Bill Nye, Ken Ham Debate Barely Touched Evolution, Impresses No One

The results for the Ken Ham, Bill Nye debate are in and the majority of people feel the science guy won this round.

In a related report by The Inquisitr, if you want to watch the Bill Nye, Ken Ham debate video it’ll be online for a limited amount of time (click the link to watch). In the future you’ll have to purchase Uncensored Science: Bill Nye Debates Ken Ham since the fee Nye charged for showing up was about double the amount of income they generated from ticket sales (it was a relatively small auditorium).

Although the debate was supposedly going to focus on evolution it seemed the primary focus was on the age of the Earth and the accuracy of the estimates provided by dating methods. In fact, Nye started his presentation on that very point and attacked the Bible as a source for scientific authority. Ham responded with videos show several scientists like Ray Damadian, inventor of the MRI scanner, saying they can easily reconcile their literal interpretation of Genesis with their scientific work.

Even before the debate began, some people felt both sides were wrong based upon their starting points. Nye was approaching the topic from an atheistic point of view while Ham presented his beliefs as a young Earth creationist, which some labeled as a false dichotomy. So where does that leave all the other people who are in the middle?

For example, Michael Behe, one of the founders of the Intelligent Design movement, accepts the majority of evolutionary theory and didn’t find the debate impressive:

“I was upset that both the parties kept talking on about the age of the Earth than on the elegance and complexities of life. I think neither of them did too well.”

When talking to some people, it seems that many feel that Ken Ham did a better job at making his presentation even when people personally disagreed with him. Personally, this does not surprise me. Ham has made a career over debating evolution and he makes presentations all the time.

According to public polls, my peers must be in the minority since 92 percent of the 37,000 people who responded to a Christian Today poll say Bill Nye won the debate. But my gut feeling is that Darwinists flooded the poll with their votes since the latest Gallup poll on the subject says 46 percent of Americans believe in some form of young earth creationism.

Regardless of who “won,” I’ve met Ken in person and his biggest problem is that he’s not flexible. That’s part of the reason his Answers In Genesis organization had a such big split a few years back and why he doesn’t get along with people like me. I consider myself a middle earth (not hobbits!) intelligent evo-creationist, which is my own term since I’m such an oddball. The short explanation for this middle ground belief is that I don’t care too much about the age of the earth estimates (which is why I found the debate boring) and I’m pragmatic over whether front-loaded or rapid evolution is possible in addition to a combination of natural and creation events.

As an example of how muddled the situation can be, some bacteria will, when under stressful environments, purposefully scramble targeted sections of DNA when replicating. Technically, that’s evolution, but it’s also self-modification and quasi-directed. As another example, I was just checking out an object recognition method that models after genetic algorithms and it doesn’t work unless you front-load a large amount of correct data first for it to build upon. Standard evolutionary theory doesn’t call for direction, whether it be progress or information degradation (in turn, DNA data loss can potentially lead to progress over many iterations via indirect paths according to theory). Nor is the frontloading hypothesis part of the older ideas.

Thus the debate leaves out many people who believe God somehow used evolution, although these beliefs tend to take away the randomness in the random mutation part of the equation, or rely on religious philosophies related to free will and predetermination. In the last 10 years, some scientists have acknowledged the limitations of the modern synthesis and have attempted to bridge the gap with hypotheses such as evo devo, horizontal gene transfer, and others. But for many scientists God can still be found somewhere in the equation.

Who do you think won the Ken Ham, Bill Nye debate?