by: Dan Hettmannsperger III
Like most of you I watched the debate between Bill Nye and Ken Ham with great interest. Looking back on it now there is much that stands out, not the least of which being the civility of Bill Nye and the astonishing hubris of Ken Ham, an embarrassment to Western Civilization if ever there was one. As a man that spends a great deal of my own time in debate forums (my favorite is GOD’S FRIENDS AND FOES on Facebook, which I highly recommend) I couldn’t help but notice that Ken’s tactics were both predictable and frankly disappointing.
I’m not really sure what I expected from Ken, but his constant use of the phrase “There’s a book…” rapidly got on my nerves. Ken doesn’t seem to understand that there are actually many books which outline a mythical creation and that the Bible is only one box of donuts in the spiritual bakery. Bill Nye was of course unimpressed by this and pressed Ken for anything factual or tangible and in so doing revealed him to be not a scientist at all but a mere apologist for a collection of irrelevant Bronze Age texts that could not be less relevant in the 21st century. Even the term “Creation Science” was shown to be the oxymoron that is always was.
I found Bill’s argument against a literal reading of the Noah story compelling. We all know that it’s absurd that so many animals could ever fit in such a small ship, but I personally had forgotten that the arc was at sea for a whole year. What should probably be mentioned at this point is that Jews do not take the story of Noah literally, it is only Christian Fundamentalists and Muslims that insist that it really happened…and Ken’s feeble assertion that Noah was simply able to build the arc because it says so couldn’t have sounded more stupid if he’d tried.
In a debate that was filled with many great moments I think the high point had to be the moment when Ken Ham said “I can’t prove anything.” For me this was the same as when Obama crushed Romney in the last Presidential debate re: Benghazi. It was the final crushing admission that Creationism is nothing more than a groundless speculation that touches reality at no noticeable point. Science will continue to march forward with courage and wonder, and Monotheism will continue to fight a losing battle against its own irrelevancy.