying job (in STEM), future security, a retirement and affordable health care.
House Reps, you, YOU let the middle class tax cut expire in 2012!!! YOU caused me to I lose $150 a month in what I needed for groceries, gas and electric. Then YOU have the audacity to tell ME that lowering the wealthiest 1% taxes is good for society!!! YOU have cut programs that cost me several and others jobs. YOU are taking food out of children's mouths by cutting SNAPS!!! YOU are abandoning the middle class by not extending long term unemployment insurance. YOU are destroying our Mother's and Daughter's health and well-being!!! YOU are at war with middle class America!!!
Independents vote these jerks out, please. I would care less about the -D or the -R's after their names. We need pragmatic and compromising representatives not Right or Left wing ideologues!
Coming back full circle, I'd give a #$%^ about Creationism vs. Evolution, its not paying my bills, saving for my retirement or helping me find a job in my beloved Engineering profession.
What I care about is that Mr. Nyes makes a point that is getting washed out from all the annoying petty noise from both sides, STEM is dying and needs to come back or else we will decline to 3rd world status. We are already heading in that direction.
Thank you, Mr. Nyes for speaking up for the STEM community.
Debating Ham is like a Harvard professor debating a 5 year old.....a waste of time.
You know, when I was in college, I was determined to not “fall prey” to the “lies” of evolution. In my Historical Geology class I was constantly on guard against all the inconsistencies I noted. For my final project I gathered a stack of evolutionary works, planning to read their perspectives and refute them using Scripture. I was set!
And I opened the first one.
As I studied that first chapter, I was stunned; it was not about science. There were no scientific arguments. It simply denied the truth of the Bible.
And as I sat there in that library, the strangest thing happened: I saw it. I saw the simplicity and futility in belief of the Bible. With this new revelation came the greatest emptiness and dead feeling I could never describe.
I shut the books and walked away like a zombie. I wanted to believe in God but knew it was pointless.
But later that week I spoke, tongue in cheek, to the God I now knew didn’t exist.
God, if you are there (although my mind knows you’re not) will you help me believe? I am going to foolishly continue to believe, so if by some wierd quirk you ARE, then, please help me somehow believe?!
That weekend my brother was cleaning his closet and I looked through the hefty sack to rescue anything valuable to me. And there I saw it. An ancient worn out copy of the Morris classic, Scientific Creationism. I grabbed it like a life preserver and devoured it. God–whose name is I AM–showed me HE IS. No matter who knows He’s not!
Would be interesting to know what you found that helped you...
Several of the inconsistencies I had questioned were answered, referencing non-religious scholarly journals which I looked up.
One of the examples that I can remember (it's been awhile) regarded archaeopteryx, which my professor had hailed as a missing link. Another regarded the vast insufficiencies of residual buildup that would be required for belief in an old earth paradigm, specifically the amount of nickel in lakes.
What really wowed me was that the God that my mind screamed was not there answered my faithless prayer. If you, like me, know that God is not, do something crazy and ask him to reveal himself to you. He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? Even answers if we crack open our minds just a bit. 🙂
ps-Jesus loves you!!! And so who am I not to?
Maybe he should take less time finding stuff for you in your closet and more time helping people who are being wronged. Your accepting an easy answer because it makes you happy.
lol maybe you should of kept reading those book on science.
" For my final project I gathered a stack of evolutionary works, planning to read their perspectives and refute them using Scripture. I was set!
And I opened the first one.
As I studied that first chapter, I was stunned; it was not about science. There were no scientific arguments. It simply denied the truth of the Bible."
So there was no science in the science books.
"And as I sat there in that library, the strangest thing happened: I saw it. I saw the simplicity and futility in belief of the Bible."
So how do you go from no science in the science books, to unbelief in God?
Evolution has nothing to do with disbelief in any god. It's simply a theory about the change In life over time. The Catholics have no problem with it and the previous Pope admitted that the evidence was very solid for evolution. It's only the fundamentalists who take every word in the bible literally that have a problem with evolution.
@Michael B : Of course science has proved man is over 6000 years old because man is far older than that
How? By radiometric dating? Well, this same dating method also 'proved' that a freshly killed seal died 13,000 years ago.
Can you give us examples of your theory of soft Dino tissue again? That's always fun to see.
Also, please tell us how UPC symbols are the Mark of the beast?
Seals live on aquatic organisms that have incorporated carbon that was once in the atmosphere, but which eventually ended up in an ocean. By the time it was incorporated into the aquatic organisms the carbon was already thousands of years old. The effect is known as the "reservoir effect". Scientists have known about that effect for a long time and don't date organisms such as seals by radiocarbon dating. Your statement about radiocarbon dating giving a false ancient age for a recently killed seal carcass relies on readers not knowing that scientists don't use radiocarbon dating on seal carcasses, mollusk shells, etc., because of the well-known reservoir effect.
Probably because either she didn't know that, or is intentionally being dishonest. This poster is known for that.
@alonsoquixote : Scientists have known about that effect for a long time and don't date organisms such as seals by radiocarbon dating
As you have rightly pointed out, oceans are carbon sinks. This included all ocean going life, be it seals, fish or clams. And if a person's primary source of food came from the ocean, then that person would also radiometrically date to older than the person's actual age. So, how did the scientists who proved man is over 6000 years eliminate a false dates caused by consuming ocean-going life?
Are you carbon dating them right after a person dies? Because how else would the contents of their stomach factor in?
@867-5309 : Are you carbon dating them right after a person dies? Because how else would the contents of their stomach factor in?
Carbon comes from one's environment. Usually, it comes from the atmosphere, but it could be from the food one consumes. Once this carbon intake occurs, the carbon gets absorbed by the body's cells. The body continuously absorbs and discharges carbon over time, including both normal carbon (C12) to radioactive carbon (C14). However, when that person dies, this flow of carbon will cease. Carbon dating measures the level of C14 within the cells. But, if one begins with a higher ratio of C14 within the body's cells, this would cause a excessively high reading for a radiometic date. And consuming food from the ocean would cause the body to store this higher ratio of C14 within the body's cells, not just one's stomach.
So your saying either your smarter than all the worlds scientist when it comes to carbon dating or they all know its wrong but they keep following it anyway. Write a paper if you know so much.
Got a link proving what you're saying? Thanks.
I've never heard of ones diet affecting the carbon dating.
You should be a college professor! You single-handedly disproved the validity of Radiocarbon Dating. I'm going to forward your comment to the Nobel Committee. I'm sure once they read it, they'll revoke Willard Libby's Nobel prize in chemistry and give it to you. You can then use the prize money to further your research. Congrats! 😀
Carbon dating is only one of a dozen radiometric dating techniques. Whoops, there goes your whole world view.
Is evolution science-based or faith-based?
1) Use of the scientific method presumes repeatable experiments.
2) Using extant evidence from a past event precludes the use of science because one must interpret the evidence without conducting any experimentation. For example, if an apple is found on the ground under a tree then it cannot be tested how it got there. Maybe it fell from the tree and maybe it was moved there by some other force (i.e. animal or man).
3) Evolution cannot repeat any occurrence that happened in the past, so it fails the criterion of a 'repeatable experiment'.
4) Evolution experiments have been conducted in a laboratory setting, striving to prove future evolution is possible. However, this does not prove that past mutations explains all of the variations that we see today.
5) The conducted evolution experiments failed to produce new offspring that was superior to original. Many of the offspring were sterile and could not reproduce.
So, in conclusion, evolution is not science-based. Rather, it is based upon one's faith, contrary to the claims of evolution's acolytes.
“If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bs.”
Science should view both evolution and creationism as viable theories as you can't prove or disprove either.
Faith should view science as man understanding what his creator made.
They ARE NOT exclusive.
You don't understand evolution enough to be discussing it otherwise you would realize how wrong what you just said was.
What you've said is false. Creationism isn't a scientific theory which has been established in court by creationists themselves.
1) That point is valid
2) With respect to the apple analogy, scientific experimentation is used inductively to determine the probable causes by conducting experiments under similar conditions. By the principle of parsimony, we can surmise what the likely causes are, and reinforce those hypotheses with repeated experiments to form a statistical model of causes. Science is about evidence, not proof.
3) Science is always used to make retrodictions. How? Simple, knowing how a concept such as evolution works, you can use the theory to locate gaps in the fossil record or DNA coding to find the missing pieces. It works quite nicely, and doing so supports Evolution as a valid theory a hundred fold.
4) Again, parsimony. Evolution is the likeliest cause of past mutations and genotypic changes in past populations. Magic wizard in the sky, not so much. Since evolution is already an observed fact, making the leap isn't that extraordinary, especially when you take into account the DNA code and compare it to similar species to see that a chain of events in mutations existed up to a divergent point.
5) Check out the Lenski experiment, where the backterium successfully adapted (evolved) to a new environment to metabolize different nutrients that the previous population was not able to do. Unless your definition of 'superior' is something different.
@DerpDetector : 2) With respect to the apple analogy, scientific experimentation is used inductively
Reproducibility is the ability of an entire experiment or study to be reproduced, either by the researcher or by someone else working independently. It is one of the main principles of the scientific method and relies on ceteribus paribus.
Without reproducibility, you're not following the scientific method.
@DerpDetector : 3) Science is always used to make retrodictions.
If it doesn't follow the scientific method, then it is not science, but a corruption of science.
@DerpDetector : 4) Again, parsimony. Evolution is the likeliest cause of past mutations and genotypic changes in past populations. Magic wizard in the sky, not so much.
I realize this is what your faith convinces you.
@DerpDetector : 5) Check out the Lenski experiment, where the backterium
How does one prove that this is a different species, rather than an adaptation within the same species?
1) Reproducibility with respect to evolution refers to the ability to reproduce results SIMILAR to that which the EVIDENCE of evolutionary history shows has LIKELY occurred in the past. The type of species in question is irrelevant. It is the METHOD by which any species underwent evolutionary changes that is studied. The common thread present in ALL species where evolution is backed by fossil, DNA, carbon-dated evidence, etc. is where scientists can apply reproducibility. What you are confusing is akin to challenging the answers of an algebraic formula when you plug in different variables, rather than the formula itself.
2) Retrodictions have been successfully applied to study WHERE to look for gaps in knowlegdge, the simplest example of which, is where in the strata levels one would attempt to look for transitional fossils, and roughly what it might look like. This is part of the PREDICTIVE nature of scientific theories that make them so reliable.
3) Do not confuse faith with statistical confidence.
4) Species are artificial checkpoints that scientists use to conveniently differentiate different genotypic organisms. One of the qualifications used is that divergent species that are different enough cannot reproduce with each other, or if a new species develops an adaptation that was not present in the previous one or ANY of its ancestors.
re: #2... maybe you cannot prove that a particular apple on the ground fell from the tree on it's own, but you can test the hypothesis by watching the tree and looking for animals carrying the same type of apple with the same DNA and will find it is infinitely more probable that the apple did indeed drop there as compared to being picked by an animal and deposited there.
But if you insist that one cannot be certain nevertheless, then one can also claim that if the complexity of the universe requires a devine being (and since on cannot prove one does not exist) then it is equally fine to claim that a perfect devine being cannot exist without a more perfect devine being having created that one, and a very perfect devine being having created that one ad nauseum.
@Poppa : maybe you cannot prove that a particular apple on the ground fell from the tree on it's own
Yet, this IS the claim of evolution – a particular species mutated to become a different species. And they cannot prove a past event.
@Poppa : it is infinitely more probable
And it must be taken on faith.
@Poppa : it is equally fine to claim that a perfect devine being cannot exist without a more perfect devine being having created that one
This violates the law of infinite regression and is thus illogical.
"3) Evolution cannot repeat any occurrence that happened in the past, so it fails the criterion of a 'repeatable experiment'.
Your miscomprehension of science is sad. A repeatable or replicable experiment is one that can be conducted more than once, preferably by independent researchers, e.g. a DNA forensics test. One can take a suspect's DNA and the DNA from the crime scene and repeat the comparison 2,10 or 100 times. Successful corroboration of the replicated comparisons improves confidence in the conclusion, akin to the sample size in polling data. Science does not require the direct observation or the recapitulation of a past event to be applicable. A DNA paternity test is no less valid because the technician failed to directly observe the act of conception or failed to recapitulate a conception from the mother's and putative father(s)'s genetic material.
The rest of your points are equally misinformed. My guess is that you've never actually conducted any scientific research . . .
The purpose of religion seems to be to drag God down to our level so we can set him straight on the facts.
The purpose of religion is to scare people in to being a good person by telling them stories and threatening them with eternal damnation. If you are willing to base your life on faith steer clear of arguments based on fact.
As Mr Nye pointed out, there are people who believe in God AND science. They are not mutually exclusive. Mr. Ham's attempt to limit science in the name of God just smacks of selfishness and hubris. Why does Mr. Ham limit the glory and power of God? Isn't God powerful enough to create an ordered world that is subject to the laws of science, to his laws of science? Why does Mr. Ham get to tell God what he can or can't do? Mr. Ham admitted that we can't be biblical literalists. There are many things the bible okays that we don't follow. For example. the bible tells us to kill our kids if they rebel against us. So why pick and choose the things that work for us and disregard the things that don't. If you read the bible literally, it can be one seriously scary, racist, bigoted and inaccurate book. But if you read it as a compilation of writings influenced by historical events and culture, it a treasure trove and the perfect book to guide religious faith. Mr. Ham is a cafeteria bible literalist. He picks and chooses depending on his own desires. He's a religious hack and an embarrassment to those of us who love God. But we forgive him and pity him as we are called to do by Christ.