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Thread: Ham on Nye evolution/creationism debate

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    The Gaze of the Abyss B. de Corbin's Avatar
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    Ham on Nye evolution/creationism debate

    Bill Nye and Ken Ham are debating evolution vs. creationism (actually, the debate was on Tuesday).

    This isn't about evolution vs. creationism.

    What this is about is Richard Dawkins & Bill Nye.

    Dawkins (outspoken atheist) has made it his policy to never debate with creationists because he believes it lends them a scientific credibility that they otherwise wouldn't have.

    On the other hand, if Nye can demonstrate that science has more evidence in favor of evolution than creationists have in favor of creationism, he may score some converts.

    So the question is this:

    Is it worth while to spend the time and energy in a public debate on evolution vs. creationism, or does it just add fuel to an already silly fire?

    Bill Nye's Debate Of Creationist Ken Ham Has Some Scientists Bothered
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    Time Lord Apostle Malflick's Avatar
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    Re: Ham on Nye evolution/creationism debate

    its worth it. That I saw some die hard creationists question if not their beliefs, but the harm their beliefs can do if taught as science on my social media feeds made the entire thing worthwhile.

    If we don't have a discourse with the people we disagree with, how on Earth are we supposed to change their minds? After all, they aren't simply going to throw up their hands en-masse.

    Refusing to publicly take on the dangers has, despite Dawkins belief, only re-enforced the ideas of people who haven't been shown any other way to think about these things, and if people who have just been told science doesn't really work are the ones making textbooks and laws in the future, that's not going to be good.

    In High School, I had a biology teacher who kept reminding us that certain principles of science did not have to be believed, and touted a biblical alternative, while still technically teaching the material. A lot of my class struggled, or failed. We need this debate, and it needs to be ongoing.

    (And that is heavily opinion based, and anecdotal, I know.)

  3. #3

    Re: Ham on Nye evolution/creationism debate

    I think it's pointless to debate a (Christian) creationist. Here's what I took away from listening to the debate:

    -Ham continuously fell back on buzzwords and "feel good" Christian statements in his "arguments."
    -Because he used such statements, other biblical creationists were predisposed to agree with him, thus shutting them off to Nye's arguments and supportive evidence.
    -I know this because having watched (admittedly just a little bit of) the post debate show, it was all biased creationists discrediting Bill BECAUSE GOD! Also from reading comments by indoctrinated creationists.

    The thing that irked me most was when Ham interrupted Nye by saying "You know there's a book out there..."

    Screw that there's a book! I have books too! Does that make the Lord of the Rings universe credible? (As much as I'd like it to be real?)

    The only way I think evolution can gain ground over people with this much indoctrination would be (by the gods...) to inject elements of the bible, but use them in such a way that it does support the evidence. Obviously you can't do it for everything (The Flood), but otherwise I think that's the only way to get some of the most die hard biblical creationists to start using the brain they believe their god gave them.

    Edit: Malflick, I was still writing my post when you submitted yours. Nice to know that you saw changes in thought processes. The only one I witnessed was 100% with Ham.

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    Grey Warden Rowanwood's Avatar
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    Re: Ham on Nye evolution/creationism debate

    I have to agree with Hekla that its pointless. You can't argue against something that is based solely on faith and emotion. There's no scientific fact that can overcome that.


    And as my late father-in-law used to say "you can't argue with a kook."

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    Re: Ham on Nye evolution/creationism debate

    I'm just gonna quote something from the link since it says pretty much what I'd want to.

    "The 'debate' largely focused on science vs creationism rather than evolution vs creationism. There was a lot about estimates of the age of the earth and geology. Not enough about the molecular, fossil, ecological, behavioral and experimental evidence for evolution. Many people might argue that it's pointless to debate someone like Ham. That's true, in that his beliefs are entrenched and he will not accept evidence that contradict them. However this is not for him. If others (especially children) who have never heard any counter-arguments to new-Earth creationist theology were exposed to something new today that made them re-think what they've been taught, then it's worth it." -- Dr. James Higham of New York University's Department of Anthropology
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    sea witch thalassa's Avatar
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    Re: Ham on Nye evolution/creationism debate

    I missed the debate, but plan to watch it this weekend.

    It really, I think, depends on how it went.

    Edit to add...I read this, and I think it makes a point:

    The debate ended as it began, with the two adversaries shaking hands and then walking off the dais. Were hearts touched and minds changed? Probably not. But two men with starkly different beliefs and viewpoints made their case stridently and respectfully before a rapt, well-behaved audience. Today, that counts for something.

    http://arstechnica.com/science/2014/...-on-evolution/
    I think it depends on what one was expecting to get out of it....
    Last edited by thalassa; 05 Feb 2014 at 08:07.
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    Live and learn anunitu's Avatar
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    Re: Ham on Nye evolution/creationism debate

    I would say it was pointless as far as changing anything on any side. As was pointed out "Faith" does not relay on reason or in this case science. I will NOT debate an issue like this because it only causes people to become more intrenched.
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    The Gaze of the Abyss B. de Corbin's Avatar
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    Re: Ham on Nye evolution/creationism debate

    I don't imagine that minds are going to change.

    But I think that, maybe, it is worthwhile for, at least some people, to see the difference between a set of beliefs based on the evidence of the senses, and one based on what an old book says.

    A lot of people won't get it - the idea that belief, even when it is in direct contradiction to evidence, equals truth - is just too, too attractive to certain types of personality. But I still think it's worth while to see it.

    I'd really like to see where people running for office fall in this debate.
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    Re: Ham on Nye evolution/creationism debate

    I think it's very worth it. Perhaps it won't convince many "set in stone" creationist types who have believed this myth their whole lives, but to younger, more impressionable, open minded creationists a discussion like this could make all the difference. If it weren't for evolutionists challenging my beliefs as a kid, I may very well still have the blinders of fundamentalist religion over my eyes.
    Just because it won't convince everyone doesn't mean it won't convince some. Besides, anyone with common sense and a halfway functioning brain could see that a debate like this debunks creationism pretty thoroughly, rather than lending any kind of credibility to it.
    Then again, after seeing some of the frustrating debates Dawkins has had with creationists, I don't blame him for wanting to retire from it, haha.


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    Re: Ham on Nye evolution/creationism debate

    I've watched about an hour of the debate so far, and I think both sides have really well thought out arguments, except that Ham's arguments keep turning mostly into "please see this person who's a creationist and a scientist, the end"

    I haven't gotten any further into it yet, though.
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