Bill Nye: Creationism Is Not Appropriate For Children


Evolution is the fundamental idea in all of life science, in all of biology. According to Bill Nye, aka “The Science Guy,” if grownups want to “deny evolution and live in your world that’s completely inconsistent with everything we observe in the universe, that’s fine, but don’t make your kids do it because we need them.”

Thanks to Quine for the link

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  1. Bill…Bill…Bill…

    My kids and I loved Bill Nye the Science Guy when they were young. Even I learned a lot from him. And he is correct in what he says here too.

  2. Creationism is not appropriate for children and certainly not appropriate for  living things!

    Put and end to child abuse creationist parents, buy them books other than that 3000 year old snoozer you parents swear by.

  3. He’s a great guy but creationism isn’t unique to the United States.   It’s strong in the UK – but not in the rest of Europe and, of course, almost the entire Muslim world is a creationist one.  As for the US still being the main driver for technological advances – I have my doubts but others may agree with him.

  4.  creationism is not strong in the UK.  its one of the places most resistant to it.  only the muslims and foreigners believe it generally.

  5. You evidently have not heard of the groups of creationists applying, and succeeding, to open creationist schools under the UK government’s “faith” schools initiative.  There are applications from muslim groups as well.  I agree creationists are not anywhere near the majority but they are vocal and pushing their agenda at every opportunity.  Please look at the British Humanist Association’s website and the many threads on this site concerning creationist activity in the UK. 

  6. I think it all depends on what you mean by strong. Is it stronger than it should be? Well given it deserves no place in education then ‘yes’. Is it strong relative to the no. of schools in the UK? I’ve no idea of the stats but given that it seems pretty well any creationist school, ‘museum’ or other public acknowledgement (eg the Giant’s causeway visitor centre mention) seems to find its way into the national press then I’d say no.

    He’s a great guy but creationism isn’t unique to the United States.   It’s strong in the UK –

    It’s illegal in the UK Science National Curriculum and only a very limited number of schools would even look at it:-
    but those that do feature prominently in the media:-

    1. Because the people promoting creationism are publicity seeking preaching fanatics.

    2. Because the scientific and educational establishment jumps on them where they pop up, so they cry “victimisation” and “bullying”, in howls to the press,  when their ridiculous claims are publicly squashed by educated people.

    The creationism in UK schools is not in the secondary science lessons, but in the “Religious Instruction” lessons – mainly  in “faith schools”,   and especially to younger children.

    “Religious Education” is also taught in state (LEA) schools but this is more “about” various religions than indoctrination in one particular “faith”.

    but not in the rest of Europe

    While the Scandinavian countries lead in secular culture, many parts of Europe are still dominated by the RCC.

  8. It perplexes me when people speak in terms
    of  “believing in evolution.” This
    makes it sound as if evolution is a matter of faith rather like religion. When
    creationists tell me that they “don’t believe in evolution,” my usual response
    is to say, “actually, I don’t believe in evolution either. Evolution is a fact,
    not a matter of faith. It has the evidence in its side, creationism doesn’t.”  Then, if they’re still interested, I discuss the evidence with them.  

  9.  I personally find that creationists and evolutionists assume meaning for terms which causes each to misunderstand and misrepresent each other.  As a creationist I believe in evolution (within definable limits). As an evolutionist you must have faith that information came from nothing. This is a belief and requires faith.      I for one would love to understand why wikipedia so wrongly describes young earth creationism, when evidence likes this exists:, ill bet it is based on the faith 0f the author

  10. I dunno. Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy … it seems as though kids thrive on fairy tales and don’t come out the worse for wear.

    The difference is that most kids outgrow the need to believe in Santa and their parents accept that change as a part of maturation. Yet adult Christian fundamentalists become indignant if their kids no longer accept the story of Genesis as anything other than a parable.

  11. It is nothing wrong with a creationism as an opinion – intuitively it is hard to imagine the outcome(us) as a “natures only” work – still creationism is a criminal doctrine to follow, say one has a cancer and goes to a church (relies on the God’s will = creationism) rather then doctors(which are educated on the base of science).

  12.  If we assume that the intelligence of inhabitants of places like Louisiana and Tennessee has the same normal distribution as in less primitive areas our explanation of the persistence of belief in creationism in these places cannot be simply stupidity, though it obviously plays its part.

    iamhvnbndru’s comment, “As an evolutionist you must have faith that information came from nothing.” demonstrates what might be the major cognitive problem. Incidentally, thanks for the link iamhvnbndru, it’s a long time since I last saw something quite that comprehensively moronic! …very amusing.

    Creationists simply do not comprehend the process of natural selection. Ask IDiots ‘what is the theory of evolution?’ and they are unable even to articulate it, with the most garbled and chaotic part of any such attempt seeming usually to relate to natural selection. Many of these people suffer exclusion from education by those who wish to control them and perhaps it is educational deprivation, rather than disingenuity which prolongs their adherence to such YEC websites.

    In a link from iamhvnbndru’s url there’s an unusual YEC site where fora appear not to use the familiar policy of exclusion by mod’s of cogent and rational comments. Reading through a thread ‘Requesting Help From Old Universe Believers’ on that site I’m struck by the nature of the misunderstandings as much as by the ignorance displayed.

    Differences of scale, of both time and space, are quite commonly not grasped. As when one poster is unable to understand the role of gravity in the shaping of the moon as a sphere and also appears shaky on Newtonian mechanics. Another appears unable to grasp orders of magnitude when speaking of the known half lives of different elemental isotopes, arguing that half life variability (and error margins) might be such that the age of the earth is +/- 6000 years. But note the attempt to agree with current empirical data and to find respectable research which supports their presuppositions.

    It’s interesting that their more serious posters do not dismiss scientific method ex hypothesi but, either through a limited understanding of the integrity of what is known or by the use of flawed logic and misunderstood (maybe badly taught) science, attempt to use science to ‘prove’ their points. And this is all conducted quite politely (see posts by ‘banned’, a 19 year old Ottowa atheist).

    This is the first example I have found of a real attempt at dialogue by Creationists with ‘Old Universe Believers’. Could some of them be educable?

  13. I’ve loved watching Bill Nye since I can remember.  Growing up in Seattle, he was a regular guest on a show called “Almost Live” in the early to mid 1980’s which came on Saturday nights on the NBC affiliate at 11:00 p.m., right before Saturday Night Live.  He was fantastically entertaining to me, even as a kid.  I was pleased when he got a national show and am even more pleased that he has been using his fame to speak out against the pernicious and continued attempts to spread creationism in this country.

    What is particularly scary to me is that two brothers that I grew up with in the Seattle area, and have been friends with most of my life, now are working in the camp for those trying to push creationism on children.  They have since moved to Alaska.  One, even though he is an atheist and accepts evolution (he actually thanks me for that because of the arguments I made to him when we were in High School together back in the 80’s) nonetheless was a campaign manager for Alaskan candidate Joe Miller.  The other brother, my longest and closest friend for most of my life, has gone even further — he is now a proponent of ID, believes that religion should be permitted in schools and government, opposes gay marriage, is antagonistic to atheism and uncritically accepts the quote-mining theists attacks on Prof. Dawkins and other atheists (we just had a massive text message debate about this last night and this morning — he simply won’t actually read or watch anything from Prof. Dawkins to find out what he really says, instead accepting what others have said he says), etc.

    It is truly frustrating because my friend genuinely is intelligent.  But living in same community as Palin and existing withing a closed loop where all his views are reinforced makes it harder and harder to have real discussions with him about anything more than how the Seattle Seahawks are going to do this year.  We had a debate a few years ago about ID v. Evolution.  I told him I would read whatever ID books he wanted me to, and he would read whatever Evolution book I recommended and then we could discuss.  I actually read two ID books (“Of Pandas and People” and “Darwin’s Black Box”).  He never read the book I asked him to (“Why Evolution is True” by Coyne).  Naturally, the discussion never took place.  He simply retreated to the refrain that “I am never going to change your mind, and you are never going to change mine, so let’s drop it” and the other refrains that evolution and atheism are just as much religions as religion.  No amount of discussion will shake him from these mantras.

    It is frustrating feeling like I have lost him completely.  It is even more frustrating to know that he actually is quite intelligent, but uses his intelligence to better defend his already made conclusion than using it to challenge them.  I’ve had no luck reaching a dear friend, and am at a complete loss as to how to proceed, or if it is even worth it to try.  How do you reach someone who doesn’t wish to hear anything he doesn’t already believe?  I fear my interaction is just a microcosm of the whole issue.

  14. I think Bill Nye is very brave taking a position against  religionists who now permeate the US educational system.

  15. The key here is they “come out or outgrow their sillyness , just as puberty kicks in. Evangelicals and Muslims are not allowed, on pain of death in some cases to outgrow this sillyness.

  16. Lawyering language is one of Americas great pass times. Read Wittgenstein then Chomshy to get a glimmer of how harmful it really is.

  17. Tony Blair actually funded Sharia in British schools and was handsomely rewarded for it.

  18. How do you reach someone who doesn’t wish to hear anything he doesn’t already believe?

    One possible way would be to consult with a surgical oncologist about excising the neoplasm present in his brain. No tumor you say? Then you can’t. To lessen your frustration however, you can certainly maintain hope that people grow and change. But, you’re not doing yourself or anyone any favors by ironically mirroring his delusion by looking for something that isn’t there.


  19. You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink when its already had the Kool Aid. Sigh.

  20.   bluebird”…Carl Sagan…”  I forget  Mr. Nye is part of the Planetary Society.  In fact, he is CEO.… 

    The British Interplanetary Society is the UK equivalent of the Planetary Society –   It was led in early years by Arthur  C. Clarke. –

    YECs are figures of comedy to planetary scientists. (albeit ones who are dangerous to education)

    Alan FBIS

      jim mcdonagh

    Tony Blair actually funded Sharia in British schools and was handsomely rewarded for it.

    Blair was a closet Catholic and a Bush-Buddy buying support where he could to keep power.

  21.    iamhvnbndru
          I for one would love to
    understand why wikipedia so wrongly describes young earth creationism, when evidence likes this exists:, ill bet it is based on the faith 0f the author

    MMmmmmm   Like the multifarious beliefs:-  all contradictory beliefs of  TRrrooooo Xtians, perhaps it’s not the TRRrrooooo version of YEC ? 

    Or it simply contains those dreadful objective SCIENTIFIC FACTS, YEC  followers choose to dislike and deny! 
    Still “young earth org’s” linked  “evidence”, is a comedy of cherry picked cluelessness, which totally ignores all the core scientific evidence available on those subjects!…  – Young Earth creationism (YEC) is the religious belief[1] that the Universe, Earth, and all life on Earth were created by direct acts of the Abrahamic God during a relatively short period, sometime between 5,700 and 10,000 years ago.[2] Its primary adherents are those Christians and Jews[3] who believe that God created the Earth in six 24-hour days, using a literal interpretation of the Genesis creation narrative as a basis.

    ….Although many young Earth creationists (YECs) are active in the development of creation science, an endeavor that holds that the events associated with supernatural creation can be evidenced and modeled through an interpretation of the scientific method, the consensus among scientists is that creation science is unscientific in both conception and methodology

    The scientific consensus, supported by a 2006 statement by 68 national and international science academies, is that it is evidence-based fact derived from observations and experiments in multiple scientific disciplines that the universe has existed for around 13 billion years, that the Earth was formed about 4.5 billion years ago with life first appearing at least 2.5 billion years ago.

    Looking over it, it looks accurate to me!  Perhaps there is a failure to recognise their own “faith”.

    – But like most YEC statements iamhvnbndru merely asserts that Wiki is wrong without producing specifics, explanations  or evidence.
    They really think that cherry-picked incredulity is evidence which will impress others, and are surprised that scientists find these simplistic misconceptions laughable.

  22. Aaaargh, that reminds me of  “banana man” RC’s book, and his sidekick “crocoduck” 🙁

  23. Enkidu 90046 — obviously your poor friend has been ensnared by one of those alarming fundie religions & needs serious deprogramming.

  24. iamhvnbndru

    Hi, I have a question for you. Do you think it’s possible the position you claim to be defined best as YEC could be completely wrong? Thanks.


  25. Was just watching one of his episodes in class yesterday, a very nice one about the complete history of Communication. I do wish we had watched this in class instead though. So much of our youth is misguided, and or never question anymore. It’s terrible.

  26. Agreed, there’s so much rubbish being taught in Muslim schools, even in modern Britain. There’s a video somewhere on YouTube of Dawkins interviewing some young Muslim schoolgirls who refuse to believe that pure water and salt water don’t mix, because the Qur’an says so…

  27. “As an evolutionist you must have faith that information came from nothing. This is a belief and requires faith.”

    I don’t understand that at all. What exactly is there about evolution that requires a belief that “information came from nothing”? I’m not even sure what that means. But I think the mistake you are making is a common one. You are identifying some bit of evolutionary theory that isn’t fully understood yet and saying since we don’t understand how it happens we have to have faith. Well, no we don’t. That is the difference between science and religion. Science never claims to have a complete answer. Science recognizes that there are parts of any theory that aren’t understood yet. That has nothing to do with faith. 

  28. I’ve seen the woman in that video before.  I am pretty sure that Michael Shermer interviewed her at length a few years ago.  If memory serves me correctly, she is not only a creationist, but a young earth creationist.  One wonders how she was able to get a Ph.D. in molecular biology and continue to hold her beliefs.

  29. Playing devil’s advocate. Have you ever seen a photograph of a ruby-lipped bat fish?

    With a straight face, please describe the environment that would provide the evolutionary pressure to create that.


      Red Dog

    “As an evolutionist you must have faith that information came from nothing. This is a belief and requires faith.”

    I don’t understand that at all.

    What it is  saying is, that with no concept of verifiable research, evolutionary scientists are viewed by YECs as a mirror image of their own faith-based vacuous beliefs.

    What exactly is there about evolution
    that requires a belief that “information came from nothing”? I’m not
    even sure what that means.

    Once again, there is no YEC concept of verified scientific research!  If information did not come from the supernatural it must have come from “nothing”!

    It is interesting that iamhvnbndru claimed, 

    “I enjoy being scientifically incompetent. It pays the bills, as I am
    the lead architect for the largest information security investigations
    in the UK.” – here –

     …  … but in the same post pontificated about Mt St. Helen’s supposedly excavating a “canyon”,  he had not researched enough to know that far from “excavating a canyon”, if actually partially filled in a valley with hundreds of feet of ash and rock, damming a lake in the process!  He also confused carbon “soot” with volcanic ash!

    How long would you have predicted the recovery before the grand eruption that landed soot all over my car in Colorado?

    A  YEC posing as an expert on volcanology and data investigation – and he cannot find the details  on a well documented eruption, does not know the chemical composition of volcanic ash, and then  seems to be confusing volcanic deposition with erosion of marine sediments!

    It looks like standard YEC “evidence”. –   Pose as an authority and spout nonsense which would fail school science or geography exams.

    I thought this comment illustrated the “reflected projected image” of  mutual blind belief.

    personally find that creationists and evolutionists assume meaning for
    terms which causes each to misunderstand and misrepresent each other.

    YE Creationists like to bandy around scientific terms, but generally have no concept of the meanings behind those scientific terms.  The converse is not so.  The assertion it is, is simply an attempt at false equivalence.

    Scientists certainly do recognise the simplistic nonsense of YE creationist claims, and the sheer lack of knowledge, lack of proper investigation and lack of understanding they show!

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