Bill Nye’s Reasonable Man—The Central Worldview Clash of the Ham-Nye Debate

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Easton's picture

There were several moments where Bill Nye drifted from his "Reasonable Man" into -- well, I'm not sure...

For example, his discussion of "traditional fish sex" and "why does anyone have sex?" -- Nye declares it a real "chinstroker".  Turns out that, according to the "reasonable man", evolution has weeded out all of the "non-traditional" fish sex by giving those fish participating in non-traditional fish sex, parasites.  In other words, evolution kills off those non-traditional fish - only allowing "traditional fish sex."

And, according to Nye and evolution, that's why humans don't flower like rose bushes or divide like bacteria -- participation in non-traditional sex will cause you to become extinct.

So, now, I'm wondering when Bill Nye is going to hear from GLAAD...

 

Larry Nelson's picture

...reminds me of this Richard Dawkins book, which I checked out of my local library a few months ago on a whim (I've never been one to avoid confronting opposing beliefs):

http://www.amazon.com/The-Greatest-Show-Earth-Evolution-ebook/dp/B002LVVCQM/ref=tmm_kin_title_0

Dawkins' "evidence" consisted primarily of asserting that nobody in their right mind could believe in Creationism. When he did eventually get around to ostensibly citing actual "evidence" it was all so couched in the language of conjecture and speculation (e.g. "perhaps..."; "probably...") that he may as well have just utilized the phrase, "Once upon a time....."

 

Dan Miller's picture

Observation shows us that we live in a world/universe that uniformly bears the marks of being very old. Is it actually old (billions of years)?

The world could have been created with the appearance of age. If God is as able we understand from His Word, then the universe could be 4,000 years or, for that matter, seconds old. It's true origin could have occurred in the middle of my writing of this post. All of history and even my own memories could have been created simultaneously. 

Go to Hawaii. Look at the difference between The Big Island and Kauai. Consider the whole Hawaiian–Emperor seamount chain

Anyway, the universe is obviously either old or created recently with ubiquitous "oldness." So in terms of scientific study and our ability to use what we observe and predict things, the world is old (or "old"). Which it is doesn't matter to our science.

That means that Nye's contention that creationism hurts our ability to do science is false. Biblical creationist scientists live and work in a world of presumed oldness.

Ham seems to deny oldness (or "oldness"). There is no reason to do that. We accept oldness ("oldness"). I really like Keller's appraoch to this in Reason for God.

ChrisC's picture

"reasonable man" excuse is a cop-out for ham to be unreasonable. hundreds of thousands of layers in ice cores is a huge problem. even if ham says the 6000 year young earth has an appearance of age that would allow for so many layers, the even more recent global flood position does not. and the 680,000 layer core isn't even the oldest. 800,000 year old ice was discovered nearly a decade ago and scientists are currently planning to drill where they expect to find 1.5mil year old ice.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131105081228.htm

 

TylerR's picture

Editor

This is AiG's first official response piece, I believe. They estimate the debate had 3,000,000 + online viewers. I draw your attention to the links within the article, where some of Nye's arguments have already been answered. Whether you accept them is another matter, but there are explanations from a creationist point of view available . . .

Tyler is a pastor in Olympia, WA and an Investigations Manager with a Washington State agency. He's the author of the book What's It Mean to Be a Baptist?

NoahB's picture

ChrisC wrote:

"reasonable man" excuse is a cop-out for ham to be unreasonable. hundreds of thousands of layers in ice cores is a huge problem. even if ham says the 6000 year young earth has an appearance of age that would allow for so many layers, the even more recent global flood position does not. and the 680,000 layer core isn't even the oldest. 800,000 year old ice was discovered nearly a decade ago and scientists are currently planning to drill where they expect to find 1.5mil year old ice.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131105081228.htm

 

alternative view: http://www.icr.org/article/are-polar-ice-sheets-only-4500-years-old/

ChrisC's picture

that "alternative" may fool some non-scientists, but it's about as solid as denying a moon landing. what mechanism caused multiple season cycles in a year and why did it stop? (and what does that do to Gen 8:22?) and with the 800,000 layers, it would require hundreds of season cycles per year.

i can't go to antarctica to measure cores myself, but there are pictures of cores and many other details from the research readily available.

http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Features/Paleoclimatology_IceCores/

G. N. Barkman's picture

 

How old was Adam the day after God created him?  If you studied him using scientific methods, you would probably conclude that he was at least 30 years old.  If you were able to compare him to other men of 30, you would arrive at a similar conclusion.  But you would be wrong.  How could God create a fully grown man without the appearance of age?  Secular science assumes uniformity.  The Bible reveals non-uniformity.  (creation, the flood, various miracles)  We wouldn't know this apart from divine revelation.  True science can study what is, but not how it became.  God, who is the only eye-witness to creation, tells us what happened.  It really boils down to believing God's revelation, or believing science is a superior source of truth.  Problem: "science" keeps changing its conclusions.  Yesterday's assured facts become today's discards.  And yet we are expected to believe that "science" is superior to divine revelation?  I don't think so.  Those who are not Christians have nothing better, so science becomes their god.  Christians have something far better, and should never surrender to the constantly changing pronouncements of science.  Evolution requires too much faith.  Just close your eyes, shut off your brain, and believe it because the majority of scientists do.  If evolution were not espoused by so many educated people, we'd probably call it a fairy tale.

G. N. Barkman

Easton's picture

...that Nye never asked...

#1 - If God had to create "light," what was there before "light?"  Don't say dark, because in order to have dark you need light.  So what was there before "light?"  Is this formless void called Earth existing in some dimension outside of normal space/time?

#2 - How can there be plant life before the sole source of their energy was created?  Photosynthesis requires sunlight, but, the Sun doesn't exist yet...

#3 - If I took a chainsaw back in time, the day after God created trees and cut a tree down, would there be growth-rings in the trunk of the tree?  (Without the rings, the trees are weak & fall down.)

#4 - Did God create the stars (and galaxies of trillions of stars) with their light already visible from Earth?  If He did, then that implies age - a nonexistent age.  Is He trying to fool us?  Is this deception?  Note the given purposes of the “lights” or “luminaries”, 1) to separate days and nights, and 2) use as a calendar - yet - we’ve already had three days without them...

#5 - What did the Earth orbit before the Sun was created?  Did it rotate?

#6 - We have no evidence that man and dinosaurs existed simultaneously, yet the biblical account of creation states that man and dinosaur would have existed at the same time.  In the Creation account, sea life and birds are categorized together.  Evolution supports the idea that life began in the sea and that some early dinosaurs were the first “birds.”

#7 - Did Adam and Eve have "belly-buttons" or navels?  Don't laugh - if they did not, they were not human.

#8 - If a medical doctor traveled back through time to Day 6 of Creation kidnapped Adam and laid him out for a full and complete medical examination, how old would Adam be?  We can assume from scripture that Adam and Eve were adults, so the day after their creation, how old would they be?  Would their bodies imply an age that didn't exist?  Again, is God trying to fool us?

Chip Van Emmerik's picture

Easton wrote:

#6 - We have no evidence that man and dinosaurs existed simultaneously, yet the biblical account of creation states that man and dinosaur would have existed at the same time.

Actually, there is quite a bit of evidence. The most noteworthy, in my mind, are the various fossilized impressions of human and dinosaur tracks left in the same mud banks way back when before the mud dried. Read here.

Why is it that my voice always seems to be loudest when I am saying the dumbest things?

Easton's picture

There is zero hard evidence -- which seems so odd.  What you link to was long ago (1980's) debunked as bad archeology.

DavidO's picture

Easton wrote:

#3 - If I took a chainsaw back in time, the day after God created trees and cut a tree down, would there be growth-rings in the trunk of the tree?  (Without the rings, the trees are weak & fall down.)

#4 - Did God create the stars (and galaxies of trillions of stars) with their light already visible from Earth?  If He did, then that implies age - a nonexistent age.  Is He trying to fool us?  Is this deception? 

#8 - If a medical doctor traveled back through time to Day 6 of Creation kidnapped Adam and laid him out for a full and complete medical examination, how old would Adam be?  We can assume from scripture that Adam and Eve were adults, so the day after their creation, how old would they be?  Would their bodies imply an age that didn't exist?  Again, is God trying to fool us?

These are fairly hilarious.  Is God under some sort of obligation to do everything so that there is no possibility for misunderstanding his act?  If God were going to create ex nihilo, why not start with an apparent adult?

#7 - Did Adam and Eve have "belly-buttons" or navels? Don't laugh - if they did not, they were not human.

I used to work in a care home for special needs kids.  One under my care was born without eyes.  Was he human?

If your issue is specifically with the navel, it seems to me that, as you did with the above questions, you are imposing your requirements about how it all would have to have gone down to be legit upon Someone who might not have to submit to such requirements.

Easton's picture

If your issue is specifically with the navel...

No, it's not, and, out of all of the questions above, I find it hilarious (and curious) that you focused on belly-buttons...

...you are imposing your requirements about how it all would have to have gone down...

I don't believe I'm the one imposing anything on God (like I could).  If God created out of nothing, anything & everything is possible.  But we have now moved out of the realm of any known science and into the realm of the supernatural, i.e, "magic"...

So, asking questions based on science or debating scientists is of little use.*

*Unless you have a museum to fund or an ark to build...

Robert Byers's picture

Easton wrote:

#1 - If God had to create "light," what was there before "light?"  Don't say dark, because in order to have dark you need light.  So what was there before "light?"  Is this formless void called Earth existing in some dimension outside of normal space/time?

I am going to say dark, because the Bible says "Darkness covered the face of the deep" before God said, "Let there be light."

Chip Van Emmerik's picture

Actually Easton, I read the follow up. While there are questions remaining, it is inaccurate to say the tracks were debunked. However, I acknowledge that the updated evidence is currently inconclusive.

Why is it that my voice always seems to be loudest when I am saying the dumbest things?

Robert Byers's picture

Easton wrote:

#2 - How can there be plant life before the sole source of their energy was created?  Photosynthesis requires sunlight, but, the Sun doesn't exist yet...

Plants require *light* not sunlight.  (You can visit any underground marijuana growing facility to verify.)  There was light before there was the Sun. The plants were just fine.

 

Mark_Smith's picture

You said supernatural = "magic".

Are you a Christian? 

Chip Van Emmerik's picture

Jim,

This has been one of Ham's most emphasized points for years. Both groups work with essentially the same data, but their approach greatly influences their outcome.

Why is it that my voice always seems to be loudest when I am saying the dumbest things?

Easton's picture

You said supernatural = "magic".

Are you a Christian? 

supernatural -- attributed to some force beyond scientific understanding or the laws of nature, i.e., magic

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." ~ A.C. Clarke

Not sure what that has to do with my status as Christian or Pagan.

 

Mark_Smith's picture

The action of God, in my opinion, is not magic. It concerns me that you, claiming to be a "fundamentalist" Christian, thinks it is. It's accommodation...as noted by quoting A.C. Clarke.

This way of thinking is why this argument is so intractable.

Easton's picture

 It concerns me that you, claiming to be a "fundamentalist" Christian... as noted by quoting A.C. Clarke.

Not sure how I would register on The Official Fundamentalist Christian Meter -- the needle (assuming an analog meter) may peg, hit the center or just quiver a bit.

I do know, however, that many "fundamentalist" Christians read (and sometimes quote) Arthur C. Clarke.

Mark_Smith's picture

If you think God's actions are magic...you have issues.

 

Jesus being resurrected...was that "magic"? The Sun standing still in the sky with Moses...magic? The Red Sea crossing...magic? The Centurion's servant being healed...magic? 

 

Magic is either paganism or a word used to belittle the miracles in the Bible.

Easton's picture

Magic is either paganism or a word used to belittle the miracles in the Bible.

Magic is a simple description of processes we do not and, possibly, cannot understand.

Mark_Smith's picture

What you are saying is what my "Lutheran" lesbian co-worker who thinks Jesus was a space alien thinks. He worked "magic"...ie technology that we don't know of.

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