So is everyone satisfied that debating a creationist about creationism at The Creation Museum, prominently displaying a man riding a dinosaur, is a waste of time? Was it everything you hoped, hearing a stupid person who believes that the Earth is 6000 years old make a bunch of nonsense arguments? Isn't it fulfilling to see a man attempt to take seriously another man who is utterly incapable of either logic or shame?

Part of the problem here is that most of us are raised to Be Nice about religion and religious people. In general this is good advice. However, this is counterproductive with fundamentalists. The pseudo-noble desire to Listen to Both Sides and to give their point of view a fair hearing quickly crumbles under the weight of the utter stupidity, in terms of historical and scientific accuracy, of their beliefs. Not their belief in god or in Christianity, but in their Beliefs about things that are actually empirically testable facts. There is no point in, and nothing to be gained by, debating someone who has "beliefs" about things that are matters of fact.

What Bill Nye did on Tuesday evening was to dignify a ludicrous argument from ludicrous people with a debate, serving largely to give creationists a platform to throw their bullshit at a large audience and to generally create the impression that this issue is up for debate. The odds of someone being persuaded by the logic of Mr. Nye's argument seem to be lower than the odds of some gullible professional skeptic – the kind that buys into 9-11 conspiracy theories because of a 3-minute YouTube video – being persuaded by a snippet of "But radiocarbon dating is unreliable!" water-muddying from a group that combines the smugness of lobbyists with the terrifyingly dead eyes of a religious zealot.

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59 Responses to “SCREAMING AT A WALL”

  1. Graham Says:

    All religion is Whistling In The Dark.

  2. freeportguy Says:

    "But radiocarbon dating is unreliable!"

    A good reply would be: And what exactly have YOU got?

  3. Mo Says:

    started treating others in the manner we would like to be treated, feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, relieving the oppressed, healing the sick, and raising the dead?

    bb, you seem to imagine that only Jesus Christ embodied those altruistic traits, instead of recognizing that they're characteristic of the better side of our human behavioral repertoire.

    And the lovely irony is, as is often pointed out, how conveniently those who label themselves as Christians completely ignore all that humanitarian stuff and go straight to self-righteousness and war – religion as a power trip. Screw humanitarianism, especially toward those non-people outside our tribe community.

  4. Major Kong Says:

    When dealing with a young-earth creationist I like to point out the following:

    Finding oil is a very high-stakes issue for oil companies. Trillions of dollars are riding on it. When they look for the most likely spots to drill, do they use Flood geology, or mainstream? Which one actually delivers the goods?

  5. fred Says:

    Carl Sagan maintained that it is essential for scientists to debate the mystics, science denialists and BS artists. Failing to do so creates the impression that scientists have something to hide.
    I really liked that Nye cheerfully explained that, no science doesn't have all the answers (unlike the fundies) but it is a work in progress, always open to question and revission.
    Personally, contemplating a 15 billion year old universe with an uncertain beginning and end, the mass and size of your average star, what might be going on inside a black hole or the nucleus of an atom thrills me with awe for existance or God or whatever it is that makes this whole thing we are privilaged to expierience. If it's God, well thank you God. What did I ever do to be so lucky as to live?

  6. jharp Says:

    They also charged $25 dollars per ticket for the $900 tickets they sold.

    I would light $50 on fire before I would give them $25 to hear such utter nonsense.

  7. Willey Says:

    Who cares "how" we arrived at our cuurent state. Let's fix the problems we have NOW. When that's been accomplished we can discus how we got here. Jeeeesh.

  8. moderateindy Says:

    First Xynzee brought up Paul's take on teh Gays. I am always amused that Fundies take Paul's words, a guy that never met Jesus, and to my knowledge never claimed to be channelling god, as being the same as God's words. He was merely writing his opinion to early members of the church on how he believed they should act. How that became the infallable word of the Lord simply escapes me.
    BB, I would cut Christians way more slack if they actually voted for candidates that represented Christ's views.
    I don't run into many fundies living in Suburban Chicago, and though after a great deal of study of the Bible, from a theologian's perspective, along with studying other religions and mythology from the past, I do not believe in the Judeo Christian take on "God", I personally do not try to convince those that believe in Jesus that they are wrong. Most people that I know that are religous do not use their religion as a cudgel to discriminate against those they don't like. They do, however; get great inspiration and comfort from their belief. So even though I could use a large quiver full (some might get that pun) of arguments, and examples that might show them that Jesus is a mythical character, I would never do that. It would be unkind, and although this fact escapes many fundies, you don't need the bible in order to know that intentionally hurting others is a bad thing.

  9. bb in GA Says:


    You ought to take that mind reading gift you have to Las Vegas and secure your family's financial future…NOT!

    I imagined and said nothing about who exclusively has any traits.