In the introductory article in this series, we gave an overview of the September 2014 Popular Science article, “Bill Nye Fights Back.” We will now examine more of the article and feature a representative segment and provide a rebuttal to each segment. In our introductory article, we highlighted just the single quote, which pondered how Bill Nye’s “defense of reason in the face of extreme faith had weighed heavily on Nye.” Now we’ll pick up with more article excerpts which flesh out this perceived sentiment of Bill Nye’s.
Just a few weeks earlier, a PEW research poll found that nearly 45 percent of Americans believe humans came to be by a process other than evolution.1
Considering that teaching biblical creation has been by and large eradicated from the government school system in the USA (and in much of the Western world), and naturalistic molecules-to-man evolution has been taught as fact for years, evolutionists are shocked that so many people don’t accept a naturalistic view of origins.
This actually illustrates the point that the origins debate is in essence a conflict of two worldviews (as Ken Ham clearly pointed out). Evolutionists can’t just point to evidence to supposedly “prove” evolution; they have to try to convince people that their secular worldview supposedly explains the evidence of the present in regard to origins. But people don’t see molecules-to-man evolution—it’s really a belief imposed on the evidence. Because of this, many people have remained (correctly) unconvinced of a naturalistic view of the origin of life and the universe. That view doesn’t sit well with Bill Nye.
To Nye, science is under siege, and he is not about to sit back and watch the thing he loves and staked his career on suffer.
Bill Nye’s technique in combating this assault on science is to use the same word science for what is clearly historical science (beliefs about the past concerning origins) and for what is clearly observational/operational science (science based on a repeatable test, used to build technology).
Bill Nye rejects the possibility that the universe and life were created by an intelligence.
Because Bill Nye rejects the possibility that the universe and life were created by an intelligence and believes the whole universe and all life are the result of natural processes, anyone who doesn’t agree with him (like Ken Ham) is accused of creating the situation described as “science . . . under siege.” Mr. Ham explained carefully the difference between the discussion on origins versus the science used to build technology like the MRI scanner. Mr. Ham used examples of biblical creationists (such as the inventor of the MRI scanner, Dr. Raymond Damadian) being innovative in producing world-class technology. Mr. Ham also challenged Bill Nye to account for the laws of nature and laws of logic (necessary to actually carry out empirical science to build technology) within his naturalistic worldview. Bill Nye did not respond—and cannot ultimately give an adequate answer.
Could it be coincidence that since the Bible was by and large thrown out of government schools in our nation, and prayer was banned, and molecules-to-man evolution has monopolized all science classes (and even many other classes), science standards in the USA have also fallen? Moreover, as Ken Ham pointed out several times in the debate, there were and are many great scientists who firmly believe in biblical inerrancy and authority, including recent creation. The Popular Science article includes the following quote from Mr. Nye:
Bill sighed and said, “When you have a portion of the population that believes in that [Creationism], it holds everybody back.”
Before the debate, during the debate, and since the debate, Mr. Ham publicly asked Bill Nye this question:
“Can you name one piece of technology that could only have been developed starting with a belief in molecules-to-man evolution?”
Bill Nye has never responded to this question, because there is no such example. The topic of origins has nothing to do with developing technology (except that anyone developing technology has to accept that the laws of nature and laws of logic that can only be accounted for within a Christian worldview). Actually, it is the belief in naturalistic evolution that will hold the population back! As more people believe life arose by natural processes, and not as a result of biblical creation, this will eventually be detrimental to research as people will not properly understand God’s processes in the creation as has been done in the past.
This statement of Bill Nye’s quoted above also makes no sense in his own evolutionary paradigm. According to Bill Nye’s beliefs, those he infers are “unscientific creationists” should not be able to compete academically or in the job market among what he would call the “scientifically literate.” But Darwin would have called such competition the survival of the fittest, and since Bill Nye believes in that, in essence he is actually arguing against what he considers one of the driving forces of evolution.
Popular Science does briefly comment on Bill’s religious upbringing, but even that is painted as a “struggle” between faith and reason.
Though he grew up in the Episcopal Church, he eventually drifted from it. At one point, he sat down and read the Bible all the way through, twice, taking notes and following the story with maps, only to arrive at the conclusion that people had pretty much made the whole thing up.
But if only Bill had dug a little deeper here, and if someone in the church could have sat down with him and pointed him to resources which corroborated what he was reading in Scripture. Archaeology has confirmed time and time again that the writers of Scripture knew historical details which could not have been known, except through experience. Just one example out of many which could be shared: Belshazzar, mentioned in Daniel 5, was lost to history for over 2,000 years and because of that, people mocked Scripture—until it was discovered that Belshazzar, the son of King Nabonidus, was acting as regent of Babylon when it fell to the Medes and Persians.
One of the Founding Fathers of the United States, Benjamin Rush, stated:
But further, we err, not only in religion but in philosophy likewise, because we "do not know or believe the Scriptures." The sciences have been compared to a circle, of which religion composes a part. To understand any one of them perfectly, it is necessary to have some knowledge of them all. Bacon, Boyle, and Newton included the Scriptures in the inquiries to which their universal geniuses disposed them, and their philosophy was aided by their knowledge in them.2
Somehow Popular Science and Bill Nye believe that any critique of evolution or any understanding of science that allows for divine creation is the cause of scientific illiteracy.
But somehow Popular Science and Bill Nye believe that any critique of evolution or any understanding of science that allows for divine creation is the cause of scientific illiteracy. Isaac Newton firmly disagreed with this in his time, as does Dr. Raymond Damadian today. The hundreds of creation scientists on our website past and present disagreed and still disagree with this anti-science statement, and in fact, their firm stance on biblical authority is what they credit as giving them the drive and desire to make scientific discoveries and invent new technologies. In a secular worldview, who cares about scientific advance? When you die, you are dead and nothing ultimately matters or mattered in that religion. The following Popular Science excerpts, however, highlight the “problem” from the secularists’ vantage point:
In the past few years, a handful of charter school systems have sprung up in Texas, Arkansas, and Indiana that use textbooks that call evolution “an unproved theory” and explain that “supernatural intervention created the first cell.”
Scientific literacy among U.S. grade school students has flat-lined since at least 2003, according to a 2012 report from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.
Nye speaks on all these topics, but it’s early science education that worries him most. A population with no foundation in basic science, he says, is a population of uninformed voters who face limited career prospects.
Those involved in building and designing things, studying diseases, performing surgery, and so on do not become any better at these jobs simply because they believe in evolution (in fact, I would still maintain a belief in evolution is a detriment to a proper understanding of how and why nature is the way it is). Furthermore, even evolutionists admit that it rarely enters into their practice or job.3 In some cases, it has even hampered research.4 Unnecessary “vestigial organ” surgeries have actually harmed patients and were often based solely on an evolutionary paradigm.5 Notice also the subtle attacks on charter schools above. This is not just an observation, but it is a subconscious attempt to link Christianity, critical examination of evolution, and charter schools with the decline of science literacy and even the critical thinking skills of voters. This is not “Popular Science” but propaganda.
Answers in Genesis is an apologetics ministry, dedicated to helping Christians defend their faith and proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ.