Bill Nye has a knack for entangling observational science with historical science, and his recent Big Think episode “Bill Nye Talks to Dogs and Explores the Lessons of Canine Evolution” is no exception. Nye makes the “startling” statement that all dogs are dogs and then goes on to point out two lessons that can be learned from this fact. First he states that all dogs descended from wolves (or possibly an ancestor to wolves). He then discusses an experiment in which foxes were selected for behaviors that were more dog-like (e.g., friendliness), and in three generations the foxes were much more like dogs. He believes that modern dogs are the result of human-wolf interactions in the past. Then he concludes by saying, “It’s really quite an insight and it’s a result of evolution.”
Newsflash, Bill—this isn’t evolution! In fact, the study with the foxes showed just the opposite. Significant changes can occur in organisms in just a few short years; it doesn’t take eons of time, and those changes don't result in a change of kind—dogs remain dogs. I’m sure if you asked Nye to define evolution, he would probably give the typical molecules-to-man scenario in which all living things descended from a common ancestor. However, what he described about dogs is speciation and adaptation, not evolution. After all, he said all dogs are dogs! Nye would likely argue that given millions and billions of years, the small changes we observe with speciation (i.e., different species and breeds of dogs) result in the large changes (which we don’t observe) that result in one kind of animal changing into another (i.e., non-dogs to dogs). However, as I have said many times before, time is not the key. The key is a genetic mechanism that can result in the gain of new genetic information leading one kind of animal to evolve into a different kind. I will give Bill all the time he wants, but evolution won’t occur without a mechanism to gain this type of genetic information. All dogs are dogs—always have been and always will be. Observational science confirms the historical science based on God’s Word.
The second lesson that can be learned from dogs according to Bill Nye has to do with reproduction. He gives the example of two domestic dogs of different breeds “interacting” (by this he means sexual interaction) and says, “all you get is a dog. You don’t get any new thing, new species, you just get a dog.” Not terribly earth-shattering, Bill, and once again has absolutely nothing to do with evolution! Although the title of Nye’s new book is Undeniable, referring to evolution, what is really undeniable is speciation and an affirmation of the biblical account of creation. God created all animals according to their kind, and they reproduce according to their kind (Genesis 1). This is exactly what we observe with dogs, as he so deftly points out.
Nye then applies the example of dog “evolution” to humans. He states that when two people of different ethnic backgrounds, like a person from Papua New Guinea and a person from Sweden, produce offspring, “all you get is a human. There’s no new thing you’re going to get. You just get a human.” He concludes his video saying, “So this is a lesson to be learned. There really is, for humankind there’s really no such thing as race. There’s [sic] different tribes but not different races. We’re all one species.” For once, I completely agree with Bill Nye!
According to Genesis, God created two human beings, Adam and Eve, and told them to be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth (Genesis 1:28). Adam called his wife’s name Eve because she was the mother of all the living (Genesis 3:20), and according to Acts 17:26, God “made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth.” It’s clear from Scripture that all humans are one race descended from Adam and Eve, and genetics, including the Human Genome Project, has confirmed the biblical truth that all humans are one race (although there are different people groups that resulted from people migrating to different locations after the Tower of Babel event).
I couldn’t help thinking after I listened to the video that, with a few exceptions, if I hadn’t known who was speaking in the video, I might have thought it was a video produced by Answers in Genesis! Honestly, if Bill Nye wants more people to believe in evolution, then he needs to present data that actually supports it. The problem is, as this video showed, there isn’t any.
Keep fighting the good fight of the faith!