Bill Nye Makes Ham Sandwich Out Of Creationism Whole Cloth

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Tuesday night there was a live debate on creationism vs. evolution between best-selling Christian author Ken Ham and Emmy Award-winning educator Bill Nye ("the Science Guy"). Any doubts on who won?

Hint: Sliced ham on Nye.

Here's a few highlights. The entire (and it's long) debate is below, but here's some nuggets you will surely enjoy. These are from NPR:

To the argument that the creationists' theory is that the earth is only about 4000 years old Nye states:

"I encourage you to explain to us why we should accept your word for it that natural law changed just 4,000 years ago — completely — and there's no record of it.

"You know, there are pyramids that are older than that. There are human populations that are far older than that — with traditions that go back farther than that. And it's just not reasonable to me that everything changed 4,000 years ago."

The story of Noah's ark:

"Then, as far as Noah being an extraordinary shipwright, I'm extraordinarily skeptical," Nye says. He cites his own family's background in New England, where people spent their lives learning how to build ships.

"It's very reasonable, perhaps, to you that Noah had superpowers and was able to build this extraordinary craft with seven family members," Nye says. "But to me, this is just not reasonable."

That's not to say that Ken Ham was a pushover. No, he got his licks in too. Here's his response to the Noah's ark argument above.

Ham defends Noah's ship-building ability, saying he hasn't met him — and neither has Nye.

Nye was at the top of his game for this debate. One of the testier moments came when Ham argued that you can't take the past and project the future. You must believe only in what it says in the bible.

He [Nye] says Ham takes the Bible — "as written in English" and translated many times — as more accurate and reasonable than "what I and everybody in here can observe."

"As far as, 'You can't observe the past,' I have to stop you right there," Nye says. "That's what we do in astronomy. All we can do in astronomy is look at the past.

"By the way, you're looking at the past right now," he tells the audience, "because the speed of light bounces off of me and then gets to your eyes. And I'm delighted to see that the people in the back appear just that much younger than the people in the front."

One final argument to share with you that puts some mustard on this Ham sandwich is this:

Nye discusses layers of ancient stone and sediment in places such as the Grand Canyon, and the various animals you'll see there. He says there is no evidence of intense churning and bubbling that an epic flood would bring.

"And by the way, if this great flood drained through the Grand Canyon, wouldn't there have been a Grand Canyon on every continent?" Nye asks.

He then discusses the layers of animal fossils in the layers — from rudimentary sea animals to "the famous trilobites" and clams, oysters, and mammals. "You never, ever, find a higher animal mixed in with a lower one," he says. "You never find a lower one trying to swim its way to the higher one."

So here's the entire debate. Like I cautioned, it's a bit long. Each of the two combatants got 30 minutes to start off with for statements. Then it becomes Q & A from the audience. That comes around the one hour and 50 minute mark, if you want to fast forward. Enjoy this epic battle.

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  • David G

    Paul, I don't fault anyone who wishes to believe in the bible, look to it for guidance or answers of any kind. But I don't find it constructive for people to cite the Bible as the book of answers. I look at creationism as it's movement grows as needing a bit of reality check from time to time. Here's a video clip that sums up my thinking: http://youtu.be/YW3MIixEps4

  • http://ifthethunderdontgetya.blogspot.com/ ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®©

    It's happening as part of a deliberate strategy, paul.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wedge_strategy
    ~

  • paullwolborsky

    This Creationism vs Evolution debate is really a war between Christianity and Science. I've known on brilliant Computer Science student who was a creationist, there are engineers, even scientists who are crationists, who nevertheless can still build Airplanes on Scienfitic and Engineering Principles.

    Of course Creationism is ridiculous when compared to Science. It is not ridiculous when compared to other religions. But people have happily reviered both Creationist belief and Science.

    The main reason this debate is happening is because Evangelicals want people to accept their Christian Faith over Science, but not necessarily all or nothing. They just made a huge mistake in trying to justify it Scientifically and making Creationism look like Science. It's like putting lipstick on a winged pig carrying an airplane.