How evangelists preach Creationism.

If like me you’re firmly sold on the merits of the theory of the evolution and find it concerning how people can disagree so wildly with it, then an article in the Los Angeles Times will only add to your concerns. The article, Their Own Version of a Big Bang details how one evangelist, Ken Ham, encourages schoolchildren to challenge their teachers if they are told evolution is fact.

Evangelist Ken Ham smiled at the 2,300 elementary students packed into pews, their faces rapt. With dinosaur puppets and silly cartoons, he was training them to reject much of geology, paleontology and evolutionary biology as a sinister tangle of lies.

“Boys and girls,” Ham said. If a teacher so much as mentions evolution, or the Big Bang, or an era when dinosaurs ruled the Earth, “you put your hand up and you say, ‘Excuse me, were you there?’ Can you remember that?”

The children roared their assent.

“Sometimes people will answer, ‘No, but you weren’t there either,’ ” Ham told them. “Then you say, ‘No, I wasn’t, but I know someone who was, and I have his book about the history of the world.’ ” He waved his Bible in the air.

“Who’s the only one who’s always been there?” Ham asked.

“God!” the boys and girls shouted.

“Who’s the only one who knows everything?”

“God!”

“So who should you always trust, God or the scientists?”

The children answered with a thundering: “God!”

It seems that many of the children are sent to these events by evangelical parents who want to give their children ‘another perspective’, or to re-inforce their faith in God. Ken Ham is a former biology teacher, which probably gives him some credibility, and he manages to cobble together some weak ‘scientific’ evidence for his theory, namely cave paintings and the speed at which material can fossilize. The fact that there’s stacks of verifiable scientific evidence in favour of evolution and is the chosen theory of most scientists seems not to matter to him – it’s incompatible with his faith so he chooses to ignore it.

Had Mr Ham just been some random guy off the street this wouldn’t be anything that people like me would lose sleep over, but the fact that he preaches to thousands of people, especially children, every week concerns me greatly.

44 thoughts on “How evangelists preach Creationism.

  1. Obviously he is just desperate….understandably, since adults who put a little thought into such a matter would be appalled. Then again, i’m not even so sure about that anymore…
    The thing that’s sad is how people present creationism as an equally valid theory to explain the world as it is now, even though it has no scientific background.

  2. Obviously he is just desperate

    The frightening thing is that anymore I suspect “Dr.” Ham and his ilk are feeling less desperate about their prospects of deluding others (along with themselves) with their outlandish beliefs. The growing numbers of evangelical Christians in this country don’t seem to bode well for science (I’ve also heard that Australia is not doing much better; perhaps not too coincidentally, Ken Ham is Australian). This should not be surprising, yet Americans are just now becoming aware of the country’s declining scientific edge. When an idiot is elected to the position of president, it makes sense that idiocy will become more prominent and acceptable in the national psyche.

    By far the most disturbing quote from the L.A. Times piece:

    We’re going to arm you with Christian Patriot missiles,” Ham, 54, recently told the 1,200 adults gathered at Calvary Temple here in northern New Jersey.

    sick

  3. How can we have modern breeds of dog like the poodle if God finished his work 6,000 years ago? He created a dog “kind” — a master blueprint — and let evolution take over from there.

    That is from the news story as to what some of his literature answers. So the poodle “evolved” from something like a dog master blue print but humans didnt evolve from something like a human blue print?
    And holy bajesus the whole cave painting thing (if you read the whole story) You think they are going to paint a herbavore dinosaur or the big ass im going to kill you dinosaur on their cave walls. A painting of something he thinks could be something else does not combat the fact that there are about a billion other cave paintings that do NOT have dinosaurs in them anywhere. No wonder we are starting to fall behind the rest of the world in science. Parents burn this garbage into their kids heads.

  4. It’s about the same as trying to figure out how a person with a science degree can really, really believe that evolution is a lie and the world was created six thousand years ago. Aparently there are such creatures around, and – being self-prophetic, they haven’t evolved either.
    I always thought in my younger days that, sure, there were people around who believed in the bible verbatumbut that they were uneducated hicks who just fell off the back of a cabbage truck.
    Imagine my horror when I discovered there were
    1. Well educated people who believed in Creationism, and
    2. Western Educated Islamic extremists!
    I guess there is a scientific explanation and even a term to descibe these people but I prefer my own: just fucking nuts!

  5. I know it’s completely unwarranted, but whenever I hear about the lastest crap this guy is trying to stuff into the heads of schoolkids I feel a little embarrassed… because he’s from the same country as me.

    Like I said, completely unwarranted. Especially since his antics would never be tolerated here.

  6. Meh, I’ve nearly given up caring about what creationists are doing. They’re going to do it regardless of what I think, so I find it fruitless to give a damn anymore. I’m not going to be living on this planet forever, so I figure I can just ignore all the people I disagree with until I die. Sorry for sounding selfish, but I honestly don’t care about the future generations who will be around when I’m dead (I feel the same about the people who lived long before me). As long as I’m happy with my life, other people can screw up the world as much as they want.

  7. Holy shit.  Way to indoctrinate the young-uns!  I think we’re headed towards a surge of God’s Army.

    Religious “faith” is such a hard thing to battle.

    A gal in one of my classes recently commented that there aren’t enough hours in the day.  Another gal, a “Christianity is awesome!” proponent, said, “Actually, the days were designed to have just enough hours in them.  Maybe you’re trying to accomplish too much.”

    Higher education my ass.

  8. I used to hold some solace that, eventually, these peck-heads would die-off, and the younger generations would act in a more rational way in the world.  But now there are new crops of hypno-mind-fucked Lil assholes being FARMED like illiterate cattle (wait, that’s redundant… you know what I mean).
    At some point, when these turds grow up, the mental arsenic they’re being fed will be annihilated by the reality of a world that increasingly displays their Jesus-voodoo upbringing null and void. 
    Lets hope anyway.

  9. Meh, I’ve nearly given up caring about what creationists are doing. They’re going to do it regardless of what I think, so I find it fruitless to give a damn anymore. I’m not going to be living on this planet forever, so I figure I can just ignore all the people I disagree with until I die.

    Problem is just that these all kind religious terrorists don’t let other people live like they want because it’s ultimate totalitarian control what they desire.

    “Everything Hitler did to the Jews, all the horribly unspeakable misdeeds, had already been done to the smitten people before by the Christian churches. . . . The isolation of Jews into ghetto camps, the wearing of the yellow spot, the burning of Jewish books, and finally the burning of the people – Hitler learned it all from the church. However, the church burned Jewish women and children alive, while Hitler granted them a quicker death, choking them first with gas.”
    -Dagobert Runes

    “Men never do evil so cheerfully and so completely as when they do so from religious conviction.”
    -Blaise Pascal

  10. I’m thinking more about the majority who are really harmless (realistically). Terrorists are a whole other category to me.

  11. “Big concerns grow from small concerns. You plant them, water them with tears, fertilize them with unconcern. If you ignore them, they grow.”
    Babylon 5 – Londo Mollari

    You know, it would be real evolutionary step if US would start aplying this:

    The law is not meant to protect the idiots.
    —unknown French judge

  12. Hey, look at the bright side:

    They’re training the next generation of burger flippers, chicken fryers and burrito wrappers.

    I mean, really. If these kids ever get a clue how the world works, they might expect (or even get) decent jobs at decent wages when they grow up. That conflicts with corporate outsourcing, which simply won’t do at all. Therefore, crush any possibility that these kids will ever be qualified to function in a modern economy, and voila!

    Republican macroeconomics in a nutshell.

  13. Apologies if this posts twice…it didn’t seem to take the first time.

    Obviously he is just desperate….understandably, since adults who put a little thought into such a matter would be appalled. Then again, i’m not even so sure about that anymore…

    These people aren’t desperate..they are on the attack. This is their golden opportunity, like nothing else they’ve had in the last 50 years. This is the culmination of the Christian-Right’s 20-year-plan.

    And as Les has shown in several postings of survey results, they are not as much of a “vocal minority” as one might hope.

    And of course, the image of 1200 kids being forced to listen to such drivel as “do you believe God or those evil atheist scientists” is both depressing and infuriating.

    Sadly, I will also defend people’s right to believe pretty much whatever they want—and I leave them alone…I only wish that they would afford me the same courtesy.

    I suppose I’m forced, once again, to apologize on behalf of my religion, and to remind people that an idea isn’t responsible for the people who believe in it.

  14. They’re training the next generation of burger flippers, chicken fryers and burrito wrappers.

    I mean, really. If these kids ever get a clue how the world works, they might expect (or even get) decent jobs at decent wages when they grow up. That conflicts with corporate outsourcing, which simply won’t do at all. Therefore, crush any possibility that these kids will ever be qualified to function in a modern economy, and voila!

    Republican macroeconomics in a nutshell.

    Pretty unclear on how this involves Republicans in any way.

    And don’t kid yourself.  A lot of these kids will go much further than burger flipping, their parents certainly have.  Look where the megachurches are being built.  It ain’t in the ghetto and it isn’t in the sticks.  It is in the suburbs where the congregation that goes to work, has two kids, owns a house and an SUV, and whose kids play soccer and take piano lessons live.

    Intentional ignorance may be stupid, but it does not mean that the individual that is practicing it is stupid.  It allows for a gross underestimation of the IQ on the other side of the evolution debate, and thus an underestimation of what the other side can accomplish.  Something that will only allow for the anti-evolutionists to charge a hill that you and I didn’t think could even be charged.

  15. Sadly, I think Consigliere is correct (imagine that I’d ever say thatwink ). Willful ignorance is the current fashion. Look at president Bush.

    By the way, “sadly” is meant to modify the merit in Consigliere’s words, not meant to imply that it is necessarily tragic that he may have a valid point. It’s not a personal and/or ideological slam. Just wanted to clarify. smile

    *On a personal note, of late my avatars are changing more rapidly than the seasons in Vermont. I just can’t stick with one for too long.*

  16. If a teacher so much as mentions evolution, or the Big Bang, or an era when dinosaurs ruled the Earth, “you put your hand up and you say, ‘Excuse me, were you there?’ Can you remember that?

  17. Considering that Hovind’s schedule, the last time I looked, was all pretty rural, it does seem surprising that Ham’s making it to the megachurches with the same drivel. 

    I think the best way for a teacher to deal with this

    I’ve had one or two who threw chalkboard(not whiteboard) erasers at us.  That heavy felt was dense enough to get a half decent hit with a chalk cloud and not leave incriminating marks and bruises.

  18. Sadie, what is the pic in your current avatar?

    It’s of a young woman at a Love-In in Los Angeles in 1967. I thought she was cute, plus I am a big hippie myself and wish I were alive in those times (I was born in ‘77).

  19. Double-dipping here:

    Puppets, I’m a Simpsons fan, so I enjoy your avatar. cheese

    Ragman, I love basset hounds, so your avatar brings a smile to my face.

    Len’s avatar intrigues me. I can’t tell what is going on there.

    Karst’s disturbs me slightly.

    I still think Jeffercine’s a cutie based on his.

    We ought to have a thread devoted entirely to waxing poetic about each other’s avatars. Pardon me if one exists already.

  20. If some smart arse kid pulled that stunt in a class I was teaching I’d give him a 5000 word assignment, the subject, proving god as the author of the bible using scientific method.

  21. I picked it b/c it’s the stealth basselope from Bloom County.  I kinda want to change it to the one I had on gravatar.

    Serai, you’d probably have the smartass kid(or parent) come back and say it can’t be done, thereby proving the scientific invalid.

  22. Lets see, if I did this right there should be a picture on the right, if not someone tell me how.
    Sort of describes the way I fit into the world.

  23. Serai, you’d probably have the smartass kid(or parent) come back and say it can’t be done, thereby proving the scientific invalid.

    Wouldn’t that just prove their whole argument invalid too? If he’s claiming the book is authored by the creator and that’s why it can be used as proof against evolution, then surely he needs to prove that claim of authorship first?

  24. Proof, since when does proof matter to these people. All the proof these people use against evolution and other things like it are all based on “faith” proof. Because they say their god did it is proof enough and you can’t question gods existence so that proves god exists too. Assbackwards thinking but it it satisfies their needs just fine.

  25. Shit, that is SO depressing.  Poor little kids subjected to mind-control and dogmatic groupthink at such an impressionable age.  Please tell me there is some way to put a stop to this insanity!!!!

  26. Good God Mr Ham!

    Yuhank you so very much for helping to raise a new generation of mindless taxpayers. Oh and one more thing Mr Ham, how do you know God knows or did anything ever? WERE YOU FUCKING THERE?

    So in 20 or so years, juries will be deciding on heresay and ones religous beliefs or social standing
    rather than actually observing scientific facts.

    Remember kids, unless someone was there it really didnt happen.  wink

  27. “Proof denies faith, and without faith, God is nothing”, goes it similar? So I’m not going to send my kids to school, because learning makes the baby Jesus cry. It’s just another test of my faith. School is the devil. Knowledge is what stopped us from living in the Garden of Eden and I ha-….dislike it greatly.

    raspberry Of course, if they weren’t hypocrites, that’s how it would be.

  28. I just saw a programme on TV, the transcript of which is here …

    Narration: Incredibly the next wave of targeted therapies may come from the bottom of the ocean.
    It’s derived from ancient bacteria-3 billion years old.
    Dr Paul Watt: So it turns out that in evolution of ancient bacteria that have been around since the dawn of life are very very diverse in the types of protein they make. So we went to those ancient bacteria to create libraries of shapes or keys that are compatible with disease locks.

    I wonder if Ken Harm ( wink ) was crook he’d go for this type of cure from scientists believing in Evolution … or would he stick with the power of prayer.  LOL

  29. Using ancient bacteria from the bottom of the sea to treat human disease?  Blasphemy!  Everyone knows they just need to pray harder and read their Bibles.  And if they still die, doG works in mysterious ways.

    It does sound like a good argument for preserving exotic ecosystems on land and sea. Instead of burning rain forest to grow sugar cane to make ethanol, maybe we ought to take care of that region.  Y’ never know what might come in handy later.

  30. I live in Georgia and you find nutcases like this everywhere. The chase you around the Walmart parking lot until you are cornered or they catch you before you can lock yourself in your car.

    They are allowed to stand on the corners of major intersections with microphones and yell out to everybody that we are going to hell no matter how much money we have or that we have nice cars and yadda-yadda-yadda. They would say that our money won’t get us into Heaven so we’d better repent right then and there. Religion gets shoved down your throat.

    The only way to escape it is just to stay home but then they come to your door, and look in the windows if you don’t answer, walk around the house front and back to see if they can spot movement inside. I swear I’m not making this up. I tell you they are insane!

  31. what I specially resent is that “Creationism” presents the Christian theory as the only alternative to Evolutionary theory. Suppose, for a moment, that Evolutionism was wrong, how would that prove Creationism is right?: we would have roughly 5,000 theories to contend for the position.

  32. Suppose, for a moment, that Evolutionism was wrong, how would that prove Creationism is right?

    You’re not the first one to make this point. I’ve yet to hear an answer to it from the creationist camp.

  33. If Ken Ham was a biology teacher, he probably wasn’t very talented.
    Perhaps someone should tell him that the bible is just a book which has been written by men.
    So, rejecting all the various domains of science which all plead for evolution just for a simple book, does that really stand for reason?
    Creationists are a total joke, and they don’t even know it (or they don’t want to know it).

  34. The word creationism is in actually a forced and thoughtful process of evolution, the simple fact that god/devil or will be referred to hence forth as godevil, is actually a bacteria which lives in the brain and is mostly dormant as it waits for the body to die so it can feed. Being that it is mostly fed from sugar gives no other reason to the obvious necessity of sugars interacting with the neurotransmiters it relies so heavily upon. The so called character of power, god is a fungal parasite which can mimic human like traits and stimulate the twelve cranial nerves of the brain and in essence communicate or rather create hallucinations along the nerves which are attached to the motor and cerebral cortexs of the brain. The word creationism is mostly a forced path and can be simple stated as the evolutional path of least resistance so in a way it sort of does have some force of path either by intention. The reason that these bacterias do not get eliminated is because the problem of schizophrenia is reactive to one sixth of the population of the world and is far to large of a price tag to treat. The religious zants are mainly a group comprised together in an attempt to keep children afraid of these bacteria so they will not talk to them. But the most obvious attributions to romans and steam power lead people to believe in gods that could open the massive temple doors at will, or even the shroud of turin, being a photograph on cloth, leads one to access what may be going on by these wealthy people and their use of technologies today leading into a wide array of conspiracies, but the simple fact that these bacteria have been around for countless eons even to the point of pre earth, does in some way manage their alien assumptions as they were also dormant in space, but the very simple fact is that these bacteria are very stupid and have no ability beyond the scope of multiple personalities, hallucinations, and other false phenomna that will one day be eliminated and repart along the lines of computer hackers. Also the downfall for these bacteria will be in their ability to communicate with one another or even the host body they live, making them the evil bastard of today.

  35. Really tho the Bible was only writin 1,500 yrs ago an tells of stories from 2,000 yrs ago I fell bad for these kids I mean its good to have faith I guess but to believe ppl popped up out the ground an were the only ppl in a universe with billions of galaxies an billions on solar systems in those galaxies there living in a box they’ll never get out of

  36. Through the passages of time, this ignoramus is telling millions of people that they never lived. Let us suppose (as is likely) that in ten thousand years time a religious group declares the world to be six thousand years old, wiping out you and me, denying we ever existed.
    Trouble with believers is they are a bit soulless.

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