Thursday, December 18, 2014

Bill Nye Thinks Creationism is "Raising A Generation Of Young People Who Can't Think"

Bill Nye has been interviewed on Newsmax TV, and, in his customary blunt way, argues that:
“Religion is one thing. People get tremendous comfort and community with their religions," Nye said. "But whatever you believe, whatever deity or higher power you might believe in, the Earth is not 6,000 years old.”
Here is the video:

Nye has a very peculiar view of religion. When he is asked why the whole debate is so vexing, he argues that it all boils down to a fear of death and that we just don't want to die. One of the central tenets of Christianity is that, after death, if you accept Jesus as your savior, you go to heaven. When death comes, despite the desire to live life to the fullest and to hang on to life (not inconsistent with Christianity, by the way), we accept it, because we know that heaven awaits.  That is faith.  His response almost comes from a complete ignorance of religious knowledge or history. 

His assessment of how creationists view scripture is largely correct, in that they want to use the Bible as a science textbook.  It is not clear that this debate extends into the realms of physics and chemistry, however.  Otherwise, you would not have so many scientists who have signed the "Dissent from Darwin" petition.  The catch is that, when you get into the realm of the earth sciences, the knowledge gaps become pronounced and arguments that promote the young earth fall short.  That is why there are so few earth scientists that have signed the document.  They make up less than 1% of practicing earth scientists.

The sad thing here is that he is right about the view of scripture that creationists have but does Christianity no favors.  In his view, religious sentiment is okay, as far as it goes.  How many people will he reach that agree with that?  This is one of the reasons that I fear that the leaders of the young earth movement will drive people away from God.  If it is just fairy tales, then why bother?

1 comment:

  1. Ham has blogged back. And I have sought to debunk: