I think there is something to be said for the argument that a scientist debating a creationist in itself elevates the creationist point of view to a level that it does not deserve.
This will accomplish nothing, except maybe ticket sales. Oh, and the creation museum is selling the tickets. Isn't that nice?
I think this is unfortunate. This accords "creationism" some legitimacy as a viable model of thinking about how the world came to be. When it fact, it is utter nonsense posing as science.
Its very similar to engaging a schitzophrenic person in a lenghty dialogue about why the fire hydrant is screaming at him and telling him to set things on fire, in an effort to convince him otherwise through pointing out the logical fallacies of his conclusions. That is not how we treat mental delusions and mental illness.
I guess Bill needs the money.
Yes, I agree completely. Nobody will be "convinced" on either side. It's all a stage show (literally!) which will benefit only Nye (good!) and Ham (bad!).
I disagree with Ken Ham's views but in all fairness both he and Bill Nye have backgrounds in science. Ham's is environmental biology and Nye's is mechanical engineering. They won't change anyone's opinions with this debate but it will be interesting to hear what happens.
Cue the music...
This is gonna be good.
No, no it's not. It's going to be tedious and pointless and stupid, like every other "debate" between naive reason and tribalism.
I love Bill Nye, but once you've seen one creationist utterly unable to argue himself out of his paper bag, you've seen them all.
It's actually applied science with an emphasis in environmental biology, apparently. I can't actually find the year it was given to him, nor can I find any evidence of him using the diploma for any actual scientific use during the interim where he apparently taught science for several years using his second degree in education from the University of Queensland. He joined the creationist movement in 1979 and was born in 1951, leaving only six years after a four year degree that he spent as a teacher.
So I wouldn't say he really has a background in it when he's never worked in the field, but I don't consider teaching high school science to be in the field, so that's at your discretion if you consider it both science and teaching or just teaching.
Of course, this is just splitting hairs, but I still think it's a little gratuitous to say he's had a background in science.
Bring forth the Lirpa!
I don't have much to say so I'll just use some irrevent soundbites
Given that something between 20-60% of the US believes in creationism (depending on how you define "creationism" and "believes," but it's more than accept evolution), it's clearly already elevated itself quite nicely already. You're right, given the outcomes of previous such debates, in that it probably won't accomplish anything. I do think scientists need to address creationism head-on, however, given the current state of affairs.
This is a good thing. As a former ardent creationist who believed it to be good sound science, it being elevated with 'real' science will only help open up the debate to people with a limited point of view. Ham will definitely be preaching to the choir but Nye has a great way of explaining science and will plant a seed in someone.
Bill, dude, DON'T FEED THE TROLL!
There is no 'winning' this debate. Ham will get publicity. Nye might say something that makes the uneducated religious zealots think he is mean and intolerant of their beliefs and they will circle the wagons and initiate the Chick-fil-A/Duck Dynasty strategy which somehow culminates in Ken Ham getting their money.
Yes, please, Mr. Nye. Don't do this. The only outcome of this charade is that the genital wart on the coital structures of science that is called the 'Creation Museum' is getting someone's 25 dollars. Ken Ham is the intellectual equivalent of a nine year old boy who won't stop farting in class because he thinks it's funny. No good can come of this... If you need money slap a quick kickstart memoir together. PLS.
Maybe Science should return the favour and deny Creationists the fruits of modern medicine. The problem would soon correct itself.
I don’t trust Ken Ham to be honest enough to make the entire video available unedited or to allow someone outside of his organization to record it. I suspect the only video available that Ken Ham allows will be heavily edited to make Bill Nye look like he lost the debate by taking his comments and gestures out of context. This is entirely due to my belief that Ken Ham is a nothing more than a snake oil salesman.
You go, Bill... this is where the battlefront is. Whosits will be preaching to the choir... but Bill Nye will be a warrior for Science! One shred of doubt, in one person, will have made the entire thing worth it... and that museum will be paying for it, so much the better. We need more folks like Bill willing to get down in the trenches. Bill Nye, I salute you!