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Bill Nye: Creationism Threatens U.S. Science

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- The man known to a generation of Americans as "The Science Guy" is condemning efforts by some Christian groups to cast doubts on evolution and lawmakers who want to bring the Bible into science classrooms.

Bill Nye, a mechanical engineer and star of the popular 1990s TV show "Bill Nye The Science Guy," has waded into the evolution debate with an online video that urges parents not to pass their religious-based doubts about evolution on to their children.

Nye has spent a career teaching science to children and teens with good-natured and sometimes silly humor, but has not been known to delve into topics as divisive as evolution.

Christians who view the stories of the Old Testament as historical fact have come to be known as creationists, and many argue that the world was created by God just a few thousand years ago.

"The Earth is not 6,000 or 10,000 years old," Nye said in an interview with The Associated Press, citing scientists' estimates that it is about 4.5 billion years old. "It's not. And if that conflicts with your beliefs, I strongly feel you should question your beliefs."

Millions of Americans do hold those beliefs, according to a June Gallup poll that found 46 percent of Americans believe God created humans in their present form about 10,000 years ago.

Nye, 56, also decried efforts in recent years by lawmakers and school boards in some states to present Bible stories as an alternative to evolution in public schools. Tennessee passed a law earlier this year that protects teachers who let students criticize evolution and other scientific theories. That echoes a Louisiana law passed in 2008 that allows teachers to introduce supplemental teaching materials in science classes.

"If we raise a generation of students who don't believe in the process of science, who think everything that we've come to know about nature and the universe can be dismissed by a few sentences translated into English from some ancient text, you're not going to continue to innovate," Nye said in a wide-ranging telephone interview.

The brief online video was not Nye's first foray into the combustible debate, but "it's the first time it's gotten to be such a big deal."

 
"I can see where one gets so caught up in this (debate) that you say something that will galvanize people in a bad way, that will make them hate you forever," he said. "But I emphasize that I'm not questioning someone's religion – much of that is how you were brought up."

In the video he tells adults they can dismiss evolution, "but don't make your kids do it. Because we need them." Posted by Big Think, an online knowledge forum, the clip went viral and has 4.6 million views on YouTube. It has garnered 182,000 comments from critics and supporters.

It drew the ire of the creationism group Answers in Genesis, which built a biblically based Creation Museum in Kentucky that teaches the stories of the Old Testament and has attracted headlines for its assertion that dinosaurs roamed alongside Adam and Eve.

The group produced a response video featuring two scientists who say the Bible has the true account of Earth's origins, and that "children should be exposed to both ideas concerning our past."

Nye, who is prone to inject dry humor into scientific discussions, said Earth is about 4.5 billion years old.

"What I find troubling, when you listen to these people ... once in a while I get the impression that they're not kidding," Nye said.

Ken Ham, a co-founder of Answers in Genesis, said dating methods used by scientists to measure the age of the earth are contradictory and many don't point to millions or billions of years of time.

"We say the only dating method that is absolute is the Word of God," Ham said. "Time is the crucial factor for Bill Nye. Without the time of millions of years, you can't postulate evolution change."

America is home to the world's biggest creationist following, Ham said, and the $27 million Creation Museum has averaged about 330,000 visitors a year since it opened just south of Cincinnati in 2007.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/09/24/bill-nye-creationism-science_n_1908926.html?utm_hp_ref=mostpopular

 

by on Sep. 25, 2012 at 10:26 AM
Replies (241-250):
Clairwil
by Ruby Member on Sep. 28, 2012 at 4:53 AM
Quoting cammibear:

Has science ever demonstrated that mutations + natural selection = more complex organisms?

Yes.   The mathematical underpinnings apply to more than just biological evolution.   The same mechanic can be used to evolve software programs.

Here's one fun example:

Clairwil
by Ruby Member on Sep. 28, 2012 at 4:57 AM
Quoting cammibear:


Because all the "evidence" I've seen involved a loss of information.

If everything we see has evolved by adding information to the genome, why do we not have observable evidence now?

Where did DNA come from? Better yet, where did information come from?

I'm going to answer this but, first, because I don't want you trying to change the goal posts on me, I want you to give a precise formal definition of what you mean by "information".   By that I mean an algorithm we can apply to any particular genepool of DNA in order to produce a single number that represents the amount of information encoded in that genepool.

Clairwil
by Ruby Member on Sep. 28, 2012 at 5:08 AM
Quoting cammibear:
Quoting Clairwil:
Quoting cammibear:
Quoting Clairwil:
Quoting cammibear:


Every "fact" discovered in geology, biology, etc., can be explained by application of the historical record in Genesis, and I believe arguably more scientifically than Evolution. And why wouldn't it be, when the creator of the world and the author of the written Word are the same. :)

What is your interpretation of all the marsupials being in Australasia?

Where you would say Continental drift over millions of years, I would
say global flood, massive earthquakes, and fountains springing up from
the deep that caused changes in the earths surface. The Genesis Flood
explains what we see in the fossil record.

How you do account for the predictive power of Continental drift?  Something that oil companies interested only in making money base their very expensive test drill sites upon?   Why would they spend the money on geologists who disagree with you, if you are right and the entire geology profession is wrong?

How do your 'massive earthquakes' account for ALL the marsupial species being moved from the site of the Ark's landing, to the same very distant area (Australasia) ?

How do you account for the pattern of the age of the rocks beneath the Atlantic Ocean?

Has science ever demonstrated that mutations + natural selection = more complex organisms?

Because all the "evidence" I've seen involved a loss of information.

If everything we see has evolved by adding information to the genome, why do we not have observable evidence now?

Where did DNA come from? Better yet, where did information come from?

By the way, I hope everybody noted cammibear's response above was in no way an actual reply to the questions asked her about her claims on continental drift, let alone a substantiation of her claim that every observation in geology, biology, etc., can be explained by application of the historical record in Genesis.

Can you explain that, cammibear, except by trying to claim that ALL the dating technique are not only wrong, but they all happen to be wrong in such a way that they give identical wrong answers?

It tends to be around this point that creationists start questioning whether the speed of light is constant. :-)

AdrianneHill
by Platinum Member on Sep. 28, 2012 at 9:32 AM
Show me evidence and I will admit I'm wrong and change my mind.
I don't think you are willing to do the same. The big problem is believers think pointing at a tree or a mountain and saying that should be all the proof I need for God's existence is the same as providing evidence. It isn't.


Quoting cammibear:

Lol, yeah, I could say the exact same thing of you. You are not open to anything but evolution, so every conclusion you come to is based on that presupposition.




Quoting AdrianneHill:

Just because you think that doesn't make it true. You want it to be true so badly you are willing to ignore the vast majority of various types of scientific evidence in most of the things going on in the world because you can't bring yourself to believe something that you hold as an important litmus test to true faith.


How are there curves in the grand canyon if it wad made in a single catastrophic flood? And the whole dinosaur business? What about saber tooth cats and dire wolves? Simple answers like "God did it" don't really answer anything.






Quoting cammibear:

Obviously where you would say common descent, I would say common design. Where you would say Continental drift over millions of years, I would say global flood, massive earthquakes, and fountains springing up from the deep that caused changes in the earths surface. The Genesis Flood explains what we see in the fossil record.












Quoting Clairwil:





Quoting cammibear:






Every "fact" discovered in geology, biology, etc., can be explained by application of the historical record in Genesis, and I believe arguably more scientifically than Evolution. And why wouldn't it be, when the creator of the world and the author of the written Word are the same. :)

What is your interpretation of the reptile genes in the human genome?

What



is your interpretation of all the marsupials being in Australasia?

What



is your interpretation of island species being similar to species from



the nearest mainland?

What is your interpretation of the ERV



markers that confirm the phylogenetic tree of the primates?

What



is your interpretation of creatures that have features in the womb that



they lose before birth (such as human babies having full skin fur



coverage like the other great apes)?

What is your interpretation



of why humans are prone to hip problems?



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cammibear
by Gold Member on Sep. 28, 2012 at 11:52 AM
Faith in evolution origins. Faith in chance and necessity. Faith in below zero probability.


Quoting Clairwil:


Quoting cammibear:

I don't deny that saying God created...involves faith. But making statements about everything evolving over millions of years...also involves faith.



In what?   Faith in scientists?  In human nature?


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cammibear
by Gold Member on Sep. 28, 2012 at 12:11 PM
Who wrote the code? Or did it just happen by chance?

Your building on information already there. Information built upon by intelligence. (admittedly, I just skimmed over your links but when you refer to "source code", it led me to assume it began with information)

When I asked where information came from, I want to know it's origin. ID is the most logical answer, whether you believe that intelligence was God, or aliens.


Quoting Clairwil:


Quoting cammibear:

Has science ever demonstrated that mutations + natural selection = more complex organisms?



Yes.   The mathematical underpinnings apply to more than just biological evolution.   The same mechanic can be used to evolve software programs.

Here's one fun example:


Posted on CafeMom Mobile
Clairwil
by Ruby Member on Sep. 28, 2012 at 12:15 PM
Quoting cammibear:

Who wrote the code? Or did it just happen by chance?

The code of the viruses evolved.   That was the point.   Nobody wrote it.

"non-random survival of randomly mutating self-replicators"

Clairwil
by Ruby Member on Sep. 28, 2012 at 12:22 PM
Quoting cammibear:

Who wrote the code? Or did it just happen by chance?

Your building on information already there. Information built upon by intelligence. (admittedly, I just skimmed over your links but when you refer to "source code", it led me to assume it began with information)

When I asked where information came from, I want to know it's origin. ID is the most logical answer, whether you believe that intelligence was God, or aliens.

One of the arguments used by Christians who accept evolution is to say that, in the same way that a programmer created the ENVIRONMENT in which self-replicators could exist, mutate and have varying survival rates, but didn't write the CODE of the self-replicators; God might have created the ENVIRONMENT conducive to life evolving, thereby creating via evolution, the resulting living creatures.

Clairwil
by Ruby Member on Sep. 28, 2012 at 12:25 PM
Quoting cammibear:
Quoting Clairwil:
Quoting cammibear:

I don't deny that saying God created...involves faith. But making statements about everything evolving over millions of years...also involves faith.

In what?   Faith in scientists?  In human nature?

Faith in below zero probability.

*sighs*

CREATIONIST

Thinks the probability of evolution having happened is "below zero"


Sorry cammibear, that quote was too funny not to immortalise for the sake of the rest of the internet.

ramita
by Member on Sep. 28, 2012 at 12:30 PM
I'll never understand why both cant be right! People take the Bible way to literally without reading and understanding all of it. Why couldn't have taken God millions of years to create the Earth, animals, humans, etc. Why couldnt evolution be how he created everything?
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