Some questions – some deserve answers…..

So the debate between the well known and popular science communicator Bill Nye of ‘The Science Guy’ fame and well known religious apologist Ken Ham of ‘Answers in Genesis’ infamy is over.

A blogger took the time to talk to a number of the audience members who were all (surprise surprise) young earth creationists, arranged by Ham as audience. These audience members were invited to leave a written question for non-believers or those who ‘believe in’ evolution.

While all of these questions have LONG been answered, most of these questioners have been carefully shielded from any such information. As a result some of these questions appear disengenuious, but some of them are certainly worth answering. To be honest, I feel the more people give the more answers they can, the more options for ways to hear the answer the more chance of understanding.

Here are my answers, for what they are worth. …

#1. Bill Nye, are you influencing the minds of children in a positive way?
Yes, Yes he is.
Now I know that this question was specifically directed at Bill Nye. However it was also worded as a form of implied attack or threat. The best course of action here is to ignore the implication entirely and point out that by encouraging curiousity, talking about science, the scientific method, the world as it really is, Bill Nye is preparing young minds to grapple with reality.
Personally I find the implication that there is something underhanded or ‘evil’ about teaching children to learn for themselves to be truely sickening.

#2. Are you scared of a divine creator?
No. This is a reversed version of Pascal’s Wager I have no reason to be scared of a boogyman that, by all real evidence, does not exist. And more specifically, a boogyman that we have evidence was created by man and mankind’s fears.

#3. Is it completely illogical that the earth was created mature? ie. trees created with rings, adam created as an adult etc etc
Yes. Is it impossible? No, in the same way that it is not impossible that the entire universe was created in situ as is 5 seconds ago. It is meaningless, unfalsifiable, pointless, and of no value as an idea. Barely better than ‘the problem of hard solipsism’.

#4. Does not the second law of thermodynamics disprove evolution?
No. This argument is long dead. It is only used to attempt to silence believers who have not actually studied either. For more information

#5. How do you explain a sunset if there is no god?
Really? Now if we lived on a flat earth, there would be a need to explain a sunset with some kind magic I am sure. But living on a BALL of rock, wrapped in a layer of gas, spinning while rotating around a massive nuclear reaction, this pretty much explains it. As the world turns, parts of it no longer face the sun, as they move away from facing the sun, the sun’s radient energy that can be seen, that is that of which is in the visable spectrum, is distorted by the angular approach too the atmosphere, changing it’s colours. No god required at all.

#6. If the big bang theory is true, and taught as science, along with the theory of evolution, why do the laws of thermodynamics debunk said theories?
They don’t. See #4. And a side note, the big bang theory has not been conclusively proved at this point, it is still up for debate. The theory of evolution on the other hand, has never met a reality based challenge it failed, there is no debate in the scientific community about evolution.

#7. What about Noetics?
What about noetics? Before you can use a supposed phenomenon to disprove something. You need to have a phenomenon. There is no evidence such a phenomenon even exists outside the imagination of it’s propoents.

#8. Where do you derive objective meaning in life?
I don’t. I derive my own subjective meaning for my life. I reject slavery to an idea as a meaning for life.

#9. If god did not create everything, How did the first single celled organism originate? By chance?
Partly. But not entirely. Also by selective pressures. Turns out that cells are more efficent than dna floating around by itself…..

#10. I believe in the big bang theory. God said it and BANG it happened.
Good for you. My imaginary friend makes cookies.

#11. Why do evolutionists/humanists/secularists/non-god believing people reject the idea of a creator god, but embrace the concept of intelligent design by aliens or other extra-terrestrial sources?
Short answer, we don’t. You are thinking of conspiracy theorist whack-a-loons. Evolutionists is not a word or a thing. Humanists includes atheists and believers who adhere to a philosophy of life. secularists are people who are believer and non-believer alike believe that belief should not dictate or generate social classes, and that equal treatment should be standard. and ‘non-god believers’ I’m going to be generous and assume you mean ‘atheists’ that is, people who do not accept the god concept.

#12. There is no in between …. the only one found has been Lucy, and there are only a few peices of the hundreds needed for an “official proof”.
‘In Between’? I assume you mean ‘transitional fossils’ in particular surrounding the evolution of humans? And you couldn’t be more wrong. Firstly, every fossil is a transitional fossil. Evolution is an ever-happening process. And secondly, we have a fairly complete set of fossils for the pre-human hominids. Try asking someone other than a priest or appologist some day. And what is ‘official proof’?

#13. Does Metamorphosis help support evolution?
Yes. To be entirely honest, my evolutionary biology university schooling is a little rusty, so I don’t have specifics at hand. But I know that the information is out there if you care to look for it. I cannot recomend strongly enough that you do. If only to better understand the world around you.

#14. If evolution is a theory (like creationism or the bible) then why is it taught as fact?
I’m sorry to see how poor a job your teachers did. Evolution is a theory, just like gravity. NOT like creationism or ‘the bible’. In scientific terms creationism has not made it past unsupported hypothesis. The bible is just a story, well a set of stories and assertions.
Evolution is both observed fact and evidentially supported theory. This is why it is taught as such.

#15. because science, by definition, is a “theory” not testable, observable or repeatable. Why do you object to creationism being taught in science class?
A scientific “theory” is, by definition, testable, observable and repeatable. UNLIKE creationism. THAT is why we object to it. Please don’t get your science from religious appologists. If you wanted to know about black culture, would you ask the KKK?

#16. What mechanism has science discovered that evidences an INCREASE in genetic information seen in any genetic mutation or evolutionary process?
It doesn’t. mutation CHANGES what is there. Just re-arranges the letters, not writing new novels.

#17. What purpose do you think you are here for if not for salvation.
I derrive my own purpose. I am in no way arrogant enough to think the entire universe was made for my personal benefit. Every morning, I review my purpose and reasons for living. It is far more satisfying and satisfactory than enslavement to some ephemeral being that never answers and could not possibly have a single care for my personal life or goals.

#18. Why have we found only 1 Lucy if we have found more than 1 of everything else.
We haven’t found more than 1 of everything else. The conditions required for fossilisation are very specific and fairly rare. There are some creatures that fossilised in larger numbers, as they happened to live in conditions that more often lead to fossilisation.

#19. Can you believe in ‘the big bang’ without faith?
I don’t. I accept the proposal based on the evidence. This is not the same as believing in something based on faith.

#20. How can you look at the world and not believe that someone created/thought of it. It’s amazing.
Easily. I look at all of it, not the pretty bits. And yes, the world around is really amazing.

#21. Relating to the big bang theory. Where did the exploding star come from.
What is wrong with ‘We don’t know yet.’ We don’t know there was a star that exploded. We don’t know for certain that is what happened. But the evidence does point in that direction.

#22. If we came from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?
We didn’t come from monkeys. We share a common ape LIKE ancestor. Besides, my family came from England, why are there still members of my family in England?

There are assorted other people answering these questions. Google it, look for them, read them.

Here is Phil Plait’s Version …


~ by scawalrus on February 7, 2014.

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